This time last year, the world looked excitedly toward the year 2020, but before the third month was over, the entire world had taken an unexpected and strange twist. The twists kept twisting, with events beyond our collective wildest imaginations occurring at a rapid pace. Tough challenges and unbelievable acts of humanity were the new daily norm. So it’s no surprise this past year has been rough for everyone’s mental health, and improving one’s mental health should be a priority for the upcoming year.
One way to take care of your mental health is to see a licensed therapist, like you can find at Jill Smith and Associates Counseling. “I love that we are talking about our mental health — finally — as part of everyday conversations,” says Jill Smith, LISW-CP. “We are not equating mental health with being ‘crazy’ and are understanding that depression, anxiety, and other mental health challenges are to be noticed, named and addressed, without shame or judgement.”
More people may have noticed they don’t feel themselves this year, which is perfectly normal. The usual pace of life is out the window, people cannot spend time with friends and family, and have to take extra precautions to run everyday errands. Anxiety over one’s own health and especially the health of family members is a constant worry. School and work schedules have been turned upside down and are subject to change at a moment’s notice. The Kaiser Family Foundation reports a significant increase in both adolescents and adults reporting sadness, isolation, worry, anger, depression, worry and suicidal thoughts/attempts since the pandemic began. “Both children and adults are challenged like never before,” says Smith.
Like many tasks in life, starting is often the hardest part, something the folks at Jill Smith and Associates Counseling know all too well. Their offices are decorated in a soothing and cheerful way to make the experience seem less clinical and to wipe away preconceived notions new clients may have. “Our therapists know the first session is hard and scary, so we focus most on connecting, listening and figuring out next steps with you,” says Smith. “We want you to feel heard and feel hope.”
Therapy is a key part of mental fitness — an evolving term embraced by Jill Smith and Associates. Mental fitness means the purposeful practice of taking care of your mental health, and is a key part of overall personal wellness and fitness. Whether you need a few therapy sessions, or an ongoing plan, you will find the flexibility and efficiency to make good mental health habits a key part of your 2021.
Set up an appointment at their Lexington or downtown location, or try a telehealth appointment from the comfort of your own home, by calling and speaking to the knowledgeable and friendly receptionists. Learn more about the therapists and the type of services offered at Jill Smith and Associates Counseling by visiting www.jsacounseling.com.