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Brain Can be Trained in Compassion

Recent study shows that the brain can be trained in compassion!

compassionUntil now, little was scientifically known about the human potential to cultivate compassion – the emotional state of caring for people who are suffering in a way that motivates altruistic behavior.

A new study by researchers at the Center for Investigating Healthy Minds at the Waisman Center of the University of Wisconsin-Madison shows that adults can be trained to be more compassionate. The report, published Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, investigates whether training adults in compassion can result in greater altruistic behavior and related changes in neural systems underlying compassion.

“Our fundamental question was, ‘Can compassion be trained and learned in adults? Can we become more caring if we practice that mindset?'” says Helen Weng, lead author of the study and a graduate student in clinical psychology. “Our evidence points to yes.”

In the study, the investigators trained young adults to engage in compassion meditation, an ancient Buddhist technique to increase caring feelings for people who are suffering. In the meditation, participants envisioned a time when someone has suffered and then practiced wishing that his or her suffering was relieved. They repeated phrases to help them focus on compassion such as, “May you be free from suffering. May you have joy and ease.”

Participants practiced with different categories of people, first starting with a loved one, someone whom they easily felt compassion for, like a friend or family member. Then, they practiced compassion for themselves and, then, a stranger. Finally, they practiced compassion for someone they actively had conflict with called the “difficult person,” such as a troublesome coworker or roommate.

“It’s kind of like weight training,” Weng says. “Using this systematic approach, we found that people can actually build up their compassion ‘muscle’ and respond to others’ suffering with care and a desire to help.”

Compassion training was compared to a control group that learned cognitive reappraisal, a technique where people learn to reframe their thoughts to feel less negative. Both groups listened to guided audio instructions over the Internet for 30 minutes per day for two weeks. “We wanted to investigate whether people could begin to change their emotional habits in a relatively short period of time,” says Weng.

The real test of whether compassion could be trained was to see if people would be willing to be more altruistic – even helping people they had never met. The research tested this by asking the participants to play a game in which they were given the opportunity to spend their own money to respond to someone in need (called the “Redistribution Game”). They played the game over the Internet with two anonymous players, the “Dictator” and the “Victim.” They watched as the Dictator shared an unfair amount of money (only $1 out of $10) with the Victim. They then decided how much of their own money to spend (out of $5) in order to equalize the unfair split and redistribute funds from the Dictator to the Victim.

“We found that people trained in compassion were more likely to spend their own money altruistically to help someone who was treated unfairly than those who were trained in cognitive reappraisal,” Weng says.

Read the full story here…

The Church must bring Jesus to a humanity in crisis

Pope Francis - washing of feetPope Francis puts his certainty of faith down to his grandmother, from whom he first heard the Christian proclamation; to a life changing encounter with Christ at age 17, through a unknown priest who heard his Confession; to his daily praying of the Rosary to his ‘Mother’, Our Lady and to allowing himself to be held in God’s gaze even when he nods off after a tiring day, while in prayer before the Tabernacle.

At 17: 30 the Pope entered the square on his jeep and for a full 30 minutes toured through the throng arriving half-way down the Via della Conciliazione to greet as many people as possible.

After two readings taken from St Paul’s Letter to the Romans and the treatise of St. Irenaeus, there were two testimonies. John Waters, an Irish journalist, spoke of his leaving the faith, in search of a freedom that “makes us feel all-powerful and deeply powerless,” typical man of today who “seeks to dominate everything and that’s why he feels isolated and alone” . He then recalled being brought to “ his knees” by alcoholism, from which he was saved thanks to some friends who helped him rediscover the faith of his childhood. Now, he concluded “I am not only John, but one with the One who created me and I could not be free in any other way.”

The second testimony was that of Paul Bhatti, former minister for minorities in Pakistan, who thanked Pope Francis for being able to “share the pain and hopes of the Christians of Pakistan.” He recalled the mission of his brother Shahbaz, who was killed by Islamic extremists March 2, 2011, his commitment to the poor, the marginalized, the weak who “are the body of the persecuted Christ.” At the same time, his brother never stopped dreaming of “a Pakistan free and open to all communities and minorities”, in dialogue with Muslims, who “bear witness to the love of Jesus.”

Four representatives from the Movements then addressed their questions to Pope Francis. Pope, who had previously read the questions, gave an unscripted response, apologizing at the end that he was “too long”. The dialogue lasted for at least 40 minutes:

Pope Francis began by wishing everyone his signatory “Good evening”. He said “I am very happy to meet you and that we are all coming together in this square, to pray, to be united and to wait for the gift of the Spirit. I knew your questions beforehand so I thought about them – this is not without some thought! First, the truth! I have them written here. But that first one, “how were you able to achieve certainty of faith in your life, and what the path can you indicate to us so that each one of us can overcome our fragility of faith?” Is a historical question, because it is about my history, my life , no?

I have had the good fortune to grow up in a family where the faith was lived in a simple and concrete manner, but it was especially my grandmother, my father’s mother, who marked my journey of faith. She was a woman who explained everything to us, who spoke to us of Jesus, who taught us the Catechism … I always remember that on Good Friday in the evening, she would take us to the Candle-light Procession, and at the end of this Procession, we would arrive before the recumbent Christ, and my grandmother made us – us kids – kneel down and she would say: “Look, He is dead, but tomorrow he will Rise up!.” I received my first Christian proclamation right from this woman, from my grandmother, right? That is something beautiful! The first proclamation is in the home, within the family, right? And this makes me think of the love of many mothers and so many grandmothers in the transmission of the faith. They are the ones that transmit the faith. Even in the early days, because St. Paul said to Timothy: “I remember the faith of your mother and your grandmother.” To all the mothers who are here, to all grandmothers, [I ask you to ] think about this! Transmitting the faith. Because God puts people alongside us who help our journey of faith. We do not find our faith ‘in the abstract, no: it is always a person who preaches it to us, who tells us who Jesus is, who gives us the faith, who gives us the first announcement. And so it was in my first experience of faith.

But…there is a very important day for me: September 21, 1953. I was almost 17 It was the “Day of the Student,” for us the start of Spring – for you the start of Autumn. Before going to the festival, I went to my parish. And there I found a priest I did not know, but I felt the need to confess. And this was for me an experience of encounter: I found that someone was waiting for me. I do not know what happened, I do not remember, I do not know if it was that priest who was there, whom I did not know, why I felt this urge to confess, but the truth is that someone was waiting for me. Someone was waiting for me for a long time. And after the confession I felt that something had changed. I was not the same. I felt a voice call me: I was convinced that I had to become a priest. And this experience of faith is important. We say that we must seek God, go to Him to ask for forgiveness … but when we go, He is waiting for us, He is the first one there! We, in Spanish, we have a word that explains this well: “The Lord always there primerea” is first, is waiting for you! And it is a really great grace to find Someone who is waiting for you. You go to Him a sinner, but He is already waiting to forgive you. That experience that the Prophets of Israel said that the Lord is like the flower of almond trees, the first flowers of Spring. Before any other flowers appear, there He is: He who waits. The Lord is waiting for us. And when we seek Him out, we find this reality: that He is waiting to welcome us, to give us His love. And this creates wonder in the heart of those who do not believe, and this is how faith grows! With an encounter with a Person, with an encounter with the Lord. Some will say, “No, I prefer to study faith in books!” Ah, yes it is important to study. But look, that alone is not enough! The important thing is our encounter with Jesus, our encounter with Him, and that gives us faith, because it is He who gives us Faith! While you were talking about the fragility of faith: how do we overcome it. Fragility’s biggest enemy curiously enough, is fear. But do not be afraid! We are weak, we know it but He is stronger! If you are with Him, then there is no problem! A child is fragile: I have seen many today. But they are with their father, their mother: so they are safe! We too are safe with the Lord, we are secure. Faith grows with the Lord, out of the very hands of the Lord. And that makes us grow and makes us stronger. But if we think that we can make it on our own, ah, think of Peter, what happened to him, “Lord, I will never disown you,” and then the cock crowed three times and he had, no? We think, when we have too much faith in our own abilities, we are more fragile, more fragile. Always with the Lord, speaking with the Lord, with Him in the Eucharist, in the Bible, in prayer … Even as a family, with our Mother, even with her because she is the one that leads us to the Lord, the mother who knows everything the Lord. So let us pray to Our Lady and ask her as our Mother to make us strong. That is what I think about the fragility: at least, in my experience. The one thing that makes me stronger every day is to pray the Rosary to Our Lady. I feel great strength because I go to her and I feel strong”.

Moving on to the second question, the Pope discussed the challenge of Evangelization for the Movements, of how to effectively communicate the faith in today’s world”.

Pope Francis said “I will say three words only. First: Jesus. What is the most important thing? Jesus . If we push ahead with planning and organization, beautiful things indeed, but without Jesus, then we are on the wrong road. Jesus is the most important thing. I would like to take the opportunity now to make a small, but fraternal, reproach, among ourselves, alright? All of you in the square shouted out: “Francis, Francis, Pope Francis ” … But, where was Jesus? I want to hear you shout out. “Jesus, Jesus is Lord, and He is in our midst.” From now on , no more “Francis”, only “Jesus”. Alright?

The second word is prayer. Look at the face of God, but above all – and this is related to what I said before – know that you are being looked at in turn. The Lord looks at us: He looks at us first. And this is my experience, this is what I experience in front of the Tabernacle when I go to pray in the evening, before the Lord. Sometimes I nod off a little bit, No?, It’s true, because the strains of the day’s work makes you fall asleep. But He understands me. I feel so much comfort when I think that He is looking at me. We think that we have to pray, talk, talk, talk … No! Just let the Lord gaze at you. When He looks at us, He empowers us and helps us to witness to Him. Because the question was on the testimony of faith, right? Prayer … first, “Jesus”, then “prayer” and feeling that God is holding me by the hand. And the importance of this is to allow ourselves be guided by Him. And that’s more important than any planning or calculations. We are true evangelizers when we let ourselves be guided by Him. Think of Peter … maybe he was taking a siesta after lunch and had the vision, the vision of the tablecloth with all the animals and that Jesus was saying something but he did not understand. Then, some non-Jews came to call him to go into a house, and he saw how the Holy Spirit was there. Peter was guided by Jesus in that first evangelization of the Gentiles, who were not Jews, something unimaginable at that time. And so it has been, throughout history, throughout history. Be guided by Jesus. This is our leader: Jesus is our leader.

And third, “witness.” We have Jesus, then prayer – prayer, letting oneself be guided by Him – and then witness. But I would like to add something. This allowing ourselves to be guided by Jesus opens us to being surprised by Jesus. When people think of evangelization, they think of projects, strategies, making plans? But … they are only tools, small tools. The important thing is that Jesus, and being guided by Him, and then come the strategies. But that is secondary. Witness, the communication of faith … but the faith can only be communicated through witness and that is through love. Not with our ideas, but by living the Gospel in our own lives, which the Holy Spirit breathes within us. It’s like a synergy between us and the Holy Spirit, and this is witness. The Church is brought forward by the Saints, who are the ones who really give this witness. And like Pope John Paul II and Benedict XVI said, the world today has so much need of witnesses. Not so much of teachers, but of witnesses. Less talk, speak through the way you live: the unity of your life, the consistency of your life! Consistency of life means living Christianity like an encounter with Jesus that leads me towards the other and not as a social fact, but … is this how we are socially? Are we Christians? Closed in on ourselves? No, not that. Witness”.

The third question regarded how we can live as a poor Church, for the poor. How does the suffering of others question our faith? How can we all, as Movements, Lay Associations, offer a concrete and effective contribution to the Church and society to address this crisis that touches the public ethics “- this is important! – The “model of development, politics, in short, a new way of being men and women?.

Pope Francis responded “I will pick up again from the subject of witness. First of all, the main contribution we can make is to live the Gospel . The Church is not a political movement, or a well-organized structure: it is not that. We are not an NGO, and when the Church becomes an NGO it loses its salt, it has no taste, it’s just an empty organization. And this – be clever! Because the devil deceives us, because there is the danger of hyper – efficiency. One thing is to preach Jesus, effectiveness, being efficient is another thing: no, that’s another value. The value of the Church, basically, is to live the Gospel and give witness to our faith. To be the ‘salt of the earth, light of the world’, is called to make present in society the yeast of the Kingdom of God and do it first with our witness, our witness of fraternal love, solidarity, sharing. When you hear some say that solidarity is not a value, it is a primary attitude that needs to be done away with… there’s something wrong! Today people are only concerned with worldly efficacy. The moments of crisis, such as the one we are experiencing – as you mentioned before, “we are in a world of lies”, no? Lies, it is a crisis – this time of crisis, but … let’s be careful, ok? It is not only an economic crisis, it is a cultural crisis. It is a human crisis: what is in crisis is mankind! And what can be destroyed, is mankind! Mankind, the image of God! For this is a deep crisis. In this time of crisis we cannot worry only about ourselves, close in on ourselves in loneliness, discouragement, in a sense of helplessness before our problems. Please do not close in on yourselves! That is a danger. But … we lock ourselves up inside our parish, among our friends, in our movement, with people who think the same as we do … But, what is happening? When the Church becomes closed in on itself, it gets sick. Think of a closed room, a room locked for a year, when you go, there is a smell of damp, all these things here, that’s not right. A Church that is closed in on itself is just the same, it is a sick Church.

“The Church must go out from herself. Where? Towards the existential outskirts”, even if that means risking accidents along the way, in the outward journey. To those who worry about what can happen to the Pope responds : “I prefer a thousand times a Church damaged by an accident, than a sick Church closed in on itself”. Faith- he added – is an encounter with Jesus, and we must do the same, help others to encounter Jesus.

Pope Francis continued “we live in a culture of confrontation, no?, A culture of fragmentation, a culture of what we don’t really need. A culture of the disposable. But,– this is part of the crisis – just think about the elderly, who have the wisdom of a people; think of the children who are … The culture of waste. But, we have to bring about encounter, we have to make our faith a culture of encounter and of friendship, a culture where we find brothers and sisters, we can talk even with those who do not think like us, even with those with which have a different faith, who do not have the same faith as our own. But everyone has something in common with us: they are made in the image of God! They are children of God!. Being open to an encounter with everyone, without negotiating the faith we belong to. And this is important: with the poor. If we step outside ourselves, we find poverty. Today, and it breaks my heart to say it, finding a homeless person who has died of cold, is not news. Today, the news is scandals, that is news, but the many children who don’t have food – that’s not news. This is grave. We can’t rest easy while things are this way!

But … this is the way things are. We cannot become starched Christians, too polite, who speak of theology calmly over tea. We have to become courageous Christians and seek out those who are the flesh of Christ, those who are the flesh of Christ”.

Pope Francis spoke of when he would hear Confessions, he would always ask: “Do you give alms to the beggars on the Street?” “Yes, father”. “Ah, good, good”. And I used to add: “Tell me, when you give alms, do you look into the eyes of the person you are giving alms to?” – “Ah, I don’t know, I haven’t noticed.” My next question: “And when you give alms, do you touch the hand of the one to whom you give alms, or throw the coin and [wipe your hands]?” That’s the problem: the flesh of Christ, touching the flesh of Christ, to take upon ourselves this pain for the poor. Poverty, for us Christians, is not a philosophical or cultural or sociological category: no, it is a theological category. I would say, perhaps the first category, because God, the Son of God, humbled himself, became poor to walk along the road with us”.

The Holy Father continued: “Being a poor Church for the poor begins by embracing the flesh of Christ. If we embrace to the flesh of Christ, we begin to understand something about what poverty is, the poverty of the Lord. And that’s not easy. But there is a problem which is not good for Christians: the spirit of the world, the worldly spirit. Spiritual worldliness. This leads us to a certain sufficiency, to live according to the spirit of the world and not that of Jesus”. Pope Francis said that in order to address the current crisis that touches public ethics, the development model, politics we must first understand that it is a “human crisis, it destroys the man, it has stripped man of ethics. And in public life, in politics, if there is no ethics, an ethics of reference that makes us transcendent, everything, everything is possible and we can do anything we want. And we see this when we read the newspapers, how this lack of ethics in public life greatly wounds all of humanity.

I would like to tell you a story. I have told this twice this week, but I’ll tell it a third to you. It’s the story about a biblical midrash, a rabbi of the twelfth century. He tells the story of the building of the Tower of Babel, and he says that to build the Tower of Babel bricks had to be made. This meant making the mud, bringing the straw, mixing them … then, in the oven, and when the brick was made it had to be hoisted up, to build the Tower of Babel. Every brick was a treasure, for all the work it took to make. When a brick fell, it was a national tragedy, and that worker guilty of breaking it was punished. But if a worker fell, nothing happened: it was something else. This still happens today: if investments in banks, drop a little , it’s a tragedy! But if people are starving, if they have nothing to eat, if they are not healthy, it does not matter! This is our crisis today! And the witness of a poor Church for the poor goes against this mentality.

Pope Francis then turned to the fourth question about how we can help and support our brothers and sisters who still today are persecuted for their faith. He said:

“Two virtues are needed to proclaim the Gospel: courage and patience. They are in the Church of patience. They suffer and there are more martyrs today than in the early centuries of the Church. More martyrs. Our brothers and sisters. They suffer. They carry the faith until martyrdom. But martyrdom is never a defeat: martyrdom is the highest rank of witness that we have to give. We are all on the way to martyrdom. [We are ] small martyrs: we give up this, do that … they, poor things, give up their life, but they give it up – as we heard in the situation in Pakistan – they give it up for love for Jesus, to witness Jesus. A Christian must always have this attitude of meekness, humility, the attitude that they have, trusting in Jesus, entrusting themselves to Jesus. It should be noted that many times these conflicts do not have a religious origin, often there are other causes of a social and political nature and unfortunately, religious affiliations are used like fuel to the fire. A Christian must always know how to respond to evil with good, although it is often difficult”.

We must try to make them feel, these brothers and sisters, that we are deeply united – deeply united! – to their situation, that we know that they are Christians who have entered a state of patience. When Jesus goes to his Passion, he enters [a state of] patience. We must make it known to them, but also make it known to the Lord. I ask the question again: Do you pray for these brothers and sisters? Do you pray for them? …in your every day prayers? I will not ask you to raise your hands. But think well, do we in our everyday prayer say to Jesus: “Lord, look at these brothers, look at these sisters who suffer so much, so much suffering.” And they experience the limits, they very limits between life and death. And to us, this experience should lead us to promote religious freedom for all: for everyone! Every man and woman should be free in his religious confession, whatever it is. Why? Because that man, that woman are children of God”.

And concluding his unscripted response to the questions put before him, on how to be certain in the faith, on how these Movements could live out their mission, about being a poor Church for the poor and about supporting persecuted Christians worldwide, Pope Francis repeated : Never be a Church closed in on itself. Be a Church that goes outside, which is on the outskirts of existence. May the Lord guide us there. Thank you”.

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ProvenTherapy.com

Nikki Ciletti is a ProvenTherapist!

Press Release: Tennessee based Licensed Professional Counselor, Nikki Ciletti, joined the team of ProvenTherapists for providing online counseling service through ProvenTherapy.com, one of the premier online counseling and psychotherapy portal on the Net.Nikki Ciletti

The online counseling and psychotherapy portal for mental health, marriage, and relationship problems https://www.ProvenTherapy.com has a team of more than 80 Professionals, Approved ProvenTherapists, providing healing touch to the troubled hearts and souls through online counseling and psychotherapy services since late 90’s. The professional therapists provide counseling and psychotherapy support through live text chat, live voice chat, and email methods round the clock, seven days a week. Nikki Ciletti, a licensed independant counsellor, psychotherapist, and addiction counselor, is the latest addition to the team of ProvenTherapists who has 15 years of experience in the mental health talk therapy field.

Nikki is a licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and a Certified Addiction Counselor III (CACIII) who has been practicing psychotherapy since 2008. She received her M.Ed. degree in Education and Human Resources and got her B.S in Psychology. She is also qualified as a Licensed Professional School Counselor.

Ms. Ciletti has 15 years experience as a Counselor and has specialized in the fields of substance misuse and domestic violence during her long career as a professional therapist. For the past nine years she has been working with teenagers and parents. On therapy, Nikki utilizes a variety of innovative approaches, while tailoring each treatment plan to the individual and incorporating the goals that each person brings to treatment. According to Nikki, each person is unique and that is why she chooses an integrative approach in her work. Most of her work consists of CBT, Solution focused and client centered therapy models.

Read the full story…

Would Positive Thinking Guarantee Positive Result?

Eric HolmesEric Holmes

Approved ProvenTherapist

We carry our past with us, to wit, the primitive and inferior man with his desires and emotions, and it is only with an enormous effort that we can detach ourselves from this burden. If it comes to a neurosis, we invariably have to deal with a considerably intensified shadow. And if such a person wants to be cured it is necessary to find a way in which his conscious personality and his shadow can live together. ~ Carl Jung

Yesterday someone wrote a post on Why Positive Thinking Won’t Guarantee You Positive Results and just like they promised, today they go deeper into the topic and talk about the 7 things you should do to make positive thinking effective.

1. Ownership

Whenever we get angry or irritated because of something people say or do to us it is so because we project our own shadows and our own darkness on to them.

Next time something negative happens and next time you come in contact with somebody you don’t quite like or maybe hate, ask yourself these questions: What is it about this person, situation that is triggering me? What is it about them that I haven’t yet accepted in me? Do I have some hidden open wounds that they touched?

Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves. ~Carl Jung

2. Non Resistance

If you feel the presence of anger in your life, let it be there, allow yourself to feel its presence but don’t allow it to define you, don’t allow you to become you!

Say to yourself: There is anger, frustration, negativity, etc. in me and I allow it to be there without making it my own. There is anger in me but I am not the anger, I am the observer of this anger.

Nonresistance is the key to the greatest power in the universe. ~Eckhart Tolle

3. Acceptance

Accept yourself for who you are and for who you are not. Accept yourself both in the presence of positivity, progress and happiness and their absence. Accept the idea that what you dislike the most in others might be something hidden deep down within yourself, in your unconscious, something you haven’t accepted in yourself.

The difference between my darkness and your darkness is that I can look at my own badness in the face and accept its existence while you are busy covering your mirror with a white linen sheet. ~C. JoyBell C.

4. Forgiveness

Forgive yourself for always believing that the enemy was outside yourself and never within you. Forgive yourself for projecting your own shadows on to the world and making it look cold, scary and frightening.

We have met the enemy and he is us. ~Pogo

5. Love and compassion

We have to learn to love and accept not only the good, bright side of us but also our dark side. Only by loving and accepting our own darkness without judging and oppressing it, we will help heal it.

Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that. ~Martin Luther King Jr.

6. Vizualization

Visualization is such a powerful tool that you can use to visualize the person you want to become, the life you want to live and the impact you want to have in the world.

The power of imagination is incredible. Often we see athletes achieving unbelievable results and wonder how they did it. One of the tools they use is visualization or mental imagery… they made the choice to create their destinies and visualized their achievements before they ultimately succeeded. ~George Kohlrieser

7. Detachment From the Outcome

Whether things will happen the way you want them to happen or not, should not matter to you that much. You now know that your happiness and your well being is not dependent on how things are on the outside but rather how things are on the inside and if you take good care of yourself and if you heal your darkness, you whole life will be healed and light will always shine on you and through you.

Detach yourself from the opinions of others; from the habit of judging or controlling others; from the past; from the need to be right and to win; from an obsession with material things. Follow your passion in life, but detach from the outcome and allow the universe to handle the details. ~Dr. Wayne Dyer

Positive thinking alone does not work and only by facing our own darkness, by accepting and loving our own shadows we will be able to get the positive results from thinking all those positive thoughts.

What are your thoughts on this? Share your insights by commenting bellow or by posting your lovely comment on the PurposeFairy Facebook Page.

Another Facelift Cheers Up Online Therapists – Press Release

Press Release published in PRLog regarding the release of the upgraded site and launching new features.

Press ReleaseThe new upgraded site with sophisticated chat application received huge applause from the service users as well as professional counselors. The new site which launched on Thursday, 9th May claimed to have more facilities than its competitors.

ProvenTherapy.com has been there on the cyber world for many years, providing ‘healing touch to troubled hearts and souls’ according to its previous business slogan. Now it has 80 approved ProvenTherapists practising 24X7 and the number is growing.

Last week the virtual clinic launched its new website along with highly sophisticated chat application for use by service users as well as Therapists. The new chat application reported to have many new features:

* Flash based live chat application with high speed and real time simulation
* Live text chat and live voice chat with excellent audio clarity
* Application run from dedicated server to ensure maximum bandwidth support
* Interactive whiteboard to make therapeutic communication effective and powerful
* Online access to verbatim (full counseling script) for Therapists and Clients any time
* Clients are offered two fee models – fee per session, and fee per minute
* Peer support facility for Therapists
* Notes keeping facility for Therapists
* Clients forum for sharing issues anonymously for Therapists to respond

The premier online counseling and psychotherapy service has changed its business tag line to ‘online counseling for life’s journey’ with the aim of adding positive color to its healing mission.

Read full story here

 

Virtual Clinic Upgraded

Online Counseling for Life’s Journey…

ProvenTherapy.comThe upgraded version of ProvenTherapy.com released today with innovative features.

  • Flash based live chat application with high speed and real time simulation
  • Live text chat and live voice chat with excellent audio clarity
  • Application run from dedicated server to ensure maximum bandwidth support
  • Interactive whiteboard to make therapeutic communication effective and powerful
  • Online access to verbatim (full counseling script) for Therapists and Clients any time
  • Clients are offered two fee models – fee per session, and fee per minute
  • Peer support facility for Therapists
  • Notes keeping facility for Therapists
  • Clients forum for sharing issues anonymously for Therapists to respond

The new site and chat application is expected to deliver the best facilities in terms of performance, efficacy,  and security. The full site and interactive application are channelled through SSL encryption for maximum security of data.

The new site offers the first 5 minutes of the first session free for clients.

The New Look…

New Look

Here’s the first peek of the upgraded site…

Some of the new features include:

  • Fast and bug-free chat application
  • Integrated audio chat
  • Improved session history
  • Per minute and per session payment system
  • Upgraded and simplified payment gateway
  • Improved audio quality
  • Telephone call widgets are something of the past
  • Improved ranking system for Therapists
  • First five minutes chat is free for the first session
  • User-friendly pagination
  • Notes and white board facilities integrated to chat window
  • Improved security features

Site Being Up-graded

Better Chat System… New Payment System… Better Environment

The main site is undergoing serious and major upgrading process. Hoping to show the new face in the first week of May.

The major changes are the following:

New Chat Application with the following features:

Chat with audio facility (yes, we are stopping telephone facility which is complex in many ways at the moment, and is very expensive for us. So, the chat will have audio facility that could substitute telephone)

  • Whiteboard plug-in
  • Notes and chat side by side (therapist can take notes, scribble down further questions that could be asked as the session progresses, etc.)
  • Access mails, check accounts/payments, etc. right from the Messenger
  • Facility to review full chat sessions (verbatim history)

Elimination/Blocking of Non-Serious Clients

This has been a serious issue until now which we are hoping to avoid by introducing the following:

  • Client has option to choose from per minute session or per hour session
  • Client can chat ONLY after purchasing minutes or purchasing an hour session
  • If client chooses per minute session, the first five minutes will be free; means, only the minutes after the first five minutes will be counted for payment

New Payment System

We are very anxious to see ProvenTherapists getting paid without delay. We are stopping our business with eSellerate and are hoping to do business with a better service where our therapists don’t need to wait for receiving their first payment. eSellerate has a waiting period of two months and they have a minimum balance condition of $100. We are in the process of negotiating with eSellerate to release all outstanding payments to our therapists, irrespective of minimum balance and waiting time. This will be done before 8th May by which time we will, hopefully, have a better payment system in place. We are hoping to deposit money into our therapists’ local banks directly by ourselves in order to avoid long waiting, minimum balance conditions, etc.

Therapist Specialized in Stress Management Opens Virtual Clinic at ProvenTherapy

Rodica Mihalis, a professionally qualified Counselor, is the latest addition to the ProvenTherapists team to extend healing touch to troubled hearts and souls through person-centered Rogerian methods.

PRLog (Press Release) – Feb. 25, 2013 – Originally from Eastern Europe, Rodica holds a M.S. in Counseling and Clinical Psychology from Chestnut Hill College in Philadelphia, joined the ProvenTherapists team recently.

The focus of her practice is on relationships, improving couple communication, loss and grief and parental support. For ten years she worked in the wellness industry, specializing in stress management using natural methods such as breathing exercises, positive visualizations and aromatherapy.

Rodica’s educational background and life experiences make her an empathetic counselor who understands the complexities of the human nature.  She will listen, evaluate the special needs of clients and offer her professional suggestions so they may achieve desired goals.

Read full Press Release…

Address Your Insecurity Feelings

Dr. Sharanya Dinesh

Approved ProvenTherapist and Clinical Psychologist

Sharanya Dinesh - Approved ProvenTherapistIt is usually our own inhibitions; insecurities and a pre conceived image of the self which makes us feel shy, leading to insecurity. A weakness or fear which sets in a feeling of imperfection, causing a dint to the ego or self-image results in insecurity. This self- image makes us vulnerable and we resist or shy away from other situations and people alike. People, especially the youth, go through this phase of insecurity when their ideal- self image clashes with the real-life self or when they experience disappointment too often and too recurring for them to overcome the negative situation. This youth withdraws into a shell and becomes shy or some tend to bury the disappointment with a show of aggression and bullying.

Most of the times, it is either the emotional self or the physical self which causes insecurity. Insecurity pulls down our confidence and self esteem takes a beating. Finding out what the core issue is which is causing the insecurity; it could be physical appearance like complexion, voice or lack of enough money, whatever may be the reason, the beginning to recovery will only come if we pin point the reason which brings in the insecure feeling. Insecurity also creeps in if the person is too set or rigid, inflexible with the way he/she wants to be, look or behave. In real life though, not all goes as planned and the obstinate person invariably faces disappointment and it becomes incredibly difficult to accept oneself; to face reality. Getting rid of this insecurity is many times difficult because acknowledgment comes after a very long time and insecurity being such a personal thing to each one of us; it is tougher to get rid of it. Most of us usually succumb to it, only the brave acknowledge it and seek ways and means to combat insecurity and hope for a free secure life.

Feeling shy about a new place, person or a new event is very natural reaction and it cannot be attributed to inherent shyness. Even a boisterous over confident person senses ‘butterflies in the stomach’ sensation before embarking on anything new. Insecurity stemming out of physical attributes results in shyness and low confidence level with regards to self-image, this batters the emotional levels also to a certain degree, but insecurity which has emotional reasons as it’s trigger results in emotional problems, low self esteem, depression and the like. The second needs to be addressed with a sense of urgency. Self image needs a definite mind shift and a renewed perspective of the self.

To lead a better holistically happy life, the sooner these insecurities are gotten rid of the better for us. Let us look at a few things that can be done differently to b able to overcome insecurity, it is easier said than done, but is imperative if one is determined to make the change:

Acceptance is the first step, learn to accept and like yourself the way you are. You are your own comparison and you are your own parameter. Comparing with anyone else will be futile because no two individuals are made the same way! So how can they behave or be the same? Start by accepting who you are, appreciate yourself and then you will start seeing where improvements can be made. If the beginning itself is rejection and criticism of the self then one can only see faults and imperfections and correcting so much will be an uphill task.

Stop being judgmental and critical about yourself; it only attributes to pulling down the self esteem and seeps in more insecurity. Write one good thing about yourself every day, morning and evening. Take time to look at yourself and see the good in you and why you are special and how you can make these your strengths to overcome your weaknesses.

Every small achievement of yours must first be recognized by you and you deserve a treat for every milestone crossed. Do not listen to what others have to say about you, start listening to yourself. Strictly avoid discouraging company and friends who make you feel bad or low about yourself. Seek out new friends who can teach a few good things without putting you down or being judgmental about you.

The world is a big place and we all have people who find us worthy. It is just when we start feeling worthy about ourselves is when the other person also begins to look at you with an appreciative eye. This in itself is a morale boost and uplifts the confidence levels. Change the image you have of yourself and the world automatically looks at you the way you look at yourself.

This is just the beginning, stick to the task and you are on your way to overcoming insecurity and take on new challenges in life.

Counseling at ProvenTherapy.com should be an easy journey, provided you take the first step! The first step is to contact a Therapist... this could be the hardest part because you have to break your mental barrier... but, the journey is sure to be relaxing and comfortable for you! --- the ProvenTherapy Team