Revisiting Topics in Psychotherapy-Article


June 24, 2024 / by Ligia Hamada

No More Shame in Revisiting Topics in Psychotherapy

If you have ever left your psychologist's office thinking: "Oh my goodness! I can't believe I talked about that very same thing again! What's wrong with me?" I want to invite you to put your shame aside and join me for a few minutes in this reading, and I am confident that you will be surprised by the outcomes.

So, Why Revisiting Topics Matters

When you first begin psychotherapy, it might feel like the discussions are merely skimming the surface, focusing on current events or immediate concerns. However, as we revisit these topics, patterns begin to emerge, revealing deeper, underlying issues. This shift is crucial as it moves our conversations from general discussion to targeted, meaningful exploration.

Memory also plays a vital role in this process. Each time a memory is recalled, it’s not simply replayed but reconstructed. This reconstruction is shaped by your current emotional state, insights, and the therapeutic environment we create together. Thus, revisiting a memory repeatedly in psychotherapy can significantly alter its emotional impact and the meaning you attribute to it.

But there’s more, much more that revisiting topics in our sessions provides, such as:

* Offering you a safe space for processing and integrating emotions.
* Enabling us to identify and reframe your negative beliefs.
* Strengthening our therapeutic relationship, building trust and safety over time.
* Helping you recognise and reinforce positive changes.
* Assisting in normalising your experiences and breaking the cycle of shame and isolation.

What Studies Say

Research, including a study by John Norcross and colleagues in 2019, supports the effectiveness of revisiting core themes in psychotherapy. Their findings highlight how repetition helps both therapists and clients drill down into subconscious motivations and unresolved conflicts that dictate behaviour patterns, thereby enabling deeper understanding and more sustainable change.

Cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT) emphasises that understanding and modifying deep-seated beliefs requires us to repeatedly scrutinise the thoughts and assumptions guiding your behaviour. By revisiting these topics, we can help you identify automatic thoughts and challenge the validity of such beliefs, promoting cognitive restructuring.

Now, let me reassure you: there's nothing wrong with you or your therapeutic process. Revisiting certain topics is actually the best way to go, so you can unravel deeper layers of understanding of complex personal issues. This approach allows you to gain deeper insights, process emotions, reshape negative beliefs, recognise your progress, build trust, and feel less isolated. No space for shame in this, right?
As a psychologist, I will never get tired of listening to what's important to you. In fact, it delights me to be here to support you through this process with empathy, understanding, and technical expertise. Given that it is clear there is no sign of failure in it, I have to ask you:
Are you ready to jump into this rewarding journey with me?


Clinician’s Guide to Evidence-Based Practices: Mental Health and the Addictions. Oxford University Press.

Cognitive Therapy: Basics and Beyond. Guilford Press.

Emotion-Focused Therapy for Depression. American Psychological Association.


Alliance in Individual Psychotherapy. Psychotherapy, 48(1), 9-16.

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Restoring Wholeness-ADHD-Article


Restoring Wholeness for Women with ADHD

May 13, 2024 / by Ligia Hamada
Living with ADHD can feel like trying to find your way through a maze filled with hidden barriers. Women facing this condition often encounter obstacles stemming from norms and underlying prejudices. Dr. Patricia Quinn, an authority, in the field of ADHD, among women illuminates these challenges and offers insights into reclaiming a sense of Wholeness.

The Impact of ADHD on Women's Self-Esteem

In Understanding Women with ADHD, Dr. Quinn explains how women with ADHD often internalise negative feedback, leading to poor self-esteem. As a result, they tend to mask their symptoms, striving for perfection while feeling deeply inadequate.

“Girls tend to suffer silently for many years, developing poor self-esteem early on,” says Dr. Quinn. Their symptoms often sneak up on them, creating a cycle of anxiety and compensatory strategies that can lead to depression and perfectionism.

Women frequently feel anxious about meeting work expectations due to the fear of making mistakes or forgetting something important. This anxiety can manifest as behaviours where women spend excessive time organising and checking tasks repeatedly to avoid criticism. The pressure for perfection often drives them to overcompensate for their perceived flaws until it becomes overwhelming.

In college, women with ADHD often struggle with inattentiveness and organisation, which can lead to poor grades and, most likely, self-doubt. Have you ever felt like you were always playing catch-up with your classmates? Comparison with seemingly more organised peers can be disheartening, and the fear of rejection often causes women to withdraw socially, compounding feelings of loneliness and making them afraid to approach new people because of irrational thoughts like, “What if they find me weird?”

The challenges don’t end after graduation. In the workplace, women with ADHD often experience imposter syndrome, doubting their achievements and attributing success to luck, frequently feeling like they don’t deserve it. Balancing work, family, and personal life often feels like an impossible juggling act, leading to feelings of failure in both work and motherhood.

Restoring Wholeness

Despite the challenges of ADHD, restoring wholeness for women involves recognising their unique strengths and embracing their true selves. Dr. Quinn emphasises the importance of self-understanding and acceptance. By recognising how ADHD impacts their lives and challenging negative beliefs, women can shift their self-perception and rebuild confidence. Accepting oneself as they are, quirks and all, is a crucial first step towards restoring self-esteem.

Reframing internal dialogue is also essential. Replace self-criticism with affirmations like “I’m capable and strong,” and challenge perfectionist thinking by focusing on progress rather than perfection. Learning to show oneself kindness of striving for perfection is key to reducing feelings of inadequacy.

Creating a support network is another vital aspect of restoring wholeness. Surrounding oneself with people who understand and offer support can significantly boost self-esteem. Finding a community of like-minded individuals through ADHD support groups or counselling offers a secure environment for exchanging experiences and coping strategies.

Aligning one’s life with their strengths is also crucial. Choose roles and activities that complement natural abilities, and consider ADHD coaching to identify career paths that align with those strengths. Shifting to roles that allow the use of ADHD superpowers can make a world of difference.

Additionally drawing inspiration from role models can be empowering. Exploring the stories of women with ADHD who have embraced their attributes can serve as a source of encouragement. Learning about women, with ADHD instills self belief. Reinforces the notion that thriving despite challenges is achievable.

Restoring wholeness as a woman with ADHD requires self-acceptance, a supportive network, and embracing one's unique strengths. By changing internal dialogues, prioritising self-care, and finding inspiration in others, women can rebuild their confidence and live more fulfilling lives.
Looking for professional support to restore your sense of wholeness?


Understanding Women with ADHD: How They Feel and Why They Do What They Do. Advantage Books, 2002.

“Update on Girls with ADHD: An Interview with Dr. Patricia Quinn”, link here.

“Women and Girls with ADHD” by Patricia O. Quinn MD, link here

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Emotional Dysregulation_Article


Understanding Emotional Dysregulation in Adults with ADHD

April 15, 2024 / by Ligia Hamada
Living with ADHD involves more than dealing with inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity. Emotional dysregulation, which is often overlooked, presents a challenge for adults with ADHD. So, let’s delve into the reasons behind this phenomenon, how it shows up, and some practical strategies to manage it.

The Likely Trigger of Emotional Dysregulation in ADHD.

Did you know that the way our brains are wired can make handling emotions a bit trickier? Studies suggest that emotional dysregulation in individuals with ADHD may originate from how the frontal lobe operates. This brain region plays a role in regulating emotions and impulses. In ADHD cases, it may not communicate effectively with other emotion-processing areas. This can complicate our ability to control our feelings and reactions.

Illustration of Emotional Dysregulation and ADHD among Adults.

Picture yourself stuck in traffic or dealing with a slow computer. For someone with ADHD, such situations can evoke frustration that disrupts their functioning at that moment. This intense emotional reaction can strain both personal and professional relationships. It's not just about being irritated by the delay—it feels like your entire day is unravelling.
Have you ever felt deeply hurt when a friend cancels plans at the last minute? Individuals with ADHD might experience an intensified version of this emotion. Rejection sensitivity is when you view the world in a way that amplifies emotional pain, often influenced by experiences of real or perceived rejection.
Let’s discuss those moments when anger suddenly erupts without warning. For adults with ADHD, this can occur unexpectedly. Whether triggered by a bill notice or a missed appointment, the reaction can be swift and intense. Recognising this can aid in finding ways to express frustration healthily.
Impatience can lead to demanding behaviour that may appear unreasonable to others. This often originates from a perception of time linked to ADHD, creating a sense of urgency that others may not share.

Achieving Balance.

Achieving balance begins with introspection. Understanding your patterns, triggers, and signals is essential. Here are some key areas to focus on:
Recognise your feelings without projecting them onto others.
Attempt to view situations from other perspectives, reducing conflicts.
Practise delaying emotional responses.
Explore techniques like deep breathing or mindfulness for self-calming.
Engage in activities that uplift your spirits, such as listening to music or expressing gratitude. These approaches go beyond navigating tough times; they focus on reshaping your interactions with the world around you.
Addressing emotional regulation challenges often entails a combination of medication, psychotherapy, psychoeducation, coaching, mindset coaching, or a good mix of these approaches to provide the support for developing coping strategies crucial for achieving harmony in a neurodiverse life within a neurotypical society.
If you are looking for support, click below to schedule an appointment with one of our experts who can assist you in moving forward on your mental health journey.


Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. 5th ed., American Psychiatric Publishing, 2013.

Emotion Dysregulation is a Core Component of ADHD. Guilford Press, 2015.

“Emotion Dysregulation in Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.” American Journal of Psychiatry, vol. no., 2014, Link here

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Managing Anxiety and Stress by Grounding Techniques

September 23, 2023 / by Ligia Hamada
Grounding techniques are a collection of therapeutic exercises and practices designed to anchor you in the present moment, both mentally and physically. They are particularly useful when you’re feeling anxious, dissociated, or overwhelmed. The core concept behind grounding is to shift your focus away from distressing thoughts or emotions and redirect it towards your immediate sensory experiences.

Types of Grounding Techniques.

There are various grounding techniques to choose from, each tailored to different preferences and situations. Here are some common types:
- Mental Grounding: Mental grounding techniques are intended to redirect your focus away from distressing thoughts and maintain your mental presence. Here are two effective methods:
* 5-4-3-2-1 Technique: This grounding technique is an effective way to help you stay present in the moment and break free from overthinking. By focusing on your five senses, this technique helps distract you from negative, anxiety-inducing thoughts that often come with the “what ifs” and “if onlys.” It provides instant relief by giving you a positive distraction, taking your mind away from endless rumination and over-analysis. This grounding technique can be especially helpful during moments of stress or anxiety, helping you to stay centred and present.

* S.O.B.E.R Technique: The SOBER stress interruption technique is an approach grounded in mindfulness that helps manage stress, anxiety, and overwhelming emotions. It provides a structured way to respond to challenging situations with greater awareness and resilience.
- Physical Grounding: Physical grounding techniques involve focusing on bodily sensations to establish a sense of stability and presence. Here are two techniques that illustrate physical grounding:
* 4-7-8 Breathing Exercise: Encourages relaxation by stimulating the body’s relaxation response. Shifts focus away from anxious thoughts by concentrating on breath and counting. Improves oxygen supply, promoting clearer thinking. Regulates the nervous system, balancing stress and relaxation responses. Builds a sense of control over thoughts and emotions through regular practice.

* Mountain Meditation: Mountain meditation is a mindfulness meditation practice that can help you cultivate a sense of stability and rootedness, much like a mountain. The scientific basis for mountain meditation is rooted in the principles of mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR), a technique developed by Jon Kabat-Zinn in the 1970s. MBSR has been shown to reduce stress and improve overall well-being through the practice of mindfulness meditation.

Why Do Grounding Techniques Work?

Grounding techniques are rooted in the principles of mindfulness and sensory awareness. They work by engaging your senses and shifting your attention away from distressing thoughts or memories. Here’s why they are effective:
* Interrupting Negative Thought Patterns: Grounding disrupts rumination and negative thought cycles, allowing your mind to reset.

* Stimulating the Parasympathetic Nervous System: Deep breathing and relaxation exercises activate the body’s relaxation response, reducing stress hormones and promoting calm.

* Enhancing Self-Awareness: Grounding encourages you to be present in your body and observe your emotions without judgment, fostering self-awareness and emotional regulation.

* Providing a Sense of Control: Grounding techniques empower you with tools to manage difficult emotions and situations.
In summary, grounded techniques play a crucial role in the psychotherapeutic process by facilitating present-moment awareness and connection to the physical world. These techniques can be a game-changer when combined with psychotherapy to help you manage distressing thoughts, emotions, or memories associated with past traumas by grounding them in the present experience. In this sense, we encourage our Broad-minded clients to ground themselves in the here and now, fostering a sense of stability, safety, and increased self-awareness.
To download our free grounding techniques toolkit

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External Resource

A Fulfilling Life: Elevate Life Through Self-Awareness

March 27, 2023 / by Ligia Hamada
Have you ever thought about what it means to live a fulfilling life? I mean, it's a goal that most of us aspire to achieve, right? And to achieve that goal, we need to invest in our own self-growth. It might sound like a daunting task, but trust me, it's worth it.
Self-growth is a truly remarkable journey that is all about unlocking our full potential. It means striving to enhance our mental, physical, emotional, social, and spiritual well-being. At the center of it all is self-awareness. That's the key to everything.
Self-awareness is about being in touch with our inner selves. It's about having an accurate perception of our strengths, weaknesses, values, and emotions. When we lack self-awareness, we tend to be driven by external factors like other people's opinions, societal norms, or our own biases. And that can really hold us back.
Think about it: if we're not aware of our fears, doubts, or beliefs, we might engage in self-limiting behaviours. We might become avoidant or perfectionistic, or we might spend all our time trying to please others. And all of that can be really detrimental to our mental health.
So, why do some people struggle with self-awareness? Well, for a simple reason, it requires introspection and reflection. And that can be uncomfortable or challenging for some. Plus, a lot of us have been socialised to prioritise external validation over self-validation. We're taught to conform to societal norms, even if they don't align with our own values or interests.
But here's the thing: investing in self-growth and building self-awareness is one of the best things we can do for ourselves. Sure, it might be a bit uncomfortable at first, but the end result? A fulfilling life that's truly our own. And isn't that worth a little bit of unease?
Given the undeniable benefits of such endeavours, let's discuss the steps needed to achieve them.

Recognise Your Limitations and Overcome Them

Self-growth is all about pushing beyond our limits and stepping out of our comfort zones. However, it would be impossible to take this journey without first acknowledging our limitations. Self-awareness helps us identify our fears, insecurities, and weaknesses. Once identified, we can design a plan to overcome them. For instance, if we struggle with public speaking, we can take classes or join public speaking groups to refine our skills.

Challenge Your Beliefs and Embrace Change

Self-awareness is not only about recognising our limitations but also recognising our beliefs and the impact they have on our lives. Often, our beliefs create biased opinions and limit our experiences, allowing self-awareness to challenge our beliefs and embrace change. An excellent way to challenge our beliefs is through learning from other cultures or communities, books, and taking courses. In addition, we can also engage in reflective practices that allow us to gain new perspectives.

Be Mindful of Your Emotions and Control Your Thoughts

Emotions are a significant part of our daily lives, and as humans, we are susceptible to experiencing various emotions. Self-awareness allows us to be present in the moment, acknowledge our emotions, and control our thoughts effectively. It helps us to avoid being overwhelmed by our emotions, make rational decisions, and foster positive mental health ...
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