May 29, 2019


Posted in cognitive behavioral therapy, Mindfulness, Well-being tagged , , , at 10:06 am by kellyfdennis

person people woman hand*

The feeling of anxiety is a part of human nature. Looking for danger and negatives kept our ancestors safe. They had reasons to be hypervigilant. In our modern world, occasional anxiety is a normal part of life. You might feel anxious when faced with a problem at work, before taking a test, or making an important decision.

Anxiety disorders involve more than temporary worry or fear. For a person with an anxiety disorder, the anxiety does not go away and can get worse over time. The feelings can interfere with daily activities such as job performance, school, and relationships.

However, being hyper vigilant 24/7 triggers the fight, flight, freeze response in our brain and body, which cause the fear center of the brain to become more reactive over time, leading to a vicious cycle of fear, anxiety, worry and insomnia. Thinking patterns of individuals with anxiety disorders are based in rumination about the past and/or apprehensive expectation (worry) about the future.

There is good news, though. Mindfulness, meditation, and cognitive behavioral therapy can help a person break out of the anxious thinking cycle and actually reverse the damage that anxiety does to the brain. It does this by helping the person focus on the present moment experience, thereby disengaging from the rumination and worry. It also activates parts of the brain that are in charge of relaxing and secreting feel good chemicals. Check out my latest You Tube video to get started on your path to less anxiety!

Be well and have a wonderful day!

*Photo by Public Domain Pictures on

May 15, 2019


Posted in cognitive behavioral therapy, Compassion, Mindfulness, Well-being tagged , , , , , , at 1:53 pm by kellyfdennis

man in blue and brown plaid dress shirt touching his hair*

Losing a loved one, getting fired from a job, going through a divorce, and other difficult situations can lead a person to feel sad, lonely,and scared. These feelings are normal reactions to life’s stressors. Most people feel low and sad at times. After a good cry or talking with a friend, we usually feel better.

However, in the case of individuals who are diagnosed with depression, the manifestations of the low mood are much more severe and they tend to persist. Crying does not help and talking with a friend is hard because one tends to feel alienated, because others can’t seem to understand why they can’t just “snap out of it.”

Major Depressive Disorder is a debilitating illness. Those suffering describe feelings of hopelessness, emptiness, despair, isolation and lonliness. One of the most difficult parts of treating depression is the negative cycle in which sufferers engage. Feelings of low self worth, negativity, and hopelessness beget more of the same thoughts and the cycle sends the person into despair.

Fortunately, when the individual learns to distance themselves from the cycle of negative thinking, he/she can begin to see a glimpse of light and hope. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Mindfulness, and Meditation are awesome tools to help begin the process of distancing.

Check out my YouTube video for a Cognitive therapy-based mindfulness mediation designed to help you begin to learn the process of not engaging with every negative thought.

Be well and have a wonderful day!

*Photo by Nathan Cowley on

May 6, 2019

Mindfulness Meditation Workshop

Posted in Compassion, Mindfulness, Well-being tagged , , , , at 1:42 pm by kellyfdennis

Path thru woods

Saturday, June 22, 9:00 am-11:00 am

Counseling office: 304 N. George St., Millersville, PA 17551

This 2-hour workshop explores the concepts of mindfulness and mindfulness strategies in a purposeful way in order to facilitate the integration of mindfulness into your daily life.

“The range of what we think and do
Is limited by what we fail to notice
And because we fail to notice
There is little we can do
To change
Until we notice
How failing to notice
Shapes our thoughts and deeds.”
– R.D. Laing –

As we learn to create purposeful present moment awareness, we begin to see the changing of things in our lives that cause us stress. We learn to relate to our difficulties in life with more openness, compassion, and acceptance.

Mindfulness concepts and Meditation practices covered will include:  Mindfulness and the scientific research; Mindfulness of the breath and body; Obstacles to mindfulness; Sensory mindfulness; Mindful self-compassion

Each session will be a combination of practice, lecture, and group discussion. Each session is taught in a supportive environment with no more than 8 people. Cost: $75

Kelly F. Dennis MS LPC is the facilitator. Please contact Kelly to sign up or for further information: (717) 951-0266 or


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Grace on the Moon

Do Not Weigh Your Self-Esteem on a Scale

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