Monthly Archives: March 2020

The Healing Power of the Present Moment


Online Video Appointments are Available!

During these trying times of social isolation and fear of the unknown, many people are experiencing anxiety due to this unexpected cultural trauma of the COVID-19.

Undoubtedly, if you are feeling high levels or chronic levels of anxiety, it can mean that most of your energy is focused externally and not in the present moment. In these times, it can be helpful to take a pause and ask yourself, “Have I been letting my fears take over? Am I overwhelmed?”

Without Judgment

A great technique to alleviate your anxiety is to turn your energy and attention inward and enter the present moment. As you focus on your inner world, without judgment, and with compassion, it is a place of the present moment, a deep inner peace. The very act of pausing and inner energy focus can calm the mind that is anxious about the future and the unknown. Ask yourself these questions. How am I right now in this present moment? Am I safe? Am I okay in this present moment?

Try building these small moments of self-connection and inner energy into your everyday life. The more you do this, the more you will be able to find your inner peace and self-compassion. When you can find satisfaction from being in the present moment you won’t feel so disconnected and anxious.

Also, In the present moment, you can release yourself from concerns of the past and the future and simply be with yourself, right where you are, right now.

Please watch this video…

If you are feeling overwhelmed, please contact me for an appointment (585) 432-0313. You can also register as a patient online Click Here. Please subscribe to and share this blog to continue to learn about better mental health!

Check out my online Alleviate Anxiety Course.

A Letter to Myself

Dear Dawn,


I am writing this letter to you(me) to remember all the things I have accomplished in my life that I want to express my gratitude for, my homework for trauma group at work. First and foremost, I am grateful for choosing to have and love my children their whole lives. I am grateful that while I was never perfect as a parent, I chose to make my children the most important people in my life and still do. My heart bursts with joy and love when I think about them, remembering all the joy they have brought me. While I crave grandchildren, my children are and always will be enough to fill my heart with love.

My Boundaries


I am also grateful for all the work I have put into the relationships with my family. My boundaries with my sometimes dysfunctional family are always being worked out, but I am so glad that I am my authentic self now and that I no longer go along to get along. And sometimes, I react with more careful thought, rather than emotion, to family members when boundaries are being tested. Even if others haven’t changed, I have. My healthier interactions are now a reflection of my true and authentic self. I will always be a work in process, but now that I respect me, and others respect me too. 


I am proud that I take care of myself too. Self-care is so important to me that my swimming 3-times per week has become no longer enough. Now I am going to look into a couple of after-work classes or morning yoga.

I am Grateful…


I thought writing this letter would be easier. I have come through so much and I am so grateful that I somehow came through each adversity stronger than before. I have a more optimistic outlook than I have ever had in my life.


I am grateful that I chose, and choose, to not drink alcohol anymore. I choose to be present in my life now, present and clear-headed. At times it is harder than I had ever imagined, but sooo very worth the hard days to stay sober. My physical health has improved, my mental health has improved, and while I have had some absolutely fabulous friends, mentors, coworkers, and counselors help me on my journey, I am ultimately the one who has stuck with it and I did the work. 

My Life’s Path


And, to this I have to tell myself, how very, very grateful I am to have taken one of the biggest risks of my life and started a brand-new career path at 50 years old as a certified peer support specialist. I work with others in recovery with addiction and help them with their mental health issues.

The world has opened up for me and I feel more valued, committed, influential, important, worthy, competent, appreciated, inspired, open, energized, believed, validated, and respected and loved than I have ever felt in my whole life. 

I own my life now, my thoughts are my own, and I Express them more than I ever have. Thank you(me) for taking a leap of faith. And thank you, Lord, for having my back, as always.

Your loving self,

Dawn

Thank you, Dawn, for sharing your story. You are an inspiration to me and others! If you would like to write a guest post for the Wisdom Room, please email me your narrative to clevelandemotionalhealth@gmail.com. Don’t forget to subscribe to the Wisdom Room!


Minding Anxiety in the Moment

One of the most common things we do when feeling anxious is to avoid our anxiety.

When you are feeling anxious, what do you that you do to avoid it? Some people may use substances (e.g. alcohol, nicotine, THC), engage in impulsive behaviors (e.g. judging others, temper, binge eating, hoarding, OCD) or shut down (e.g. ruminating, low motivation, physical aches and pains, headaches/migraines).

If you are in the process of learning how to face your emotions to alleviate your anxiety, this can be a very difficult undertaking. So, I want to share some mindful practices that I use to “keep it together and carry on” in the face of deeply disturbing anxiety.

Box Breathing & Mantra

The first one is breathing deeply or box breathing (breath out for 4-hold for 4-breath in for 4-hold for 4-repeat; see video). I practice this breathing technique daily and often.

The second is having a mantra that I use for calming my mind. For example, I went for a jog this morning, and when my body and mind wanted to quit, I kept repeating feeling good-looking good, feeling good-looking good, and this kept me going without slowing down my pace. Mantras also work well with breathing meditations.

Mental Toughness

Another way to reduce and tolerate anxiety is mental toughness. Mental toughness is a philosophy of learning and growth. Mental toughness is facing difficulties and suffering from a positive and open mindset. Watch the video below on mental toughness.

Learn More

If you are interested in learning more about adaptive and mentally healthy ways to work through your distress, Below is a book I recommend reading (at least twice) to better understand the phenomenon of mental toughness philosophy.

For more information on your anxiety, please contact me clevelandemotionalhealth@gmail.com and Cleveland Emotional Health Courses

Until next time ~ Catherine