Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!

I wanted to express thanks to the GIC for allowing me to get great experience with our amazing clients.  It has been a privileged and honor to work with every intern and client.  I hope everyone going to the GIC for Thanksgiving will enjoy my apple pie!
Happy Thanksgiving!!

Friday, November 21, 2014

A Grateful Friday

It's a beautiful, sunny day outside.  This time of year carries the ubiquitous message of being grateful for what we have.  And there IS so much we have.  Before I go off on a tangent, I'll stop myself and instead ask you to scroll down where I listed a couple articles I recently read that might interest our readers.  I also included a couple songs that helped carry me through the recent flurry of ending the quarter and gearing up for end of year festivities.  What am I grateful for?  The fact that I can read, hear, write and learn.  I'm grateful I have the capacity to gather information about our world and about the folks who populate it.  Happy Friday to you and yours!

Report: Transgender Coloradans face daunting mental health challenges

When Women Become Men at Wellesley
(Excuse the poorly worded headline, but this is an interesting article)

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

What Are YOU Thankful For?

So many people struggle this time of year, especially when it comes to the pressure of the holidays. This becomes especially challenging if you don't have anywhere to go for said holidays, which just ramps up the insidious cycles of loneliness and depression so many people experience daily. At the GIC, we are doing our part to ease some of the tension by having our own version of Thanksgiving dinner.

But this begs the question: What are you thankful for? I'm thankful for breath. Specifically my breath; the breath that keeps oxygen flowing through my being that is a major contributor to what is keeping me alive. When you observe that breath, you know you are alive. That is called purpose. The question behind purpose is: What is my purpose? Why am I here? What am I doing? Unfortunately, because we do not come with instruction manuals that design our way of being, it is left to each of us to individually determine who we are, what we are doing, and where we are going.

We have a limited time on earth, depending what your belief system is around the birth, life, death cycle, so why not make the most of it? Why not choose the path that's right for you? Why not be who you are supposed to be?

Friday, November 14, 2014

Transgender Day of Remembrance

Happy Friday everyone! Just wanted to send out another reminder about Transgender Day of Remembrance. I was not able to make it last year, and can vividly remember several people talking about how impactful the candlelight vigil was. I hope to make it this year, and possibly see some familiar faces that I have not seen in a while. This is such a special time for our community, and one that can be difficult emotionally... I encourage everyone to be good to themselves, and kind to one another in a way that continues to foster positivity and love within our community. Have a wonderful weekend :)


Transgender Day of Remembrance: 

November 20th, 2014
7:00pm to 9:00pm
Jefferson Unitarian Church
14350 W 32nd Ave, Golden, CO 80401
(303) 279-5282

"Join us in support and solidarity, to remember those affected by violence and oppression against Transgender people. We will be holding a candlelight vigil and reading the names of those who have passed away within the last year. Afterward we will have a brief reception to build community. Light food and drinks will be provided during our reception. All are welcome."

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Holiday Stress

It is getting colder and the holidays are approaching. As exciting as it is for some, holidays can be very stressful.  Here are some ways to cope from WebMD:

Tips for Beating Holiday Stress

Once you’ve taken a clear look at the holidays -- about what works and what doesn’t -- it’s time to make some changes. Focus on the holiday stresses that you can control. That includes making different plans and changing your responses to situations. Here are four key don’ts for the holidays.
  • Don’t do the same old thing. If the usual family gathering is causing holiday stress, try something else. If you’re too overwhelmed to host, discuss other possibilities with family members. Maybe a sibling could have the dinner this year.
  • Don’t expect miracles. If your holiday anxiety stems from a deeper history of family conflict, don’t expect that you’ll be able to resolve any big underlying issues now. Sure, it’s supposed to be a season of forgiveness and good will. But in the midst of a hectic holiday season, you can’t pin your hopes on leading family members to big emotional breakthroughs. You may be better off focusing on your own state of mind and confronting difficult issues during a less volatile time of year.
  • Don’t overdo it. To reduce holiday stress, you have to pace yourself. Long before the family gatherings actually happen, decide on some limits and stick to them. Stay one or two nights at your parents’ house instead of three or four. Plan to drop by the holiday party for a couple of hours instead of staying all night.
  • Don’t worry about how things should be. “There’s a lot of cultural pressure during the holidays,” says Duckworth. “We tend to compare ourselves with these idealized notions of perfect families and perfect holidays.” But in fact, most people have less than perfect holiday gatherings -- they have family tension, melancholy, and dry turkey too. If you have negative feelings, don’t try to deny them. Remember that there’s nothing wrong or shameful or unusual about feeling down during the holidays.

Depression During the Holidays: Getting Help

For many people battling holiday stress, changing expectations and behavior can make a big difference. But not always. David Dunner, MD, director of the Center for Anxiety and Depression in Mercer Island, Wash., says that sometimes the apparent connections between the holidays and depression may just be coincidental.
“I tend to take a fairly agnostic approach toward the cause of depression because I’m never sure what it really is,” says Dunner. “Even though it might seem like that the holiday trip to Cleveland to see family is what’s making you feel down, it could have nothing to do with it.” Seasonal affective disorder (SAD), a medical condition, a drug side effect, or something else entirely could be the real culprit.