Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Real People Wednesday / Meet Cindy!

Hi Readers! We have another Real People Wednesday Interview today. I'm excited about featuring Cindy today for many reasons. One is that I love Cindy and her family! Her daughter McCartney was in my small group at church and I got to know her and her parents and they're so sweet! Their whole family is one of the sweetest family's I've ever known. They're so welcoming and they make everyone feel so comfortable at their house. Not to mention, they have a thousand animals including a barn full of horses. Cindy is a counselor as well as a mom and horse lover. In our day and age a lot of people have stigmas against going to see a counselor-- especially within various churches. There's this whole concept that because you have church you don't or shouldn't need anything else. However, I like to view things a little different. We can have church... and other things too! That's such a luxury and freedom! Talking through issues that affect our lives and those around us can only better us and help us walk in freedom and healthy relationships. Being healthy isn't just about what you eat. It's definitely a mindset and lifestyle as well, as I've talked about here. We have to grow in having healthy minds, healthy emotions, and healthy relationships. Sometimes you just need to sit down and chat with "a Cindy" to take stock of your mind and heart and to see things you otherwise didn't. It's also always helpful to have a listening ear and Cindy is one of those perfect people to do that! I love what she says (especially about when to see a counselor) below and I know you will too! 

Meet Cindy! 

Q: Tell us a little bit about yourself! Who is your family comprised of / what do you do / what you do  /  what you are passionate about / your hobbies / etc. 

A: I was born in Long Island, New York but moved to Palm Beach Gardens, Florida when I was three or four years old. I consider South Florida to be my home of origin as that is where the majority of my childhood memories are from. I grew up the middle of five children with many fond childhood memories. I have now lived in Phenix City, Alabama for over 20 years where I live with my husband, William, and my daughter McCartney. We also have a grown son, Trent, who lives in Lafayette, Louisiana. We live on my husband’s family farm where five generations have now lived. Many years ago my husband’s grandfather, William Howard, ran a successful turkey business, Howard Turkey Farm, on the property. For the past 14 years we have run C Bar W Boarding Stables. Gosh, it is hard to say any one thing that I feel passionate about as I can think of so many things. What first comes to my mind is passion for my faith, my family, my friends and life in general. I love crafting of any kind but especially hand stitching pine needle baskets, crocheting and sewing. I also enjoy gardening and working in my greenhouse and I always look forward to working in the hayfield with my husband. As a family, we all enjoy being active, I especially love going camping and kayaking.

Q: How long have you been a counselor and what led you to this doing this? 
To Read Cindy's Response And The Rest Of Her Interview Click Here... 
A: I have been a counselor since 1999 when I graduated from Columbus State University in Columbus, Georgia. I don’t know that there was any one thing that led me into counseling, it is just the direction my life took. Being in private practice was appealing to me because I have the ability to schedule my own time and work around my daughter’s school hours without any problem (being a wife and a mom are my first priority).

Q: Why do you think that taking care of your mental and emotional health is so important in the times and culture we live in in this day and age? 

A: When so many things around us are changing so quickly I feel it is especially important to maintain our mental and emotional health in order to stay balanced and grounded. If we are not vigilant in caring for our mental and emotional health we set ourselves up for depression and anxiety and feelings of being lost in the shuffle. When we are mentally and emotionally healthy we have a firm sense of self and are able to make wise decisions and not just follow the crowd, so to speak.

Q: Do you have to have a “huge” issue to visit a counselor? What do you find is one of the biggest benefits of going to see a counselor? 

A: No, a huge issue is not necessary to benefit from counseling. Sometimes just a session or two is all that is needed to help us get “unstuck” from whatever we are dealing with. I think perhaps one of the biggest benefits of counseling is just having a safe place to air out our thoughts and feelings without any judgment or bias. 

Q: Do you find there is a lot of stigma in different cultures and even churches about getting help with working through certain issues in one’s life and seeing a counselor? 

A: Yes, unfortunately I do see a stigma attached to counseling. I am glad to say though, that stigma is changing for the positive. I think we can find individuals in any culture or church who may have a negative attitude toward counseling, but by the same token, we can also find individuals with a positive attitude toward counseling. I do think it is important when seeking out a counselor to find one who is familiar and knowledgeable of our own culture and/or faith. 

Q: For someone who is scared to approach a counselor for help or is on the fence about deciding to visit one, what would you say to them? 

A:  I would say just try a session or two. If you don’t feel comfortable with your counselor, it is perfectly ok to find another one. I think it is very important to have a good working relationship  and to feel comfortable with any counselor you see. 

Q: What does being “healthy” and emotionally look like to you? Is there anything you could say about this? 

A: I think someone who is emotionally healthy is a person who has the ability to feel and experience a wide range emotion, who takes responsibility for their own feelings, thoughts and behaviors. I also think an emotionally health person is able to maintain healthy relationships, demonstrate forgiveness, is willing to try new things and has a strong sense of self. An emotionally healthy person is also able to set appropriate boundaries for themselves and not be persuaded by the behaviors or opinions of others, they are true to who God created them to be.

Q: I know all of us can find ourselves stressed out at different times. Since emotions play such a high role in our physical health as well, what are ways to keep our emotions and stress levels under control and keep ourselves healthy emotionally? 

A: Across the board, eating a healthy diet, regular exercise and restful sleep are the foundation for emotional health and maintenance of stress. We can also learn to not over-schedule our day, set boundaries and limits for all the technologies (we don’t have to be available to everyone 24/7),engage in some form of recreation, and spend meaningful time with friends and family. For me personally, I also feel that regular worship and continuous prayer are of utmost importance. 

Thank you Cindy!! I loved your answers and love what you've intentionally cultivated in your life and family! 


Disclaimer: PRTLIVING (and all of those feature and interviewed) is limited to providing self-help education in natural health matters and advocating of a healthy lifestyle for the sole purpose of sharing personal experiences and historical information about the traditional use of God-given herbs and natural remedies. This information is not intended to diagnose, prevent, treat, or cure any specific disease. No medical claims are made. If you have a medical problem, please seek the advice of your medical doctor.
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