Upstate Community Weighs in on Women’s Self-Care

Counseling For Positive Change

Monique Guffey, licensed professional counselor and clinical hypnotherapist, agrees that serving the needs of others at your own expense can be exhausting. Over time, frustration, resentment and despair deepen as you distance yourself further and further from your dreams for a happy life. Guffey practices at The Whole Health Collective in Greenville.

“Attending to yourself and thriving is a gift you must give to yourself, and syncronsistically when you do, everyone around you will benefit too. If you hope things will be different but, you remain untethered and out of control in myriad areas of your life, change is unlikely. Hope is not a method. A definitive action plan is.”

Guffey explains, “Talking with a counselor, coach or mentor helps to clear blocks, navigate through the hurts and hurdles, and map out ideas for the next steps toward positive change. Releasing the baggage of the past also helps cultivate courage, resilience and self empowerment, to catapult you through difficult times when they occur.”

There are many innovative and motivating ways to help you achieve your dreams,” says Guffey. “A solution-oriented approach emphasizing values, purpose, accountability and decisive action steps is helpful. To facilitate this we offer a cognitive behavioral approach, along with neuro-linguistic programming, creative visualization, emotional freedom methods and mindfulness techniques.” Clinical hypnotherapy is also beneficial in uncovering the deeper origins of pain and suffering. Self help is self care and does not have to be shameful, frightening or boring.

Serenity at Sunset

Lyn Hatton is the owner of Serenity at Sunset, in Pickens, a mind-body-healing center and retail shop that provides energy healing therapies and classes, in addition to a holistic pet corner. Hatton explains that self-care begins from a place of willingness to see ourselves just as we are and accept ourselves in a loving, compassionate manner.

“So often we measure our successes, our rightness, our worthiness, by the achievements and perceived lifestyles of others. Whether we are mothers, wives, career-focused or retired, the seasons of our lives come with inherent challenges and rewards. A self-care practice is essential to facing challenges with confidence and feeling worthy of reward.”

Hatton’s client-base ranges in age, from 20-somethings to 70+. “The common thread linking these beautiful souls is the sense of inadequacy through measurement using a false statement. The “I should” becomes the ruler through which they determine their value and success.”

“Women have developed a sense of self-judgment based on what they think they should be, do, wear, drive, live, etc. This self-judgment can lead to the development of a facade, relationship difficulty, or living beyond their means, all of which adds stress to their existence. We shift to a survival mode, rather than thriving and enjoying life. When we create a life based on acceptance, love and compassion, we can truly live in peace.”

Our Inward Journey

Peggy Zielinski, MSW, is the founder of Our Inward Journey, a mindfulness meditation practice housed at Oakview Medical Associates, in Simpsonville.

Zielinski notes in current times women have become especially susceptible to burnout and stress overload. “While the demands of balancing full-time jobs, parenting responsibilities, community involvement, and holding space for self-care can be very challenging, women are becoming more aware of the need to create space for themselves, in order to bring their best selves into their careers and their families.”

Zielinksi is skilled in the practice of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), an 8-week mindfulness program, developed by Jon Kabat-Zinn, of UMASS Medical.

“Empirical research finds that the MBSR program provides participants with an avenue of relief from stress and anxiety. After completing the 8-week course, participants experienced physiological changes in the brain, primarily in the regions of the amygdala (a part of the brain known to regulate fear and anxiety) as well as the hippocampus (a part that is related to learning and focus).”

“The foundation of this technique is to help bring mindfulness into our daily routines, through helping to establish beneficial habits related to being more mindful in our daily lives as well as incorporating a daily practice of meditation.”

Jon Kabat-Zinn defines mindfulness as paying attention, on purpose, in the present moment, non-judgmentally. Zielinski says that this may sound simple, but our lives often pull us away from the present moment, toggling back and forth between ruminating on past experiences and worrying about the future. Only through diligently increasing our awareness of the present moment can we truly experience the benefits of mindfulness, and the resulting stress relief, in our daily lives.

Zielinski offers mindfulness coaching based on the MBSR format to individuals, couples, and groups. There is also a mindfulness program to help those with Diabetes to better manage their disease.

Counseling for Positive Change is located at 530 Howell Rd., Ste, 100, Greenville. For more information, visit or call 843-368-6331.
Serenity at Sunset is located at 321 E. Main St., Pickens. For more information visit or call 864-878-9973.
Our Inward Journey is located at 11 Five Forks Plaza Ct., Simpsonville. For more information visit or call 864-386-4893.