Blog post by: Erin Jones, M.A., M.Ed., LPC, NCC
Image from https://creativecommons.org
Why think functionally? A functional approach is a whole-person approach. It is a process, not an event. It is a lens that helps a counselor consider how the physical, emotional, spiritual, and nutritional factors are all connected, and how each influences the whole person.
What we put into our bodies, our minds, hearts, relationships, and spirits; emotionally, physically, spiritually, and nutritionally, what is coming out in each area, and the quality of each of these areas all provide data about the whole person. This is not just where symptoms such as depression or anxiety, bloating, fatigue, sleep disturbances, or irritability are treated, but where we can look at how each is connected and what the root causes might be that lead to the symptoms that eventually manifest.
Yes, we want to help people feel better and reduce symptoms, but if the root causes of those symptoms are never uncovered and addressed, we are simply applying a band-aid to mask the real issues. Our bodies communicate all kinds of data to us. If we address the foundational issues, we impact symptoms. From the functional perspective, there is rarely a single root cause or issue leading to what are often multiple symptoms. Rather, there are multiple root causes for the symptoms that lead a person to seek care from a therapist or a doctor, and often, these begin long before symptoms are to the point of noticeable consequence for the client. It is also worth noting that honoring what we know about ourselves, or what a client knows about themselves, their body, their values, and goals is as important. Understanding what is working will give a provider important information as well!
Consider the analogy of a spider’s web. If you look at the image above, can you decipher where one strand begins or ends? Where one strand in the web is separate, or not connected to another? Spider webs are designed to work as a whole system made of many parts, and those parts are made of many individual strands that all function as a whole for optimal efficiency. Similarly, our whole being, that is from the perspective of a functionally healthy person, operates the same way. As each strand in the web is connected and works in harmony with all the other strands in the web to serve its whole purpose, so too do our systems function best when working in harmony-each connected to the other systems for optimal, whole, well-being...
Hope and Support for Ukraine
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.
Accepting new clients for teletherapy within the state of Colorado or in-person sessions in Loveland or Fort Collins!
All of the therapists associated with Healthy Horizons, LLC are independent professionals with their own practices and are independent wellness businesses, separate from Healthy Horizons, LLC.