Author Archives: Kelly McNaughton

Information overload – digesting tragedy in the digital age (PART TWO)

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In part one of this blog we discussed the concept of information overload and the stress that this non-stop diet of bad news can cause. What are the side effects of this kind of stress overload? How can we support ourselves and our families in the face of the never ending stream of information and media stimuli?

Long-term side effects

Various studies have examined the impact of media exposure on people following 9/11. In one such study, approximately 90% of the participants demonstrated symptoms of traumatic stress. In fact, the greater the exposure to media coverage, the greater the stress, and post-traumatic stress, exhibited by the participants. This is a normal response! Post-traumatic stress, or PTS, is the …

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Information overload – digesting tragedy in the digital age (PART ONE)

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By most accounts I don’t watch much television, however, I confess that I am a captive audience to the series “Lost”; a cryptic storyline essentially following the disappearance of a commercial airliner and its passengers in the South Pacific. A steady diet of fascinating plot and entertainment.  Fictional.  Ironic.

They say life imitates art, but the vanishing of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 on March 8 is pure tragedy. And much like the events at Sandy Hook Elementary school before it, and 9/11 before that, we become the captive audience spellbound by widespread theorizing, speculation, and the maelstrom of news and media around these incidents.

Information overload

Gone is exclusive dependence on newspaper or television to satiate our curiosity and inform.   …

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You can stop yelling at your kids. Really!

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You can stop yelling at your kidsChildren do not come with a manual but if they did, the manual would likely include a bit about not yelling at them. As a parent this makes sense to me, but I have three kids, and the older two may be surprised that’s what I think. I didn’t quite master parenting in the first two rounds but surely by the time my 9-year- old reaches adolescence I should have parenting down to an art…

That art includes communicating with my kids without yelling. Many of us swore we wouldn’t turn out like our own parents, only to wake up one day and realize the apple really didn’t fall far from the tree. The truth is, much is learned from …

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How should I talk to my children about my mental health?

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How Should I Talk To My Children About My Mental Health?The only constant to parenting is the challenge of navigating the issues, transitions, and crises. Communication about schedules, vacations, and routine activities set the rhythm for a family. Stress brought on by change can interrupt this rhythm and communication can become strained.

With statistics showing that 1 in 5 Canadians will develop a mental health issue in their lifetime, those parents affected struggle with how to talk to their children, often experiencing feelings of shame, guilt, or embarrassment.

These isolating feelings may lead parents to mask their symptoms from their children in an attempt to protect the established family dynamic. It is not easy to start a conversation with your children about something as challenging as your mental health. However, …

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After your adult child moves out

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After your child moves outYour child has moved out but family members are experiencing times of loneliness, anxiety and uncertainty.

How can you help your family and yourself make a smooth and enjoyable transition?

  • Don’t make immediate sweeping changes: Take some time to adjust to the new pace of life in the family home. Avoid immediately ending your relationship with your spouse, selling the house, or buying a new car. Maintain as much normality as possible as everyone adjusts. If you do introduce change make sure you inform the child that has left home. They need to know things are changing so they will not be surprised or upset when they come home for a visit.
  •  Keep in Touch: Text, Facebook, Skype, or
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