January 23, 2017

Have you ever had one of those days when everything looked good on you?

Outfit. Fit great in all the right places. Shoes. Matched the outfit perfectly. Accessories. On point. Skin. Glowing with no breakouts. Hair. Perfect.

Then… one comment from another person, about your appearance, causes you to reevaluate your life and worth. You go from feeling FLY to totally deflated in a matter of moments.

Forgive my blind optimism, but I believe that most people don’t intend to destroy your self-esteem.

It’s my belief that our backgrounds and experiences guide the comments we make and the way we receive feedback from others.

Sarah - A spunky, compassionate, ambitious 23-year-old college student

Since childhood, Sarah and her sister were known for their sparkling blue eyes, rosy cheeks and kind smiles. However, Sarah disliked her long, straight, thin, dusty brown hair. She was cute as a button to onlookers, but she envied the Shirley Temple curls and textures of her other classmates.

On special occasion...

November 18, 2016

If you’re reading this, it’s safe to assume that you are an adult. You took time to read words that weren’t in a social media caption or music lyric, so YES…you have to be over 25.

Many of you are finding your way in this great big world. 

You are exploring:
1.    Industry – work, school, trade, hobby or skill
2.    Relationship – friendships, romantic partnerships, colleagues, children and/or relatives

Once upon a time, there was a third, equally significant, category:
3.    Dreams and Desires

As you navigate this whole ‘adulting’ thing, meeting your basic needs, supporting others and mixing in some recreation, that 3rd category appears to disappear.

Where did those dreams go? They seem to have been swallowed up by responsibilities.
Let me be your voice of reason. Don’t let those dreams die! They must remain active, so you can not only exist, but truly live.  

Do you want to:
-Start a school or mentor others?
-Travel the world?
-Play an instrument?

September 3, 2016

Most of you know that I am a licensed marriage and family therapist. In my practice, people frequently come to me in intense emotional pain.

They are dealing with past hurts, current stressors and fears concerning future issues.

It is my responsibility to create a safe and comfortable environment, where they can feel free to expose everything in their hearts and mind.

This is important, because…

Healing Comes From The Individual Facing Their Truth

To heal from it, we have to deal with it.

In my recent video posting (‘Lunch with Chevonna’ video post on Facebook Live and Periscope @ChevonnaLMFT),

I gave the example of a husband and wife struggling with honest communication. I explained that:

The wife may be struggling with a need for more quality time from her husband.

The husband may be harboring frustration regarding a lack of intimacy from his wife.

They may avoid sharing these emotions and needs with one another, due to:

  • Fear of being misunderstand

  • Attempting to avoid conflict

  • ...

August 8, 2016

Over the past week, I have found myself out of sorts, at times. I’ve been impatient, moody and even bitchy (Please excuse my language. It’s the best word to describe how I’ve behaved during some moments this past week).

I wasn’t able to identify the source of my shifts in mood. So, I resorted to a strategy that I frequently utilize with the clients I serve in my therapy practice.

I asked myself:

Chevonna, what do you need?

When my client’s present with an imbalance, I challenge them to consider what specific needs in their life are unmet.

This question is partially based upon some tenets from Gary Chapman’s life affirming 5 Love Language model and Love Cup theory. Let me paraphrase my understanding of Mr. Chapman’s theories:

There are 5 primary love languages that people utilize to communicate and receive love. If an individual communicates love to you in your identified language, it will fill your love cup. However, if they fail to communicate love in the way that you need it communicated,...

July 26, 2016

Usually, when we face difficulties in life, it's because of uncertainty.

For instance, when relationship issues arise, we may wonder:

  • Will we break up?

  • Will I find someone else to love me?

During challenging times, it feels like the future is bleak and unclear... Almost like entering a dark tunnel.

In a tunnel, there is darkness all around. You eventually reach the light by taking one step at a time in the right direction. The light may appear far away, yet moving forward gets you closer to your goal. 

The fear of the unknown can feel paralyzing.

Recently, my brother faced one of those situations. His job that he lovingly committed to for the past 12 years, unexpectedly suspended him. 

He panicked, thinking:

-Will I be fired?
-Would I be able to find another job? 

-What happens if I run out of money?

Unfortunately, his fears came true and he was let go. He had won employee awards and developed lifelong relationships at this job, but it had come to an abrupt end...

July 25, 2016

Don't miss it! 
TODAY at 5:00pm, I will be interviewed on Periscope by the award winning author, Sandy Peckinpah!

Step 1: Go to Periscope
Step 2: Follow @sandypeckinpah 
Step 3: Tune in at 5pm

Step 4: Subscribe to my website below for encouragement and info

July 15, 2016

'You (and our Nation) Can Heal'

Becoming a Business Woman:

Transitioning from Healing a Few to Impacting the World

I’ve always been an empathic listener and soother of the soul. From early childhood, I was the person that people poured out their heart to. The old folks would say that I had an old soul. Yep, I was in 3rd grade listening to my high school aged cousin vent about some jerk that did her wrong. I recall telling her, “you’re too good for him anyway.”

I eventually transferred my gift of listening and support into a career. I have been blessed to identify my calling and am using it to make a living.

Some might disagree, but for me being a therapist is the easy part. My biggest challenge lies in figuring out how to go from being a therapist affecting a few people to becoming a global healer impacting the world.

It is time for me to further expand my reach (and multiply my income in the process).  I don’t think I have to choose between being compassionate and achieving financial freedom. They can coexist, but how...

June 23, 2016

I know the season is summer and water fun is upon us. If you live in California, you are praying for an opportunity to be near any body of water. However, my posed question has nothing to do with splashing. 

I ask:

Are you Swimming, Floating or Sinking?

I am questioning how you are currently coping with your life. 

How are you feeling about yourself, your career and your relationships?

There are many titles you may hold:
o    Woman/Man
o    Husband/Wife
o    Sister/Brother
o    Employee/Student
o    Friend/Mentor
o    Daughter/Son

Of course, there are other specialized titles, like Dance Mom, Baseball Coach or Choir Director, to name a few. 

In addition to my plethora of titles, one of the roles that I have had the pleasure of fulfilling has been that of leader. I now operate as more of a freelancer, but once upon a time I was a Program Coordinator over a social service program. I supervised 65+ staff of varying academic and career l...

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Chevonna Gaylor, LMFT © 2018