Share

mat.j.collins

mat.j.collins

210
Expertise
70
Contributions

About Me

Developing a career in social media, Matt is dedicated to implementing evidence-based practices for social media optimization. He is focused on supporting businesses and individuals in maximizing their online engagement through simple and effective strategies.

Personal growth, health, communication, organizational performance, spirituality, Matt is an all around wellness junkie. Through his personal pursuits, he is utilizing his capacity for inspiring others toward lives of health, equanimity, and well-being. Matt created Realize Wellness, the blog he uses in building a practical and realistic framework for realizing integrative wellness.
... (more)

How I Stay Healthy

Yoga
Rock Climbing
Meditation
Cooking and enjoying whole foods
Running
Live music
Playing guitar

My Experience with Health Challenges

I struggled with strong emotional distresses (probably mild depression) when I was in middle school and again in college. These painful experiences were major reasons for my academic pursuit of psychology and philosophy. The profound personal growth I experienced in grad school supported me in developing new perspectives and maintaining emotional equanimity.

In addition, I worked for the past five years with adults with severe mental illness and/or moderate to severe developmental disabilities. These experiences have provided me awareness and sensitivity around disabilities and health challenges associated with them.
... (more)

I've been thinking more about this question since my last comment. I remembered another technique that you might be interested. It is called Emotional Brain Training (EBT: www.ebt.org). It is a system of practices and groups that is designed to enhance emotional awareness, emotional intelligence, and healthy expression of emotions and needs. It is still in development and based on recent research in neuroscience (neuroplasticity). I think you might be interested because it isn't psychotherapy and it is a strong practical approach to improve mood, relationships, behavior and health.

I've been thinking more about this question since my last comment. I remembered another technique that you might be interested. It is called Emotional Brain Training (EBT: www.ebt.org). It is a system...

...
(more)

It seems that you came out of the previous spiral. What happened then?

There are various things you could try, and as I am sure you are aware, anxiety, depression, bi-polar disorder, etc. do not always respond the same to all treatments. I hear you are averse to medical treatment, but first and foremost, I definitely recommend seeking some form of professional support. If for no other reason than to have an environment to express how you're feeling authentically, with no fear of stigma or emotionally overburdening friends.

From my experience, and what I practice now to maintain balance and support my overall daily productivity, I have had great results with mindfulness and yoga. The combination of 15 minutes of meditation ~4-5x and 3-4 yoga classes per week has supported my own health and wellbeing tremendously. It may or may not be what works for you, but I trust that you can find the right combination of activities and/or treatments that allows you to retain equanimity.

It seems that you came out of the previous spiral. What happened then?

There are various things you could try, and as I am sure you are aware, anxiety, depression, bi-polar disorder, etc. do not...

...
(more)

It appears you have some insight as well, and your past experience can serve as an added tool to guide you through this. What did you do when you felt like this in the past?

Sounds overwhelming. Can you be more specific with what is going on? In particular, start with one thing. What's most causing you to feel like you're lost?

At this point, I can only give advice based on the little bit of info you provided in your question.

Cognitive behavioral therapy along with medication (depending on the level of your anxiety) are two highly effective treatments for anxiety. Medication can allow one to attain enough mental relaxation for therapy to be even more effective. In addition, the treatment pages under Generalize Anxiety Disorder can provide additional tips.

It also sounds like your physical environment, "clutter," is causing or perpetuating your anxiety. Starting slowly with manageable steps to clear out clutter can provide great relief. It's not always easy. Be prepared to feel resistant to getting rid of things or to feel overwhelmed by the size of the job ahead of you. You can get through it with persistence and celebrating small victories. A skilled therapist can also be very supportive in this process.

Please feel free to respond back with further details. I will be sure to follow this thread to serve as a reference for your ability to get through this. Don't be afraid to reach out!

Sounds overwhelming. Can you be more specific with what is going on? In particular, start with one thing. What's most causing you to feel like you're lost?

At this point, I can only give advice...

...
(more)
Shared experience with Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction 5 years ago

I took an eight week training in Mindfulness about 8 months ago. It wasn't necessarily the Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) method, but I assume very similar. I have practiced mindfulness for 15 minutes a day approximately 2-5x per week since completing course. It definitely makes a difference in my clarity and attention, which in turn supports me in managing stressful situations with more ease and grace. I plan to continue practicing, and continue progressing towards practicing mindfulness daily.

I took an eight week training in Mindfulness about 8 months ago. It wasn't necessarily the Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) method, but I assume very similar. I have practiced mindfulness for...

...
(more)
Commented on loss of smell/taste 5 years ago

Interesting question. Can you provide more info? When did you realize that you were losing these senses? Do you have any ideas regarding the cause for your loss of smell/taste?

I've heard cigarettes can cause desensitized taste buds (basically making food taste more and more bland), but am unaware of other reasons. I would be interested to learn more about your particular story.

Interesting question. Can you provide more info? When did you realize that you were losing these senses? Do you have any ideas regarding the cause for your loss of smell/taste?

I've heard...

...
(more)
Shared experience with Massage Therapy 5 years ago

I had my first professional massage session a few weeks ago. It was pretty incredible to say the least. It was a therapeutic session, but we weren't working on any one specific thing. The masseuse found several spots where I never realized there was tension. The most surprising was in my thighs, where my quads were super tight. She also released a bunch of tension in my shoulder, which doesn't have full range of motion probably because I played baseball all throughout my childhood and adolescence. There is also a lot of tension at the top of my neck. Overall, this was one of the most beneficial things I've done for my body. I recommend it and will definitely be going back in the future.

I had my first professional massage session a few weeks ago. It was pretty incredible to say the least. It was a therapeutic session, but we weren't working on any one specific thing. The masseuse...

...
(more)

Weight loss is a potential side effect of Zelboraf. It appears that the drug has the potential to reduce your appetite, which could definitely result in weight loss.

Commented on Heart Attack Treatment: Herbs 5 years ago

These are pretty serious life-threatening conditions. Curiously, I assume in the meantime seeking emergency medical support?

Interesting. Sounds like you have some great experience with this, what led you toward this specific combination?

Hi Barbara, Gabapentin is a medication that is sometimes prescribed for neuropathic back pain (it's more commonly prescribed for epilepsy in adults). It's effectiveness depends on the origin of your husband's back pain. It would only be effective if your husbands back pain is rooted in the nerves. Toradol is an anti-inflammatory pain killer used after surgeries to control inflammation, pain, and fever. Your husband's doctor can help explain the cause of his back pain, and prescribe gabapentin or another appropriate pain killer depending on the source of the pain.

One thing to keep in mind regarding pain killers is that they are cosmetic drugs. In other words, they help numb the pain or stop inflammation that's causing the pain, but they do not heal or "cure" the root cause of the pain. (Crude example: If you have a broken arm, you can take all the pain killers you want to relieve the pain and discomfort, but they will not heal the bone. A doctor has to set the fracture and put it in a cast to allow time for the bone to heal itself.) The point I'm trying to make is that your husband might benefit from a different pain killer for the discomfort of his back pain, but he might also benefit from exercise, stretching, massage, a chiropractor, or acupuncture. Again, the doctor should be a good source for approaching your husband's back pain in these areas. With his assessment of the source of your husband's back pain, you can begin exploring treatments that will also heal whatever is going on to cause the pain.

Hi Barbara, Gabapentin is a medication that is sometimes prescribed for neuropathic back pain (it's more commonly prescribed for epilepsy in adults). It's effectiveness depends on the origin of your...

...
(more)

link text
Blood Sugar Solution

In The Blood Sugar Solution,11 Dr. Hyman outlines a six week program to attain each of the 7 keys to wellness. The entire program is personally built to your needs based on initial health survey. Each step along the way is guided by your personal level of health based on the surveys.

The initial step in the approach is an overview of nutritional basics. Dr. Hyman explains how to eliminate processed grains, oils, fats, and sugars from your diet. He strongly advises against eating white bread, drinking sugary drinks, and cooking with highly processed oils. The book provides alternatives to replace the regularly used food products in the Standard American Diet (SAD). He also provides over 40 pages of easy to fix recipes that replace foods that are killing us by making us sick and fat.

Many of us are still deficient of some nutrients despite eating a healthy diet. Dr. Hyman lists a variety of supplements might be necessary based on your diet and survey scores. There are tests he recommends requesting from your doctor to ensure you have the right balance of vitamins, minerals, hormones, and other biochemicals.

Next, Dr. Hyman’s program highlights tips for relaxation. The stress response is a major contributor to inflammation and ultimately diabetes, heart disease, and more. Examples of relaxation practices from the Blood Sugar Solution include belly breathing, visualization, media fasts, and maintaining a regular sleep pattern. Practicing these relaxation methods slows stress responses, and decreases dangerous levels of cortisol in your body.

Then, Dr. Hyman outlines ways to make exercise fun and easy. He acknowledges that if exercise isn’t fun, you’re not likely to do it. To increase your exercise and physical activity, select exercises that you enjoy and feel good doing. One example is dancing, and Dr. Hyman provides information on how to involve strength training, aerobic exercise, and flexibility into your normal routine. Being active supports your detoxification, strengthens your energy, and improves your body’s self-healing response.

Moreover, Dr. Hyman explains how typical household cleaners and other products are poisoning our system and increasing the prevalence of disease. He explains hidden sources of toxins, and provides simple solutions such as investing in houseplant, using air filters, buying nontoxic cleaners, and quitting using your microwave.

Throughout the entire program, Dr. Hyman encourages journaling to enhance self-awareness, promoting relaxation and tracking your progress. At the end of the six week program, you take another self-quiz. You can cycle through the program multiple times until you reach a point where self-care is the primary focus.

The program provides the tools to reverse diabesity, chronic illness, and maintain a healthy lifestyle.

... (more)