Integrated Mental Wellness
The Better State of Mind Approach is one of Integrated Mental Wellness in that our approach combines traditional approaches to mental health such as talk therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, medication treatment with other complementary ones that can support one’s wellbeing in addition to the standard ones. We recognize that mental wellness has many components to it apart from those included in the more generic treatments of mental health. Better State of Mind recognizes the importance of domains of relationships/community, health/diet/physical activity, creativity, meaning/spirituality. Our approach is structured to address the multifaceted aspects of each unique individual attempting to deal in their own ways with their challenges. We set ourselves apart from the insurance/money-driven, sterilely impersonal, antiquated medical model that a large part of our mental health system still operates by. Our services are also designed to be complementary, facilitating a process of change psychologically, mentally, and physiologically, including a network of collaboration with other providers.
I have felt that many of the big challenges in my life are internal (how we internally respond to things) rather than just external, (i.e. marathons, jobs, relationships, physical exercise, bungee jumping), which are of course valid and important too. Such a belief has led me in a personal journey of many years of practicing meditation traditions from Vipassna (insight meditation), Yoga, Zazen (Walking Meditation), Buddhism, and other meditative and spiritual traditions throughout the years. I have also led mindfulness groups and meditations. I feel that a secular feeling of meaning, a religious or spiritual community or practice, and various mindful practices and beliefs offer an array of benefits to many people, especially in times of hardship. Click to read more about how mindfulness may be integrated into treatment for some individuals.
“…In deep thinking vs. regular thinking, there is a focus on identifying, through this engaged listening, some of your key issues and some solutions. My undivided attention to your exploration is a catalyst and a magnifying glass, and through it, there is a feedback process between the client and the undivided attention guiding and intensifying the exploration. The opportunity to come up with a meaningful solution that comes from the person’s deep roots is tapped into through this process…”
Neuroscience and Neurobiology
My long-term interest in neuroscience was seeded in graduate school upon learning of biofeedback and neurofeedback. The idea that one can learn to regulate an aspect of their own physiology (their brain waves or their heart rate variability) has always had a deep resonance with me, and drove me through years-long certification process of the international in neurofeedback. Though not against treatment with medications, I feel that identifying biomarkers of mental wellness and training them in a data-focused way (results are clearly measurable) is a very compelling approach to support mental wellness for many people. Read more about neurofeedback and other ways that neurobiology is integrated into the Better State of Mind approach.