Relationships can be complex and come with different types of challenges. When couples are faced with challenging situations, resolutions can be hard to reach. In those cases, the smartest thing to do is to start couples therapy. Emotional Focused Therapy (EFT) for couples has been found to help couples detect their negative “interactional dances/cycles” that perpetuate arguments in relationships. Grazel Garcia is one of the best EFT practitioners in Los Angeles and can give you and your partner the tools you need to make your relationship work.
The goal of EFT therapy is to help couples change insecure attachment styles and move couples to a secure attachment style(s). The negative “interactional dances/cycles” trigger negative responses from each person. EFT detects them and helps couples understand these dances/cycles and their consequent responses; and thus, create new ways of breaking the negative dances/cycles. EFT teaches couples in understanding deeper-seated emotions; and uses them as guidance to creating secure ways of relating with each other.
Grazel Garcia’s Background and Experience
Grazel Garcia is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (California License # 97561) practicing in Atwater Village, Los Angeles. Before becoming a Psychotherapist, Grazel attended law school and decided to make a shift in her career. Grazel pursued a Master of Science Degree in Counseling with Emphasis on Marriage and Family Therapy from California State University, Northridge.
Grazel is an LGBTQI affirmative therapist and received her training hours at the Los Angeles LGBT Center, a world-renowned non-profit organization serving the LGBTQI population. Grazel’s approach to therapy is Psychodynamic in nature combined with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and mindfulness techniques. Grazel is an EFT therapist and specialize in treating couples. Grazel also works well with those who are struggling with depression, anxiety and trauma and specializes in addiction. Grazel is also a Domestic Violence Certified Therapist.
What makes Grazel stand out of the rest of the EFT practitioners in Los Angeles is her empathy and non-judgmental therapeutic stance. Grazel has a very diverse background and knows how it feels to be different, misunderstood and discriminated. This makes Grazel have a closer understanding of her patient’s struggles and issues related to oppression that not all therapists could fully comprehend.
Find the best EFT practitioners in Los Angeles
Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) is not only used for couples but is also used with individuals and families from all ages and ethnicities. EFT is also known for helping couples that have struggled with infidelity and betrayal. Grazel also works with children and teens, and adults ages 18 to 70 years old. Grazel sees many musicians, artists, actors, CEOs and those who are in the helping professions including doctors and other psychotherapists in her practice. Grazel specializes in seeing heterosexual, interracial and LGBTQ couples.
To meet with Grazel, you can book an appointment at her website, www.grazelgarciatherapy.com You can also call (323) 487-9003 for a free phone consultation.
Caring for oneself is fundamental to “Basic Self-Care.”
First, I’d like to thank Christy B for sharing tips about Self-Care on her blog. Reading her blog titled “Mental Health Tips for Women” made me want to expand more on the importance of “Self-Care.”
Why is “Self-Care” so important?
1. The Power of Smile
What does it mean when they say just “fake it until you make it?” There’s something powerful about a random smile, even a fake one can create a slight change in our mood. Recent studies have revealed that our mood aligns with the facial expressions that we make. Why? Bodily movements including facial expressions (e.g. smile) releases happy neurotransmitters in our brain called DOPAMINE.
Give a stranger a smile today and see if it works for you!
Some people struggle with sleep. They experience difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep. So here’s a list of tips that could help.
Eat something light for dinner (e.g. salad or soup).
Refrain from using any electronic devices an hour before sleep.
Take a nice candlelight bath.
Infuse your bath with lavender oil, epsom salt and your favorite scent. For those who are allergic to fragrances, epsom salt would suffice.
Meditate while bathing. I provided two free meditation apps below.
Pick a guided meditation that sets an intention of calmness and peace before sleep.
To women who has difficulty sleeping and staying asleep, repeat step 5 and 6.
Intrusive negative thoughts about the body affects the way we relate to our bodies. Studies have revealed that using the descriptor such as “weight”or “large-bodied” versus “fat” has been helpful to those who struggle with weight issues or obesity. Choosing a non-judgmental language helps cultivate self-compassion that is a catalyst to change.
Be mindful of thoughts that judge you for the way you look or the way your body is shaped.
Create an intention of using kinder language that decreases negative self-talk and boosts self-esteem. These intentions may sound: “May I feel at peace with my body,” “May I feel confident about the shape of my body,” “May I love the shape of my body.”
Try using exercise as the vitamin for your inner soul as opposed to using exercise to fit in the “skinny look” click in LA.
Every shape and weight is beautiful.
Here are some tips without having to spend a ridiculous amount of money on studio memberships.
Take a brisk walk around your neighborhood. Oh, and don’t forget to bring pepper spray for protection.
If you live in a building or a house with a stairwell, use the stairs as a stair master and do some laps.
Exercise at home and download inexpensive yoga apps. The one I use is called “down dog.” I believe it’s about $49.99/a year.
Use google and research exercise tips and do them at home.
If you are meeting with someone for coffee, ask them to go on a walk at the beach or go for a hike instead and enjoy the beauty of nature!
4. A Healthy Diet
Our body is the temple of our spirit. It is essential that we get the right amount of nutrition that is required to function daily. Eating healthy food improves overall psychological and physical well-being. It helps decrease the signs of aging, helps with focus, confidence, self-esteem, helps maintain healthy weight and promotes weight loss, and most importantly, it increases the release of happy neurotransmitters in the brain. I highly encourage you to speak with a nutritionist, a dietician, or an eastern or western medicine doctor to get more information on the best diet that works well for you.
Having a healthy diet creates a healthy lifestyle. When our mind, heart and body is nourished, happiness is attainable.
Meditation has been a valuable tool in improving people’s’ lives. In most recent years, mental health practitioners began integrating the practice of mindfulness meditation in their work with mental illness. Thich Nhat Hahn founded mindfulness meditation during Vietnam War and discovered that being mindfully aware of your emotions and emotional pain improves your overall psychological health.
In addition, mindfulness meditation has been proven to help decrease symptoms of mental illness. As a mindfulness therapist, I utilize mindfulness meditation in my work with patients struggling with depression, anxiety, OCD, trauma, etc and have yielded great results. During treatment and after treatment, patients have reported decreased level of anxiety and depression and increased ability in managing stressful situations.
Mindfulness means being aware of your moment to moment experience without changing it to what it is not. One of the benefits of mindfulness is that it teaches you to take a pause, observe your thinking, identify what you’re feeling and what you’re doing before reacting.It provides an opportunity to do something different, away from the usual and familiar. Mindfulness meditation focuses on building inner strength to sit with thoughts and emotions that are avoided. Mindfulness teaches you to be curious of your experience without judgment. Meditation is experiential and requires daily practice to be mindful of your moment to moment experience.
Here’s three free mediation apps that you can download for your use.
Mindfulness Meditation by UCLA (please search using ItunesU or podcast).
Play as if you are a child again. Chanel the moment when you were in your most innocent state and begin to RELIVE it through PLAY.
Tap into your favorite child game or activity.
Watch your favorite child movie(s).
Pick a board game or two and play them with family and friends.
Pick a new game or a hobby with a childhood friend or a new friend.
Now that you’ve gotten some self-care tips, try to apply what you’ve learned, and come back and share your experience with me and other readers on the comment box below!
Thanks for visiting and hope you enjoyed today’s blog.
The content on this blog is for general information and educational purposes only, and is not intended to substitute for professional services. Visiting this website, blog or contacting Grazel Garcia by e-mail or phone does not constitute the establishment of a therapeutic or professional relationship.
My name is Grazel Garcia and I am a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) with a private practice located in Atwater Village, Los Angeles, California. I spent some time in the legal field and attended law school prior to completing my graduate studies in Marriage and Family Therapy at California State University, Northridge. If you would like to know more about me and how I work, please click here.
Why am I here?
I love being in the mental health field
and enjoy providing psychotherapy services
to those who are in need of help and value the gift of therapy.
So this is the reason why I’m here. I’d like to be of help and write about anything that is of interest to you. If you have a burning desire to read about something in particular and would like for me to write about it, feel free to send me an email by contacting me here.
In addition to topic(s) specifically requested by my readers, please expect to read about a variety of topics surrounding mental health and wellness including tips on how to practice mindfulness.
Intimacy is being close to someone emotionally, spiritually, intellectually, sexually, socially, and experientially. In short, intimacy is about sharing who you are with others. Being open to sharing your fears, your spiritual beliefs, thoughts and opinions, asking and talking about your sexual needs and desires, and engaging in activities socially and experientially with others.
Many of us, however, are very afraid of intimacy; and as a result, tend to isolate and feel very alone.
Here are some phrases that we say to ourselves when we get afraid of closeness or intimacy.
I am scared to be close to others.
No one is interested in me so why bother.
I am afraid to be rejected.
I don’t want to open up.
I am scared to open up.
I put walls up.
When these thoughts or fears come up, I encourage you to lean in closely to your fears by becoming more curious and interested about how these fears affect the way you relate with others. These fears could stand in the way of establishing and maintaining healthy relationships with others.It could be that you’re really wanting to be close to someone but so afraid that you don’t realize you’re pushing others away. This keeps you in a cycle of longing for love but pushing love away.