Grief/Grieving/Bereavement, Social Work/Helping Profession/Mental Health

Now What? Grieving After the Death of a Loved One

End of Life Education Materials Source: Reaching for the Far Side of Grief | Barbara Karnes Books,

via Reaching for the Far Side of Grief | Barbara Karnes Books, — Loss, Grief, Transitions and Relationship Support

This is a post worth reading that focuses on grief and what that entails. If you have been a caregiver and your loved one has died, what are you doing? Are you grieving? Are you keeping busy? Are friends checking in with you?

Now what?


The Need for Spiritual/Religious Care at the End of Life……

Take a look at this article. Religious or spiritual care is important for those individuals that want it at the end of life. All professionals should ask about this and then find the correct religious chaplain, rabbi, priest, minister for the client/patient.

Career/Job Advice, Healthcare, ICU, News, Social Work/Helping Profession/Mental Health

Frustration Within the Helping/Medical Professions: Strategies to Change it.

I came across this article on LinkedIn and had to take a look. Do doctors die differently and are they treated differently? I have also come across many posts about frustration related to one’s work environment and profession. What are the solutions?

What do you think?  Medical professionals are more knowledgeable about medical procedures, diseases, illnesses, and treatment options. They have witnessed patients in all types of scenarios. They probably know what they do not want-to lie in a hospital bed ignored in an understaffed hospital.

“Many people have witnessed a death that seemed to be exacerbated by modern medicine: a drug that came with side effects but never seemed to halt the disease’s progress, the surgery that was totally unnecessary and might even have sped up someone’s death. Doctors have seen that happen even more often.”

The article states: “…that the entire health-care system is aimed at fixing problems, not giving comfort.” This is the piece that needs to change and there are many health professionals around the world trying to do just that, one person at a time. Provide attention and comfort, to listen to the patient and family members, to be compassionate, empathic, to do a little bit more.

No matter whether one is a nurse, physician, social worker, psychologist, companion, caregiver, orderly…..the list goes on.

Meet some of these professionals: – Gabriel Heras, MD is such a professional who is striving to make a difference and has created an environment in Spain within the ICU that has caught on and other professionals are doing the same. Watch his youtube video and turn on the English subtitles. -a wonderful resource site and a place to connect with other like minded professionals.

“Healthcare’s focus on physical disease and bio-medicine is unbalanced. We need to pay much more attention to emotional, psychological and spiritual well-being and the huge importance of healing relationships.” -Dr. Robin Youngson- “Time to Care

I have connected with many such professionals through LinkedIn. Brave, open-minded professionals who are willing to take a stand. Professionals who share information, ideas, speak at conferences, write articles and books. Professionals who care and because they care so much, have made and continue to make a real difference in their work environments. That is the type of professional I want to be and strive to be. If not, why did any of us choose a helping profession or a healthcare profession to work in in the first place?

We all start out with this idea of wanting to help others, to want to make a difference in the world and perhaps our idea is very grand in the beginning, and as we work in our chosen profession and the years go by, reality sets in. This does not mean we have to settle, give up or become frustrated. This is the very time, the very moment to become focused again and to mindfully choose to make a difference each day we go to work. Clients or patients that frustrate us-there is a reason. The reason is not them, but us. WE have to change our mindset and figure out what it is that frustrates us and why we allow it to. Once we do this, the relationship changes, the way we approach the client/patient changes and usually for the better.

The same can be said for one’s work environment too. Many professionals, and I read articles and posts all the time about professionals becoming frustrated with their work environment, their bosses, their colleagues…..again-what is the reason? This is the moment to review and decide why one may become frustrated, fed-up, think of quitting or changing careers. What has caused an individual to reach burn-out or come close to it?

Share your thoughts with me on this topic. What have you done if this was your situation to change the feelings of frustration? If you were the one that was in hospital or diagnosed as ill-what would you do-helping professional/healthcare professional or not?

Book Review, News

Party with a Plan: Author Interview & Book Spotlight by Randy Haveson

Book Description:

Finally! Here is a proven, practical way to drink alcohol and lower your risk for problems. Up until now, there have been two primary messages when it comes to drinking alcohol. One is “just say no,” which for the majority of the population is not an option. The other is to “drink responsibly.” But what does that mean? If you ask five random people to define responsible drinking, you will most likely get five completely different answers. This invalidates the term because it can be defined in so many different ways. Party with a Plan® gives a concise and research based formula that teaches people how to drink and lower their risk of negative consequences. It’s like creating a speed limit for drinking. If you stick to the speed limit, your chance of problems is minimal. However, the more you go over the speed limit, and the more often you go over the speed limit, the more you put yourself and others at risk. This book is long overdue!


Author’s Bio:

Randy Haveson knows addiction. As an alcoholic in long-term recovery (May, 1984), he has dedicated his life to helping others make more empowered choices in their lives. He is a 25 year veteran in the substance abuse field with extensive experience as a counselor, Director of Health & Alcohol Education at highly accredited universities, and speaker on over 100 campuses, speaking about harm reduction, self-esteem, leadership, and supporting students in recovery.

Connect with the author: Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook


Author Interview:

Finally! An alcohol education program that makes sense!

What was your motivation for writing this book?

I was working in college counseling centers, dealing mostly with students who had substance abuse issues, and I realized that students were never taught how to drink alcohol. We have rules and guidelines for sports, driving, and a host of other things, but not for drinking. All we have is “drink responsibly.” But that’s like handing the keys of a car to a 16-year-old and saying, “Just drive responsibly.” We wouldn’t do that, e teach them how to lower their risk for problems, how to navigate the roads and be a respectful driver, and we teach them when it’s a good idea not to drive. So I did years of research and came up with the Party with a Plan® low-risk guidelines.

What do the guidelines include?

The guidelines teach the difference between low-risk and high-risk drinking. It draws a solid line in the sand that differentiates the two categories. When people know what the guidelines are, they know if they are low-risk or high-risk drinkers. Once a person knows what the speed limit is, they know if they are going over the limit or not. If they don’t know the speed limit, there’s no way to know if they’re speeding. Up until now the speed limit sign has read “drive responsibly” and there’s no way to actually know what that is.

Did you write the book for college students only? It seems this might be useful for everyone.

I did write an edition for college students and I wrote another for women because both have their own specific issues to consider when drinking. But I do have an edition that is more general for anyone who chooses to drink.

Where did you get your information from?

All components of the program are research based. Most of it comes from the CDC and the NIAAA. For the college edition I also used statistics from the Core Institute. I also use a lot of my own personal experience for parts of the book. Since I am an alcoholic in long term recovery, I wanted to create something that would have made sense to me when I was drinking. I do find it a bit ironic that I’m a recovering alcoholic that teaches people how to drink.

Is this book meant for alcoholics?

No, absolutely not. This is a book meant for those who haven’t crossed the line into addiction. It is also a useful tool for those who are wondering if they have crossed the line. I believe that once someone has crossed the line into addiction, the only low-risk choice is abstinence.


Party with a Plan



iRead Website new logo

Book Review, News

The Great Disneyland Scavenger Hunt Book Spotlight & Author Interview by Catherine Olen

Book Description:

See the enchantment of the Disneyland resort in a whole new way with “The Great Disneyland Scavenger Hunt.” From Main Street U.S.A. to New Orleans Square, Walt Disney lovingly designed every detail to immerse guests in the magic of his theme parks.

See Disneyland and Disney’s California Adventure through new eyes when you discover fantasy, thrills, and dreams around every turn. Whether you’re perusing the shops, waiting in line, or riding attractions, there’s plenty to uncover for even the most knowledgeable Disney fan.

If this is your first visit or your five hundredth, you will discover something new with “The Great Disneyland Scavenger Hunt.”

Buy the Book:  Amazon  ~  Books-a-Million  ~ Barnes & Noble ~ Powell’s Books  ~


The Great Disneyland Scavenger Hunt

Author’s Bio:

Catherine Olen has enjoyed a love affair with the magic of the Disney theme parks for as long as she can remember, counting herself among Disneyland passholders for the last twenty-five years. Previously, Olen owned and operated Hollywood Grave Hunter and is the proud author of The Final Curtain: Celebrity Deaths and The Upside of Undertaking, chronicling her previous career experiences. She has been a correspondent to Entertainment Tonight (US and France), The Biography Channel, Reelz Network, and the Mark & Brian radio show.

Connect with the author:  Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook  ~  Pinterest  ~  Instagram


Author Interview:

In writing The Great Disneyland Scavenger Hunt was there anything new you learned about Disneyland resort?

I should say so! After being an annual pass holder for over twenty-five years, I was surprised with all of the part of Disneyland I had not seen previously. For instance, did you know that the lighthouse in front of the Storybookland Canal Boats attraction was previously used as a ticket booth when the theme parks still used coupon for the attraction? It is now used as park décor but it is a wonderful example of the incarnations Disneyland has gone through over the decades.

What is your favorite part of the writing process?

While I enjoy most of the writing process, I suppose my favorite part is seeing the book take form. With each page and chapter, I love seeing each question and fact appear on the page. It was a celebration for me the day I wrote the final words and sent the book off to my publisher. I imagine Walt Disney felt much the same when he watched Disneyland go from a group of orange grove to clearing the space to building the rides and shops of Disneyland. There is a satisfaction to seeing your vision become reality.

Have you spent time reading other books about Disneyland or Walt Disney World?

I have read many books about the history and trivia surrounding the Disney parks. I have enjoyed learning about the hidden basketball court within the Matterhorn attraction or reading about the time capsule hidden beneath the ground in front of Sleeping Beauty castle. When I envisioned The Great Disneyland Scavenger Hunt, I stayed away from formats that had been done previously and created something new for guests to explore the theme parks. After reading many of the other books published, I feel my book is very different from anything done before.

What are your thoughts on the new Star Wars area of Disneyland being built now?

I am so excited about the new themed area of Disneyland. The Tomorrowland area has already began getting guests ready for this new transition with re-theming the Space Mountain attraction as well we creating the Launch Bay in the old Innoventons building. Seeing the characters like Chewbacca and Kylo Ren are adding so much fun to this section of the park.

What are your plans for the future of Mouse Hangover and the Scavenger hunt books?

I am excited to announce The Great Walt Disney World Scavenger Hunt and The Great Universal Studios Florida books coming soon. I am anxiously awaiting taking guests on a new tour of the theme parks in the east coast in much the same way I have done with The Great Disneyland Scavenger Hunt.


iRead Website new logo


Education, News

Summer Reading List by TED

40+ TED speakers recommend the books you need to read right now. Okay, so it’s not summer everywhere right now. But whatever the weather, it’s always time to read a good book. So we compiled summer reading recommendations from TED speakers, and then organized them according to the various situations in which you might find yourself…

via What should you read this summer? A mega reading list —

I love to read and often am reading 1-3 books at the same time depending on my mood.take a look at this list by TED.


Aging/Gerontology, Healthcare, News, Social Work/Helping Profession/Mental Health

Healthcare and Older Adults: Changes Needed.

Noor Heim is an assistant professor who currently works for the University Medical Center in Utrecht. In this blog, she discusses her recent Age & Ageing paper on research she has done in the Leiden University Medical Center. Integration of treatment and care from multiple disciplines is particularly critical in care for older people. Most […]

via Get healthcare providers to improve care together, that’s the challenge — British Geriatrics Society

The population is aging; it can be seen all around the world. Humans are living longer. For each individual the way they age is different. Some are healthy, active and continue to work  for as long as possible and for others, aging is more challenging; difficulties with mobility, health issues that can range from vision or auditory loss (es), to chronic health conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, cancer, memory loss, cardiac problems……the list goes on.

Healthcare and access to is is not easy for one who is 70+. This line from the article, “Integration of treatment and care from multiple disciplines is particularly critical in care for older people. Most older people admitted to a hospital suffer from more than just one (chronic) condition. As a consequence, coherent care for older patients involves more than just one discipline” says it all. Healthcare providers need to work together, to collaborate, to advocate for services, to help the older patient in the best way possible.

Now, to a social worker this makes total sense- as we do this every day. We are trained this way-to collaborate with other professionals and providers, to advocate for what is in the best interest of our client, to see the whole picture vs. a very small window.

All helping and medical professionals should do this. It is about the patient/client and not about the provider or the professional.