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Not Okay? Try This...

Not Okay? Try This...

By Aylssa Cowell
Listen in as our counsellor Aylssa gives you practical strategies for better mental health and wellbeing in a podcast of less than 10 mins.

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Unsent Letters

Not Okay? Try This...

Unsent Letters

Not Okay? Try This...

Challenge Your Thinking
In this episode Aylssa talks about the 10 different 'Thinking Traps' sometimes called 'Cognitive Distortions' that we can get ourselves into that fuel poor mental health including Anxiety and Depression. As our thinking fuels our emotions (and vice versa), paying attention to what our brain is telling us can help us challenge what is untrue or unhelpful and help us feel better. Thoughts, like feelings, are not facts.  This approach is the basis of Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy (CBT) which is an evidence based strategy for Anxiety and Depression. The basis for the episode came from the book "The Borderline Personality Disorder Toolbox" by Jeff Riggenback, PHD, LPC. Episode length 10 minutes. 
October 28, 2021
Try these 2 things each day for a week
If you could purposely do 2 things each day that would change your life - would you try?  In this episode Aylssa argues you can positively impact your mental health by choosing to do these 2 things each day. Give it a try for a week and see if you feel any differently! This is the DBT Skill of Cultivating Positive Experiences initially devised by Marsha M. Lineham. 
October 23, 2021
3 words to stop using this week
In this episode Aylssa explains why stopping using these 3 words could benefit your relationships and your mental health.  Bonus! Another word you could consider changing. See if changing some words can change the way you see things. Episode length: Around 5 minutes Where does this theory come from? Solution-focussed therapy; cognitive behavioural therapy, dialectical behaviour therapy
October 6, 2021
Acceptance of the Things You Can't Change
Sometimes in life awful things happen - big things, small things - and sometimes we get stuck in a cycle of painful emotions like shame, anger, bitterness, guilt or intense sadness. If you find yourself caught up in "why me" or "life isn't fair" because you can't solve the problem or change how you feel about it, this episode may be helpful. Acceptance of the things you can't change does not mean you approve of them or like them - it means that you stop prolonging your suffering. In this episode Aylssa talks about the DBT Skill of Radical Acceptance. Dialectical Behaviour Therapy was devised by Marsha M. Lineham, and this episode was devised referencing the book: "DBT Skills Manual for Adolescents" by Jill H. Rathus & Alec L. Miller (2015) Guildford Press.
October 3, 2021
Mapping The Present
In this episode Aylssa talks you through the deceptively simple MIBT exercise of Mind Mapping. This is a great exercise to check in on where you are at in life, what you are coping with at the moment and things you would like to change. So as always, grab yourself a pen and paper and lets get started! This exercise is something you can do if you are attending counselling or therapy for the first time (take it with you!) or if you are feeling emotionally overwhelmed (it can be helpful to understand exactly what you are dealing with at the moment) or if you want to just check in with your life and mental health.  The exercise is from Motivational Interviewing (MIBT) which really focuses on identifying problem areas of your life/behaviours and prioritising the changes you want to make. 
September 29, 2021
The Tree of Life
In this episode Aylssa talks you through the Art Therapy exercise of The Tree of Life. It is a great exercise for your mental wellbeing because you reflect on how far you've come, the challenges you have overcome along the way, and what is important to you. So grab yourself a piece of paper (or your journal) and a pencil and lets get started - as always please pause the podcast as you need to! Remember with all art therapy exercises, the goal is not the finished piece - it is your process. It doesn't have to look pretty (or even that much like a tree!) If you would like to show us your finished picture feel free to tag us on Instagram: @not.ok.try.this as we'd love to see it! Length: under 8 minutes. 
September 26, 2021
Unsent Letters
Unsent Letters is a journaling exercise you can do if you want to tell someone something but can't - it might be that you are so angry that screaming in their face would make matters so much worse, or maybe a relationship has ended, or perhaps you are grieving after a loved one's death. If your mental health is suffering and you have scenarios spinning around and around in your head this could be for you. Great for processing anger, grief, anxiety and sadness, Aylssa talks you using this writing exercise to help you process how you feel and what you can do next. It's also one she uses personally to process her own emotions. Bonus - at the end she also tell you how you can use the same technique in a slightly different way (sentence stems). Exercise is originally called "Series of Three" by Kathleen Adams, in Bolton, Field & Thompson (2006) 'Writing Works: A Resource Handbook for Therapeutic Writing Workshops & Activities' London: JKP
September 23, 2021
How To Get What You Want
Do you need to ask someone to do something? Always feel the need to put others before yourself and are starting to resent feeling taken for granted? Have no idea how to ask someone to do what you want? Then this episode is for you. Aylssa talks you through the 7 steps to asking for what you want - whether that is your child to stop coming home late or your boss for a pay-rise - give it a listen. People are not mind readers and often do not know you are seething about something - so for everyone's mental health, it's better to be open and honest about how you feel and what you want. 
September 19, 2021
How to Change Your Emotions when they're not helping you
Have you ever been so angry at someone that its lingered around and you've taken it out on someone else? Or tired of feeling so sad all of the time? Or perhaps you're in love with someone who doesn't deserve you, or doesn't love you back... or your jealousy is threatening your relationship. Give this a listen and find out what to do to change these emotions. (Note: Opposite Action is a DBT Skill, originally devised by Marsha M. Lineham)
September 15, 2021
How to Tame Your Emotions
In this episode Aylssa talks about the purpose of emotions and how using the strategy Name It to Tame It, can help you feel more in control of your emotional reactions and your mental health. Also see episode 2 for a strategy about using your senses to help if you are feeling overwhelmed.  Our temperament and life experiences can influence how easily we feel overwhelmed emotionally. Figuring out our unique early warning signals can help us from being sideswiped. Pop over to our instagram page: @not.ok.try.this to make any suggestions for future episodes.
September 12, 2021
Calming Down Using Your Senses
In this episode Aylssa talks about how you can use your senses to ground and calm yourself when you are emotionally overwhelmed and 'can't think straight'. This is a strategy to help with your mental health and to give some pause between emotion and (re)action so you don't make things worse. It's particularly useful for anxiety spirals and overthinking.
September 8, 2021
How to solve any problem (that can be solved)
Do you feel like your life is just one big problem? Feeling lost about what to do? If so grab yourself a pen and a piece of paper and let Aylssa talk you through the 7 steps to solving any problem.  Our motto: keep it short - keep it simple - keep it evidence based. Episode length = less than 7 minutes. (Note: the problem solving strategy outlined comes from DBT Skills developed by Marsha M. Lineham.)
September 5, 2021
Not OK? Try This... trailer
How is your mental health? Would you like some strategies that will help?
September 4, 2021