Body, Mind and Spirit. This is a phrase that most people would be familiar with. They would have little trouble defining what is necessary for physical health and wellness, even if their own life may not reflect healthy lifestyle choices. A healthy mind or mental health is often defined as an absence of mental health issues, although this is not really accurate, as everyone, at times, struggles with emotional issues.
Christian Perspective & Spiritual Counselling & Therapy
Now, a healthy spirit is more difficult to define. We are created as spiritual beings and for those who rely on a personally relationship with the Creator, this identity ultimately defines whom they should be and how their life should be lived. This faith relationship adds a rich dimension to who we are as we grow in the process of discovering meaning and purpose in our life.
For Christians, this journey is enhanced and directed by this very personal sense of relationship and connection to God through Jesus. Just like our physical body and intellect, our spiritual wellness depends on nourishment and exercise. We must feed our faith by reading God’s Word, learning and growing within a faith community. This exercise is the very real challenge if, to be blunt, we are going to walk the walk as we talk the talk in the world in which we live.
Our spiritual wellness is vulnerable. This can be especially difficult when dealing with anxiety and depression. These struggles can be distorted into pounding and overwhelming lies that are aimed at undermining personal faith. This can result in a sense of failures and anxiety, leading to withdrawal from the very things that can lead to healing and restoration.
Clearly, wellness is more than living to stay healthy. It is also more than dealing with illness or disease. Wellness involves a sense of personal well-being that ultimately will transcend the various circumstances real life brings our way. Real life can make us feel overwhelmed, depressed, anxious and unable to cope. It can make us feel defeated and unable to grow in our faith journey.
Mental wellness involves the process of using one’s mind to create a greater understanding, deepening our appreciation of life and our world. There is truth to the saying “garbage in, garbage out.” This is extended to the process of creating and maintaining healthy relationships through the choices we make. Toxic relationships are often the result of us feeling that we don’t “deserve” better.
Part of the journey to wellness involves intentionality in exploring the reasons for our decisions in the areas of relationships, sexuality, and substance abuse. It also requires intentionality in seeking professional help for healing and restoration when there are obstacles that interfere with our wellness.
At Bayridge, we recognize that taking care of a person’s wellness should be an ongoing journey, which ultimately improves their quality of life. Wellness is concerned with what is necessary and desirable to be able to function at one’s best in all areas of life; spiritually, emotionally and physically. Wellness is created through the responsible choices the individual makes in seeking to maintain an active, positive lifestyle.
Don’t let fear, pride or shame stand in your way to wellness.
There is hope … we can help!
Christian Perspective to Counselling
Christians believe that we are created as spiritual beings and for those who rely on a personal relationship with their Creator, this identity ultimately defines how their life should be lived. This faith relationship adds a rich dimension to who we are, as we grow in the process of discovering meaning and purpose in our life.
At Bayridge, many of us are professionals with faith. As counsellors and therapists, we submit ourselves to recognized professional organizations such as the College of Psychologists, College of Social Workers, Ontario Association of Marriage and Family Therapists, Certified Pastoral Counsellors, in addition to many other accountability boards.
We have chosen our counsellors because of the gifts, experience and skills they can bring to the counselling session. The methods of counselling can vary with the situation. Respect is foundational for good therapy. We always encourage the client to integrate their healing process with their spiritual roots, whatever that might be. We believe a religious community is often critical for optimum recovery of personal issues.
For those who have faith, clinical research studies are showing that when faith and prayer are integrated into counselling, when we use the wisdom of scripture and the principles found there, the rates of recovery are often more encouraging. Scriptures acts as a compass to point us in the right direction.
Many of our therapists are very comfortable with prayer and will integrate this into the sessions, if this is important to you. Just ask! We have built a team that is able to consider not only issues from a relational, emotional, cognitive and behavioural perspective but feel comfortable integrating spiritual and eternal values into therapy as well. As a center, our strength is our Team. However, our personal strength comes from above and from within!
Spirituality issues counselling and therapy
‘Living spiritually’ has different meaning to different people. For many of us North Americans, it means following a particular religious tradition like Christianity, the Jewish faith or other religions. While organized religion is being challenged on every front, spirituality is advancing. History clearly shows that deep within mankind there is a longing and searching for meaning that transcends one’s own life. In other words, we all sub-consciously know there must be more.
While there are many different ideas, with many different approaches, we believe that living spiritually is finding a relational connection on several levels of our personhood. Firstly, it is living in communion with your own self, in meaningful and nurturing processes that empower and promote the expansion of all that is good within you. It is mining the depths of your soul for wisdom and truth . . . . and seeking after the coin of great price.
Secondly, it is birthing and dwelling in the cradle of a loving relationship with a Higher Power. Daily we sensethe echo in our soul of Him / Her warmly say; “My son My daughter I am so proud, so pleased”.
Thirdly, it is living out a meaningful deep relationship with others that affirms their value and empowers them to become all that they can be. Living spiritually, we understand that we derive meaning from our deep relationships with others. Hence, we seek to connect with like-minded communities.
Lastly, in all our journeying, we acknowledge that we have hurt and wounded ourselves, others, our environment, and, therefore, pursue to diligently seek forgiveness and reconciliation in a very broken world. In all of our understanding of living spiritually, we endeavour to love our neighbours as we love ourselves.
Spirituality by its very nature tends to be a mystery that challenges the intellect of us all. However, most clinicians ofevery school of thought, integrate spirituality and itsresilient strength into the art of healing the heart, mind and soul.