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Stop the Stress: Stress Awareness Month

Stress. It’s a feeling, a physiological response, a state of being, and a burden that often makes us feel powerless.  Stress is the natural response generated by our body and brain when we feel overwhelmed by pressures, demands, or challenges. Stress itself is not all bad. In fact, in short bouts, stress helps the body upregulate and prepare to face or meet challenges. Overtime, however, chronic stress can negatively impact our minds and bodies. The way we respond and cope with stress also plays a role in our overall wellbeing.   We all handle stress differently. Whatever your coping strategies are, they likely speak to your perception of your ability to manage stress and your skill set for effectively responding to it. The actions we might take in response to stress are countless. Unless you have embarked a journey of self-improvement, your coping tool kit may look empty...

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Sharing Toys (and Support): Celebrating Siblings Day

Our lives begin within a system; one most often made up of parents, family friends, aunts and uncles, cousins, peers, and siblings. Our siblings are often our first friends, our first role models, and our first exposure to arguments (over toys, perhaps, but there is always something to argue about). The bonds we build in childhood speak deeply to our sense of belonging and can lay the groundwork for how we manage other relationships later in our lives. Siblings can play a significant role in how we learn to trust others, resolve conflicts, or give unconditional love.   In honor of National Siblings Day on April 10, we will cover ways in which sibling relationships can positively impact our mental health, as well as their potential challenges.   Benefits of a Healthy Sibling Relationship  Research shows that 80% of...

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Crustless Vegetarian Quiche

March 26th, was National Spinach Day and to celebrate, THIRA Health put together this yummy crustless vegetarian quiche. Incorporating spinach into your meals will give you numerous kinds of vitamins, such as vitamin C and vitamin K1. Vitamin C can help protect you from free radicals and can help prevent you from developing heart disease and cancer. Vitamin K1 is essential for your body’s blood flow and oxygen levels. Try this recipe out and enjoy the amazing benefits of this leafy green! Ingredients: 1 tbsp. olive oil 3 handfuls of fresh baby spinach 1 onions, diced 1 red bell pepper, chopped 5 eggs 1 cup of mushrooms, chopped ½ tsp. salt ½ tsp. pepper ½ tsp cayenne pepper ½ tsp. of garlic powder Instructions: Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees F.Heat oil in a large pan over medium...

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March Staff Spotlight

What is your role at THIRA: Mental Health Technician WHEN I’M NOT AT WORK, YOU CAN FIND ME… At a bookstore or hiking. WHEN I WANT TO DE-STRESS, I… Take a day trip in the area and spend time discovering a new place. MY FAVORITE TIME OF YEAR IS… Spring WHAT LED YOU TO PURSUE A CAREER HELPING OTHERS? I have always been that person for my friends and family members, someone that is able to sit and listen without judgment. I’m really glad I am able to do that as a career. WHAT EDUCATION, SKILLS AND EXPERTISE DO YOU BRING TO YOUR ROLE? I have a BA in psychology and have experience working in residential. WHO/WHAT INSPIRES YOU? My grandma. WHAT IS ONE SMALL THING PEOPLE CAN DO TO IMPROVE THEIR LIVES AND INCREASE THEIR HAPPINESS? Practicing self-compassion /...

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A Year in Quarantine: This Time Last Year & What’s on Women’s Minds Now

It's been a year—the strangest part of that statement is that we do not even need to mention which year, or what occurred, or the words "COVID-19," "quarantine," or "pandemic." We all just know, because we have felt each and every one of those 365 days (also known as the “year when some days felt like weeks and some weeks felt like months”).   It's been one year since, virtually overnight, our realities changed from living in the open air to huddling behind closed doors. To wearing masks, and dealing with grocery shortages, and coping with isolation when physical contact became little more than a memory.   Knowing that we are now a year beyond the start of our "new normal," what is on the minds of women today?   The Realities Facing Women  As mentioned in a past blog, women are among the hardest-hit groups amid the effects of...

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Eating for Mental Wellness: Myths about Healthy Eating

Food is everywhere and in practically everything we see — television commercials, gatherings with family and friends, billboards, print ads, celebrations, and more. It is a cultural marker of togetherness, as well as a primal need for survival. All species depend on sustenance to give them energy to endure the day's tasks. We are, however, much different than our lion counterparts, as we attach considerable emotional weight to food.  Through our Stomach to our Hearts  As humans, we rely on food to keep us going. However, we also make food as a sign of love, bring it as a sign of respect or welcome, and then criticize it when it makes us feel uncomfortable. We often hear food categorized as “good” or “bad,” “clean” or “fattening,” and a variety of other judgmental cocktails.   Diet culture and “healthy eating” are messages that worm their way into our psyche through...

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February Staff Spotlight

What is your role at THIRA: I am a registered dietitian (RD) for the teen and adult cohorts.WHEN I’M NOT AT WORK, YOU CAN FIND ME… visiting all the scenic spots that Washington has to offer! Living in a state that has so many places to explore has been a huge blessing over the past year. WHEN I WANT TO DE-STRESS, I… put on a face mask, curl up with a cup of hot tea, and read a good book. MY FAVORITE TIME OF YEAR IS… August for sure because the skies are clear and it’s warm enough to swim! MY FAVORITE THING TO COOK IS… stuffed bell peppers—I make this dish all the time. It’s quick, stores well, and you can mix up the fillings! My favorite is...

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Spicy Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Have you ever wanted to spice things up with your grilled cheese sandwich? We recommend adding a bit of cayenne pepper to add a different flavor to this classic meal. Trying new foods out will also give you a lot more nutritious variety and will help you find new flavors that you may enjoy. This meal is a great source of calcium to keep our bones healthy and strong. We also need this nutrient to maintain the muscle contractions of our heart to keep the blood flowing and pumping throughout our body. Enjoy this different version of your typical grilled cheese sandwich! Ingredients 2 tablespoons of butter 2 slices of white bread 2 slices of Medium Cheddar cheese 2 slices of Pepper jack cheese ½ small onion, chopped 1 jalapeno pepper, chopped...

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How to Make Friends and Drop Enemies: Using DBT to Lean In and Let Go

February, aside from cold weather, brings Valentine’s Day and the commercialized spirit of expressing affection to loved ones.   However, , while letting those you care for know you appreciate them, there also exists the need to shed relationships that do not reciprocate our affections. These two acts are equally valuable in building a life that is satisfying.    At THIRA Health we find great value in principles of Dialectal Behavior Therapy, which permits us the ability to untether ourselves from ineffective relationships  through exercises such as radical acceptance, mindfulness, and building strong interpersonal skills.   This Valentine’s Day, we hope that you find the people worth melting for, as well as allow yourself the freedom from those that make you feel like you are melting away.   Moving Away & Leaning In  According to the ever-growing mountain of research on the benefits of interpersonal relationships, it has...

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Coping with “the COVID 19”: Honoring the Eating Process

 Each year many of us end the traditional season of overeating with an equally traditional resolution to get into shape to lose those extra pounds we just acquired at the dinner table. This past year, COVID exacerbated ordinary weight issues by forcing us into a months-long quarantine filled with a sense of helplessness, anxiety, and forced inactivity – a perfect breeding ground for “stress eating.”  Now, not two months into the new year, we approach another month filled with candy, cards, and love expressed by way of “sweet” gifts, which can generate unwanted guilt for our (over)indulgences.   Following Valentine’s Day comes another important week here at THIRA Health: the National Eating Disorders Awareness Week, which extends from February 22 through February 28.   This year, for National Eating Disorders Awareness Week, we will explore the effects of how COVID-19, quarantining, social distancing, and closer proximity to the kitchen have affected wellness,...

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