Couple in Quarantine


In the interview below I share some pointers for couples during quarantine, and other mental health resources. Be well, be safe, be easy my friends 👫¸


Posted by Colette Lopane-Capella

Three ways to build on your self-esteem

Let’s talk about self-esteem. That word that either scares the hell out of you, or you feel secure and confident about. For some it brings back high school memories and feeling a sense of instability with your confidence. Others when they hear the word self-esteem, It highlights something that they need to work on or continue to work on. No matter what your age, or gender, self-esteem is essential.

So whether we call it self-esteem, self confidence, self-love, self-worth it all equates to the way we internally feel about ourselves and even deeper our self care reflection.

Below is a list of three ways that you can start today to build your self-esteem, easy beginners guide.

1. Positive mantras

Practicing positive self talk, positive mantras or positive affirmations changes your internal talk to yourself. It can be something that you practice every single day, and or can be your response for when things go wrong, not as planned. Remember we’re all only human, and there is no such thing as perfection or perfect. We all make mistakes, but the best part of mistakes and things going wrong is it leads to deep self growth and development. It’s all about the way we react and respond when these things happen, instead of doubting and eliciting negative self talk, reframe into positive or reassuring self talk. Here’s some examples of some positive self talk, positive mantras that you can begin using today:

I am worthy

I am loved

I am a good person

I am beautiful

I am strong

I am wise

I have courage

I have strong resilience

I can do this

I will over come this

I am doing my best

I am in control

I am a good mother, father, daughter, son, friend, sister, brother, etc.

I love my body

I love myself

I am worthy

2. Another way to build on self-esteem is practicing self-care daily. Remember self-care is not selfish it’s essential. To start practicing self-care, it can be as simple as being kind to yourself and doing things that makes you smile, things that are good for your soul. Whether it be treating yourself to a manicure, starting therapy, or continuing, or simply sitting in a park in silence it’s doing something for you and makes you feel good, that’s all that matters and counts.

3. Lastly, to improve self-esteem is by surrounding yourself with friends and family members who support you and love you unconditionally. You deserve the same love and compassion that you show to so many, make sure that the people you surround yourself with, a.k.a. tribe, are kind to you, our supportive, our loving, and authentic, and remember it’s ok to say no.

I encourage you to begin to practice the three simple items on this list today, and you will begin to notice how your self-esteem grows and increases.

Namaste my friends

Intuitive authentic psychotherapy in Westchester NY

Posted by Colette Lopane-Capella

How to Stick to Your New Year’s Resolutions


At the beginning of each year, we want to start fresh – we feel inspired to get rid of old habits, change unproductive behavior patterns, boost our health, enhance our job performance, improve relationships, and increase our life satisfaction.

This year, you feel all spirited and determined to improve yourself in the honor of the New Year. Whether your New Year’s resolutions include finding a soulmate, getting a better job, losing weight or starting psychotherapy, go easy on yourself and make your goals realistic. That’s the most important step in making your New Year’s resolutions stick throughout the year.

How to Achieve Your New Year’s Resolutions and Make Them Stick

If you set too many goals or make your resolutions nonsensical, you may find yourself overwhelmed and discouraged by the very end of January. The failure to keep your resolutions at the beginning of the year can be dispiriting and stressful and may negatively affect your self-esteem and confidence, weaken your resilience, and increase your anxiety.

Therefore, it is important to make your New Year’s resolutions wisely. Here are a few tips to help you stick to your goals.

1. Set Clear Goals

A successful individual always sets clear goals. Setting goals is a vital part of your New Year’s resolutions. Goals will provide motivation and a clear vision: when you know what you want from life, and more importantly, and how to achieve that, you are more likely to succeed. Setting clear goals will help you focus on getting the needed skills and staying organized.

2. Visualize Your Goals

Once you set your goals, make sure to write them down and visualize actions you need to take to realize those goals. Visualization or mental rehearsal (imagining yourself in a specific situation, performing a specific activity or achieving a specific goal) will help you make your goals tangible. Visualization is a powerful motivation tool that can help you build confidence, improve mood and increase motivation.

3. Keep Your Resolutions Realistic

Whether you decide to exercise more, date more, polish your communication skills, or upgrade your professional assets, keep in mind that no results can happen overnight. Don’t expect to see the effects too soon. Give yourself time and stay realistic in setting your New Year’s goals.

For example, if you made getting in shape your New Year’s resolution, don’t get disappointed if you don’t see results shortly. Focus on small changes to your fitness habits, for example, start with planning a gym three times a week. Otherwise, you may burn out quickly and feel irritated for not being able to achieve your New Year’s goals.

4. Make your Goals Specific

Unclear goals and resolutions won’t work. If you want to keep your New Year’s resolutions, you need to develop a specific plan for change and map out a clear strategy. For example, if you want to improve your communication skills, target a precise skill you would like to gain or the specific communication patterns that you would like to change. Then plan precise and detailed mini-goals you want to accomplish, e.g., not to withdraw from communication when you feel overwhelmed. Also, visualize the change in your behavior and improvements in your relationships you want to achieve.

5. Plan Small

No matter how generous you may feel at the beginning of the new year, make New Year’s resolutions that you can keep. For instance, if your goal is to change some unhealthy behaviors, change one behavior at a time. This way you won’t feel overwhelmed.

6. Don’t Be Hard on Yourself

Don’t strive for perfection when setting your New Year’s goals. Also, don’t be too rigorous to yourself if you don’t always keep strictly to your resolutions. Don’t give up because you skipped a gym workout or didn’t get a promotion at work. The flaws when changing your thoughts, behaviors, or habits are completely normal and shouldn’t discourage you.

7. Incorporate the Resolutions into Your Daily Life

Turning your New Year’s resolutions into habits will make it easier to make these intentions stick throughout the year. For example, make a gratitude practice your everyday morning routine and stick to it. This will boost your mood, improve your resilience, and help fight dysfunctional thoughts. Make other healthy lifestyle choices and include them in your everyday habits.

8. Track Your Progress

Studies show that self-monitoring increases the probability of keeping your New Year resolutions. So, make sure to record your changed behavior daily, weekly or monthly using a calendar or a chart. This will boost your self-esteem and motivate you to reach your goals.

9. Reach Out for Counseling

If, regardless of your desire and determination, you still feel that cannot achieve your New Year’s goals on your own, seek professional support. Your counselor can suggest some useful strategies for making your resolutions stick, help you change unproductive thoughts and behaviors and encourage you to work on your emotional issues.

The New Year’s resolutions are a sound way to do something good for yourself. And even if you don’t accomplish all your goals, it’s not the end of the world. However, to make sure you don’t blow it after only a few weeks, keep your goals realistic and manageable. This will ensure your resolutions stick and help you make positive changes in your life.


Posted by Colette Lopane-Capella

How to Survive the Holidays

The most wonderful time of the year is around the corner and everyone’s getting ready for another season of joy, togetherness, gifting, caroling, and tasty food. Yet, for a large number of people, this time of the year is also a source of a great stress, exhaustion, and sadness.

Studies show that only 10 percent of people in the U.S. report no stress during the holidays.Also, the holiday season may beexceptionallytough if you recently lost someonecloseand you are still grieving. All the hustle and bustle around the holidayscanincrease the feeling ofyourloss, making thesorrow and loneliness feel bottomless.

For all of you who struggle with the jolliness of the season, here are some effective ways to survive theholidays.

Holiday Stress

To lessenor avoid the stressthroughoutthe holidays,youneed to learn how to respond tooverwhelmingholidayhubbubin a composed and healthyway.So, let’sdelve onthemost effective ways tostay saneduring the holidayseason.

1. KeepOrganized

If you wanttolessentheholiday-related stress, try toavoid the last-minuteshopping. Rathermake a schedule aheadfor shopping, decorating, baking, gathering,and other holiday activities. This wayyou’ll cut your last-minute errandsthat causea lot ofstress during holidays.

2. PlanYour Budget

Things can easily get out of hand during the holidays. Each year,most of usendup spending a lot more thanweoriginally planned.So, make sure to plan your holiday budget andtostick to it.Also, if you’re struggling with the finances, don’t spendunreasonably. Forinstance, instead of buying expensive gifts, give something handmade and original.

3. Take Care of Yourself

Although the holiday season is usually asymbolfor familyget-togethers andfriend-reunions, try to devote sometimeto yourselfas well. Take a break from partying,excessive eating andgruelingtrips to the malls.

Dosomeyoga or practice mindfulness meditation instead.Read your favorite book and spend some lazy mornings in your bed.Also, this is a perfect time of the year to count your blessings and think ofyourNew Year’s resolutions. Start your days expressing gratitude for all those good things that have come your way.

Devoting time to yourselfduring the holidays will help renew your energyandhelp keepthe peaceful mind during the holidays.

Loss andGrief during the Holidays

If you recently lost a close person, your life has certainly changed, filling your days withthedevastating pain.Andtheholiday season can be particularly tough for those inamidst of thegrieving process. If you’re still grieving, it is totally normal that you feel the apathy and indifference towards the approaching holiday season.

However, here are some things you can do to ease the pain and survive the holidays.

1. Acknowledge Your Feelings

The way you’ll cope with grief and loss during the holidays is only your business. Don’tfeel guilty if you cannot enjoy yourself.It is all right to tell people you just aren’t up to celebrations this year.

There is no right or wrong when it comes to mourning during the holiday season. For example, if you don’t feel like joiningthefamily or corporate celebrations this year,don’t want to sing carolsor you want to tune out the holiday season altogether,that’s only your choice. So, do whatever you feel like doingand give yourself time to grieve.

2. Reach Out for Support

Seek grief counseling. A professional bereavement counselor can help you accept your feelings and build a strategy for coping with emotional, cognitive, behavioral, and spiritual reaction to loss.

3. Externalize Your Loss

Talk about the deceased person. Joinagrief support group, online or in your community.Sharingyour feelings and thoughts with people who are going throughasimilar experience can be helpful.In addition, doingsmall things inthememory of a loved one such as creating a certain tribute during the holidays can also help in your grieving process.

4. Start a New Holiday Tradition

Starting a new tradition with your kids, family members or friendsdoesn’t mean that you have already forgotten a loved one. Doing something different will help you survive the holidays and boost the awareness that you need to moveon.Also, don’t feel guilty if you find joy during the holiday season. Enjoying the holidays doesn’t diminish how much you miss the person you lost.

5. Holiday Good Deeds

Consider helpingothersduringtheholidays.Think aboutjoining a local charity orvolunteeringin your community. Helping others will distract your grieving thoughts and give you something else to think about instead. Additionally, giving and sharing with others will boost your self-esteem; you’ll feel better knowing that you are doing something selfless during the holidays.

For many people, holidays can beastressfuland painfultime of the year.None of us can escape loss, butthesting ofbereavementcan be especiallypainfulduring the holidays. While youmay feel pressure to be happy during the holiday season, it’s totally fine if you don’t.

In the end, if you need support in overcoming stress or coping with grief during the holidays,reach out for support. We canwork on your feelings, boost your coping mechanismsduring the holidays, and help you get back on track.


Posted by Colette Lopane-Capella

The Inner Light of an Empath: Embracing Your Spirituality


Emotions are an inseparable part of human life. We all have them and live with them. However, a spiritual empath’s feelings are delicate and deep. An empath feels sadness, fear and anxiety more intensely and gets upset easier. The empaths get easily overwhelmed and often have the odd feeling that they somehow do not fit in.

An empath feels the pain of others. The pain of the world. The suffering of those around themmakes themoverwhelmed, so empathsoftenexperiencefeelinghopelessness, sadness, anxiety, and depression.So, they oftenwant to withdraw from the world full ofsorrowto protect themselves.

However, if you are an empath, you don’t have to withdraw from the world around you completely.Instead, you need to learn how to embrace your spirituality andhow tobalance your empathyandyour self-protection.

But firstly, you need to understand whyyou tune in your own and the feelings of others so deeply and intensely.

How Neuroscience and Spirituality are Intertwined?

Have you ever heard of amygdala? This delicate set of small almond-shaped clusters of nuclei is settled deepin the temporal lobe of the brain and plays a huge part in processing emotions. The more intense the feelings are the more responsive your amygdala becomes.In other words, the amygdala plays an important part inyourheightenedemotionalreactions.

According to Dr. Elaine Aron, a research psychologist, the amygdala is extremely activated in sensitive people. Through herextensiveresearch, Dr. Aron found that whenshe exposes empaths and highly sensitive persons (HSPs) to pictures of human suffering, their amygdala becomes highly activated.

The amygdala then sends signals tothehypothalamus, the part of the brain that communicates with the rest of the body throughtheautonomic nervous system, releasing hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol into the bloodstream, which further provokes emotional responses.

For an empath’s emotional reaction, it is enough to be in the presence of someone suffering emotionally. An empath feels other person’s feelings and reacts to them. Amygdala then alarms the hypothalamus and the hormones are activated. However, it these hormones are overproduced but not used (for example through body movement), the result may beanoversensitive emotional response.

Constantly repeated, this pattern may block the normal energy flow through the body, putting the hormones and organs out of the balance.

The problem withempathsis thattheirstress triggers decrease rarely or never.The empathsfeel other people’s energy all the time and sometimes this energy can stick withthemfor days after witnessing other person’s emotional reaction.

In short, their amygdala is constantly activated, releasing the large amounts of cortisol and adrenaline into the body, often triggering anxiety, fear, and worry.

How to Embrace Your Spirituality?

Being an empath can be draining. It is, therefore, important to find the balance between your spiritual empathy and the worldyou feel for.

The spiritual empaths are profoundly needed in today’s worldfilled with profounddisaffection and alienation. It is the spiritual energy of the empaths that can influence those around them to seek beauty and peacefulness in the things that surround them.

For that reason, it is important that you work on your inner balance, protect yourself, andlivein harmony with the world around you.

Don’t get to exposed to negative influences. Try to avoid stress triggers as much as possible. Limit your exposure to negativity around you. Tune out people who emit hostility and anger and bring pain into your life. Also, try to minimize the exposure to dramatic news. However, this doesn’t mean you need to tune out the world completely but to filter the information you are going to emotionally invest in.

Be mindful of good.Choose to see kindness, positivity, and calmness around youand be the kindness and love you feel.

Practice mindful meditation.This will help keep yourmind quietand stop unnecessary amygdala activation.

Stay active.If you are an empath, regular exercise will help ease the stress response by clearing excess stress hormones from your bloodstream.

Connect with nature.Negativity mostly comes fromotherpeople.Immerse yourself in nature. Spend time outsideand allow the sunlight and nature to cleanse and recharge you.The empaths are highly attracted to light because their gift is like light to others.As an empath, you emit the light of yoursoul onto your surroundings.Connecting with flowers, animals, and water around you is a great energy healing therapy that will help you regain the balance.

Let it out.Cry when you feel you need to do so. Crying has healing properties -it works like a cleaning mechanism for your soul.

Being an empath is simply something that you are. You cannot choose to be less an empath or not to be an empath anymore. But you can channel your spirituality to make a positive change.


Posted by Colette Lopane-Capella