Balance and the Wise Mind
I’ve resisted a newsletter or blog, until now, because it’s felt antithetical to our goal of keeping things simple. I’ve not wanted to fill up your inbox with useless junk or be another email in your spam box. I’ve had to balance that with the desire to want to share relevant and even sometimes urgent information. So, today we introduce our first newsletter with the goal of balance. We hope to offer monthly or semi-monthly news, care, support, and perhaps, even a little wisdom, delivered right to your inbox. The goal is to keep our newsletter simple and mindful.
This month, with the drastic swings in temperature, the word “Balance” frequents my mind.
Our spring season has brought mid-summer heat, preceded by days of rain and ice then followed by days of snow. We’ve experienced all four seasons in a single week. But as the green buds begin to blossom and the crocuses break new ground, hope feels abundant. Spring strives for balance as it swings from morning frosts to sunny evenings.
I find myself craving stability in the midst of such a chaotic spring. My body needs rest and my mind begs for stillness.
We have no control over the weather. That may be why so many of us find stability and balance through cleaning in the springtime; sweeping out the old and freshening up with some new. It’s active and grounding. It makes space for embracing the hope embodied in those beautiful eager buds that spring brings forth.
While a seasonal spring comes around only once a year, it predictably and steadily yields to the consistency of summer. But we can find ourselves in our own personal spring at anytime of the year, without guarantee of a surrender toward balance. Our minds are not as whimsical as the season. We have agency. That means that we can create our own peaceful summer when it’s needed. Even right now. There is no better time to find your balance.
Internal balance comes with finding our Wise Mind, and it isn’t quite as elusive at the weather. I promise.
Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) founder Marsha Linehan describes Wise Mind as “that part of each person that can know and experience truth. It is where the person knows something to be true or valid. It is almost always quiet. It has a certain peace. It is where the person knows something in a centered way.”
Our Wise Mind is that part within all of us that is in touch with what we really need. It’s that part of us that, down to our bones and cells; that wants to heal and continue to grow and connect. The Wise Mind is always there, but it is often drowned out by the distractions of the moment, the pain of the past, or the worry of the future. We’re frequently too busy and too stressed to easily access that part of ourselves. We end up vacillating between the rational mind and the emotional mind in the same way that spring swings from hot to snow and frost to sunny skies.
In a similar fashion to spring cleaning, finding balance through the engagement of our Wise Mind is an active process: a bit of unpacking what trained us away from our Wise Mind here, a sprinkle of mindfulness there, add in a new skill or two around emotion regulation and distress tolerance, and there you go, you're well on your way to finding the balance you crave. The Wise Mind is accessed by calibrating the space between the emotional and the rational, fine-tuning our own behavior, challenging our thinking, leaning into our knowing, and trusting our truth.
Find stillness. Rest. Give yourself the space to lean into your own Wise Mind.
This Season we are launching some initiatives to support the journey of finding our Wise Minds.
Hadley Huff, LLMSW, will be offering two separate DBT groups: a teen group and an adult group. Each will focus on supporting skills such as mindfulness, emotion regulation, interpersonal effectiveness, and distress tolerance.
We’re also growing the Integrative Healthcare Services offered at our practice. These services are adjunct to your psychotherapy and are there to help you find stillness and give you space to release what your body holds.
As we grow and offer new services, Simply Mindful Counseling clinicians continue, as they always have, to hold space for you to navigate the journey of finding and acquainting yourself with your Wise Mind. We have a few clinicians with immediate availability Simply Mindful Counseling offers mental health services throughout the lifespan, serving children as young as 5 and adults well into their senior years with individual, family, couple, and group therapy.