Finding Light in the Darkness: A Suicide Prevention Toolkit – by Jennifer Scott

Photo courtesy of Pixabay by Sharokh

 

It feels like heartbreaking suicide reports have recently been all over the news. We’ve been shocked by the celebrity deaths of beloved comedian, Robin Williams, and talented musician, Chris Cornell. There have also been far too many teenagers, adolescents and adults who have committed suicide – such as the widely-publicized death of 15-year-old Audrie Pott, who is now the focus of a new Netflix documentary. Indeed, our world has been rocked by millions of people taking their own lives because they feel trapped with no other way out.

Suicide remains the 10th leading cause of death for people of all ages. Suicide is also the 2nd leading cause of death for adolescents and teenagers aged 10 to 19 years. Facts such as these have led many experts to suggest that the current suicide rates are a national “epidemic.”

Although these statistics sound grim – and they are – there is hope. Keep reading to learn short-term and long-term methods for helping yourself or a loved one who might be struggling with suicidal thoughts.

 

Suicide Prevention Toolkit

This suicide prevention toolkit listed in this article contains two parts: short-term (emergency) prevention resources; and long-term suicide prevention strategies.

    1. Emergency Resources and Short-Term Prevention
      If you (or a loved one) have recently been struggling with suicidal thoughts, it is important to seek help now rather than allowing the thoughts to escalate further. Suicide prevention hotlines, chats, and licensed professionals specializing in intervention can all be literal life savers during your time of need. These short-term prevention methods and emergency resources could help you (or your loved one) remain in the present moment and not give into suicidal thoughts during an emergency situation.
    2. Long-Term Prevention
      Suicide rates in the United States have recently climbed to a 30 year high, and some of the leading reasons include drug abuse (such as heroin addiction) and alcoholism. For this reason, it is crucial for anyone struggling with addiction or alcoholism to seek recovery. There are many licensed professionals with years of experience in suicide prevention, postvention and recovery techniques who can help regain one’s life and manage mental health conditions such as depression, anxiety, or trauma. In addition, daily breathwork practices such as yoga and meditation may also be helpful in treating symptoms of depression, anxiety, stress PTSD, and suicidal thoughts or behaviors. Maintaining a spiritual or religious practice, attending church, and deepening one’s relationship with a higher power can also assist in healing, recovery, and suicide prevention.


Author
JK Rowling once wrote: “Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light.” Remember, there is always a light, even on your darkest days. Never give up and never lose hope.

With the suicide prevention toolkit listed in this article, we hope to provide resources for those in need – so we never have to lose any more beautiful lives to the pain of suicide. Good luck with your journey to healing!

~ Jennifer Scott

 

 

 

Fall Is In The Air



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As we are savoring our last days of summer, notice what happens inside your body as Fall comes closer. For me, there’s a sense of hope and new beginnings. There’s a momentum that wants to explore and explode with new ideas and new activities. Challenge yourself to quiet the mind enough to sense what is inside. This is some of the work we do in our Somatic Experiencing sessions. When the stuff inside is too mucky or dark we learn to pendulate out of the trauma to places that make us feel good and whole again. Our goal is being able to have a healthy nervous system that flows easily from the good to the difficult sensations, and back to the wonderful ones. Embodiment has been a new term for my clients to digest. How do we stay in our bodies and grounded during times of distress? Meditation and Yoga can sometimes take us out of our body. To stay within it takes awareness and sensation. Becoming aware of when you leave your body and noticing bodily sensations that will help keep you grounded, in the here and now, and in your body. EMBODIED

I wish you a beautiful, safe and grounded Fall! Remember… our Wednesday 6pm Yoga class begins in Stamford next week. If you are interested, just reply to this email and I will forward details.

Till then,

La Shana Tova for those of you who are celebrating the Jewish New Year and

Namaste to all!

 


From West to East

“From West to East”

Pamela doing a variation of Warrior I - Virabhadrasana I

 Pamela of doing a variation of Warrior I – Virabhadrasana I 

“The Yoga we practice is not for ourselves alone, but for the Divine; its aim is to work out the will of the Divine in the world,
to effect a Spiritual transformation and to bring down a Divine nature and a Divine life into the mental, vital, and life of humanity.”

~ Sri Aurobindo (Indian Sage)

 

Dear readers,

I’m so blessed to have had a vacation out West in Idaho!  Yes Idaho!  When people from the East Coast hear “Idaho” they think of potatoes .  Northern Idaho, the land of gorgeous lakes and mountains is a hidden gem. The water is as crystal clear as a diamond and the air is a pure delight to breathe. The people are happy, friendly, and live a wonderful quality of life. On the main page of my website (www.PamelaTinkham.com) you can see some photos of this beautiful place. A quote from my mentor in CA is, “New York, slow the F–k down! California, hurry up!”  West coast is definitely more “chill” in the most positive way. What I noticed coming back East was that everybody had an intensity that just did not exist over there. The stress levels here are so high and yet everyone is used to the stress so it has become our way of life. People don’t even realize the stress in their bodies and seem to have no awareness of it until they get sick.

Now I would like to mention West to East on a global level. In the West we tend to treat physical symptoms in the moment as they occur, while in the East they look at the entire body as a whole system and include spirit as well. In Eastern traditions there are many aspects to health and a holistic practitioner will do an exhaustive interview to know everything about you before prescribing a natural remedy. In the West we just prescribe drugs to treat the presenting problem. Please don’t misunderstand, I’m all for drugs and have taken many! I just think we overlook many things and don’t always get to the root of the problem.

So… where to live, what to do, and how to thrive seems to be the subject here. Personally, I want to live where I feel God’s presence. I want to treat my body as a temple and nourish it in the best possible way and I want my soul to soar with nature and be free! Sounds mushy? Maybe for some…

As I return to my routine, I notice that the amount of people on the East Coast adds to my overall stress level. Whether it is in traffic, a line at the grocery store, or even wanting to find peace and quiet at the beach and there’s a crowd. (Or people having sex on the beach if you read the last email blast ). Also, if anyone has been away to a beautiful, peaceful place and has come back to one of the New York airports, you know exactly what I’m talking about. It’s almost like you going from Paradise to Hell. Please excuse me if you are an “I love New Yorker”. I love the restaurants, the arts, the culture, the diversity, and I believe there is no comparison when it comes to those things. NYC is one of a kind and cannot be compared to other cities. My sincere apologies if this email offends anyone!

Where I am going with this is…

To simply inform you that I am moving to the West Coast soon! Actually in about 2 years. I’m not trying to sell myself or my services to anyone. (Although I wouldn’t mind having more business ). I’m letting you know that if you have been putting off trying the combination of Yoga and Psychotherapy, you have 2 years to come in for an appointment. With that said, once I move I will be offering a generous discount for existing clients to continue working with me via FaceTime or Skype. The union of Yoga and Psychotherapy has been a gift to me and I am passionate about sharing it. I am also in the beginning stages of a 3 year training in Psychological Trauma and will continue the training out West and will have the credential of a SEP, (Somatic Experiencing Practitioner). Somatic Experiencing is all about how emotions are stored within the body and how trauma affects the nervous system. It’s all very exciting work to share with you!

Once again, thank you for reading. I know that lengthy emails are annoying during the times of receiving 100+ emails daily. I appreciate you taking the time out of your busy day and look forward to hearing from you in the near future.

With love and blessings always…

Namaste,
Pamela

 


Ski Therapy

 

by Pamela Tinkham, LCSW, C-IAYT, SEP

 

What’s the best treatment for depression and anxiety?  MINDFULNESS

Mindfulness, or being mindful, is being fully aware of your present moment. You are not judging, reflecting, or thinking. You are simply observing the moment in which you find yourself. After skiing with my Yogini (female Yogi) buddies this weekend with wind chills below zero degrees, I realized that ski therapy is a wonderful way of cultivating mindfulness.

Being present does not allow you to ruminate about the past or to worry about the future. When you are on a mountain with ice and snow piles in between where your skis can get caught, you cannot be anything but present. All of the sudden everything you were obsessing about goes away because you must be present “OR DIE” .

This form of mindfulness can be done with any activity that pushes you to your most fearful edge. It can be snowboarding; zip lining, rock climbing or even riding a bike if that is difficult for you. Choosing an activity that pushes you to face your fears, work through them, and come to the other side can increase your self-awareness, self-esteem, and overall sense of courage.

It’s never too late to try a new activity and greatly advantageous to find the warrior within and the strength that you did not believe you had! Thanks to my daredevil friend Jackie, I was able to push through my greatest fears to have an awesome weekend.

Love to all of you and thanks for reading!

Namaste,
Pamela