Skip to main content
Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free

Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free

By Melissa Clark
Hi! I’m Melissa Clark, a professional counselor. In this podcast, we’ll be talking about different topics related to mental health from a Christian perspective. You’ll be hearing from experts in the field, my personal friends, and sometimes - just me sharing my stories and perspectives on these topics.
Listen on
Where to listen
Apple Podcasts Logo

Apple Podcasts

Spotify Logo

Spotify

Stitcher Logo

Stitcher

Currently playing episode

Marriage and Blended Families:: Interview with Vanessa Martindale [Episode32]

Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free

1x
Fighting Forward : An Interview with Hannah Brencher :: [Episode 39]
Hello Friends and welcome to Season 2 of Thrive and the Art of Living Free!  We made it through 2020 - can you believe it? I'm so excited to be starting Season 2 and we're starting with a new format!  I loved learning about what worked well last season and I'm changing up a few things for this one. I have some really exciting things in store for you plus a few surprises this season!  Today, I'm joined by author, Hannah Brencher. Hannah is a mental health advocate, viral TED speaker, and new mom. She has recently written a book, called Fighting Forward and it is amazing! With a large pile of hope for those who long to move from anxiety and fear into action steps. It will encourage you to savor the milestones you've already reached, root yourself in the next small step,  welcome healthy routines into your day, and apply grace like sunscreen in the process of your own becoming. We also chat about: the heart behind Hannah's book and the idea of fighting forward  fear of failure and the idea that failure is not necessarily a negative thing  Hannah shares practical ways to fight forward in a strategic way  Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts   Click here to listen on Spotify  Click here to listen on Stitcher     Resources  Fighting Forward: Your Nitty-Gritty Guide to Beating the Lies That Hold You Back by Hannah Brencher The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones by James Clear I loved the conversation with Hannah today and I hope that you did as well.  Be sure to subscribe in iTunes and slap some stars on a review for Season 2! Have a great week!  Melissa
34:34
January 15, 2021
Pursuing Purpose: An Interview with Rachel Swanson :: [Episode 38]
Today on the show, I am talking with Rachel Swanson.  Rachel C. Swanson is a best-selling author, national speaker, podcaster, and accredited life coach. She’s passionate about refining away the barriers that are holding others back and restoring their hearts and minds back to God’s truth. Married for thirteen years to her husband Jeff, they recently relocated their tribe of “Wannabe Triplets” from the bustling sprawl of Southern California to the rural hills of Southern Idaho. We are talking about: Her book, Refine and Restore: Revive Your Heart and Release Your Purpose We discuss the definition of purpose We explore the impact of pursuing purpose and your mental health How lies keep us from pursuing our purpose Why journaling is so helpful Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts   Click here to listen on Spotify  Click here to listen on Stitcher      Hope you loved this episode! Be sure to subscribe on iTunes and slap some 5 stars on a review! :) Have a great week! Melissa
33:45
November 20, 2020
Finding Quiet :: Jamie Grace :: [Episode37]
Today we are talking with Jamie Grace.  Jamie Grace is a two-time Grammy-nominated singer, songwriter, and actress. Diagnosed with Tourette Syndrome, OCD, ADHD, and anxiety at a young age, Jamie actively advocates for joy, wellness, and mental health through the lens of music, film, and faith. An entertainer at heart, she regularly creates fresh content, including new music and weekly videos and episodes of The Jamie Grace Podcast. When she isn't touring, Jamie lives in Southern California with her husband, Aaron, and daughter, Isabella Brave. We talk about: Jamie’s mental health and how it impacts her pursuit of purpose. Jamie’s new book, Finding Quiet. Ways can we work towards our purpose in spite of not being enough. How “failure” has impacted Jamie’s journey. Jamie’s thoughts on social media and its influence on how we pursue purpose. Jamie also offers encouragement, reminding us that we don’t have to be perfect in order to pursue our dreams and passions. Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts   Click here to listen on Spotify    Click here to listen on Stitcher      I felt like my voice didn’t matter and my words don’t hold value. What can seem like a strength can become one of my greatest weaknesses when I allow it to translate into feelings of not being “enough” if I can’t find, create, or even be the cure. Every day that we wake up, we are faced with the choice of pursuing our calling and our purpose, or giving in to doubt, negativity, and the schemes that are against the very thing we should be living for. I hope you love this episode! Be sure to subscribe on iTunes and leave a review! Have a great week! Melissa
43:11
November 6, 2020
Sexual Health in your Marriage with Heather Seguin :: [Episode 35]
I'm joined today by Heather Seguin, LMFT. Heather is passionate about helping people live free from shame and be deeply connected to the people they love. She is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. She is also a Certified Sex Addiction Therapist and Certified Clinical Partner Specialist-Candidate and has completed training in Gottman Method Couples Therapy. Heather has been featured on numerous podcasts and webinars, sharing her perspective on sexual healing and wholeness. She is rooted in the belief that every person is made in the image of God and is therefore imbued with great dignity. Heather loves partnering with Jesus to see people’s lives transformed and filled with joy. In this episode, we talk about: ❤️ How sex can be a capstone of intimacy. 😊 Why trust is foundational for creating a healthy sexual relationship. 😲 What prevents sexual connection. 🔥 What’s getting in the way of building a strong sexual connection. 👏🏻 Habits that foster sexual connection. Listen now: I hope you love this episode! Be sure to subscribe on iTunes and slap some stars on a review! Have a great week! Melissa
36:35
October 23, 2020
Creating Strong Marriages with Rachael Gilbert :: [Episode 34]
I'm joined today by Rachael Gilbert.  Rachael is a homeschooling momma of three, business owner, marriage and family therapist, blogger, certified marketing coach, the creator of The Intentional Influencer, and the podcast host of Real Talk with Rachael. Rachael helps women find their voice and be brave enough to use it. She loves to equip women to get real, live free, and pursue their God-given dreams.  You can follow her at www.rachaelgilbert.com as well as on Facebook and Instagram. We talk about: 😲 How conflict is often unresolvable but understanding is always available. 🙌🏻 God’s design for marriage. ❤️ Biblical ways to practice conflict resolution. 🔥 Why you need to improve your conflict style. 👏🏻 Tangible, practical tools for creating healthy marriages. Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts   Click here to listen on Spotify  Click here to listen on Stitcher      . I hope you love this episode! Be sure to subscribe on Apple Podcasts and slap some stars on a review! Have a great week! Melissa
33:40
October 16, 2020
Enneagram & Relationships :: Interview with Callie Ammons [Episode33]
I'm joined today by my dear friend Callie Ammons. Callie is a type 3 Enneagram life coach, podcaster, and speaker!  Four years ago, Callie went on a journey of trying to understand who she was at her core - who God made her to be. She quickly realized that her feelings of being "stuck", were not something that could be fixed by chai tea lattes. Through this process, she learned the true power of God's Word, our minds, and the Enneagram - leading her to become a certified Enneagram life coach. If you want to know your Enneagram number, check out the following information. We talk about: 😲 The importance of humility in your relationship. 🙌🏻 How understanding your Enneagram number can help improve your conflict style. ❤️ The power of understanding ourselves and others 🔥 Don't assume intent from your partner. Take time to ask questions to clarify. 👏🏻 Any number can work together. Your relationship health isn't dependent on your number. Rather, it's dependent on your heart condition. Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts   Click here to listen on Spotify  Click here to listen on Stitcher    Links to great things we discussed: Callie Ammons  The Path Between Us  Enneagram and Coffee  Typology Podcast  Hope you loved this episode! Be sure to subscribe in iTunes and slap some stars on a review! :) Have a great week! Melissa
46:03
October 9, 2020
Marriage and Blended Families:: Interview with Vanessa Martindale [Episode32]
I'm joined today by my dear friend Vanessa Martindale. Vanessa is a genuine and enthusiastic believer who loves Jesus, the bible, and His people. She is a Christian wife and mother, registered nurse and current Graduate Student at The Kings University pursuing a Master'sDegree as a Marriage and Family therapist.  She is also a corporate bible study leader, serves at Gateway Church as the Blending Families Equip Class teacher. Vanessa and her husband Scott,  are a blended family with four sons. Together they are the founders of Blended Kingdom Families, a Christian ministry, recommends committed to equipping and educating blended families with resources and practical skills through the truth of God’s word. Vanessa and Scott also host a weekly podcast show. We talk about: Her story with her blended family Common pitfalls she sees with blended families The one thing she recommend every couple do daily to protect their marriage Practical, tangible tools to help blended families Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts    Click here to listen on Spotify    Click here to listen on Stitcher    Hope you loved this episode! Be sure to subscribe in iTunes and slap some stars on a review! :) Have a great week! Melissa
48:51
October 2, 2020
Do Not Enter Zones:: Interview with Kat Armstrong [Episode31]
I'm joined today by the amazing Kat Armstrong. Kat has been emboldening women to be all-in for Jesus for twenty years as a speaker, Bible teacher, author, and podcast host. She is the author of No More Holding Back and The In-Between Place. As co-founder of The Polished Network, a nonprofit connecting and gathering working women to navigate career and explore faith, her mission is to create holy curiosity. Kat holds a master of christian education from Dallas Theological Seminary. She and her husband, Aaron, have been married for eighteen years, and live in Dallas, Texas, with their son, Caleb. They attend Dallas Bible Church, where Aaron serves as the lead pastor. We talk about: How shame holds us back from seeing our true worth Kat shares a personal story about shame in her life Why women are vulnerable to feeling shame Practical, tangible ways to let go of shame Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts   Click here to listen on Spotify   Click here to listen on Stitcher    Favorite Quotes: Shame doesn’t lead to health, God doesn’t want you to feel shame. Instead of shame practice holy curiosity. Shame means that we believe we deserve bad things in life. Jesus wants you to live an abundant life, shame doesn’t lead to abundance or health. Practical ways to let go of shame: Name the Zone - be honest with yourself Imagine God coming into the do not enter zone. Process what is truth about this zone Imagine leaving the do not enter zone Share this with a trusted friend Links:  Subscribe to Kat's bi-monthly newsletter here. Pre-order The In-Between Place book here. Follow Kat on Instagram here. Follow Kat on  Facebook page Learn more about The Polished Network here. Hope you loved this episode! Be sure to subscribe in iTunes and slap some stars on a review! :) Have a great week! Melissa
41:36
September 25, 2020
How Shame Keeps You From Your Purpose: An Interview with Alli Worthington:: [ Episode 30]
Today we are talking with my friend, my coach, my mentor, Alli Worthington. Alli is a wife and mom of five sons. She lives outside of Nashville in a loud, messy, testosterone-filled house with the only golden retriever who refuses to retrieve. She’s also a coach who is obsessed with helping women be more successful in their careers, businesses, and entrepreneurial pursuits. She has a new book called Standing Strong. In this episode,  we continue the conversation about shame. God created a plan and purpose for us all.  Shame wants to keep your dream hidden. Instead of creating a culture of try, shame creates a culture of doubt. We become hyper focused on our flaws, failures, and limitations. We also talk about: Shame prevents us from pursuing our calling Why shame is never helpful Her new book Standing Strong The difference of humility and shame Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts   Click here to listen on Spotify   Click here to listen on Stitcher    Favorite Quotes: Shame is a feeling that we are inherently wrong. We confuse humility with beating ourselves up emotionally and mentally. Shame doesn’t lead to growth. Humility creates growth and change. When we are self-focused, we become self-absorbed. Shame causes us to focus on ourselves. Shame leads to anxiety, this anxiety causes us to doubt ourselves and the calling that God has for each of us. Whenever you make a decision, ask yourself if this is going to please and honor God? Or, is this going to make the enemy happy? Links to great things we discussed: Alli Worthington Standing Strong  Healing the Shame that Binds You  Hope you loved this episode! Be sure to subscribe in iTunes and slap some stars on a review! :) Have a great week! Melissa
40:28
September 18, 2020
Effects of Shame On Your Brain: Interview with Bob Hamp :: [Episode 29]
I'm joined today by one of my-all time favorite people, Bob Hamp. Bob and his wife Polly (who was on Episode 4) are the founders of Think Differently Live Differently Counseling, Consulting, Coaching, and Connecting. Bob has been instrumental in my life, and I am so excited about this interview. In our chat, Bob talks about the effect of shame on the brain. He discusses how shame rewires the way our brain functions. We also talk about: How shame keeps us from freedom How Christians are vulnerable to shame traps The effect of shame on the brain Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts  Click here to listen on Spotify    Click here to listen on Stitcher      Favorite quotes: Freedom is the ability to live life as you were created to be. . Your capacity to attach to others is dependent on your ability to attach to yourself. Shame fears disconnection. This fear results in disconnection. Links to great things we discussed: 1. Bob Hamp 2. TD ACAD 3. Think Differently Live Differently  I hope you love this episode! Be sure to subscribe on Apple Podcasts and slap some stars on a review! :) Have a great week! Melissa
50:29
September 11, 2020
Break Free from Shame :: Interview with Denise Pass [Episode 28]
We are starting a new series this month about shame. I love Brene Brown’s definition of shame, “Shame is the intensely painful feeling or experience of believing that we are flawed and therefore unworthy of love and belonging – something we’ve experienced, done, or failed to do makes us unworthy of connection.” Through this series, you’ll hear important stories about how shame keeps us from our true selves. I hope these conversations inspire you to see your true self, your God-designed self. I hope you bravely challenge shame patterns and learn tangible ways to release shame. We are starting off the series with Denise Pass, she’s author/Speaker/Worship Leader/Songwriter/CCM Artist/Podcaster. She loves to create and find new ways to communicate God’s lavish grace and forgiveness. She wrote two books, “Shame Off You” and “31 Days to Hope Reinvented”, from a place of needing to heal and find answers as well as a burning desire for her suffering to not be in vain—she just wanted to help someone else overcome, too. We also talk about: -Ways to break free from shame-based thinking -Explored the power of truth, humility, and grace -Why shame is never healthy or helpful Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts Click here to listen on Spotify   Click here to listen on Stitcher    I hope that you loved this episode! Be sure to subscribe on iTunes so you never miss a show. Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show. Have a great week! Melissa
40:53
September 4, 2020
Creating healthy relationships with your children: Interview with Janet Newberry [Episode 27]
I'm joined today by the inspiring Janet Newberry who has helped families adopt a culture of love. Janet Newberry is an educational consultant and an unshakeable believer in the transforming power of love. Janet and her husband Doug offer a weekly LOVE IS FEARLESS podcast and support families in both an online community called John 15 Academy and in private consulting. Janet dives deep into how parents can foster healthy, strong relationships with their children. Also, we  discuss her powerful book, Education by Design. We also talk about: How children are running on dopamine and cortisol instead of oxytocin Discuss the importance of trust in the parenting relationship How children are designed Punishment versus rehabilitation Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts Click here to listen on Spotify   Click here to listen on Stitcher    I hope you loved this episode! Be sure to subscribe on Apple Podcasts and slap some stars on a review! :) Have a great week! Melissa
49:07
August 28, 2020
Counselor On-Call: Bonus Episode: Cultivating Resiliency
In this short episode, I share with you the value and importance of cultivating resiliency.  I think this is what we do with our kids. We see them struggling, especially now. We want to help ease their wrestling and struggling. But if we do this for our kids, then they won’t develop the skills and strength they’ll need when they step out into the world as adults. Instead, parents need to help foster emotional resiliency in their kids. Emotional resilience refers to one's ability to adapt to stressful situations or crises. I believe this is needed now more than ever. Kids are facing a new online world. School, band lessons, play dates, everything is virtual. Physical connection is limited to immediate family and maybe a COVID circle. Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts Click here to listen on Spotify   Click here to listen on Stitcher    Favorite quotes: “We want to help ease their wrestling and struggling. But if we do this for our kids, then they won’t develop the skills and strength they’ll need when they step out into the world as adults. ” “It’s hard to watch our children struggle.” “We aren’t born resilient. Resiliency is a choice. It’s a choice to get back up after difficulties arise.” I hope you love this episode! Be sure to subscribe on iTunes and slap some stars on a review! :) Have a great week! Melissa
11:31
August 26, 2020
Episode 26: Creating resiliency in our children with Kari Kampakis
How do I help my teen develop strong relationships? How do I handle conflict resolution with my child? What are ways to cultivate resiliency? Like many parents, these are questions I’ve been asking lately. I’m also hearing these questions come up in my counseling practice. If you’re a parent with these kinds of questions, join me and my new friend Kari Kampakis as we continue the discussion on kids, going back to school, and resiliency. Kari shares how she is honest with her daughters about her personal failures and mistakes in order to bring reconciliation to the relationship. We also chat about: her new book, Loving Her Well: 10 Ways to Find Joy and Connection with your Teenage Daughter. ways to incorporate faith into your parenting practice without being forceful. how to navigate conflict resolution with your teenager. practical ways to cultivate resiliency, even in the midst of a pandemic. Listen now:  Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts   Click here to listen on Spotify   Click here to listen on Stitcher    Favorite quotes: “My biggest concern is the kids who don’t have the support they need to navigate what will likely be a difficult school year.” “Teenagers are a lot like Ferrari's: amazing potential but they need a lot of help learning to navigate the path ahead of them.” “Be the initiation of the relationship. Your child isn’t likely going to come to you saying, ‘I would like to work on our relationship.’ Be the one to initiate conversations with your child. Expect a little rejection, but don’t let that stop you. Keep pursuing.” Links to great things we discussed: 1. Girl Mom Podcast 2. 10 Truths Middle Schooler Should Know 3. John Gottman I hope you love this episode! Be sure to subscribe on iTunes and slap some stars on a review! :) Have a great week! Melissa
47:05
August 21, 2020
Episode 25: Helping your child thrive in the midst of a pandemic
Is my child okay? Are they on screens too much? What will this school year look like in the midst of a pandemic? Like many other parents, these are questions I’ve been asking as a parent.I’m also hearing these questions in my counseling practice. Join me and my friend and colleague Michelle Nietert as we continue the discussion on kids, back to school, and resiliency. Michelle shares the powerful lessons she's been learning during quarantine, both clinically and professionally. We also chat about: How parents can help their kids navigate the current culture. The warning signs parents can be looking for if their kids are struggling. Practical tools that keep kids mentally healthy. Screen time boundaries. Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts   Click here to listen on Spotify   Click here to listen on Stitcher    Favorite quotes: “Let’s get back to the basics. Forget about elaborate Pinterest parties and packed social schedules, let's make sure our kids are eating, sleeping, and engaging with others.” “Character isn’t built or destroyed in a day. Don’t panic if your kids are watching a lot of Netflix or are quiet for a day or two. We are all struggling right now.” “If you notice your child acting out behaviorally, their outburst could be because they are feeling scared, upset, or sad. Ask them “What is one thing I can do to make this easier?” Reinforce boundaries and the need for respect while also giving them the skills and language to identify their feelings.” Links to great things we discussed: Counseling Grant Farkle  Counseling Associates  Feelings wheel for kids Michelle Nietert Loved and Cherished book Brave Beauties Podcast I hope you love this episode! Be sure to subscribe on iTunes and slap some stars on a review! :) Have a great week! Melissa
40:25
August 14, 2020
How to Cultivate Resiliency with Lynn Cowell (Episode 24)
I'm joined today by the amazing Lynn Cowell. Lynn Cowell is a member of the Proverbs 31 speaker and writer teams. Lynn passionately writes for women of all ages. Her book for young girls, Brave Beauty, Finding the Fearless You has empowered over 20,000 girls to overcome confidence-defeating thoughts and stand on who Jesus says she is. Lynn dives even deeper today and talks about the struggles children and teens are experiencing each day going through. She bravely shares her parenting mistakes and missteps with the hope of imparting hope and wisdom to help other parents. We also talk about: The current struggles children and teens are facing Why Lynn’s heart is burdened for today’s youth Lynn discusses practical takeaways to help for tweens and teens to explore their identity and help reduce their anxiety and fears How to incorporate faith in the resiliency process Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts    Click here to listen on Spotify    Click here to listen on Stitcher    Favorite quotes: 1. “Lessen fear of failure by helping to make it a ‘when,’ not an ‘if.’” 2. “I love the definition of ‘resiliency’: the power or ability to return to the original form, position, etc., after being bent, compressed, or stretched; elasticity. We can model to our kids that they can ‘“come back’”; they can get back up again by living that out ourselves.” 3. “Look at how we respond to rejection and adversity. What are we modeling? Is failure the worst possible thing that can happen or does it simply mean we try it again in a new way?” 4. “If we can trust God to save us from eternity, certainly we can trust him with the next few years of our lives and to lead us and guide us.” Things we talked about: Proverbs 31 Lynn Cowell and her book, Brave Beauty Counselor Thoughts : Raising Brave Beauties Series Loved and Cherished I hope you loved this episode as much as I did! Be sure to subscribe on Apple Podcast and leave a review.  Have a great week! Melissa
50:42
August 7, 2020
Body Image and The connection to your soul - A conversation with Jennifer Strickland (Episode 23)
Hello Everyone and Welcome back! Today we are concluding a series about body image. Body Image is a component of self-esteem. Approximately 80% of U.S. women don't like how they look. Our perception of our body influences our mental health, our physical health, how we take care of ourselves, and how we relate to others. Those with a negative body image have a higher chance of developing an eating disorder and will often suffer from depression, low self-esteem, and obsessions with weight loss. Last week, we talked with Kara Miller. Kara shared how she intentionally parents her three girls to focus on the strength of their bodies instead of focusing on a size or number on the scale. Today we’re continuing the conversation with Jennifer Strickland. Jennifer Strickland is the founder and visionary of U R More, a ministry that teaches people their identity in Christ. Her passion is teaching women and teen girls their true worth and helping them fulfill their calling. She has a master’s in writing and bachelor’s degrees in broadcast journalism and international relations. For 15 years, Jen worked internationally as a professional model, which led her to the ministry she has today. These days you’ll either find her speaking at teen girls’ and women’s events, writing her inspirational messages of faith, helping other women write and publish their books, or at home cooking for her family. Her favorite moments are found working on the family ranch with her husband Shane, who she calls “the Cowboy”; in her kitchen, concocting a new version of her famous spaghetti; or spending time with their three precious children. In this episode, we discuss: Jen’s rock bottom moment where she knew she needed to change. Jen shares powerful mindsets that help her to practice a healthy body image. Jen shares how her faith was instrumental in creating a path of wholeness and healing. Favorite quotes: Loving your body is a myth. Instead of focusing on loving your body, find ways to honor your body. If your identity is always based on what you see in the mirror, you’ll always be on a roller coaster. Turn away from the things that don’t serve you. What you look at is what you reflect. Helpful links: URmore.com Facebook Let’s Write and Speak Beautiful Lies by Jennifer Strickland Girl Perfect by Jennifer Strickland Thank you for joining me this week on the Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free. Make sure to visit my website where you can subscribe to the show on Apple or Stitcher so you never miss a show. Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show. Have a great week! Melissa
48:10
June 26, 2020
Body image and our daughters:: An interview with Kara Miller (Episode 22)
Welcome to Episode 22 of THRIVE and the art of living free!  Thank you so much for being here! I believe listening to this podcast will leave you feeling excited, educated, and empowered. We’re in the middle of a series talking about body image. Last week, we talked with Heather Creekmore.  Today we’re going to be talking with a friend, Kara Miller about children and body image. Kara is a mom to 3 girls.  Kara is a California Mom Blogger of three daughters who wants to help you create meaningful moments with your families. She shares tried and true recipes and travel tips on her blog to help you beat overwhelm and feel confident in your role as a mother. She runs a Facebook group called, “Kindness Changes Everything” and her husband and she own two pizza shops. Before we get started, I wanted to give some stats to frame the importance of this conversation: Over 80% of 10 year olds are afraid of being fat!! 53% of 13 year-old American girls are unhappy with their bodies. This number grows to 78% by the time girls reach 17. By middle school 40-70% of girls are dissatisfied with 2 or more parts of their body. Around 30% of 10-14 year olds are actively dieting. 46% of 9-11 year-olds are “sometimes” or “very often” on diets, 82% of their families are “sometimes” or “very often” on diets. Over 50% of teen girls and 30% of teen boys use unhealthy weight control behaviors such as skipping meals, fasting, smoking cigarettes, vomiting, and taking laxatives. Where to find Kara :  Blog: https://karajmiller.com/ Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kara.j.miller/ Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/TheRealKaraJMiller/ Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/KindnessChangesEverything/ Twitter: https://twitter.com/KaraJMiller Helpful links about body image and kids: Developing and Modeling a Healthy Body Image  https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/tween-and-teen-health/in-depth/healthy-body-image/art-20044668 Kids Health: Encouraging a healthy body image Thank you for joining me this week on the Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free. Make sure to visit my website where you can subscribe to the show on Apple Podcast, Spotify  or Stitcher so you never miss a show. Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show. Be sure to tune in next week, where we continue the conversation about body image! Have a great week! Melissa
43:05
June 19, 2020
Episode 21 - Interview with Heather Creekmore
Hello Everyone and Welcome back! We’re in the middle of a series talking about body image. Body Image is a component of self-esteem. Approximately 80% of U.S. women don't like how they look. Our perception of our body influences our mental health, our physical health, how we take care of ourselves, and how we relate to others. Those with a negative body image have a higher chance of developing an eating disorder and will often suffer from depression, low self-esteem, and obsessions with weight loss. Body image statistics prove many people, even those as young as age 10, are sensitive and vulnerable to critical thoughts about themselves. Last week, we talked with Jamie Young and discussed unhealthy and negative body image.  Today we’re continuing the conversation with my friend, speaker and author, Heather Creekmore. Through her ministry -Compared to Who?-- Heather Creekmore writes and speaks hope to thousands of women each week, inspiring them to stop comparing and find their true purpose in Christ. Heather and her fighter-pilot-turned-pastor husband, Eric, live in Austin, Texas with their four children and a dog named Violet. In her free time, Heather homeschools, shops clearance racks, and competes on Netflix baking shows. Heather’s first book also titled Compared to Who?, encourages women to uncover the spiritual root of body image issues and find freedom. Her second book titled, “The Burden of Better: How a Comparison-Free Life Leads to Peace, Joy & Rest” releases this September. You can find Heather  :  Podcast:www.comparedtowho.me/podcast  | Facebook   | Instagram | YouTube In our conversation, we discuss: What makes a body image positive? Heather's steps to freedom How does comparison influence body image? Resources : Tim Keller - The Freedom of Forgetfulness  Christine Hoover - With All Your Heart  Heather's Book : Compared to Who? Thank you for joining me this week on the Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free. Make sure to visit my website where you can subscribe to the show on iTunes or Stitcher so you never miss a show. Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show. Be sure to tune in next week, where we continue the conversation about body image! Have a great week!
53:34
June 12, 2020
Episode 20: Interview with Jamie Young: Body Image
We just finished a series for the month of May about Mental Health awareness month. I hope you enjoyed the amazing interviews about Eating Disorder, Bipolar, and so much more. I’m excited to be in a new month! June. As I record this, I have no idea what the summer is going to look like. Will pools be open? Will I go on vacation? In every other summer season, many of us are concerned about being “summer ready.” IE tan and toned. This month we’re going to be talking about body image. While we may not be as concerned with being ready for swimsuit season, there are going to be concerns about body image. 80% of women report being dissatisfied with the way they look. 80% that’s a lot! 34% of men report being dissatisfied about their appearance. I’m passionate about talking about body image because it’s influenced so much of my story including eating disorder behaviors in my high school and college years. If you struggle with a negative body image, I want to let you know this matters. How you view yourself deeply matters. I’m excited about the interviews that I have lined up for you this month. We’ll be talking to professionals and friends. Our special guest today is Jamie Young.  Jamie Young, the founder and CEO of Real Results Medical Weight Loss. Jamie earned her Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Exercise and Sports Science from the University of Georgia. After graduation Jamie spent time in New York City as an Athletic Trainer, and Athens Georgia as a personal trainer.  She is excited to partner with the best medical professionals in the Atlanta area to provide weight loss services to her community. Jamie lives in Kennesaw with her husband Philip, their daughter Jayden, and son Jackson. You can find Jamie :  www.realresultsforlife.com | Facebook   | Instagram In our conversation, we discuss: What makes a body image positive? Best practices to build a a stronger, healthier body image How to view body image in light of a Christian perspective? Resources :  Jamie's Meal Plan Membership Posture Podcast The Alli Worthington Show Pantsuit Politics   Thank you for joining me this week on the Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free. Make sure to visit my website where you can subscribe to the show on iTunes or Stitcher so you never miss a show. Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show. Be sure to tune in next week, where we continue the conversation about body image! Have a great week!
40:58
June 5, 2020
Episode 19: Interview with Stephanie Coker: Suicide Prevention
We are in the middle of a series about mental health. May is Mental Health Awareness month. I am so excited about this series. I hope to debunk myths about mental health issues, provide resources, help you gain insight that will help you understand mental health issues. We’re going to be talking about addictions, bipolar, suicide, and childhood mental illness. Last week, we heard from Dr. Rhonda Johnson, about children and mental health. Be sure to go back and listen after today’s interview if you didn’t get a chance to listen to that episode previously. Before we dive in, I want to give a few facts to note the urgency and importance of this conversation: Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the US for all ages. Every day, approximately 123 Americans die by suicide. There is one death by suicide in the US every 12 minutes. Depression affects 20-25% of Americans ages 18+ in a given year Today, we will continue the conversation with a dear friend, Stephanie Coker. We’re diving into a sensitive but necessary topic about suicide and suicide prevention. Stephanie Coker, LCSW-S, LCDC, CDWF has been helping people find freedom from the struggles of perfectionism, codependency, addiction, and toxic relationships for 25 years. She has her Bachelor's degree in Psychology from Baylor University and Her Master's in Social Work  from UT-Arlington. She's worked in various settings including community clinics and psychiatric hospitals and currently has a private practice in Plano, TX.  To know more about the organizations she's involved in, visit cokercounsling.com or check out her Facebook  page,  for resources and upcoming events.  In our conversation, we discuss: Who is at risk for suicide? What are some of the ways to protect/prevent from suicidality? Religious shame and its' impact on one's willingness to reach out for help Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts   | Click here to listen on Spotify   | Click here to listen on Stitcher    Helpful Links:  https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/ https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/suicide-faq/index.shtml https://wmich.edu/suicideprevention/basics/faq https://www.hanna4hope.com/resource Thank you so much for joining me this week on the Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free! Make sure to visit my website where you can subscribe to the show so you never miss a show!! Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show. Have a great week, wash your hands and stay safe! Melissa
52:20
May 22, 2020
Episode 18 :: Mental Health & Children :: Interview with Rhonda Johnson
Greetings all!  We are in the middle of a series about mental health. May is Mental Health Awareness month. I am so excited about this series. I hope to debunk myths about mental health issues, provide resources, help you gain insight that will help you understand mental health issues. We’re going to be talking about addictions, bipolar, suicide, and childhood mental illness. On today's show, I'm so excited about our special guest, Dr. Rhonda Johnson is one of my favorite people. Her energy is infectious and the warmth of her spirit is so encouraging. Dr. Johnson has been working with children, adolescents, adults, couples, and families in private practice since 1999. She became a TBRI Practitioner in 2011 for her specialty of working with children who have been adopted domestically or internationally, children in state foster care, and children who have experienced trauma. Dr. Johnson is the owner of a large group private practice, the Center for Counseling and Family Relationships, which was established in 2007. She is also the owner of CCFAM Training, established in 2012, specializing as a Live, Virtual, and Online CEU provider with a focus on supervision, Texas Ethics, play therapy, and children who have experienced trauma. In our conversation, we discuss: How parents can help their children with their mental health Dr. Rhonda's personal story with childhood mental health How parents can raise mentally strong children Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts   Click here to listen on Spotify   Click here to listen on Stitcher    Resources: Connect with Dr. Rhonda and CCFAM : Visit her website:  CCFAM  and follow them on Facebook   Helpful Links Free Parent Resources: https://ccfam.com/resources/ www.training.ccfam.com to see trainings Dr. Rhonda is leading in Texas.  NAMI Thank you so much for joining me this week on the Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free! Make sure to visit my website where you can subscribe to the show so you never miss a show!! Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show. Be sure to tune in next week, where we continue our conversation about Mental Health. Have a great week, wash your hands and stay safe! Melissa
46:21
May 15, 2020
Episode 17 :: Addiction & Mental Health :: An Interview with Jenni Hubby
Happy Friday !  We are in the middle of a series about mental health. May is Mental Health Awareness month. I am so excited about this series. I hope to debunk myths about mental health issues, provide resources, help you gain insight that will help you understand mental health issues. We’re going to be talking about addictions, bipolar, suicide, and childhood mental illness.  This week we are discussing addiction.  Addiction is blind when it comes to age, race, financial and socio-economic areas. One of the definitions that I love is from AA. Alcoholic Anonymous (AA) describes addiction as an allergy of the body, and an obsession of the mind.  On today's show, I'm so excited about our featured guest. Jenni Hubby is one of my favorite people. Her energy is infectious and the warmth of her spirit is so encouraging. Jenni is a Professional Certified Coach, credentialed through the International Coach Federation. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology. Before becoming a life coach, Jenni was in business development and marketing in the field of addiction and mental health treatment. She is very passionate about helping people recover from these issues because recovery is a big part of her story. In our conversation, we discuss: her story with addiction having old mindsets sparked during crisis How as a professional coach, she is helping her clients not only survive during this season, but to thrive Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts   Click here to listen on Spotify   Click here to listen on Stitcher    Resources: Connect with Jenni: Visit her website:  jhubconsulting.com Facebook: jenni.hubby or jhubconsulting  Helpful Links https://www.samhsa.gov/find-help/national-helpline https://www.drugrehab.com/recovery/ https://www.crchealth.com/find-a-treatment-center/washington-treatment-information/5-stages-addiction-recovery/ Thank you so much for joining me this week on the Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free! Make sure to visit my website where you can subscribe to the show so you never miss a show!! Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show. Be sure to tune in next week, where we continue our conversation about Mental Health . Have a great week, wash your hands and stay safe!  Melissa
45:24
May 8, 2020
Let's Talk about Eating Disorders : An Interview with Whitney Russell
It's finally May! Doesn't it feel like April just went on forever?  Thank you so much for being here! I believe listening to this podcast will leave you feeling excited, educated, and empowered. We are starting a new series this month. May is Mental Health Awareness month. I am so excited about this series. I hope to debunk myths about mental health issues, provide resources, help you gain insight that will help you understand mental health issues. We’re going to be talking about addictions, bipolar, suicide, and childhood mental illness. Today we have the privilege to hear from the amazing Whitney Russell.  We’re going to talk about Eating disorders. You’re going to hear from an expert about resources, ways to detect eating disorders, and insight into this disorder. I hope this gives you compassion if you know someone with this and grace for yourself if you are struggling in the midst. Whitney is the owner and founder of Brave Haven Counseling in Richardson, Tx. She is a Licensed Professional Counselor-Supervisor and Certified Eating Disorder Specialist-Supervisor. Her favorite part about being a therapist is establishing relationships with her clients where she is able to help them to see what they have been missing about themselves all along- that they are powerful beings worthy of great love, belonging, and connection. She is also a wife, mother of 4, and an Enneagram 1. She is a lover of plants, Nutella, thrift stores, and collecting books. On the show today, Whitney and I discuss some of the following: Common myths and assumptions about eating disorders Whitney's personal story with eating disorders How our faith can be transformative during the recovery process Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts   Click here to listen on Spotify   Click here to listen on Stitcher    Resources: Connect with Whitney Visit her website:  www.bravehavencounseling.com Instagram: @whitneylpc Listen to her Podcast: realmessyrealhappy.com and @realmessyrealhappy Helpful Links Expert Q & A: Eating Disorders The Academy for Eating Disorders  National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) Thank you so much for joining me this week on the Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free! Make sure to visit my website where you can subscribe to the show so you never miss a show. Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show. Be sure to tune in next week, where we continue our conversation about Mental Health with my special guest, Jenni Hubby.  Have a great week! Melissa
40:00
May 1, 2020
Episode 15:: Soul Care:: An interview with Amy Seiffert
Happy Friday!  Thank you so much for being here! I believe listening to this podcast will leave you feeling excited, educated, and empowered. Today is the conclusion about soul care. I hope you enjoyed last’s week’s interview with Jolene Underwood who is a soul care mentor. She added a thoughtful approach and mindset to this conversation. Today we are in for a treat talking to Amy Seiffert. Amy has been writing, teaching, and speaking on staff with CRU for over 17 years and is currently the Director of Outward Movement at Brookside Church. She is married to Rob since 2001, and they live in Bowling Green, OH with their three children Robby, Olive, and Judah. On the show today, Amy and I  discuss some of the following: How soul care has an intentional restoration of your soul 5 minutes of Stillness and the palms down/palms up exercise How what we have in our "cups" spills onto others Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts   Click here to listen on Spotify   Click here to listen on Stitcher    Resources: Amy's Book - Grace Looks Amazing on You Nordace Backpack - the backpack that Amy talks about You can connect with Amy  on Facebook or Instagram, and on her website, AmySeiffert.com Thank you so much for joining me this week on the Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free! Make sure to visit my website where you can subscribe to the show so you never miss a show. Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show. Be sure to tune in next week, where we start a new series. May is Mental Health Awareness month. We are going to be talking about Eating Disorders, Addictions, Bipolar disorder and so much more. This is a series you won’t want to miss! Have a great week! Melissa
31:03
April 24, 2020
Episode 14 Soul Care:: An interview with Jolene Underwood
Thank you so much for joining me this week!  I truly believe listening to this podcast will leave you feeling excited, educated, and empowered. We are at the halfway point on our series on soul care.  Last week’s interview with Rachel Kang was so awesome and I hope you liked it too! I loved her take on  soul care not to mention her practical advice on practicing social distancing without being socially distant.  Today, we will continue the conversation with very dear friend of mine , Jolene Underwood. Jolene Underwood is an emotional health warrior and soul care mentor. She provides practical and spiritual support for cultivating life within the Christian soul by drawing upon her personal journey towards emotional health, her psychology background, and a passion for Christian counseling. Jolene writes regularly at JoleneUnderwood.com, Crosswalk, and iBelieve. She is also  a certified life coach for Christians who want to cultivate their lives with Christ so they can experience more of God and the life He's given them. Her tool, Unleash : Heart and Soul Care Sheets, has helped hundreds experience greater freedom.  On the show today, Jolene and I  discuss some of the following: Challenges you can face practicing soul care How practicing soul care can strengthen your relationships Jolene's own journey of practicing soul care and dealing with depression and PTSD Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts   Click here to listen on Spotify   Click here to listen on Stitcher    Resources: Unleash: Heart and Soul Care Sheets You can connect with Jolene online via Twitter/Instagram/Pinterest at @theJoleneU or via the Cultivated Life Newsletter. Thank you so much for joining me this week on the Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free! Make sure to visit my website where you can subscribe to the show so you never miss a show. Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show. Be sure to tune in next week, where we continue our conversation on Soul Care. I’ll be wrapping up this series by sharing with you my thoughts, challenges, and advice on practical ways for you to care for your soul. Have a great week, stay healthy and wash your hands! Melissa
44:08
April 17, 2020
Episode 13 Soul Care:: An interview with Rachel Kang
Thank you so much for being here! I believe listening to this podcast will leave you feeling excited, educated, and empowered. We are in new the middle of a series on soul care.  Last week’s interview with Becky Lauridsen was so good! I loved her practical advice on soul care and how we can practice this daily. Today we will continue the conversation with a new friend of mine, Rachel Kang.  Rachel Kang is a writer, editor, and the creator of Indelible Ink Writers, an online writing community full of journal-keepers and closet poets. She is a graduate of Nyack College in New York where she studied Creative Writing with Bible and Christian Ministry. Rachel's writing has been featured in Christianity Today, (in)courage, and My Influence Circle. When she is not hiding behind the pages of poetry and paperback, you'll find her drinking tea, chasing laundry piles, and stealing away for mornings at the lake. She lives with her family in North Carolina, a blink away from The Queen City. On the show today, Rachel and I  discuss some of the following: Challenges facing when one practices soul care, especially during a pandemic Difference in soul care and self-care Is soul care is Scriptural? Practical ways to practice social distancing without being socially distant Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts   Click here to listen on Spotify   Click here to listen on Stitcher    Resources: Novel Marketing Podcast with Thomas Umstattd Jr. Building a Story Brand Podcast with Donald Miller You can find Rachel on her website : https://www.rachelmariekang.com and https://www.indelibleinkwriters.com Thank you so much for joining me this week on the Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free! Make sure to visit my website where you can subscribe to the show so you never miss a show. Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show. Be sure to tune in next week, where we continue our conversation on Soul Care.  Have a great week, stay healthy and wash your hands! Melissa
36:10
April 10, 2020
Episode 12:: Soul Care - An Interview with Becky Lauridsen
April is FINALLY here! We made it through another LONG week in the midst of COVID-19, social distancing  and the global pandemic. Today, We are starting a new series on soul care.  For years, I used the term self-care. I heard influencers online talk about self-care Sunday. Chatting about facial masks and getting a pedicure. Getting pedicures and massages are amazing! But these acts aren’t enough to truly care for your soul. Most of us are overwhelmed, depleted and exhausted. Our batteries are generally drained. Our relationships are anemic. I believe we must first care for our soul. In these series, I’ll be talking with friends, colleagues, and you’ll hear from me about soul care. We’ll get into the nitty-gritty by defining soul care. And discuss practical ways to practice soul care. Today, I'm  interviewing Becky Lauridsen . Becky  is an Licensed Professional Counselor and Founder of IOME. It’s an I Owe Me instead of an I Owe You, offering Guilt Free Self Care by partnering with local businesses to offer discounted self care services and products. As a Licensed Professional Counselor, it became alarmingly clear to Becky just how important self care is and just how detrimental it is without. On the show today, Becky and I  discuss some of the following: The difference between self-care and soul-care strengthening relationships by practicing soul-care Whether or not soul care is spiritual ? Practical and tangible ways that you practice soul care through establishing a routine, spending time alone, doing something you love Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts   Click here to listen on Spotify   Click here to listen on Stitcher    Resources: You are the girl for the job! By Jess Connelly IOME self care membership program The IOME Guilt Free Soul Care Journal  You can find Becky at @iowemenow for Facebook and Instagram and Email her at becky@iowemenow.com Thank you so much for joining me this week on the Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free! Make sure to visit my website where you can subscribe to the show so you never miss a show. Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show. Be sure to tune in next week, where we continue our conversation on Soul Care. I’ll be chatting with a new friend, Rachel Kang. Have a great week, stay healthy and wash your hands! Melissa
43:25
April 3, 2020
Episode 11 : Struggling well with Anxiety
Happy Friday! We made it through another week in the midst of COVID-19 and the global pandemic.  In today's episode, we are going to discuss how to identify and manage your anxiety. This episode is not another episode about the Coronavirus. Back in December, when I was planning content for the podcast, I decide that anxiety would be the topic of the month of March! How fortuitous was that?! On the show today, we discuss some of the following: How to identify your feelings, emotions, and triggers Identifying your emotions and what is triggering you Validate your emotions and experiences The Feelings Wheel Coping strategies such as deep breathing, body posturing, the power of words and flipping the script Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts   Click here to listen on Spotify   Click here to listen on Stitcher    Resources: The Feeling Wheel  SoulTime - an app for Christian meditation Calm - #1 app for Sleep, Meditation, and Relaxation Thank you so much for joining me this week on the Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free! Make sure to visit my website where you can subscribe to the show so you never miss a show. Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show. Be sure to tune in next week, where we begin a new series on soul care. After all the craziness we've been dealing with lately, we can all use some! I’ve got some great interviews lined up for you. It is my hope that listening will leave you empowered, educated, and feeling a little more normal. Have a great week, stay healthy and wash your hands! Melissa
31:08
March 27, 2020
Episode 10:: Thriving in the Midst of CoronaVirus
This week, I have no guests or interviews. Simply, I’m going to share with you my thoughts about Covid-19.  In this episode, I share how I’m struggling in the midst of this pandemic. Why I’ve been struggling and why you may be struggling  as well. As always, as always, I want to leave you feeling equipped and empowered with a few action steps to help in the midst of the chaos. We'll talk about some steps you can take to cope with your anxiety. This includes how to care for people in your world like aging family members and children. On the show today, we discuss some of the following: Everyone's heightened anxiety about the Coronavirus and the global pandemic Identifying your emotions and what is triggering you The Feelings Wheel  Coping strategies help to lessen the intensity of attacks and also helps to mitigate some of the anxiety. Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts   Click here to listen on Spotify   Click here to listen on Stitcher     Resources:  The Feeling Wheel  Mindfulness meditation helps fight insomnia, improves sleep -  article by Julie Corliss (Harvard Medical School ) SoulTime - an app for Christian meditation Calm - #1 app for Sleep, Meditation and Relaxation Thank you so much for joining me this week on the Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free! Make sure to visit my website where you can subscribe to the show so you never miss a show. Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show.  A Big Shout out to all of you that have subscribe, left a rating,etc. The podcast is doing consistently well and it is ALL BECAUSE OF YOU!  Be sure to tune in next week, where I’m going to share with you my journey with anxiety. I am also going to discuss how I’ve learned to manage my anxiety and how these practices could be helpful for you. Have a great week and wash your hands! Melissa
30:35
March 20, 2020
Episode 9 :: Interview with Jacyln Weidner
Considering all the fear and anxiety with the current situation with the Coronavirus .. the topic of anxiety is so timely!  On this week's episode, I'm interviewing Jacyln Weidner. Jaclyn lives just outside of Vancouver,Canada with her husband and 3 talkative little girls. She loves Jesus, strong coffee and helping women move from surviving to thriving. She is the host of the Ready to Thrive Podcast where she shares practical tips and a whole lotta Jesus! On the show today, we discuss some of the following:  Jaclyn's story of anxiety  How different life events trigger one's anxiety  What does it mean for you to take your thoughts captive? What is soul care and how it can change the way you cope with your anxiety  Listen now: Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts  Click here to listen on Spotify  Click here to listen on Stitcher   Resources: JaclynWeider.com Jaclyn's Podcast : Ready to Thrive Chase the Lion by Mark Batterson Thank you so much for joining me this week on the Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free! Make sure to visit my website where you can subscribe to the show so you never miss a show. Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show. Be sure to tune in next week, where we conclude our conversation about anxiety. I’m going to share with you my journey with anxiety. We are going to discuss how I’ve learned to manage my anxiety and how these practices could be helpful for you. Have a great week!  Melissa 
41:47
March 13, 2020
Episode 8 :: Interview with Kristin Funston
Welcome to Episode 8 of THRIVE: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free! March is finally here... can you believe it?  Today, we begin a new series on anxiety and how to cope with it. For most, Anxiety is often a vague concept. We know it affects our emotions,  but for some, it can be difficult to describe. This is because anxiety feels different for everyone. However, I believe with all the special guest interviews we have this month, it will leave you empowered, educated, and feeling a little more normal. On today's show, I interview Kristin Funston. Kristin is a Christian author, speaker, web designer, and regular contributor to multiple popular blogs. She's been featured on sites such as The Better Mom, City Moms Blog, FaithIt, TODAY Parenting, and Scary  Mommy. In this episode,  I discuss: My long story with anxiety How to overcome roadblocks like Mom Guilt and Shame How faith impacts your mental health journey Kristen's struggle as a Believer and anxiety/depression Listen now:    Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts  Click here to listen on Spotify  Click here to listen on Stitcher     Resources: More for Mom by Kristin Funston KristenFunston.com Instagram: @kfunston Thank you for joining me this week on the Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free. Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show. Be sure to tune in next week, where we continue the conversation about anxiety. I’m interviewing Jacyln Weidner. She is a wife, mom of the 3 girls, a writer, speaker, podcast who also struggles with anxiety. You are going to be encouraged by her story and words of wisdom. Thank you - Have a great week! Melissa
41:34
March 6, 2020
Episode 7 :: Creating a Healthy Relationship with Yourself!
Welcome to Episode 7 of THRIVE: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free!  Today, I will be concluding our series on relationships.  This isn’t a marriage episode. This is a relationship episode. We are all in relationships. However, the fact is even though we are relational beings, we are incredibly lonely. Google the phrase loneliness epidemic and you’ll see what I mean. In this episode,  I discuss: How the loneliness epidemic is far more dangerous than the Coronavirus . how to improve your relationships with others by improving your relationship you have with yourself. Why you shouldn't depend on others to meet your needs for security and approval. How to let go of unrealistic, perfectionistic expectations of yourself Listen now:   Click here to listen on iTunes   Click here to listen on Spotify Click here to listen on Stitcher   Resources: The Gifts of Imperfection by Brene Brown The Search for Significance by Robert McGee Wild and Free by Jess Connolley and Haley Morgan Thank you for joining me this week on the Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free. on iTunes or Stitcher so you never miss a show. Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show. Be sure to tune in next week, where we begin a new series on anxiety. It is so, so good! We are going to be talking about my story with anxiety, mom guilt, postpartum anxiety. I’ve got some great interviews lined up. I believe listening will leave you empowered, educated, and feeling a little more normal. Have a great week! Thank you - Melissa
3:27:46
February 28, 2020
Episode 6 :: Interview with Amanda Davison
The entire month of February,  we'll be talking all about relationships! Do you want to improve your personal relationships? Do you feel that you struggle with behavioral patterns when it comes to relationships? Do you feel that you just keep making the same mistakes over and over in your interpersonal relationships? Hey, we've all been there! In today's episode, I sit down with Amanda Davison, founder of A Wife Like Me to discuss marriage and relationships.   Amanda Davison is the wife to a Minnesota farmer, mother of three, and President of the nonprofit, A Wife Like Me. She is the co-author of Dear Wife: 10 Minute Invitations to Practice Connection with Your Husband, and national speaker, and serves on staff at her local church, where she and her husband lead the marriage mentor team. Former psychology professor, Amanda is now relentlessly sharing how her education in counseling and God’s word changed her life and marriage. To learn more about Amanda and her community of other wives, please visit her website at A Wife Like Me In this episode we discuss: How Amanda became interested in helping women with marriages? Unrealistic versus realistic expectations in a relationship The common pitfalls in marriage/relationships Ways to avoid these pitfalls Listen now:   Click here to listen on iTunes Click here to listen on Spotify Click here to listen on Stitcher   Resources:  A Wife Like Me :  Facebook https://www.facebook.com/awifelikeme/ Instagram  https://www.instagram.com/awifelikeme/ Amanda's Book: https://www.amazon.com/Dear-Wife-Invitations-Practice-Connection/dp/0578470594/ref=sr_1_3?keywords=dear+wife&qid=1578683285&sr=8-3 John Gottman Links: https://www.gottman.com/blog/want-to-improve-your-relationship-start-paying-more-attention-to-bids/ https://www.gottman.com/blog/turn-toward-instead-of-away/ Be sure to tune in next Friday, where I continue my conversation on relationships!  Thank you for joining me this week on Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free. Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show. Thank you -  Melissa 
40:31
February 21, 2020
Episode 5: Creating Healthy Relationships After Abuse - Part 2
This month we'll be talking all about relationships! Do you want to improve your personal relationships? Do you feel that you struggle with behavioral patterns when it comes to relationships? Do you feel that you just keep making the same mistakes over and over in your interpersonal relationships? Hey, we've all been there! But, what if you weren’t the problem. What if you're just using the wrong part of your brain that is the issue?  In today's episode, I sit down with Polly Hamp, of Think Differently Counseling, Coaching, and Consulting for the second part of her interview.  To learn more about Polly and her work, please visit her website at https://tdacad.com/ In this episode we discuss: Relationship patterns and how we are likely to repeat patterns if we don’t have awareness. Ways to break out of destructive relational patterns. 4 questions to ask yourself when you are journaling  The benefit of having a "pre-conversation" Listen now: Click here to listen on iTunes Click here to listen on Spotify Click here to listen on Stitcher   Helpful links: Think Differently Academy The Feelings Wheel  The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel van der Kolk, M.D Cherished by Polly Hamp Polly’s Instagram account Be sure to tune in next week, where I continue my conversation with Amanda Davison, founder of A Wife Like Me Thank you for joining me this week on Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free. Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show.
22:25
February 14, 2020
Episode 4: Creating Healthy Relationships After Abuse
This month we'll be talking all about relationships! Do you want to improve your personal relationships? Do you feel that you struggle with behavioral patterns when it comes to relationships? Do you feel that you just keep making the same mistakes over and over in your interpersonal relationships? Hey, we've all been there! But, what if you weren’t the problem. What if you're just using the wrong part of your brain that is the issue. In today's episode, I sit down with Polly Hamp with Think Differently Counseling, Coaching, and Consulting. In this episode, we discuss Polly’s story and life after abuse. To learn more about Polly, please visit her website at https://tdacad.com/ In this episode we discuss: Life after abuse. Relationship patterns and how we are likely to repeat patterns if we don’t have awareness. Ways to break out of destructive relational patterns. Listen now: Click here to listen on iTunes Click here to listen on Spotify Click here to listen on Stitcher Helpful links: Think Differently Academy The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel van der Kolk, M.D Cherished by Polly Hamp Polly’s Instagram account Be sure to tune in next week, where I continue my conversation with Polly about overcoming sexual abuse and relationships! Thank you for joining me this week on Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free. Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show.
37:45
February 8, 2020
Episode 3: Breaking Bad Habits
It’s estimated that 40% of our behavior is habituated - meaning you don’t even know what you’re doing - when you’re doing it. You are tuned out and letting the engrained patterns take over. When you are numb and on autopilot, you will struggle to accomplish your goals. Habits form when little thoughts and behaviors come in and your brain shifts to autopilot. No longer paying attention, you simply go through the motions of life bobbing about, going wherever the current takes you. In today’s episode, we explore a systematic way to help you ditch old habits. I’ve created a handout for you... Click here to get your copy. Enjoy! Melissa
30:44
January 31, 2020
Episode 2: Ditch SMART Goals for PEACE Goals
Are you struggling to accomplish goals? When you aren’t able to achieve an objective, you likely feel discouraged and frustrated. You may even begin feeling like a failure. But, what if you weren’t the problem. What if it’s how you’re trying to reach these goals that is the issue. Maybe it’s the system you’re using that needs to change. You likely know about SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-based) goals. SMART goals are often thought of as the guide for goal-setting behaviors. These goals often leave us feeling dumb when we can’t follow through. Christa Hutchins, author and speaker, advocates using PEACE (Purposeful, Essential, Adjustable, Current, and Enjoyable) goals instead. In this interview, I sit down with Christa and discuss PEACE goals, how to create habits to foster PEACE goals, and what she sees as common roadblocks for implementing new practices. To learn more about Christa, please visit her website at https://doanewthing.com/thrive/ Thank you for joining me this week on Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free. Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show. Also, Be sure to tune in next week, where we'll explore how to break those bad habits!   Have a Great Week!  Melissa
39:13
January 24, 2020
Episode 1: The Power of Habits & Your Mental Health!
Hi, I’m Melissa Clark.  I’m a professional counselor in the Dallas area with a passion for helping you overcome challenges, process painful emotions, and understand your God-given identity.   I am so glad that you are here!  This podcast is a series format. This means each month you will hear about different mental health topics.  These are issues I’m thinking about, seeing in my office, or have personally experienced. Here are some examples: anxiety, negative thoughts, parenting a child with mental issues - and so much more.  We will be looking at these topics from a Christian perspective.  Some weeks I will interview professional colleagues, some weeks I’ll be interviewing friends, and others will be me - sharing my story and perspective on these important topics. Be sure to tune into the final episode of each topic, I’ll give you an opportunity to put everything you’ve learned into practice.  Thank you so much for being here!  I believe listening to this podcast will leave you feeling excited, educated, and empowered.  Thank you for tuning into episode 1!  In this episode, we begin the journey of conversations about mental health beginning with a conversation about habits. In this episode we discuss: 1. What habits have to do with your mental health. 2. How your brain is a goal-seeking organism that desperately desires to solve your problems. 3. How to Identify your Habits 4. How to Create New Habits Seriously, make sure that you subscribe to the email list, https://www.melissaclarkcounseling.com/resources. Not only will you get a copy of my eBook but you’ll also get the notes to the show. Thank you for joining me this week on Thrive: Mental Health and the Art of Living Free. Make sure to visit my website where you can subscribe to the show on iTunes, Spotify or Stitcher, so you never miss a show.  Hey, while you’re at it, help me out by adding some stars to the rating and tell a friend about the show. Be sure to tune in next week, where I interview Christa Hutchins. She is all about goal setting and helping you start this new DECADE off the right way. Have a great week!
16:43
January 16, 2020
November 22, 2019
00:57
November 22, 2019