How We Treat Ourselves Informs How We Treat Others

Despite some efforts on my part, I’ve been working more. Like, much more. This is partially exciting, as I’m starting up a whole new work venture (Learn about it here and here!!) and it brings me a lot of joy and meaning. And, of course, it’s a colossal amount of work, in addition to my already full private practice, which requires a good amount of my mental energy to run as well as I prefer it to. 

I’m trying to pay attention to the effect this might be having on me, and the first place I noticed it (which is always the case with me) was physically. More specifically, in my Neck. My Neck is like my own in-home psychic, alerting me to potential emotional breakdowns long before I experience them. A good hearty cry is three months in the distance? I don’t know about it yet, but I can’t turn my head sideways, so…something is a comin’. 

In addition to the physical toll, I’m also trying to pay attention to how I’m interacting with the people in my life. I’m not articulating as well as I usually do, and I’ve mis-stated a few things both in my personal life and my professional one. These mistakes are good markers that it’s time to slow down, and I’ve got a mini-vacation this weekend with my name on it, where I’m going to leave all my work at home and spend three days playing. I need to do it. My people need me to do it, too.

It’s important to watch the impact of burnout on how we interact with others because there is a strong connection there. Our relationships with ourselves inform our relationships to the people in our lives. Have you ever had a terrible, rotten, no good work day and then come home and just emotionally exploded all over your partner? Or had no capacity to listen well to your friend talk about their day because you exhausted all your personal resources? Or walked through life generally irritable for days on end because you couldn’t prioritize your sleep for days, or weeks, or months, or just ever? 

This is all of us at times, right? But does it have to be? 

In the therapy room, I tend to work with hard-working, brilliant folks that put their jobs at the top of the list and prize their work ethics. Confronting burnout and over-work can be very difficult because, for many of us, what we do feels tantamount to who we are, but I assure you this isn’t the case, or at least isn’t at all the whole picture. The people we choose to have in our lives – our families, or our dear friends, or our coworkers, or our communities – our relationships to those people matter at least as much as our careers, and I would implore us all to consider how well we are nurturing those relationships if and when we are overly focused on being productive and end up getting our assholery all over the people around us. 

Listen, I know this is a hard one. It is so hard to choose to take time out for ourselves, and to step away from our work, and to limit how much we produce. Even I can’t stomach the term “self-care” most of the time – but I believe deeply in the general tenets of caring for oneself in a consistent and intentional manner. What might it look like if we could redefine what it means to be a productive human? What if it means doing only ten productive things a day? Or five? Or two? What if it means naps are not a luxury, but a necessity at times? What if it means that fun should be part of our daily lives? What if it means asking for help so we can juggle all the tremendous stressors that seemed to have found their way to us in this miserable excuse for a year? 

What would you do if you were really taking care of yourself, and how would it impact your relationships with those you love?


Useful Information

Some frequently asked questions and useful answers.

Online therapy works in the same way as in-office therapy, but is done online, similar to a Skype or FaceTime conversation. Clients are able to have sessions from home, work, or any other convenient location. We meet with clients using a HIPAA-compliant secure platform.

Online therapy allows you to work with us from the comfort of home, or any private location of your choosing. For some, the screen provides an added layer of comfort that makes the challenging work of being vulnerable in therapy a little easier.

Online therapy also creates the unique opportunity for you to work with us without the constraints of proximity! The practice was born in Keene, New Hampshire, but has since grown to service clients anywhere in Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Vermont, New Jersey, Florida, and New Hampshire.

Online therapy is a great option for clients that travel for work, for college students that go home during the summertime and do not want a break in their sessions, and for anyone with a challenging or inconsistent day-to-day schedule. It is an excellent choice for clients seeking a therapist with a particular specialty that they are unable to find support for locally. Some of our clients report that online therapy makes the vulnerability element of therapy a bit less intimidating.

No. For some clients with more complex symptoms or safety concerns, having a local therapist that is readily available is important in case of crisis or the need for a higher level of care. Online therapy is also a challenge for clients that do not have access to a private, quiet space to be “in session” for the hour, or for those that do not have adequate internet connectivity.

There are several reasons why we don’t accept insurance. The most important are:

Confidentiality. Insurance companies require that your information be shared with them in order to pay for services. We prefer that clients’ information is kept as confidential as possible.

The pressure to diagnose. Insurance companies require that clients are given a mental health diagnosis in order to pay for therapy. We have found that many clients benefit from therapy, but do not meet criteria for a diagnosis. Not using insurance allows clients to access therapy without being given a mental health diagnosis.

Flexibility and freedom. Insurance companies dictate the length and number of sessions they will authorize, as well as when a client is no longer eligible for the benefits of therapy. Because we do not work with insurance panels, you and we can collaborate to determine your individual needs regarding session length, frequency of sessions, and when to terminate therapy.

While we do not accept insurance, many clients choose to submit receipts to their insurance companies to receive reimbursement via out-of-network benefits. We are happy to provide these receipts for you! Please check with your insurance company for details on your benefits.



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