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Reframed: The Power of Perspective

with Carley Marcouillier

Reframed: The Power of Perspective Episodes
4 Reasons Why You Have a Hard Time Saying “No”
October 13, 2021 - 33 min
From boundaries, communication, differentiation, loneliness and community etc. There are many important truths and techniques to support us in developing healthy and God honoring relationships with those around us. I am finding that to love those around me well, I must start with uncovering messages I have believed, addressing patterns of unhealth, and reframing my perspective through practice and prayer. So, today’s episode is going to focus on one of the most common questions brought into therapy. Why is it so hard to say “no”? I am learning, slowly, that whether professionally or personally, I must find my edges. Learn my limits, and communicate my choices clearly. AKA we need to know and name our boundaries. These spoken or unspoken relational lines are meant to help us distinguish where we end and others begin. One of the easiest ways to test the quality of your boundaries is to ask yourself two simple questions: Do I say no? Do I apologize for my limits? If you answered yes to either then you are in good company. So, the question is WHY? What motivates us to contradict our capacity, push ourselves beyond our limits or dismiss our needs, feelings, and values? The top 4 reasons you have a hard time saying no: 1. Guilt of letting people down – this is the most common reason 2. Need to “help” others in over to be loved – “Am I doing this -for- love, or -from- love?” 3. Needing to please people 4. Need of acceptance What Are the Consequences of Not saying No? These symptoms may be present if you don’t implement boundaries: 1. Enmeshment /Codependency 2. Emotional distress 3. Resentment 4. Guilt/fear cycle Let’s reframe our perspective. Here’s what boundaries are NOT… 1. walls 2. others’ responsibility 3. equal 4. selfish What boundaries ARE … 1. Relational Tracks 2. property lines of one’s personal power 3. individualized 4. self-care Boundaries 3 key components: 1. Ownership - personal power 2. Choice - yes and no 3. Responsibility - invitation vs. expectation Practices: 1. Check in and invite God in too 2. Explore your values by going back to God’s word 3. Name your limits 4. Take small bites - build with small no’s Show Resources: https://www.boundaries.me https://www.emotionallyhealthy.org Follow Carley: | | To access more content and join my monthly email list for the latest episodes and info, visit my website at Episode Image Credit: Getty/Elenabs
How You Talk to Yourself Matters to God
September 01, 2021 - 27 min
Over the last few weeks, we have been looking at the important topics surrounding mental health and today I want to discuss one of the most discussed topics within my work as a therapist. Self-talk. So, what is Self-Talk? Self-talk is your internal dialogue. It's influenced by your subconscious mind and it reveals your thoughts, beliefs, questions, and ideas. Self-talk can be both negative and positive. It can be encouraging, and it can be distressing. Psychology Today explains that “our inner voice, or self-talk, combining conscious thoughts and beliefs and biases, provides a way for the brain to interpret and process daily experiences. Our self-talk can be cheerful and supportive or negative and self-defeating. Self-talk can be beneficial when it’s positive, calming fears and bolstering . Human nature, unfortunately, is prone to negative self-talk, including sweeping assertions like “I can’t do anything right” or “I’m a complete failure." Reason to Reframe: Recently, my pastor asked a thought-provoking question to the congregation in regard to self-talk, he asked: “What story are you telling yourself?” You see, the narrative we believe about ourselves will have a significant impact on the way we live our lives, view ourselves, and our image of God. These narratives often come from childhood messages, adverse experiences and internal evaluations of our self-perception. The stories we tell ourselves directly impact our self-concept, Self-esteem & self-worth. These can in many ways limit our full expression of personality. So, Why does this matter to God? The simple answer to this question is that our negative self-talk reflects a heart that believes lies over truth. Jesus says that out of the heart the mouth speaks. So, what is our heart believing? Is it reflective of our identity as children of God? Think about your most recent internal dialogue. Maybe the thing you told yourself when you missed an A on an exam, or disappointed your boss at work. Maybe it's the thing you tell yourself when you see your reflection in the mirror, or when you fail to be the parent, or spouse, or friend you think you should be. Now, listen to how God talks about you… Isaiah 43:1-4 - Loved, called, and chosen 2 Corinthians 5:17 - New creation Ephesians 2:10 - God’s workmanship 1 Peter 2:9 - Royal and holy people Romans 8:2 - Free from condemnation Romans 8: 38-39 - More than conquerors 1 John 3:1- Children of God Self-compassion practice: Critical self, Wounded Self, Compassionate self Resources: - Dan Ortland Episode Image Credit: Ponomariova Maria
Signs and Symptoms of Emotionally Unhealthy Spirituality with Brenton Lehman
August 25, 2021 - 35 min
Today I am excited to be introduced to a special guest on the podcast my Pastor, and spiritual mentor, Brenton Lehman. Brenton is the discipleship and teaching pastor at my home church, Gospel Community, here in Lynchburg, Va. Over the last year, I have been working with Brenton and the staff here at Gospel as a ministry resident and learning so much from a spiritual formation and discipleship perspective. I felt that it was only fitting that at the completion of my time as a ministry resident, we discuss a topic that is near and dear to both therapy work and pastoral care. One of the biggest problems I have come to in church culture throughout my time in ministry is the propensity to disconnect or dismiss the presence of emotional distress or pain for the sake of spiritual maturity. In this episode, we cover: A. Spiritual bypassing – what it is and how it shows up in our lives: Denial or repression of feelings – “I’m not lonely, I have Jesus” Dismissing others’ emotions – “Count it all joy” Focusing only on the positive – “It will all work together for good” Over-using spiritual statements as the solution to distress – “Everything happens for a reason” B. What does it mean to steward our emotions well? 1. Remember that you can’t unlink spiritual and emotional maturity. 2. Stop labeling emotions as bad or good 3. Recognize emotions as needs 4. Bring needs to Jesus Resources: Allison Coke: Check out Pete Scazzero’s work – Follow Carley: | | To access more content and join my monthly email list for the latest episodes and info, visit my website at Episode Image Credit: Getty/Aleksei Morozov
Mental illness, Medication, and the Heart of God
August 18, 2021 - 27 min
This episode is all about addressing the hot topics of mental health. We’ll reframe our thoughts and perspectives about mental health by looking through the lens of God’s Word to see the heart of God. In this episode, we will unpack: 1. What mental illness is (and how it is different than mental health). 2. What labels can be dangerous 3. Differentiating between symptoms and disorders 4. The challenges that come with specific diagnoses (including depression, psychosis, bipolar, anxiety disorders and suicidality) 5. Treatment options and the stigma around treatment 6. The heart of God toward those who are struggling with mental illness symptoms and disorders. *** How do we know if someone is at risk or deeply struggling with suicidality? Evidence of emotional distress (depression, anxiety, hopelessness, fear, anger, sudden mood shifts, isolation/withdrawal, recklessness, etc.) Intrusive thoughts and/or statements of suicidal intention or ideation (“I don’t have a reason to live” or “I keep thinking people would be better off without me”) Seeking access to means or having access to items such as firearms, pills, sharp objects. Having a plan or contemplating a plan for attempting suicide. If you are personally struggling, I want to be the one to tell you, I am in it with you. Please reach out to those in your circle and/or call the Suicide Prevention Hotline 1-800-273-TALK (8255) for support. Resources & References: My Mental Health: Do I Need Help? (via nimh.nih.gov) https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/my-mental-health-do-i-need-help https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org https://www.focusonthefamily.com/get-help/ https://www.anthemofhope.com https://www.nami.org http://www.suicidology.org. www.christiancounselor.network Follow Carley: | | To access more content and join my monthly email list for the latest episodes and info, visit my website at Episode Image Credit: Getty/Ponomariova_Maria
Top 10 Reasons to Go to Therapy (with Jen Robinson Guerin)
August 11, 2021 - 36 min
Hey everyone! Today is a special episode because you won't just be hearing from me. My special guest today is my clinical mentor, colleague and friend, Jen Robinson Guerin. Jen is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Director of Blackwater Counseling in Lynchburg, VA and specializes in Perinatal Mood/Anxiety Disorders (PMAD), Adoption-Competent Therapist, Mindfulness and Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), Trauma-Informed Care, Certification in Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT). Today we are going to dive into the top 10 reasons to go to therapy, mainly because I believe there is still such a stigma with seeking support and especially in the Christian community. The purpose in a man’s heart is like deep water, but a man of understanding will draw it out. - Proverbs 20:5 Where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors there is safety. - Proverbs 11:14 “If I must boast I will boast of things that show my weakness.“ - 2 Corinthians 11:30 We were not meant to walk through life in isolation. Scripture tells us to seek counsel, to confess sin to others, and to carry the burdens of our brothers and sisters. Here Are the Top 10 Reasons for Exploring Therapy: 1. Gain self-awareness 2. Evaluate emotional health needs 3. Explore relational dynamics/patterns - “Jesus may be in your heart but grampa is in your bones” 4. Improve emotional awareness “I react but I want to learn how to respond" 5. Address distress related to transitions, trauma, tough seasons 6. Receive support from an unbiased perspective 7. Gain insight into problematic behaviors/ habits/ addictions 8. Decrease stress 9. Increase coping strategies 10. Identify the root cause of symptoms such as anxiety, depression, etc. Next Steps: So, maybe you are feeling a little more open to the idea of therapy. When it comes to acknowledging our need for support, we can feel guilt, shame, fear, etc. but having sat on both sides of the counselling room I cannot tell you how powerful the process of practicing vulnerability and honesty is. As a therapist I am changed and challenged by each brave soul that sits across from me because I am on this journey right alongside you. So what's the next step: • Looking for a good fit • Asking questions • Embrace the suck Websites: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us Follow Carley: | | To access more content and join my monthly email list for the latest episodes and info, visit my website at Episode Image Credit: Getty/Elenabs
4 Myths You May Still Believe about Mental Health
August 04, 2021 - 32 min
I am so excited to jump back into important conversations that influence our perspectives. Over the next several episodes I want to dive into several topics surrounding mental health and its impact on our perspectives of ourselves, others, and God. Over the years, within both my ministry and clinical experience, I have heard far too many stories that reflect the significant disconnect between our Christian living and emotional well-being. Maybe you too have experienced the distortions of religious culture and have been left with questions about how your theology informs your emotional experiences through life. In today’s episode, I want to look at 4 myths you may still believe about mental health, and offer an integrative perspective that may help us to advance both the gospel and our emotional stewardship. Myth 1: Christians Should Not Struggle with Emotional Distress Myth 2: Mental Health Is Not Mentioned in Scripture Myth 3: Feelings Don’t Matter to God Myth 4: Distress Is a Form of Spiritual Immaturity Here is what we know: Our feelings matter to God; we can have faith despite fears and; support is available to us through God’s work in and through the lives of helping professionals and our Church community. My hope is that we, as a generation of believers, can step out and start talking about how we actually feel, without fear of rejection or judgment. I pray that we will continue to dispute the lies our culture has adopted, learn to listen well, acknowledging the pain experienced by those around us, and press on, heavenward. Join me next week with a special guest, Jen Robinson Gueren, LPC, we will be discussing the top 10 reasons to go to therapy! If You Know Someone in Crisis Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (Lifeline) at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or text the Crisis Text Line (text HELLO to 741741). Both services are free and available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. All calls are confidential. Follow Carley: | | To access more content and join my monthly email list for the latest episodes and info, visit my website at Episode Image Credit: Getty/Dumitru Ochievschi
Tools and Truths for Reframing Unhealthy Thinking Patterns
June 02, 2021 - 28 min
How do we apply God’s truth – this divine knowledge of God’s power, through Scripture, to our daily lives? Tools to Access the Power of God’s Truth to Our Lives: 1. Capture the Thought. Just because we think it, doesn’t mean it’s true. Just because we feel it, doesn’t mean it’s true. 2. Bring the Thought to Truth – What Does God’s Word Say about My Current Thoughts? 3. Pause with God’s perspective through prayers, praise music, medications, or affirmations. 4. Claim victory in what God has done. We do not live to earn God’s grace and love but with it! Other Principles that Carley unpacks in this episode: 1. Exploring the truth of our God-given purpose over popular perspectives 2. Remember 3 Practices: belong, abide, bring glory 3. 3 Steps to Reframing our faith 4. Addressing Relational Conflict with the Wisdom of God’s Word 5. Rules for Relationships: If we don't repair it, we will repeat it. 6. CALM : connect, Assess, Listen, and maintain 7. Naming and holding space for our pain Follow Carley: | | To access more content and join my monthly email list for the latest episodes and info, visit my website at Episode Image Credit: Getty/Benjavisa
How to Find Meaning in Our Pain
May 26, 2021 - 25 min
The impact of pain is a lot like that wave! We have all been wounded by this world and the scars we carry tell a story- one which can powerfully influence our perspective. It takes our breath away and leaves us with questions that reach beyond psychological explanations. It is in these dark times, we are forced to face our feelings rather than reframe them. We are called to cultivate courage, rest upon resilience, and make meaning out of lost memories. How we each choose to do this work differs from one another yet our process is most often aligned in seeking to find the answers to the question “Why?” We call this distress, the friction of loss which propels us into the process of grieving. Through my own grieving, I have been brought to the humbling reality that pain is a part of my story that cannot be avoided or undone. It must be heard. It must be felt. Pain left unfelt will surely strangle our souls, steal our joy, and suffocate our spirits. It is here, with the choice to press in or push away, our perspectives of pain are formed. Let's choose to widen our lens and broaden our focus of faith. As author John Green so poetically stated, “The good times and the bad times both will pass. It will pass. It will get easier. But the fact that it will get easier does not mean that it doesn’t hurt now. And when people try to minimize your pain they are doing you a disservice. And when you try to minimize your pain you’re doing yourself a disservice. Don’t do that. The truth is that it hurts because it’s real. It hurts because it mattered. And that’s an important thing to acknowledge to yourself. But that doesn’t mean that it won’t end, that it won’t get better. Because it will.” There are four primary sources of suffering found in scripture. 1. Pain resulting from our sinfulness 2. The pain we experience from the sinfulness of others 3. Pain resulting from the fallenness of the world 4. The pain we experience for the sake of the gospel There are also four steps in a pathway to make meaning of our experiences. 1. Hold space for your pain. 2. Name your pain. 3. Pursue prayer. 4. Press into the “and” – where we experience both pain and God’s promise. Episode References Concepts from by Virginia Todd Holeman Follow Carley: | | Episode Image Credit: Getty/Ponomariova_Maria
Why Do We Argue? Exploring the Root of Relational Conflict and Healthy Communication
May 19, 2021 - 24 min
If there is one thing I know we all have in common, it is that we have all experienced relational conflict. Regardless of age, race, gender, religion, our common frame of interpersonal conflict connects us. We are all people who have problems. In most cases, our interpersonal patterns have roots in our family of origin. Our upbringing largely and early experiences significantly impact how we perceive and pursue all other relationships. One way we can begin to explore these patterns is by identifying the roles and rules assigned to us within our families and how they impact our relational and emotional functioning. Within our family system framework, we learn how to communicate, handle stress, cope with strong emotions, and solve conflicts. Reflection Questions that I unpack in this episode: 1. Rules: What were the unspoken rules you lived by in your family of origin? 2. Roles: What was the role(s) you took on in your family of origin? There are 3 overarching areas of our interpersonal relationships that are impacted by our family of origin or our experiences. Carley breaks each of these down: Communication Emotions Conflict … and explains how we can reframe these, using skills and practices found in Scripture, and can begin repairing our relational hurts and renew our outlook on the people around us. Follow Carley: | | Episode Image Credit: Getty/Ponomariova_Maria
Why God’s Promises Are Essential for Reframing Our Thoughts
May 12, 2021 - 24 min
Have you ever felt like God has broken his promises to you? Me too! So how do we trust God when the reality of our experiences makes it hard? Growing up, I had learned about the many promises of God. Yet without even realizing it, I had somehow replaced God’s truth with my faulty perspective. Consequently, the expectations I held lacked substance when my reality seemed to reflect the absence of God’s presence rather than the abundance of His promises. We believe God promises comfort, yet we mourn. We believe God promises peace, yet we worry. We believe God promises hope, yet we feel hopeless. We believe God promises love, yet we experience loss. What have we missed? Where have our perspectives gone wrong? Looking back to God’s Word, we can begin to reframe our shattered views and build a firm foundation for a faith that regulates our feelings while boldly believing in God’s unchanging nature. It’s important that we deconstruct the abstract concept of “God’s promises.” Here is the simple reality: We are promised, Christ. Nothing more, nothing less. ALL of God’s promises throughout Scripture point to the sufficiency and supremacy of the Triune God. Follow Carley: | | Episode Image Credit: Getty/Nuthawut Somsuk
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