Introduction: Say a Little about Yourself! {by 1/12}

Yes, it’s this again!  For most of you this is your second semester of graduate classes!  Please answer the following about yourself (some same, some different): (1) Name?  (2) What college/university did you graduate from?  (3) What is your most effective coping skill for graduate school?  (4) What was your biggest take-away from your first semester of graduate classes? (5) What are your initial thoughts (or experience) about cognitive-behavioral therapy?!?

 

Your original post should be posted by 1/12.  Post your two replies no later than 1/14.  *Please remember to click the “reply” button when posting a reply.  This makes it easier for the reader to follow the blog postings.

 

*Strong suggestion: Write all your blogs on a separate document.  Then, copy and paste it.  This will make your life easier and less stressful in case something “wacky” happens with technology.

 

*Your first post may not immediately appear on my website.  I have strong spam filters.  So, I may have to approve your first post before it is visible.  I should only have to do this once unless you post in a different name and/or email address.

66 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Tiana Faulkner
    Jan 05, 2023 @ 11:37:43

    My name is Tiana Faulkner, I graduated from Stonehill College. I think my most effective coping skill has been physical activity. When I start to feel super overwhelmed, I like to workout or go on a run, it helps to unravel my thoughts and puts me in a better position to get work done. My biggest take away from my first semester of grad school would be that we are all pretty much in the same position, just as clueless and nervous, but there really is no reason to be quite as nervous. It is a lot of work but nothing that cannot be managed, for now at least. I think cognitive behavioral therapy is effective and a great tool. All of the stages are great at doing what they are meant to do and I enjoy using it.

    Reply

    • Grace Ling
      Jan 09, 2023 @ 19:13:52

      Hi Tiana, I resonated with your take away because I felt definitely felt lost and nervous. I thought everyone knew what they wanted to do coming into the program and was a little intimidated. It is nice to know that I was not the only one who felt that way. I think as we continue to progress in this program it will be cool to see where everyone goes and figure out what they want to do in terms of counseling. When things get stressful this coming semester, I am confident that we will be able to get through it 🙂

      Reply

    • Whitney Andrew
      Jan 10, 2023 @ 22:00:15

      Hi Tiana!

      I couldn’t have said it better myself! It is super helpful to remember that we’re all in the same boat and that it is okay to be a little nervous, but we have all made it this far for a reason. This is all definitely something we can handle for the next few semesters even though it’s sometimes hard to remember that.

      Reply

    • Melissa Elder
      Jan 13, 2023 @ 17:18:12

      Hi Tiana,
      I look up to you for using running and working out as a coping skills. I wish I was into that form of physical activity, yoga and pilates are about as far as I can go, but running is not for me. I agree there is no reason to be so nervous but the nerves can easily get to me for sure, but we are all in this together.

      Reply

  2. Abby Sproles
    Jan 05, 2023 @ 14:26:43

    Hi everyone, my name is Abby and I attended Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas. The most effective coping strategy for me during my first semester of graduate school was making time for going outside. I enjoyed exploring Massachusetts’s parks and trails, and hiking allowed me to disconnect from the stress of balancing my coursework and job. My biggest take away from my first semester was the reassurance that I can be an effective counselor. At the beginning of the semester, I was worried that I might not know what to say to clients or say the wrong thing. However, I grew more confident when practicing my helping skills in role-plays and learning about how assessments can be used as a tool within the session to support the therapeutic process. My initial thoughts about CBT are that it is a client-centered, structured approach to therapy. I prefer CBT over other theoretical approaches as it allows clients to understand the connection between their thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. For example, by improving one’s thought patterns, their emotions and behaviors may change in a positive way. I am excited to learn more about the specific techniques of CBT and how to create a case formulation and treatment plan!

    Reply

    • Emily Forde
      Jan 08, 2023 @ 11:41:32

      Hi Abby! I love that your coping strategy is to spend more time outside, that is something that helps me also and the science behind spending time outside for our overall health is so strong! In my post, I also talked about how my biggest takeaway was gaining confidence in my skills and I also felt reassured I was in the right career. I really like how you highlighted the ability of CBT to understand the connections between thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. It is so important to look at all of these aspects together and not just observe them independently.

      Reply

    • mikayladebois
      Jan 09, 2023 @ 15:43:15

      Hi Abby! It is awesome to hear that you got to hike last semester! That is one of my favorite activities and something that definitely gets neglected for me during the semester. I also have an appreciation for the connections that CBT draws between thoughts, feelings, and actions.

      Reply

    • Tiana Faulkner
      Jan 12, 2023 @ 17:30:25

      Hi Abby, I agree with you about your semester take away! I was super nervous about my ability to be a good counselor or my overall ability to be good within the field. But much of the work we had done last semester really made me feel better about my abilities.

      Reply

    • Olgena Pano
      Jan 14, 2023 @ 12:46:34

      Hi Abby,
      Great post! I am glad you enjoyed hiking, and it is true that there are some great trails around here. Similarly to you, I started this activity during and post Covid period . As a person that does not enjoys any type of extreme sports, I think that nature walks are great for some quiet time and meditation.
      During the first semesters I shared the same thoughts as you, often questioning myself and feeling overwhelmed at certain times. However, knowing how much I love what we are learning and doing, helped me reflect and reassure myself the skills that I know I have. Likewise, I think that the role plays have helped us a lot to learn more, especially when observing each other in class during our pretend therapeutic sessions. I hope that this semester we improve those skills and feel more confident, in order to best serve our clients tomorrow.
      🙂

      Reply

  3. Grace Ling
    Jan 05, 2023 @ 18:26:11

    Hi everyone! My name is Grace, and I graduated from Trinity University in San Antonio, TX. My most effective coping skill for graduate school was hanging out/spending time with friends. It is important for me to be able to connect with people because I tend to isolate myself when it gets busy. My biggest take away from my first semester is that I should not underestimate myself. I doubted myself and got in my head a lot but getting through my first semester was proof that I am meant to be here. My initial thoughts about CBT is that it is a collaborative method of addressing client problems and helping produce change. There are also no attempts to “cure” people of their psychological issues. CBT works to help people cope and improve their quality of life.

    Reply

    • Stephanie Lugo
      Jan 07, 2023 @ 21:47:17

      Hi Grace!

      I am the same as you. When I get super busy with work and school, my social life goes out the window. I realized last semester that my social life was not as prominent and I rarely spent any time with my friends. As someone who works and goes to college full time, I feel like I do get a bit overwhelmed when I have a lot of assignments due and this does make me isolate myself more. My goal for this semester is to try and develop more of a balance between all areas of my life. While I know school and work are important, it is also super important to maintain relationships.

      Reply

    • mikayladebois
      Jan 09, 2023 @ 15:41:03

      Hi Grace! I’m glad to see that you have built your confidence through the first semester, I think we all were feeling doubts. I really like your description of CBT as a collaborative method, some clients don’t realize that it will be hard work them to improve, they just want someone to “fix” their issues for them.

      Reply

    • Magdalen Paul
      Jan 11, 2023 @ 18:24:30

      Hi Grace! I totally resonated with your point about connecting with people when busy. I tend to do the same thing–when I feel that there are many tasks on my plate, I tend to isolate myself. I am excited to challenge myself this semester by better integrating social opportunities within my routine. I agree that it is crucial to set time aside for social opportunities because it works as fuel for all the remaining class work that we have to do. I agree that the collaborative method of CBT is highly attractive and am so excited to put it into action!

      Reply

    • Becca Boucher
      Jan 12, 2023 @ 09:53:55

      Hi Grace! I love that you’ve been working on not isolating yourself when things get busy! I tend to do this as well, and I know how damaging the effects can be. Congratulations on doing that hard work. I’m also really glad to hear that you’ve learned to not underestimate yourself. We worked together once or twice last semester for role plays and I know you were underestimating yourself then, but you did so well! I also like that you mention that CBT helps people cope with their issues and improve their quality of life, that’s a really good take on CBT that I don’t initially think of when I think of CBT.

      Reply

  4. Taylor Poland
    Jan 06, 2023 @ 14:04:44

    Hi everyone, my name is Taylor Poland and I attended Assumption University for my undergraduate degree. The most effective coping strategy during my first semester of graduate school was listening to music. When I felt stressed out or overwhelmed with classes, work, and sports, I would put my headphones on and listen to some of my favorite songs to unplug and relax. I even found that playing some of my favorite songs quietly while writing papers really helped me stay calm and focus better. The biggest takeaway from my first semester of graduate classes is the importance of time management. Last semester I found myself pushing off some of the “easier” assignments which ended up making me more stressed. Moving forward, I need to make and stick to a better schedule to limit my procrastination. As I am learning more about cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) the more I appreciate it. Unlike other methods of therapy, CBT emphasizes understanding one’s thoughts, feelings, and behaviors to make positive changes in one’s life. I think this type of therapy is proven to be effective because the client gains awareness and insight into certain aspects of their lives and the tools needed to cope. I look forward to learning more about the history of CBT and more strategies/ techniques in this course.

    Reply

    • Grace Ling
      Jan 09, 2023 @ 19:07:54

      Hi Taylor, music is definitely a great way to take your mind off of things and relax. Last semester, I went to a concert and it was really therapeutic. In terms of time management, I found that using a digital planner was really helpful to organize all of our assignments. It was also helpful to schedule in breaks that forced me to not think about work. The scheduled breaks helped me procrastinate less and feel more prepared to go back to focusing on the assignment at hand.

      Reply

    • Olgena Pano
      Jan 13, 2023 @ 13:45:45

      Hello Taylor,
      I enjoyed reading your post because I also use music listening/playing as one of my coping strategies as well. I think any type of art is helpful when it comes to stress relief and self- care routines. There have been times where I have used these strategies with my clients as well, by focusing on their strengths and hobbies to help them boost their self esteem.
      I also agree that one of the biggest challenges when being on a graduate program is time management, and sometimes feels as everything is packed together. To do a better job with that this New Year I decided to plan ahead writing everything on a calendar. This tool is helping me to refresh my memory , and sometimes it motivates me to complete the written goals on time.
      Great post!

      Reply

    • Jonas Horan
      Jan 14, 2023 @ 10:40:27

      I definitely use music to cope as well! My Spotify wrapped was severely compromised by my study music, but it helps me to not get too anxious about the assignments.

      Reply

  5. Esther Konadu
    Jan 06, 2023 @ 15:56:12

    Hi everyone, my name is Esther and I graduated from Worcester State University. My most effective coping skill would probably be taking time to put myself first – whether it is getting lunch, catching up with friends, or spending some time unwinding and encouraging healthy separation from work & school. I tend to put myself last a lot, so doing this helps me to be present everywhere else and have things to look forward to.
    The biggest thing I learned from last semester is that making small, but spread-out progress toward assignments is not a bad thing. I have always procrastinated and waited until the last minute to get assignments done (because finishing a long list felt a thousand times more rewarding), and I usually felt bad completing work in shorter bursts. Now, I know that it is not okay to pressure myself that way, so I plan to start practicing breaking up my work. (Hopefully.)
    My first thought about CBT is how approachable it is. To me, it looks pretty straightforward to generally explain what its focus is to people who have no clue about it. The second thought is how intrigued I am to learn more about it. There are some parts of CBT we have yet to learn, so I want to absorb all the expanded & new information.

    Reply

    • Stephanie Lugo
      Jan 07, 2023 @ 21:41:58

      Hi Esther! You make a great point about needing to learn to take time for yourself. It is super important to have a work-life balance or in this case a school-life balance. Graduate school can be so stressful, so taking some time during the day to do things for yourself is so beneficial for your mental health.

      It is so incredibly easy to procrastinate especially if you become overwhelmed with all the assignments. With that being said making a plan and working on manageable tasks is important. I like to take a large task and break it down into smaller and more realistic tasks. This makes it much easier to get things done on time with much less stress.

      Reply

    • Megan VanDyke
      Jan 12, 2023 @ 10:38:10

      Hi, Esther! I feel like we’re the opposite, where my coping skill is scheduling, and something I need to work on is prioritizing myself. If you’re interested in practicing breaking up your assignments, a good place to start might be breaking up reading into sections. I like dividing up the pages throughout the week, so I can focus better on the content and retain it more easily. While that should leave me plenty of free time, I often jump to the next assignment to get ahead. As you stated, I need to encourage healthy separation from work or school obligations a lot better than I did last semester to prevent burnout.

      Reply

    • Maria Nowak
      Jan 13, 2023 @ 07:54:25

      Hi Esther!
      I resonate with your coping skill so much! I also tend to not put myself first but lately I have been. After doing so I was much happier. I also agree that not waiting until last minute is significant even though it happens to everyone sometimes.

      Reply

    • Ashley Millett
      Jan 13, 2023 @ 09:44:07

      Hi Esther,

      I agree with what you have said about putting yourself first. I think it is especially important for the career we are all heading towards. Sometimes, things such as work, school or our personal life can affect us mentally and emotionally. Having the ability to put yourself first and noticing that you need a break is important. I always seem to put myself last and put everything else before myself. However, I am now putting myself first and I have been much happier with things. I also agree with not waiting until the last minute and spreading assignments out. Though it might seem like a hassle, it will benefit you in the long run.

      Reply

    • Jonas Horan
      Jan 14, 2023 @ 10:55:03

      That’s a great strategy for getting things done! I tend to work like that myself. We all work differently and as long as the assignments get done, do what works best for you.

      Reply

  6. Stephanie Lugo
    Jan 07, 2023 @ 21:00:54

    Hello everyone! My name is Stephanie. I graduated from Nichols College with a double major in Criminal Justice and Psychology. I am currently an ABA Assistant working at Auburn Public Schools.

    My most effective coping skill for graduate school has honestly been planning and organizing. As someone who works full-time and is a full-time student the more, I am structured and organized with assignments the less stress I have on my plate. I am a big planner and making sure I have planned my assignments and working on them before they are due allows me not to stress when it comes time for the due date.

    The biggest takeaway from my first semester of graduate classes was to have a good planner and space out the progress of assignments before they are due. One thing I started doing was making sure I set up reminders and placed due dates on my physical planner, but also on my google calendar. Having it on my google calendar as well as on my physical planner allows me to see what assignments are due and how long I have to complete these assignments. Being able to space out assignments allows me to get them done without all of the stress involved.

    My initial thoughts about Cognitive Behavioral Therapy after my first semester is that it is more complex and more beneficial than I initially thought. I knew a bit about CBT before, but not much about how detailed the stages were. While it is more complex when you dive into it, it is very approachable. It can be used in various situations across many different ages, genders, and ethnicities. This makes CBT more expansive and allows the counselor to apply different aspects of it to each and every client as they are all different.

    Reply

    • Emily Forde
      Jan 08, 2023 @ 11:36:53

      Hi Stephanie! I also work in ABA! I really resonate with your coping skill of organization and think it is extremely critical in graduate school and for anyone with a busy life. What you said about using google calendar is super important and I think I am going to try that out this semester. I agree that the more we learn about CBT in school, the more approachable it becomes. In my post, I talk about how it was a daunting idea for me initially but my comfort has also grown as I dive deeper.

      Reply

  7. Emily Forde
    Jan 08, 2023 @ 11:32:18

    Hi everyone! My name is Emily Forde and I went to Seton Hall University for my undergraduate degree. I studied biology and psychology. My most effective graduate school coping skill is scheduling time for myself and my life separate from my education. During this time, I love to hang out with my friends and family, go to the gym, and listen to podcasts. My biggest takeaway from semester one of graduate school was growing more confident in my counseling abilities. It is so so easy to doubt yourself and last semester I became more confident through practice and becoming more educated in general. The more I am learning in classes about CBT, the more interested I am becoming in it. In addition, I am understanding more about what it is and how it is formatted in session. Before learning about CBT, it seemed kind of daunting to me but now that I have started to learn about it, I am more comfortable with CBT and drawn to learn more and dive deeper.

    Reply

    • Abby Sproles
      Jan 09, 2023 @ 18:19:03

      Hi Emily! That’s a great coping skill to have as a student and as a counselor. I think it is great that you are already enforcing boundaries between school work and personal life so that you can continue to do this in your career. It may be easy to get wrapped up in our client’s issues and become emotionally overwhelmed, but setting aside time for ourselves can help with burnout.

      Reply

    • rena yaghmour
      Jan 12, 2023 @ 09:52:29

      Hi Emily,
      I noticed that taking time for myself too was much needed after feeling burnt out. I also enjoyed hanging out with friends as it gave me a sense of life again (not to be dramatic). I started going to the gym during break and I’ve been liking how it’s making me feel so I hope to continue going throughout the semester as I think it would keep me going. In regards to CBT I am also excited to learn more about it and the way it positively effects certain individuals.

      Reply

  8. Megan VanDyke
    Jan 09, 2023 @ 15:29:31

    Hi everyone! My name is Megan, and I graduated from Bridgewater State University. My most effective coping skill for graduate school is scheduling. I find the courses less overwhelming when I plan my assignments well in advance, so I’m completing small portions throughout the week instead of becoming overwhelmed trying to complete multiple assignments from start to finish in a few days. It also makes balancing work and personal time more manageable, as I’m working full-time and still trying to fit in time to take care of myself. The biggest takeaway from my first semester is that I will sometimes make a mistake while working with clients. However, that does not mean that I’ll be a bad counselor. Instead, it means I’m human and can learn from the mistake to repair the relationship and do better next time. CBT is a great tool to use with clients. It focuses on the client’s needs and helps guide them to coping skills, and action plans that best suit them, which can help the client feel more in control of their sessions.

    Reply

    • Abby Sproles
      Jan 09, 2023 @ 18:28:18

      Hi Megan, I appreciate your acceptance with making mistakes with a client and turning them into learning opportunities. I need to remind myself that I will not be a perfect counselor, but to use my mistakes to better understand the client’s perspective. Also, I think minor mistakes may in turn strengthen the therapeutic relationship by demonstrating that the therapeutic process is not as daunting as it may seem.

      Reply

  9. mikayladebois
    Jan 09, 2023 @ 15:37:56

    Hi everyone, my name is Mikayla DeBois. I graduated from Assumption in 2022. My most effective coping skills last semester were reading and listening to music. Seeing as I used both of those skills a lot, I am always open to book or music suggestions. My biggest takeaway from last semester is the importance of relaxing when the chance presents itself. This doesn’t justify procrastination or putting things off but knowing when to relax is crucial to staying sane. My experience with CBT is pretty basic, but I am excited to learn more. All throughout my undergraduate classes and even last semester, I have been told that CBT is the best option for the majority of clients, and it has significant empirical backing. So I know that it is effective and widely used, but I do not know exactly what the specifics are and how to apply it.

    Reply

    • Melissa Elder
      Jan 13, 2023 @ 15:36:11

      Hi Mikayla,
      I really enjoy listening to music as well. I like reading but I have had a hard time doing that while in school it feels like too much reading for me. Do you ever feel this way? I also really agree with the need to relax, without justifying procrastination. It is important to de-escalate after a long week of schoolwork. I have learned prioritizing yourself is so important to be successful. I am also excited to continue learning about CBT and eventually applying it to our work.

      Reply

    • taylor poland
      Jan 16, 2023 @ 11:23:54

      Hi Mikayla,
      I also used music as a way to relax last semester. I found classical music while writing papers extremely helpful in staying focused and relaxed. It is so important to schedule time every day to care for yourself. As future therapists, we must practice what we preach because we need to care for ourselves before we can help others.

      Reply

  10. Ashley Millett
    Jan 10, 2023 @ 13:14:19

    Hi everyone! My name is Ashley Millett. I graduated from Rivier University in Nashua, New Hampshire. My most effective coping skill for graduate school is to take a whole day for myself. I always think that having an entire day dedicated to self-care, helps me refocus on either work, school or life related. I would watch my favorite movies, go out with friends, color and more. It used to help me during undergrad so I was able to integrate that into grad school. One of my biggest takeaways from the first semester of graduate classes is to not beat myself up over a bad grade. It was a huge and still is a learning experience to navigate grad school. Now I know just to work harder for the next assignment, test, exam, etc. Another big takeaway is doing assignments early and breaking them down throughout the week. My initial thought about CBT was that it had become a widely popular treatment in the mental health world. It has benefited the client’s overall well-being while also creating different coping skills for the client.

    Reply

    • Whitney Andrew
      Jan 10, 2023 @ 21:57:34

      Hi Ashley!

      I might take a page out of your book and start booking off a whole day for myself to better cope through this semester! I agree that it is so important to not beat yourself up over a bad grade; it is impossible to be perfect all of the time, but it doesn’t mean that you aren’t still doing amazing. You are going to do so amazing this semester, you got this!

      Reply

    • Becca Boucher
      Jan 12, 2023 @ 09:58:26

      Hi Ashley! I love that you are able to build your schedule to have a day for yourself. We have already heard so many times that in this field in particular that self-care is really important, so I’m glad that you’ve created such an effective self-care model for yourself and that you actually do it! Self-care is really important but it can be difficult to pinpoint what works for you, and even harder to work it into your schedule, but I’m really impressed that you’ve done such a great job with that! I also agree that not stressing about a disappointing grade is really important, and that I should start some assignments earlier than I did last semester to save myself some extra stress. I’m also going to try to prioritize self-care this semester, and I think that will be a huge help!

      Reply

    • Tiana Faulkner
      Jan 12, 2023 @ 17:33:35

      Hi Ashley! I absolutely love that you set those kind of boundaries and take that time for yourself. I tend to over work myself and wish I could do more of that. I also agree with how you construct your semesters work. Starting early and being organized is super important.

      Reply

  11. Becca Boucher
    Jan 10, 2023 @ 20:44:08

    Hello, my name is Becca! I graduated from Fitchburg State University with a Bachelor’s in psychology. To help cope with the stresses of graduate school I spend time on creative projects like crocheting or drawing. I also have a kitten who I enjoy playing with and who brings me a lot of joy. My biggest take-away from my first semester of graduate school is that while I am excited to start my career but that I also am no longer sure of the exact niche of clinical mental health counseling I want to go into any more which is exciting but also frustrating. My initial thoughts about cognitive behavioral therapy is that it’s really interesting. I’m particularly interested in how it can be used to treat OCD, anxiety, and depression.

    Reply

    • Megan VanDyke
      Jan 12, 2023 @ 09:50:56

      Hi, Becca! I started crocheting over winter break, and I agree it’s a great coping skill! I plan to continue practicing throughout the semester to take my mind off things when I become too overwhelmed or burnt out. I was in the same boat you’re in regarding what path you want to take in the mental health field. I worked in an adolescent behavioral health group home from late 2020 – early 2022 but switched to an adult dual-diagnosis group home due to scheduling conflicts. Working with populations I had not previously considered helped me better understand what I want to pursue in my career. Maybe your practicum will do the same thing for you!

      Reply

    • Jack Halliday
      Jan 12, 2023 @ 10:03:56

      Hey Becca, I think it’s great that you’ve found a constructive creative outlet to utilize during grad school, because for some being creative can be a really good coping skill. Cats are also great, but I can’t imagine kittens make it easy to crochet when they’re around. I also totally feel being unsure about what niche within the field you want to work in, but I’ve found that getting experience, even if it’s just a little bit, can be really helpful towards figuring out where you do (and even more importantly) don’t want to work. I also find myself very intrigued about enacting the cognitive behavior therapy principles into practice.

      Reply

    • Gitte Lenaerts
      Jan 12, 2023 @ 12:42:52

      Hi Becca, I like that you brought up doing some kind of creative projects. This is a great tool to use to wind down and have your mind focused on something other than school or work. Pets are also so therapeutic in themselves. I always make sure I spend time with my dog after work/school. Great post, see you soon!

      Reply

    • Alysha Benoit
      Jan 12, 2023 @ 14:22:36

      Hi Becca, I also have a cat and love spending time and playing with her (cats are the best, sorry dog lovers). It also resonated with me when you said that you are unsure of the exact niche you’d like to work with now that you have entered more into the field. I feel the same way. In order to help with this I am trying my best to branch out of my comfort zone and take classes that I usually wouldn’t have, such as child and family assessment and intervention courses. Good luck this semester!!

      Reply

  12. Whitney Andrew
    Jan 10, 2023 @ 21:54:47

    My name is Whitney Andrew and I graduated from Clark University for my undergrad. So far, my most effective coping skill in grad school has been reading for fun and decompressing with friends to remind me that academia is important, but not everything. My biggest take away from my first semester was that we all love what we are doing and that we will all be successful, no matter the struggles we may face along the way. My initial thoughts on CBT are positive and I find it to be a useful tool in the therapeutic process; the word insightful comes to mind when I think of CBT.

    Reply

    • Magdalen Paul
      Jan 11, 2023 @ 18:33:30

      Hey Whitney! I love that you read and decompress with friends to help you remember that there is more to life than academics and studying. This is so true, and I am trying my best to integrate more fun and social time into my life while in graduate school, too. Life is short, and while our studies are important to our success as future counselors, there is so much more out there in the world to do and to enjoy. Looking at the big picture, like relationships and doing things that you love, is crucial to success in academics, too.

      Reply

    • Lucy Rising
      Jan 12, 2023 @ 10:16:23

      Hey Whitney, I also use my free time to read (although I tend to get carried away and my fun reading time takes away from my school reading time). I also appreciate your positive takeaway from the first semester, most of us tended to put something negative or a mistake that we made that we want to correct, so I value your positive outlook that semester and hope I can replicate that positivity this semester for myself.

      Reply

    • Maria Nowak
      Jan 13, 2023 @ 08:02:38

      Hi Whitney!
      I was able to start reading for fun over the break and it felt so good to start reading for my own pleasure again. I really want to continue to do this throughout the semester. It is so important to incorporate activities we enjoy or new activities so life doesn’t seem so dull and repetitive.

      Reply

  13. Magdalen Paul
    Jan 11, 2023 @ 17:36:01

    Hi everyone! My name is Magdalen Paul. I graduated from Saint Anselm college with a degree in psychology. So far, my most effective coping skill for graduate school has been scheduling in regular little trips to take my mind off of school work. I can often get swept up in classes and, as a result, forget that my study bubble is not all that there is to the world. Therefore, I try to prioritize weekly mini getaways, even just a quick half-day road trip to a new town for lunch. This has helped me take my mind off school and remember that there is more to life beyond classes. My biggest take-away from first semester is that it is great to work hard and critical to learn as much as possible, but perfection is not necessary. It is important to put in the time and energy to do well in classes, but not at the expense of other important areas of life. Perfection is not possible, and there is more to life! My initial thoughts about CBT are those of excitement. Learning about CBT is what initially drew me to study psychology, because I loved the collaborative learning approach that it engages clients in. I loved how “user-friendly” CBT appeared, in the sense that many CBT-based exercises/resources/etc exist online for people who may not even be in therapy. This is how I originally discovered CBT, and to think that I could study it and share it with others made me excited. I am interested to learn more about specific techniques that we can use with clients.

    Reply

    • Gitte Lenaerts
      Jan 12, 2023 @ 08:14:56

      Hi Magdalen, thank you for sharing! I completely agree, scheduling is super vital when it comes to grad school and managing your time. Making time for yourself is so important when working and going to school. I like the idea of going to a new town for lunch, I might have to start trying that out! Again, I agree with your comment on perfection. Perfection is not possible, and everything will work out. Thanks for sharing, great post!

      Reply

    • Ashley Millett
      Jan 13, 2023 @ 09:32:00

      Hi Magdalen,

      I agree with being almost stuck in a little study/school bubble. The minute I was not focused on school, I felt like panicking. It is definitely important to be able to enjoy the real world while also (key word) trying to enjoy school. I do love the idea to prioritize weekly mini getaways. Sometimes, being away from everything is a nice relaxation technique. Being able to get away for a few can help you refocus on school. I also agree that perfection is not possible. No one is perfect and there definitely is more to life.

      Reply

  14. Gitte Lenaerts
    Jan 11, 2023 @ 19:25:21

    Hi guys, my name is Gitte Lenaerts and I graduated from Worcester State University. My most effective coping skills during graduate school are practicing self-care and spending time with friends and family. I found that taking that extra time for myself helped me a lot and allowed me to apply myself more in the long run. Along with making time for friends and family, there were periods when I did not make that time and felt more burnt out. I found that the times I did spend time with friends and family, I felt more motivated afterward. My biggest takeaway from my first semester of graduate classes was, it’s really not that bad. Prior to attending, I was nervous that we would have these crazy long assignments every week and that I would have no time for myself. Though there were moments when there were lengthier assignments, they were not necessarily challenging but rather, just needed to make the time and apply myself. In undergrad, my professors talked extensively about CBT and evidence-based practices many times. It was pretty much drilled into my brain that, if students pursue a career in counseling, it should be focused on evidence-based treatment. Additionally, I use CBT at my job along with DBT. I’m excited to learn more about CBT and more techniques.

    Reply

    • rena yaghmour
      Jan 12, 2023 @ 09:47:20

      Hi Gitte,
      I had the same problem where I practically shut my friends out from how tired and burnt out i got. Again, similar to you when I did take the time and go out with my friends I felt like myself again so it feels good knowing that I wasn’t the only one feeling like this! I too use CBT at work and have seen the positive impact it has on the kids. I’m excited to gain more knowledge about this as I know my understanding about CBT is at a very basic level.

      Reply

  15. rena yaghmour
    Jan 12, 2023 @ 09:43:49

    Hello everyone,
    my name is Rena and I graduated from Worcester State University. My most effective coping skill that I have been doing so far throughout graduate school is baking and taking time to hangout with friends. my biggest take away from last semester was to start my work earlier and not push it off. Another thing i learned was to not doubt how well I can do something. my initial thought about about CBT is the way it’s been seen as effective. Working in the field now, I use CBT with my kids as I have seen first hand that it helps them as well as helps them be more open and collaborative.

    Reply

    • Jack Halliday
      Jan 12, 2023 @ 09:57:27

      Hey Rena, I’ve also started baking a lot since becoming gluten and dairy free, which has mostly included boxed recipes because it’s so much harder than cooking. I’ve been trying to branch out and do more homemade stuff but a.) it’s hard, and b.) it’s ten times harder when you need to find strictly gluten and dairy free recipes or try to substitute in regular recipes. It’s also definitely important to start work earlier, but trying to balance a course load and working is no easy feat, but I’m going to look at last semester as a practice run and hopefully we can take what we’ve learned and this semester may be easier.

      Reply

    • taylor poland
      Jan 16, 2023 @ 11:26:56

      Hi Rena, I think its really cool that you have started to bake more as a coping strategy. What have been your best recipes? Were there any recipes that flopped? I have been considering baking but I do not know where to start. I am sure the entire class would not be opposed if you brought some baked goods to class next week; we can be your taste testers!

      Reply

  16. Jack Halliday
    Jan 12, 2023 @ 09:50:53

    I’m Jack and I graduated from Fitchburg State. My most effective coping skill has probably been just detaching myself from my responsibilities for a little bit whenever I can. Sometimes this is by playing video games, other times its reading, sometimes it’s watching tv or a movie, and then sometimes I go crazy and actually leave my house and go hang out with my friends. If I’m feeling really crazy, I do also love some retail therapy, but lately that has been mostly thrift stores because life is expensive. I don’t really have a ton of thoughts or experiences with CBT, besides what some brief google searches have shown me. I have noticed that this framework for practicing therapy has become more and more popular, and I’m excited to learn more about it and to have it in my toolbox when I start counseling. Most of my knowledge about CBT is just the theoretical framework surrounding it, so I’m excited to learn more about how that framework gets implemented into practicing therapy.

    Reply

    • Lucy Rising
      Jan 12, 2023 @ 10:11:05

      Hey Jack, I’m with you on not knowing too much about CBT other than the basic understandings of it. I’m interested in learning how to apply a theoretical model into practice when treating individuals since all of my experience in psychology thus far has been only in that realm of academia and theory. Like you said, it definitely will be a really useful tool for us to use and rely on, especially in practicum-internship where I will be experiencing the practical application of this stuff for the first time.

      Reply

  17. Lucy Rising
    Jan 12, 2023 @ 10:00:38

    Hello everyone, my name is Lucy (they/them). I graduated from Holy Cross in Worcester. For my coping mechanisms I make sure that I schedule time in my days to read or write for pleasure (and not just for class). Those are my main two hobbies and I know that I need to take time to relax with them throughout the week if I am going to be able to do the readings/writings required for class. However, my biggest takeaway from last semester is to not use my pleasure reading to procrastinate my class reading, because when I get into a really good book I tend to ignore other things that I need to do. As for my thoughts on CBT, I was talking about this with a friend of mine who is getting his counseling degree at a different college that does not focus on or require their students to learn a specific theoretical background. I really like the idea of having a theoretical model to fall back on for when I am conducting my sessions. In addition to being taught general counseling skills, we are learning the foundational understandings of a model of treating people. Obviously in session we mold the treatment to fit the client, but if we are in a situation where we are unsure on how to proceed, having this CBT background is a good tool to have to fall back on and use to help ourselves through that difficulty.

    Reply

    • Esther Konadu
      Jan 12, 2023 @ 13:29:30

      Hi Lucy! I have also been reading a lot lately and have finished three books into 2023. Typically if the book is interesting, I will focus on that for a while until I finish (or get interrupted). I also definitely use books as a way to separate from every day life, and tend to get distracted. Sometimes, I try to set up time “limits” for pleasure reading so I can stay immersed in my book but also have time to get homework/reading done. That way, I still get to read something of my choice and have some balance.

      Reply

  18. Olgena Pano
    Jan 12, 2023 @ 13:34:21

    Hello everyone,

    My name is Olga and I graduated from WSU in 2020. I am a part-time student in the program due to my work obligations and other events going on. As the semesters go by I feel more confident compared to the beginning phase where I felt a little lost while adjusting with all the requirements and the way things worked.While having a busy schedule 7 days a wee, my best coping skills is spending time with my loved ones, playing piano, watching my favorite programs, and “potentially” exercising whenever is possible. The biggest fear of the moment is being able to manage all these aspects when starting my practicum and internship this coming summer.
    I am glad that this semester I am taking classes that are focused not only on the theoretical aspects, but are also giving us an insight on how to apply our skills practically.
    Learning about CBT methods these passing semsters make me feel excited to learn how to help my future clients, applying and teaching skills that they would be able to apply during and after their treatment, in order to improve themselves.

    Reply

  19. Maria Nowak
    Jan 12, 2023 @ 13:36:22

    Hi everyone! My name is Maria and I graduated from Westfield State University. My most effective coping skill for graduate school is staying organized and maintaining balance. It is significant to keep track of assignments and due dates. It is also significant to have school/work and life balance. Without still doing things that make me happy, I would have gone off the deep end! My biggest take away from my first semester of graduate classes is that hard work really does pay off and that we all truly want to be here. This is a much different feeling than undergrad. I know that CBT reveals the relationship between beliefs, thoughts, feelings, and behaviors.

    Reply

    • Alysha Benoit
      Jan 12, 2023 @ 14:17:28

      Hi Maria! I like how you mention the balance between your responsibilities and hobbies/things that make you happy. I agree that this balance is super important for your mental health, especially to help prevent burnout when it comes to the course load grad school brings. I also agree that keeping track of due dates is one of the most important things to do in grad school, particularly if you have multiple assignments due around or on the same days as balancing different projects can get very hard. Time management is super important as you mention!

      Reply

  20. Alysha Benoit
    Jan 12, 2023 @ 14:13:53

    Hi all! My name is Alysha and I graduated from Worcester State in May of 2022. I also majored in Psychology. In my opinion, the most effective coping skill for a graduate class is forming connections with your peers and professors. During the first month starting in this program I was a little nervous and felt as though I was out of place, but reaching out to my peers to discuss class and form friendships has really helped me cope with the stress graduate school brings. Alongside that, I think reaching out to professors for help regarding an assignment, professional opportunities, etc has also helped me to cope with the unknown. In terms of having a takeaway experience from last semester, I would say my biggest would be to not underestimate how long an assignment may take and to also take advantage of free time to read and catch up on your work. Lastly, my initial thoughts or experiences about cognitive-behavioral therapy are, that it is unique from what most people assume therapy to be like. After my first semester of grad, I have noticed that many people (including my friends and family) believe much of the work is placed on the therapist. From my experience so far in getting a better understanding of CBT and how it works, I have learned that this is not the case for effective CBT interventions and that the therapist is an acting guide for their clients, not the other way around.

    Reply

    • Esther Konadu
      Jan 14, 2023 @ 15:30:37

      Hi Alysha,

      Not underestimating assignments and readings is certainly something I need to work on! In my head, I convince myself and think it could be done in two days when I might need five. Breaking things down into manageable parts is my main goal for this semester. That way, there is less stress and I can be present in other areas of my life. And nerves aside, you got this & I hope the semester goes great for you!

      Reply

  21. Jonas Horan
    Jan 12, 2023 @ 16:53:13

    My name is Jonas Horan and I graduated from The University of Dallas. This is my fourth semester in the program and I would have to say that a good schedule with lots of sleep and exercise included has been my most effective coping mechanism. My brain can’t function without rest and exercise and I’ve tried to stick to my routines as much as possible. Getting to the gym at least three times a week and getting eight hours of sleep keeps the work from getting overwhelming. It takes some discipline to maintain but it’s worth it.

    One thing that struck me about my first few semesters at Assumption is how nice it is to learn from professionals in the field of psychology because they’re good with people! No, I’m not just trying to endear myself to the professor. I really do think there’s a noticeable difference between professors who are primarily academics, and professors who have clinical experience in psychology. The assumption professors have been extremely personable and approachable and are good communicators in the classroom, making the academic challenges of the program much less intimidating.

    The more I learn about cognitive behavioral therapy the more I gravitate towards it as a method. Although different individuals benefit from different approaches, I myself feel best equipped to assist people through CBT. I like how CBT has a focus on solving specific problems, which gives treatment a strong sense of direction.

    Reply

  22. Melissa Elder
    Jan 12, 2023 @ 20:32:50

    My name is Melissa Elder, I graduated from Franklin Pierce University. My most effective coping skill for graduate school has been yoga and Pilates. My biggest take away from my first semester is to stay positive and to remember we are all in the same position. Our professors are all extremely resourceful and never to be ashamed to ask for help. My initial thought and experiences around CBT is that it is very effective. I chose this program because of CBT. I am excited to learn more about CBT.

    Reply

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Adam M. Volungis, PhD, LMHC

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