I am a therapist and author trying to use my powers for good!


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Friday, 17 January 2014

The Anxious Teenager - 1 #TeenHandbook

Anxiety can be mild, but it can also be debilitating, life-limiting.

It can stop you sleeping, stop you being with people, going to school, eating and more.  It can result in a very tough life.

But why do some teens experience anxiety?

It can caused by issues at school.

Issues at home.

Pressures of life.

and sometimes it just happens.

There are easy techniques that can help you to reduce and cope with anxiety, allowing you to get back to your life.

Here is one of those techniques:

Brain Time
Why not give your hard working brain a rest?
This exercise will help you feel calmer and find life easier to cope with.

Get some brain time:
  • ·      Close your eyes, or stare straight ahead at one point on a wall.
  • ·      Scan through your body from the top of your head down to the tips of your toes, just noticing how your body is feeling.  Is it comfortable, tired, uncomfortable?
  • ·      Now notice what mood you are in.  Are you stressed, worried, happy?  Whatever you are feeling is ok, just check-in and find out.
  • ·      The next step is to start to focus on your breathing.  Breathing slowly in and out, breathing deep into your belly so that your stomach moves as you breathe.
  • ·      Just focus on your breathing.
  • ·      Do this for a minute or two.

By building this exercise into your day you will find that you are much calmer and more able to cope with life.
Try gradually increasing the time you spend doing this each day from 2 minutes to 5 minutes up to 10 minutes over a number of weeks.

Doing this at the end of your day will help you lower your stress levels.

There are many more tips available in The Teen Handbook UK, USA.

Kimberly Willis

Author of Diet Coach UK, The Little Book of Diet Help USA and The Teen Handbook.

Thursday, 12 December 2013

Sleepovers and Nights Away - a Nightmare for some Teenagers

As your child grows up it can be normal for them to be invited to a sleepover, or on a school trip.  For some this is an exciting adventure, but for others it can be a horrible nightmare.

One of my children hated being away from home while the other loved it.  Now, this is ok when they are younger, but as they get older and become teenagers it can start to make them feel embarrassed, and possibly sad that they are missing out on a fun night away.

Some teens just accept that they won't be going away, but others want to change this and do something about it.  As a therapist I have helped a number of teens feel more confident about going on sleepovers and have taught them how to deal with any feelings of fear they might experience while away.

Here is one of the methods I teach to help lower anxiety while away:

Planted Feet
This is a great exercise that you can use anywhere.  Its easy and effective.
  • ·         Take a moment to really notice where your feet are on the ground, sitting or standing.
  • ·         Feel the weight of your feet on the ground.
  • ·        Notice your shoulders; just let them gently relax away from your ears.
  • ·         Start to breathe deeply into the depths of your stomach.  So that your breathing moves your stomach in and out.  Repeat for a few breaths.

 Sometimes a simple technique can make all the difference.

Kimberly Willis

Friday, 6 December 2013

How to help your teenager

As a therapist I have worked with many teens and have come to be aware of some common problems.  Quite often these issues can make life really difficult for a teenager.

In one case it might be that when they go on a sleepover they get anxious and possibly very homesick, and have to leave in the night.  This may stop them from going away in future and can become embarrassing.

Or it might be that the thought of speaking in front of a class terrifies them and they don't know how to feel confident.

I have put together some of the most common issues that I have helped teenagers with into this book - which is for teens, because as a mother I know that children often won't listen to their parents - but you could just hand them a book and leave them to it!

It contains quick and easy solutions to these problems.

For help with: confidence, stress, anxiety, feeling low, sleep problems, fears, school, exams, sleepovers.

The Teen Handbook is now available in paperback and for Kindle.

Kimberly Willis

Friday, 8 November 2013

Exam Day - Help!

Exam time seems to have started already.  Gone are the days when it was just a couple of weeks in June - really showing my age! - now it seems that our teens face exams that matter every other week.

This week one of my teens had a GCSE exam that really counted - in a subject that was not her favourite.  She had prepared well, but was still nervous.  As the whole year was taking the exam there was quite a build up of nerves and excitement in school.

The night before I could see that she was worried, I wanted to give her a tip to help.  I couldn't help with the actual exam, what she wrote would have to be down to her.  I needed something that would be easy for her to use and very, very easy to remember - after all she didn't need the added pressure of having to learn something new.

So, what did I teach her?

It was this:

If you get that panicky, nervous feeling, just take a moment.  Put your hand on your stomach, feel your feet on the floor, and breathe deeply into your stomach.

Yes that was it.  I just needed something easy to help calm her.

And did it help?

Well, after the exam she came home and said "mum that breathing thing really helped, I was getting all worried about this one question, so I did what you said and I felt better."


Kimberly Willis, therapist and mum.

Author of Diet Coach, The Little Book of Diet Help and The Teen Handbook