with Heather Gilmore, MSW, LLMSW, BCBA

Personal Wellness

Free Association: How to be more creative

I was at a loss for coming up with a great idea for this blog post. I desire to be a wonderful, inspiring, great writer, but as I put more and more pressure on myself, I sometimes experience a block to my creativity. This is somewhat representative of my life. In some situations, the more pressure I have, the more locked down I can get. On the other hand, having certain types of pressure such as a deadline (My personal goal that I have to write this post today!) can help me to find ways to get the job done.

So, through this post, I will provide you with how I came up with a topic as well as how you can delve deeper into your own creativity.

Personal Wellness

6 Lessons Kids Can Teach Adults

"A child can teach an adult three things: to be happy for no reason, to always be busy with something, and to know how to demand with all his might that which he desires." -Paulo Coelho

Kids and adults experience the world and live their lives differently. The way in which children function, the way they view their surroundings, the way they think and feel and process provides some lessons to help adults live their lives with more peace, happiness, and fulfillment.

1.Enjoy Life

Despite challenges that kids may face, most kids are able to enjoy life. Even kids who are going through some pretty tough times are able to separate from their difficulties and have experiences of sincere happiness, joy, and freedom. Even kids who have a heavy weight on their shoulders from the troubles they have experienced or are currently experiencing can seem to have positive experiences in life in which they are living in the moment and experiencing positivity and peace even if for a short time. Of course, some kids have more severe mental health concerns which result in less enjoyment of life, but most of the time, kids have a natural ability to find joy in whatever life they have.


Why do Siblings have to Fight so much?

It's about mid-way through summer break for most kids. School will be starting back up before you know it. Many kids spend more time with their siblings during the summer than they do during the school year. This time spent together inevitably leads to more bickering, more butting heads, more annoyances between siblings.

There are many reasons siblings fight. Here are a few of the factors that influence sibling rivalry.

Personal Wellness

5 Tips for Living a Life you Love

I have many roles and responsibilities as I'm sure many of you do, as well. Others may find their identity mostly coming from one main area of life such as their long-term career or being a parent or a combination of the two.

For each person, the ideal life probably looks at least slightly different. However, for all of us, there are some steps that can be taken to help life to be much more fulfilling.


Personal Wellness

Self-care; How to have Peace in these Busy times

Whether you work full-time or part-time or stay at home with your kids, life can feel so busy these days. It can seem like there are a million things to do and as if you are constantly running to get everything done.
You might also feel like you are always thinking about and taking care of other people. If you are in some sort of helping field or a job where you provide customer service or have to consider the well-being of someone else, even if you love the job, this can add to the overall sense of not having much time for you.
In the therapy field, we call taking care of yourself "self-care." Here are some great self-care tips to promote peace and well-being for anyone who feels like life can get busy or overwhelming.


Survive a summer day with your kids…and be happy about it, too ;o)

School’s out for the summer and, for most kids, it has been out for at least a few weeks now. No matter your family situation (whether you are a stay at home parent, work from home, or work outside the home), summer time can have its challenges.

When siblings spend more time together, they can develop frustrating behaviors like nagging at each other, teaming up against mom or dad (by distracting each other from doing chores or whatever else they are being told to do), not getting things done, and making more messes around the house.

I say these somewhat (or totally) irritating issues with love for my kids and compassion for all kids.

Following are some tips on how to get through a day with your kids not only in a way that ends the day with the thought “Thank goodness! We all survived.” but also with true happiness and fulfillment.


5 Parenting Lessons; Parenting Tips I’ve Learned While Being a Children’s Therapist

Throughout my education and various professional experiences, I have gone through classes, seminars, and trainings to learn about parenting skills, child development, and children’s mental health.

My education and work experiences have trained me to be knowledgeable about the supposedly “right” ways to help kids as well as how to parent them. Being a mom of three kids (a 7 year old son, a 5 year old daughter, and an 8 month old daughter), I naturally use some of the information that I learn in my personal parenting style.

Over the time that I have trained and worked in the realm of children’s mental health and parenting, I have learned a few things to remind myself of in my personal life. I would recommend these lessons to other parents, as well.

Play Therapy

Welcome to my blog!

I am a mental health therapist/social worker with a specialization in play therapy. I am a recent graduate from Michigan State University. I have a bachelor’s degree in psychology with a minor in youth services. I also have a master’s degree in clinical social work. (See my bio for more info about me.)

This blog will provide you with insights, experiences, and ideas from my perspective of being a children’s therapist. I will provide you with the following types of information:

research related to play therapy, children’s counseling, and families
play therapy techniques
observations and insights from my experience working with families and kids
how being a children’s therapist relates to my personal experiences
experiences related to recently completing grad school and tips for those still in college
recommendations about child therapy practices and working with kids and families
tips for parents and the non-therapist (i.e. the typical parent looking for some useful information)
and more

In addition to my training as a social worker which has also helped prepare me to become a mental health therapist, I am also in the process of becoming a Registered Play Therapist. Therefore, my perspective often comes from my play therapist-based thinking.