lindsay braman trauma avocado teaching model

Trauma Recovery Avocado Model

  Trauma and trauma recovery look different for everyone, but generally, there’s a deep hardened core and a bunch of squishy stuff, all held together by a peel juuuust thick enough to keep us composed unless something comes along to smash us. A lot of times, we think the “pit” is in the past, and…

Isolation Mental Health Wellbeing Daily To-Do List Worksheet

Our lives have changed significantly in the past few weeks as Covid-19 has spread around the globe and into our communities. In the space of a month we shifted from life-as-usual to- if our jobs and lifestyles allowed it- nearly complete isolation. For all of us, this is a challenge. For individuals struggling with mental…

Steps to Containing a Mental Health Crisis Printable- RO-DBT model

Traditional DBT helps develop emotion regulation and impulse control in people who struggle in these areas, but  Radically Open (RO) DBT is an adaptation of DBT targeted towards people struggling in the opposite way:  those with an overabundance of self-control and who struggle to express emotion. I encountered the text version of this crisis response…

Self Care in the Age of Coronavirus

Right now it’s hard to know what is & isn’t overreacting- but self care is a lens that may help bring some clarity. It’s normal to be worried. It’s smart to stay up to date, But how can we gauge whether our response is “not enough” or “too much”? Self Care is the frame I’m…

A Flowchart for Getting to Sleep – A Playful take on Sleep Hygiene

A Flowchart for Getting to Sleep – A Playful take on Sleep Hygiene

A flowchart for getting to sleep. We all know how elusive sleep can be, but quality sleep is essential for physical and mental health. When sleep feels hard to come by, “sleep hygiene” is the go-to remedy. While some sleep and insomnia-related issues need specific treatments including medication or longer-term psychotherapy, psycho-education about sleep hygiene…

Worksheet for Cultivating Mindfulness Practices

Why Mindfulness? In a culture where life is often lived digitally, mindfulness matters. While our brains increasingly adept at sensing fake news deciphering complex texts based on emojis, but increasingly we struggle to orient ourselves to more physical, embodied, aspects of the world. Mindfulness is one way to train your brain to be present in…

Trigger-Tracker Worksheet for Mental Health Journaling and Self-Advocacy

  Dismantling mental health triggers often involves a little detective work. Although awareness of “being triggered” can be very obvious, for many people, figuring out specific triggers can be a puzzle. Solving the puzzle requires developing a capacity to seek to know ourselves better, then noticing and tracking backward chronologically to begin to locate exact…

Pyramid of Crisis Response & Planning – A Visual

  The nature of crisis is that it’s (1) overwhelming, and (2) inevitable. Whether you are a clinician in the helping professions or a person in relationship with other persons, crisis will show up eventually. When it does, we can all be a little more ready to handle potentially overwhelming experiences by planning how to…

Urge Surfing, Alternatives, and Harm Reduction

To follow my post earlier this week on developing (new) coping skills rather than attempting to just desert our old ones, here are a few examples of ways to practice new skills (like asking for support, distraction, or alternative behaviors) when there is a desire for self-harm. Instagram recently removed a different version of this…

Understanding The Help Rejecting Complainer Mindset

Most of us know one or two help rejecting complainers. It can be tempting to get frustrated, give up, or get “even,” but when we react out of frustration instead of responding with kindness, we actually reinforce the beliefs that support the behavior. Complaining is the only type of support-seeking some people know. Complaining engages…

Ways to Manage Food & Exercise that are Anti-Diet

  Numbers, timers, scales, and bell curves are not the measure of health- they are external authorities sold to us as measures of goodness, permission, and performance. Fear and disorientation are normal first responses to the idea that perhaps all these wellness apps and fitness trackers are deeply tied to patriarchal motives to co-opt bodies…

Small Changes in Self Care add up for Mental Health

  When all you can muster up the energy to do is sit on the couch in a blanket-burrito browsing internet memes, try sitting outside in a blanket-burrito browsing internet memes. It’s old news to most of us that activity (including things like exercise/movement, gardening, volunteering, and spending time with supportive people and communities) helps…

Scarcity and the Brain

Needs that are ignored or unable to be met due to lack of resources don’t go away- instead, they often become all-consuming until there’s no space for us to focus on tasks, plan, organize, parent, or take good care of ourselves. Whether self-imposed (like dieting or working your way into vocational burnout) or external (like…

Illustrated Embodied Grounding Exercise – Free Printable

  Get a free PDF copy of this art:   Social media can be a dark, divisive place sometimes. On the other end of the spectrum, depending on the accounts you choose to follow, it can be really easy to find yourself surrounded by toxic positivity. Toxic positivity is the sort of blind optimism that…

Red Flags for Early Stage Schizophrenia- an Infographic

  Schizophrenia is among the most debilitating mental health disorders- so much so that there is still a lot of stigma around the diagnosis. The problem is stigma is especially harmful when it comes to this diagnosis. Here’s why: about 75% of people with schizophrenia have months or years of subtle symptoms (called a predromal…