Seabreeze Counselling and Psychology - Robyn Van der Zee
Bryant Drive, Tuggerah
The Mariners Centre of Excellence, Tuggerah
Bryant Drive, Tuggerah
Meadow Drive, Hervey Bay
Central Coast Locations
Reliance Drive, Tuggerah
Tuggerah Medical & Professional Centre, Tuggerah
Grevillia Crescent, Berkeley Vale
Lorraine Avenue, Berkeley Vale
I am a Registered Psychologist and Clinical Counsellor and Supervisor.
I am a Clinical Counsellor working with mental health issues such as: Anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress, relationship issues, abuse recovery
Operating as usual
Today on The Best of You podcast, we're starting a new series on Boundaries and the Bible. And we're starting with what I call the Yes Side of No.
So many of us struggle with setting external boundaries because we keep the focus on the other person. But the work of setting boundaries starts inside of you.
In today's episode, I walk you through how to build to trust with yourself from the inside out. Here's what we cover:
1. Why I don’t believe boundaries start with No
2. Can I really learn to trust myself?
3. What about sin?
4. What is an internal (vs. external) locus of control and why does it matter?
5. Examples of promises you can make to parts of you carrying pain
6. Examples of promises you can make to your body
7. A challenge to you that we'll circle back to next week.
Check it out wherever you get your podcasts, or at dralisoncook.com/podcast.
Setting boundaries with unsafe people is wisdom, its not unforgiveness or walking in offence. Jesus set many boundaries with unsafe people, e.g. the Pharisees. Give yourself permission to be like Jesus and set boundaries when you need to.
Embracing Scripture after Religious Trauma | The Roys Report
This podcast is an interview of a counsellor who has both experienced and works with religious trauma. It’s not about using scripture as pat religious answers which spiritually bypasses underlying truths. It rather questions some traditional punitive interpretations of scripture for deeper personal, grace based embodied healing practices.
Embracing Scripture after Religious Trauma | The Roys Report Guest Bios Show Transcript Psalm 23 is a powerful psalm, reminding us that the Lord is our shepherd. Yet for those who have been hurt by their earthly shepherds—their pastors—the Psalm can sound trite or even off-put
CW: Religious Trauma, Betrayal Trauma, Abuse
The betrayal trauma of a church cover-up can be as traumatizing as the initial abuse.
It’s no secret that churches have been covering up abuse for a long time, but seeing the latest blatant example in the news can be overwhelming for many religious trauma survivors.
If you’re feeling this, you’re not alone.
I’m sharing this post to shine a light on a form of trauma that often gets overlooked—betrayal trauma.
Trauma is often an isolating and disorienting experience, and survivors desperately need the safety and support of a caring other to facilitate healing.
Not only does covering up abuse frequently result in ongoing harm, the betrayal itself is traumatizing.
Survivors know this all too well.
Unfortunately, many “defenders of the church” fail to recognize the harm they cause when they implicitly and explicitly support, dismiss, or excuse church cover-ups.
I want to live in a world where survivors’ safety and well-being is at least as important as the most ardent churchgoer’s beliefs.
I want to be the kind of person who recognizes the harm of betrayal trauma and values the safety and well-being of survivors more than the institutions and relationships I hold dear.
Survivors deserve better from all of us.
The Church as a Healing Community
A fabulous talk, well worth listening to.
The Church as a Healing Community Dr. Diane Langberg2018 AACC York Summit
I love this from the late Rebecca Merrill Groothius whose words live on.
"Nowhere does the Bible say that it is a man's job to discern the will of God, take responsibility for another's spirituality, and protect others from Satan and sin.
If God has given responsibility and dominion to both male and female (Gen 1:26-28), if we stand on equal ground before God (Gal 3:26-28), if women are equal heirs of the grace of God (1 Pet 3:7), and if all believers together--both men and women--form God's new priesthood (1 Pet 2:5, 9; Rev. 1:6; 5:10), then there is no reason for anyone to take this sort of spiritual responsibility for anyone else.
If Jesus Christ is a female believer's Lord and Saviour in the same way as he is a male believer's, then surely no Christian woman has need of a man to stand in the place of Christ for her."
Groothuis, "Equal in Being, Unequal in Role," in Discovering Biblical Equality, Ronald W. Pierce, Cynthia Long Westfall, Christa L. McKirland (eds) (Downers Grove, IL: IVP Academic, 2021), 393-428, 406.
Very wise words.
The humanism bypass. I did it for years. I saw glimpses of someone’s potential, their beautiful soul, their loving heart, and told myself that this was who they... truly were, ignoring all the rest. But the rest was what destroyed. The rest is where they lived most of the time. The rest was no illusion- it was them, too. This self-destructive pattern was birthed in two places: (1) my deep desire to see the best in my difficult parents. Not for them, but for me. I needed to believe that there was something kind and caring living inside of them; (2) a misplaced projection from my own self-concept work. I held the belief in my own potential, as a way of overcoming the shame I carried. But I made the mistake of assuming that everyone else was just as eager to find their light. Of course we all have glowing potential. At the core, we are all magnificent beings with profound capacities. But how many of us fully actualize it? At this stage of human development, not so many. The trick is to hold the space for two things at once- a deep belief in everyone’s possibilities, and a deep regard for your own well-being. It’s okay to pray for everyone’s liberation without joining them in prison. Pray from outside the prison walls, while taking exquisite care of yourself. It's okay- you can't do the work for them anyway. Boundaries, boundaries, boundaries… don’t leave home without them.
Phil Monroe: Trauma and Healing | The Roys Report
A great podcast -
Phil Monroe: Trauma and Healing | The Roys Report If you’re struggling with healing after trauma, or wanting to help someone facing those challenges, Dr. Phil Monroe offers help from his decades of experience.
The idea of “self” gets so misunderstood, especially in church culture. We are told to “deny ourselves,” before we even understand what it means to have a “self” in the first place!
It’s so damaging.
When you deny yourself before you even have a sense of self, it looks a little like this:
—I’ll deny my human limitations.
—I’ll deny that God-given talent.
—I’ll deny this beautiful aspect of who I am.
—I’ll deny the voice inside that longs to know the fullness of God’s love.
It leads to bitterness, resentment, and broken relationships. It’s not what Jesus meant.
We don’t often talk about that place inside, at the core - a place where the Spirit comes to live. This is a place where the essence of you was formed before all the wounds and brokenness found their way in - a place where you are intimately known, intimately loved, and intimately found (John 14, 2 Cor. 4:7, Eph 1:13; 3:16-17; Rom 7:22, etc.)
Self-acceptance isn’t glossing over rough edges or empty self affirming mantras.
It’s a deep knowing of the good AND the hard, busted up or broken. It’s seeing oneself clearly and honestly without condemnation. It’s seeing yourself in the way God does. it’s realizing that we change in the context of compassion vs. rigid “self denial.”
As you start to see yourself more clearly, you will no doubt bump into parts of you that you don’t like, parts that sometimes show pride, greed, or selfishness. When you see those parts of you from that Spirit-led place within, you won’t condemn yourself.
Instead, you’ll start to heal and transform them with God’s help.
Happily Family Online Conference
Happily Family Online Conference Free Conference - Mindful Parenting and Mental Wellness - October 14-18, 2021
Sunday Self-Care 🪴
Kristin on Nurturing Yourself with Self-Compassion
“The number one thing I’ve found in my research is that people think it’s good to be a little self-compassionate, but not too much. There is a strong belief that we need self-criticism to motivate us. Meaning, ‘If I’m not hard on myself, I’ll let myself get away with everything.'”
This reflects a fundamental misunderstanding about what self-compassion is: being kind and supportive with yourself when you’re confronting personal weaknesses, challenges, and setbacks. “Self-compassion goes beyond self-acceptance, it has an active element of caring, of wanting the best for yourself. It means saying to yourself, ‘I want to heal, to be happy, to be healthy,’ and knowing that sometimes requires you to make a change.”
If you view the change you’re trying to make as an act of self-care instead of trying to motivate yourself with anger or rejection, you’ll be more likely to succeed.
moodgym - Interactive skills training for depression and anxiety
Resources for mental health
moodgym - Interactive skills training for depression and anxiety moodgym is an interactive self-help program that provides cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) training to help users prevent and cope with depression and anxiety.
#114: Embracing an authentic spiritual life (with Liz Milani) — Jonathan Puddle
A great podcast about embracing authenticity in our spiritual walk and trusting your God given intuition and discernment as often we can inadvertently be taught the opposite.
#114: Embracing an authentic spiritual life (with Liz Milani) — Jonathan Puddle Liz Milani is a writer and seeker who runs The Practice Co app and Instagram, and joins me this week to talk about daily spiritual practices that are authentic to our self of sense. We talked about leaving church when our bodies break down, deconstructing and reconfiguring our faith, and reconnectin
Why is Covering Theology false? | Covering and Authority
Why is Covering Theology false? | Covering and Authority Covering Theology distorts the gospel of Jesus Christ by redefining biblical concepts such as the Kingdom of God, faith, sin and grace.
What is DARVO?
DENY ATTACK REVERSE VICTIM OFFENDER - A possibly dynamic at play when you may be confused.
What is DARVO? DARVO refers to a reaction perpetrators of wrong doing, particularly sexual offenders, may display in response to being held accountable for their behavior. DARVO stands for "Deny, Attack, and Reverse Victim and Offender." The perpetrator or offender may Deny the behavior, Attack the individual doin...
Great advice -
If you are highly empathic, you might find it exhausting to show up daily in the world. You sense the feelings of others, and if you've been conditioned to please or to fawn, you may feel that ALL of those feelings are YOUR responsibility to soothe or to heal.
Consider giving yourself the gift of spaciouness to honor this beautiful gift you've been given. In the quiet of self-reflection, you'll discover how to separate from your empathy, so that you can lead yourself wisely.
Empathy is not always a cue that you have to be the one to enter in. Even Jesus did not heal every person he met—imagine how he must have stayed deeply aligned and in touch with himself and with God. My guess is that is why he often slipped away from the crowds.
Thoughts about Hillsong and Brian Houston from a minister who did report his own father
Thoughts about Hillsong and Brian Houston from a minister who did report his own father Hillsong Church, known across the globe for its worship music, has been in the spotlight recently. To be honest, I never knew much about Hillsong until 60 Minutes Australia did a special on Frank H…
A podcast on a hot topic - SPIRITUAL TRAUMA within a Christian context - with hopefully more to come on spiritual trauma recovery. In the meantime a great resource is “Altogether you: Experiencing Personal and Spiritual Transformation with Internal Family Systems Therapy” which describes the process of healing inner dividedness and shame from trauma including spiritual trauma with a Christian worldview.
Love this - very insightful interpretation of this theology
Sometimes I think of the idea of "dying to yourself" like shedding old skin. It's shedding old ways that we learned to please, perform, or produce to earn love. It's learning to become more real, more you, more alive to the person God made you to become.
To read the whole article and sign up for my free Thursday email, go to https://alisoncookphd.com/are-you-really-supposed-to-die-to-yourself.
"The encouraging thing is that every time you meet a situation, though you may think at the time it is an impossibility and you go through the tortures of the damned, once you have met it and lived through it you find that forever after you are freer than you ever were before. If you can live through that you can live through anything. You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face."
Eleanor Roosevelt, You Learn by Living
“The History And Politics Of ‘False Memories’: The Australian Experience”
Another great article by a colleagues of mine working in the trauma field, discussing the undermining of CSA reports by the non-evidence based “false memory syndrome” and the politics involved.
“The History And Politics Of ‘False Memories’: The Australian Experience” (2022). “The History And Politics Of ‘False Memories’: The Australian Experience”. Journal of Trauma & Dissociation. Ahead of Print.
Do S*x Offenders Belong in Church?
Great article and podcast.
Do S*x Offenders Belong in Church? Support WILD as we empower women on their journey to heal from trauma + abuse in the faith community.
But let’s be honest how accurate is this… 😳😅😬
Remember it’s good to laugh! Laughter is so healing for your brain as I discuss in my latest podcast (358). To listen to the podcast just look for Cleaning up the Mental Mess wherever you listen to podcasts or visit: https://anchor.fm/cleaningupthementalmess/episodes/Podcast-358-One-of-the-best--most-easily-accessible-anti-depressants-e1ele62
Love this -
The idea of what it really means to "die to yourself " might surprise you! So often, this idea has been used to encourage women to:
– destroy their health
– stay in abusive marriages
– let co-workers take advantage of them
– bury their God-given talents
– sit by while friends walk all over them
But, what if that's not at all what Jesus meant? What if dying to yourself is dying to old ways that you learned to cope and survive, that are no longer serving you?
In fact, what if dying to yourself means dying to the lie that God does not want more for you?
For more content like this, head over to alisoncookphd.com or the link in my bio to sign up for my free weekly newsletter.
Internal Family Systems (IFS) Therapy for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) among Survivors of Multiple Childhood Trauma: A Pilot Effectiveness Study
Interesting research on healing trauma
Internal Family Systems (IFS) Therapy for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) among Survivors of Multiple Childhood Trauma: A Pilot Effectiveness Study (2021). Internal Family Systems (IFS) Therapy for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) among Survivors of Multiple Childhood Trauma: A Pilot Effectiveness Study. Journal of Aggression, Maltreatment & Trauma. Ahead of Print.
Boundaries are hard. Especially when we’re dealing with loneliness, uncertainty, and the pressures of the holidays. As I’ve interacted with you about this topic, it occurs to me that the most important boundary we can set is with the part of ourself that constantly beats us up telling us:
—You shouldn’t have done that!
—Why did you say it that way?!
—What’s wrong with you?
—When will you ever learn?
Do you beat yourself up in these ways? It’s a voice that can sneak into my mind still to this day. It’s a part of us that is trying to help. But it needs a gentle reframe. It needs a reminder that we don’t change in the context of criticism.
It’s not how our loving God talks to us.
So why do we talk to ourselves in this way?
The truth is: We change with compassion.
Instead of pressuring yourself to get all of your hardest boundaries situations perfected this Christmas, consider flipping the script in your mind to the following:
—What’s one way I can be kind to myself each day?
—How can I show gentleness toward myself?
—What activity helps me feel good about myself?
As you work to genuinely care for yourself, with God’s help, the boundary lines will follow.
Go easy. ❤️🙏🏻🎄
BUILDING MENTAL HEALTH RESILIENCE - GRATITUDE
BUILDING MENTAL HEALTH RESILIENCE
BUILDING MENTAL HEALTH RESILIENCE
BUILDING MENTAL HEALTH RESILIENCE - LETTING GO
How Trauma Can Damage the Brain for Generations and Can Be Reversed - The Best Brain Possible
How Trauma Can Damage the Brain for Generations and Can Be Reversed - The Best Brain Possible Epigenetics is proving that trauma changes genes influencing mental health. The bad news is that it can be inherited. The good news is that it can be reversed.
LOCKDOWN COVID MENTAL HEALTH TIP - THE SERENITY PRAYER
God grant me the serenity -
To accept the things I cannot change;
Courage to change the things I can;
And the wisdom to know the difference.
Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace.
MENTAL HEALTH TIPS FOR COPING WITH COVID AND LOCKDOWNS.
1. ACCEPTANCE - Ironically accepting a situation that you cannot change, nor have any control over has been consistently found to increase mental health. The good old Serenity Prayer.
2. FOCUS ON THE THINGS YOU DO HAVE CONTROL OVER - That is things like your responses to challenges, your attitudes, your thoughts, your daily routine etc.
3. LET GO OF THE THINGS YOU CANNOT CONTROL - Eg. Things like government decisions, other people’s reactions and responses.
4. SELF COMPASSION - The research regarding the benefit of self-compassion undeniably shows its benefits to mental health. That is being kind to yourself.
5. BELIEF THAT THIS WILL END - Even though lockdowns especially for those in Sydney and Melbourne may have felt like its forever and its uncertain when they will end, they will eventually end. Keep focusing on that they will end. Research shows that believing a prolonged difficulty will not go on forever assists mental health.
6. PRACTICE MINDFULNESS - That is become aware of what you are thinking - ask is this helpful? Is it moving towards my goals? Is it assisting my mental health? If not how can I unhook from these thoughts and redirect my focus to thoughts that are more helpful.
7. GRATITUDE - Practicing gratitude regularly during the day. Notice the beauty around you, even in the small things. Being mindfully aware of things to be grateful for.
8. EXERCISE - This cannot be overstated as an important way to increase mental health. Exercise releases in short “happy hormones and neurochemicals”. Even if you start small, every little bit helps.
9. RECOGNISE YOU ARE NOT IN THIS ALONE - Whilst it may feel like this there is a collective of people who also are impacted by COVID and lockdowns
10. UTILISE SOCIAL MEDIA WELL - To maintain social connectedness. Beware of the “conspiracy theory - government big pharma” rabbit hole as well as posts that contain misinformation, even if they are wellmeaning. They will only cause confusion and/or more anxiety, stress and in some cases paranoia.
11. If you have a faith - where is God in this for you and for everyone this will mean a uniquely different thing. Find out what this means for uniquely you. For Christians - “He never leaves or forsakes us”. That means He is there in this with us. Draw upon His strength.
Conspiracy theories are a mental health crisis
I am not trying to be controversial, or not respectful of viewpoints, but merely bringing to the forefront a valid perspective from mental health workers who are finding the concerning relationship between "conspiracy theories", including "Christian conspiracy theories" and and its impact on mental health.
Conspiracy theories are a mental health crisis No one's talking about the complex relationship between disinformation and mental health. That changes now.
10 ways to take care of yourself at home
Self Care tips during lockdowns
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