Our Blog

Update from Palmetto Counseling 3.2.18

Turn Your Hobbies into Dollars

Special to Palmetto Counseling’s Blog * March 2, 2018 11:50 AM EDT 

This issue features an article by Kim Thomas

Turn Hobbies

Reap the rewards of your passions and boost your self-esteem in the process.

Hobbies are a necessary part of life. They give us an outlet to release negative energy and help us tap into our creative side. Plus, our hobbies let us do something we’re truly good at without the pressures of doing it someone else’s way. Having a hobby is also a great way to boost your career or help launch you into a new one.

If you’re struggling with depression, addiction recovery, or other mental health concerns, turning your hobby into a paycheck may be a part of a healthy treatment plan. Here are a few ideas on how to transform something you do for fun into a positive means of support for yourself and your family.


People stare in awe as others with even the slightest bit of artistic talent doodle and sketch. They also tend to spend money to decorate their homes with unique one-of-a-kind pieces of artwork. Drawing and painting is a great hobby and, in fact, art therapy has been used in mental health treatment for decades. Even outside of professional applications, doing art is relaxing. Depending on your style, you could create custom artwork for homes or businesses. Comic book art has regained popularity since the advent of the Marvel Cinematic Universe so that might be a good place to start, especially with new superhero movies being released at a rate of two or three each year. A quick search of Etsy reveals dozens of pages of original art selling for up to $4,000 (or more).

Dog walking

If you love dogs, you can turn that passion into profit by opening your own dog walking or dog boarding service. You probably won’t strike it rich frolicking with Fido, but you will benefit in numerous other ways. Science suggests that spending time with dogs actually increases your overall mood and will encourage you to exercise. And a little fresh air never hurt anyone. You can expect to earn between $25 and $50 per night cuddling and caring for other people’s canine companions.


Inc. rightly asserts that people will always need food. And no food is more iconic than cake. While anyone can throw together a boxed cake mix, it takes a special talent to design a custom confection for a special event, such as a birthday, retirement party, or wedding. The average wedding cake cost more than $450 and many parents have no problem dropping $150 or more on their child’s birthday cake. If you have kitchen skills, you can make a respectable living helping other people celebrate their milestones.


A wedding photographer can make thousands of dollars over the course of a single weekend. It’s hard work and requires the proper equipment, but photography is a popular pastime that can help you earn a serious income while practicing your art and celebrating life’s most cherished moments. If you understand lighting, composition, and the inner workings of a DSLR camera, you are miles ahead of the general population. Once you are done photographing the events, you get to take your images home and refine them according to your own vision through software such as Photoshop or Lightroom.

You don’t have to be an expert to share your talents with the world. Often, your skills are just what someone else needs to finalize a birthday party, wedding, or simply focus their attention on their own job or hobbies. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there, you might be amazed at how much you can earn – and how much better you feel -- by doing something you enjoy.

Kim Thomas’ mission is aligned with that of US Health Corps, and that is to triumph over chronic disease. Her mission is to advocate for those suffering from chronic disease and enjoys writing about maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

Do you have an article on mental health, addiction, substance abuse, mental health advocacy or other important topic you would like to submit?

Let us know if you would like to be featured as a Special Guest Contributor to PCC's Blog by contacting us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Update From Palmetto Counseling 2.22.18

How to Achieve Work-Life Balance to Maintain Mental and Physical Health

Special to Palmetto Counseling’s Blog * February 22, 2018 9:39 AM EDT 

This issue features an article by Gloria Martinez

Work Life Balance 

Image via Pixabay by Unsplash 

As Americans work longer hours and blur the line between work and home, the idea of achieving a work-life balance may seem like nothing more than a pipedream. The trouble with this way of thinking is that busy Americans don’t have enough time or energy to devote to their families or themselves if they are failing to achieve a work-life balance. As a result, their relationships suffer, they become burned out, and in some cases, the struggle to manage the overwhelming stress leads to mental health or substance use disorders. If you’re looking for a better way to balance work life and home life to improve your health, our tips will help get you started.

Commit to Exercising

Yes, you know exercise is important for health, but there is a good chance that it is something that you often don’t make time for or is something that you cut first from your schedule on particularly busy days. However, skipping regular exercise is one of the fastest ways to sabotage your work-life balance. Exercise improves your memory and your capacity for learning something new. It relieves stress, lightens your mood, and relieves chronic pain (which often results from stress). Try walking during your lunch break, doing yoga while listening to a webinar, or asking your partners to have a walking meeting instead of a sit-down meeting.

Make Priorities

It’s nearly impossible to achieve a work-life balance when you feel like everything from making dinner to turning in a report on time takes equal priority. The only way to achieve balance is to evaluate your personal and professional lives and determine what is most important to you. Those priorities will be the things that mean the most to you personally and professionally and should be the only things that you divide your time between because other things are not as worthy of your time. Dividing your attention among too many things means that none of them is receiving the proper amount of attention anyway, and making priorities will help you devote more attention to those that deserve your time.

Pencil in lunch breaks away from your desk to get a break. Leave your phone in your car so you are not distracted during family dinners. Schedule a workout so you view it as part of your calendar just as you would a business meeting. By setting aside time for your family, friends, and yourself, you will get the break you need to boost your mental and physical health.

Of course, you need to make committing to exercise one of your priorities. There’s a reason that flight attendants tell parents to put on their oxygen masks first: if you can’t function, you can’t help your children. This fact applies to the role your health plays in work-life balance; if you are not in good mental and physical health, your personal and professional lives will suffer. Indeed, exercise is the best thing you can do to maintain good mental and physical health while attempting to achieve a work-life balance. When you take care of yourself, you are better able to handle the stress of a busy day and accomplish your priorities.

Make a Sanctuary in Your Home

Consider where you live. If you have a long, draining commute to and from work every day, the money you save living in the suburbs might not be worth it. Consider that it might be time to move to into the city to be closer to your job. City life also offers a lot of advantages that suburban life might not, including being closer to museums, sporting events, and health and wellness practices that could give you and your family a big boost to your overall wellness.

That said, if you’re content to stay put, there’s plenty that can be done to your current home to improve your work-life balance. For example, whether you work from home full time, part time, or just after hours to get through email and wrap up projects, you need to set some boundaries. If your home office also is where your children do their homework, you are not helping yourself achieve the balance you need. Make a designated space for work inside your home and make it a point to work only inside that space.

Next, optimize your living space to reduce your overall stress. Start by designating a personal sanctuary in your home. Be sure this room remains is a work-free zone where you can go to unplug, unwind, and reduce stress. Paint the walls your favorite color. Add plants because nature has been shown to improve mood and reduce stress. Add comfortable furniture or at least one comfortable chair. Add a music player if you love to listen to music. Give yourself space to do yoga if that will relax and recenter you. Most importantly: this work-free, stress-reducing place needs to be yours and needs to be a place that you visit at least once a day, even if it’s for only five minutes.

Achieving a work-life balance is necessary for your mental and physical health. If you commit to exercising, make priorities, and create a sanctuary in your home, you will have more energy, more time, and the ability to handle the demands of your professional and personal lives. 

Gloria Martinez started WomenLed.org to celebrate the advancements women have made and inspire women to become entrepreneurs and seek promotions in the workplace.


Do you have an article on mental health, addiction, substance abuse, mental health advocacy or other important topic you would like to submit?

Let us know if you would like to be featured as a Special Guest Contributor to PCC's Blog by contacting us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Update from Palmetto Counseling 1.19.18

The Importance of Self-Care for Mental Health 

Special to Palmetto Counseling’s Blog * January 19, 2018 12:20 PM EDT 

This issue features an article by Kim Thomas

Self Care

There are many clichés that actually discourage us from looking closely at our own self-care, such as, “when the going gets tough, the tough get going,” “no pain, no gain,” or “if it doesn’t kill you it will make you stronger.”  However, without tending to our own mental health needs, we leave ourselves vulnerable to stress, anxiety, depression and other concerns.  Chances are if you’re trying to get through a situation by clinging to those old clichés, you would be better off embracing healthy self-care. 

Prioritize.  Harvard Health Publishing compares good self-care habits to putting on an oxygen mask when an airplane is in trouble; without first ensuring you will be okay, you can’t help anyone else.  When time is tight and energy levels are low, self-care is often the first thing that is pushed aside.  However those are signals to make self-care a priority. 

What self-care isn’t.  Many people are concerned that self-care is selfishness in disguise, but making good choices that keep you healthy and promote wellness will allow you to better tend to the needs of others, not just yourself.  Psych Central explains that good self-care is also saying “no” to overcommitting, and to participating in activities that create stress like attending gatherings you don’t enjoy and checking email before bed.

What self-care is.  Self-care won’t happen on its own.  Self-care is planned and scheduled, and should happen every day by making a conscious choice.  As you establish a good program, you may find it helpful to follow a checklist for guidance.  Reach Out Australia offers a template you can download, or you may want to create your own. 

Your routine.  Taking care of one’s physical well-being is an imperative first-step toward a good self-care program.  When your body has insufficient energy due to exhaustion or lack of good nutrition, you can’t perform well.  Experts explain that you leave yourself open to debilitating physical issues, both now and in the future.  Good care of your body keeps you strong and resilient, ready to face the challenges life brings your way.  It helps lower risk for heart disease, diabetes, cancer, even colds and the flu. 

Here are some important components in a self-care program:

  • Sleep. Getting sufficient sleep is vital to good physical and mental health.  Your body and mind regroup during sleep.  Average adults need between seven and nine hours of sleep every night. 
  • Exercise. You don’t need a trip to the gym to improve your fitness program.  Jogging, biking and hiking are excellent, but even taking the stairs instead of the elevator can improve your body’s fitness.  Being active increases your body’s release of feel-good, stress-fighting chemicals, so ensure you make physical activity part of your daily routine. 
  • Eat right. Good nutrition is a building block for staying healthy.  Eat balanced meals that provide for your body’s energy needs and don’t contain harmful products.  Aim for whole grains, fruits and vegetables, and foods that are not processed. 
  • Relax. It’s important to allow yourself some downtime.  Practice methods of relaxation, such as meditation, breathing exercises, prayer, and sensory focusing techniques to lower stress and anxiety and maintain a healthy outlook. 
  • Hobbies. Engaging in healthy hobbies is an important outlet and part of personal development.  Reading books, creating artwork, playing sports and tending a garden are all hobbies noted by experts as helpful to your well-being.  Participating even when you're short on time can improve your energy and perspective. 
  • Relationships. Don’t allow busyness and stress to isolate you.  When life is difficult it’s important to participate with your support network.  Make sure you nurture your social life and engage with family and friends. 

Choose good health.  It’s important to recognize that self-care is a conscious choice and important to your overall well-being.  Incorporate self-care into your routine to improve your energy levels.  Good choices promote your ability to handle situations as they arise, as well as promote your long-term health and wellness.  

Kim Thomas’ mission is aligned with that of US Health Corps, and that is to triumph over chronic disease. Her mission is to advocate for those suffering from chronic disease and enjoys writing about maintaining a healthy lifestyle.


Do you have an article on mental health, addiction, substance abuse, mental health advocacy or other important topic you would like to submit?

Let us know if you would like to be featured as a Special Guest Contributor to PCC's Blog by contacting us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Update from Palmetto Counseling: August 2017

Why I Decided to Get Treatment for my Anxiety Disorder

Special to Palmetto Counseling’s Blog * August 12, 2017 3:06 PM EDT

This issue features an article by Freelance Mental Health Writer, Lisa Fourman


The definition of generalized anxiety disorder is an excessive worry about many things. According to the ADAA, this anxiety disorder affects 6.8 million adults.

That's a lot of people and it includes me. I've been suffering with this disorder since 2006 when I was in high school. What are the symptoms of generalized anxiety disorder, you ask?

Symptoms of the disorder include: feeling wound tightly enough that you feel like you’re going to snap, having trouble falling or staying asleep, tension in your muscles, irritability, fatigue, and having trouble concentrating.

For those who go through these symptoms, it’s a struggle to get through the day. I have had each of these before in my journey for help and I’ve had some of them all at once.  There are a lot of people who suffer with the disorder in complete silence.

They are afraid to get the help they need for reasons I can understand. What if they're laughed at for wanting help? What if no one understands them? What if they try to get the help they know they need but the help doesn’t give them any relief?

These are questions I've asked myself in my own time as I thought about getting support for my anxiety. I couldn't help wondering if therapy was worth it until I decided I couldn't go on without treatment.

In the end, I decided to try medication management for three reasons: my sanity, doing what is best for me, and wondering what else I had to lose. These reasons were simple enough for me. I hope they can help you too.

Taking a Stand for My Sanity

Having an anxiety disorder is not a walk in the park. You worry about everything that crosses your mind. You feel trapped in a cage of sorts inside of your mind.

You can't move in this cage and it's locked tighter than anything you've ever seen. You fear that you're losing your sanity as you panic over the smallest of things.

For me, the choice of avoiding people was an easy one to make. I hated getting into arguments with people, especially customers at work.

Why would I want to put myself in that situation where my anxiety would go through the roof? I had enough trouble just sitting at my desk, going about my work. I refused to make things worse for me.

This is what I've dealt with for years before seeking treatment. I finally decided that enough was enough. I wanted to do what is best for my sanity.

I didn't want to spend my life with my anxiety in control of every action I take. I decided to take a stand for my sanity and for my life itself.

I couldn't continue down the path I was going where the anxiety ruled my life in every way. I refused to let myself stray down a path where my health was completely sub-par.

Taking a stand for your sanity doesn't have to be difficult. It can sometimes be a choice between life or death but know that it is as serious as you make it to be.

Doing What is Best for Me

I knew something in my life had to change if I wanted a life where I could be happy. I didn't want to live, looking over my shoulder at every turn.

Getting treatment was the best thing for me. My anxiety was at an all-time high and I knew I had to do something about it. I'd been dealing with it for over 10 years by this point, after all.

Having anxiety has led to me missing out on so many events with friends. That’s not to mention the job opportunities I’ve passed on because of my anxiety! I’ve left 3 jobs because of the panic attacks that kept me up at night.

I knew that if I could get proper treatment for what I was suffering with, I could feel better for the first time. I don't remember a time when I didn't feel any sort of anxiety. How can you call that living?

That's a question I asked myself as I wondered if I should even get treatment. That's when the answer to that question became obvious to me. Going through with it was the best thing for me.

I have tried medication management and mindfulness tactics, both of which seem to work the best for me. If you don’t know what works for you, try a breathing exercise.

Breathe in for seven seconds, hold it for four seconds, and then release it in eight seconds. Do this several times until your heart rate has slowed down to a normal rate. Focusing on the breathing helps calm the brain down when it’s going too fast.

What Did I Have to Lose?

This is not a question I thought I would ever ask myself. It is not something I thought much about. Having anxiety means I hesitate with every decision to the very end.

It means I am not sure about any decision I make, no matter how big or small that decision might be. It's a terrible way to go about life so I decided to make a change in this regard as well.

I considered my options and this one question came up: what did I have to lose? If I got treatment for my anxiety and it failed, would the anxiety be any worse?

No...no it wouldn't. My anxiety would always be there in the back of my mind, no matter what I did to stop it. So why couldn't I do something about it? Why couldn't I do something about it?

I didn't have anything else to lose at this point since I didn't have much to begin with. That is what anxiety does to you as well: it takes everything you love away from you.

If I get treatment for my anxiety and it doesn't work, then it's on to the next thing. I could get some valuable insight into my life with anxiety: what does and does not work.

What I Learned about My Life with Anxiety

Living with anxiety can be one heck of a challenge even with the advantage of treatment for it. It is almost like a roller coaster of sorts that you can't get off, no matter how hard you try.

Getting treatment for anxiety has been the best decision I ever made. I made the decision so I can have a life of happiness instead of a life of dread and anxiety.

Getting the medication that works for me has slowed my heart rate down tremendously, I’m no longer focusing on the anxiety, and I don’t live in a state of constant fear. I’m free of the cage that anxiety has kept me in for so long!

Getting free of the cage takes time but getting the right treatment for your anxiety can mean all the difference for you. For me, it took me two years to find the right medication but I know now that I’ll be alright. For me, that’s all I needed in a life of anxiety-ridden distress.

It gets tiring if you live a life full of emotional turmoil so I urge you to do something about it. If you need help and you know you need help, I urge you to get that help.

I urge you to get the help you need to live the life you want to live. There is no shame in admitting that you can't do things on your own. That is where support comes in. Won't you get help today?

Lisa Fourman Author Photo 002

Lisa is a freelance writer in the mental health niche, who has generalized anxiety disorder. She is addicted to Facebook and reading long fantasy novels. If you want to talk blog posts, you can find her website here.

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 We are pleased to announce that Palmetto Counseling is currently accepting referrals for Group Therapy:

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy [DBT] Group [Adults]: Frequently used to treat symptoms associated with Borderline Personality Disorder, clients in DBT can expect to be assigned therapeutic homework, role-play alternate ways of interacting with other people, and practice adaptive coping skills such as distress tolerance, emotion regulation, mindfulness, radical acceptance, interpersonal effectiveness and other positive means of managing intense feelings or emotions when angry, depressed, anxious, or upset. These skills are an important component of DBT and are reviewed in weekly groups as the Group Facilitator helps clients to learn, apply and master DBT skills.

Issues Addressed: Symptoms frequently associated with Borderline Personality Disorder such as severe depression, trauma, anxiety, patterns of engaging in self-harm behaviors, cutting, suicidal thoughts / suicidal urges, and suicidality.

When: For more information or to make a referral, please contact us at (803) 329-9639

Group Facilitator: Alissa Hager, LPC

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy [CBT] Coping Skills Group [Adults]: Backed by years of empirical support and widely accepted by mental health practitioners, CBT is a highly structured group intervention that teaches individuals to identify and learn effective problem-solving skills, how to express feelings and how to focus on the “here and now” to minimize thoughts and behavior that lead to problems. The interventions in group therapy feature modeling, role-play, help the client challenge irrational or negative thoughts and therapeutic homework exercises.

Issues Addressed: Anxiety or Fears, Depression, Self-Esteem, Stress / Anger Management, Coping Skills

When: For more information or to make a referral, please contact us at (803) 329-9639

Group Facilitator: Alissa Hager, LPC

Meet The New Faces!


Mary Beirne Taylor, MEd, ED.S, LPC, NCC

Mary Beirne Taylor earned her Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Wofford College and Master’s Degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Clemson University. Additionally, she holds an Education Specialist Degree and a Bachelor of Arts in Modern Language and Culture (Spanish), and has experience counseling Spanish-speaking families.

Licensed in South Carolina, Ms. Taylor has provided therapy to children in elementary school settings. She specializes in counseling children with Depression, Anxiety, ADHD, Trauma, Autism, Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, and Anger issues. Although treating children of all ages is her specialty, Mary Beirne also enjoys working with adults in individual counseling and family therapy.
Ms. Taylor has a genuine passion for working with children, is energetic, creative, non-judgmental, adaptable and flexible in her approach, and is deeply committed to working collaboratively with clients and their families.

Alissa Pic

Alissa Hager, MED, LPC

Alissa received her Masters of Education in Community Counseling from Winthrop University and is a Licensed Professional Counselor in South Carolina. Areas of interest include working with adolescents and their families as well as adults. Ms. Westphal has 7 years experience working with both adults and adolescents in inpatient and outpatient settings.

As part of her work with clients, Alissa firmly believes that the counseling relationship is a very personal and intimate relationship, with set limits and defined professional boundaries. The most crucial aspect of this relationship is trust. Counseling is a joint effort which cannot be successful or effective without hard work, dedication, and courage to change.

"I come from a strengths based perspective, where we will help identify positive characteristics that can help you overcome your concerns and lead a happier, more fulfilled life. In order to change behavior, I believe it is important to change perspectives and thinking patterns, and explore alternatives to maladaptive or negative ways of coping in a safe, nurturing environment."

Alissa's specialties include Dialectical Behavioral Therapy [DBT], Trauma, Oppositional Defiant Disorder, and Play Therapy. In addition to working with teens and their families, Alissa enjoys working with adults. 


With several licensed counselors to choose from, our caring team of professionals is ready to assist you in meeting your behavioral healthcare needs. 

Lisa C Pic2Kathleen PII6.16Robert Johnson III Rev10.11.14Alissa PicMaryBeirneTaylorimageresizedrms 9 29 08 0mku.jpg

Do you have an article on mental health, addiction, substance abuse, mental health advocacy or other important topic you would like to submit?

Let us know if you would like to be featured as a Special Guest Contributor to PCC's Blog by contacting us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Update from Palmetto Counseling June 16, 2016

Welcome to the Team

Kathleen P Pic6.16

Kathleen Farrell-Perrini, MSW, LISW-CP - Specialties include Christian counseling, bullying, trauma resolution, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), depression, grief / loss, anger, self-esteem, military related issues, couples / marriage / relationship counseling, and addictions. Kathleen enjoys working with adolescents through the wisdom years. 



In an effort to offer more availability and convenience to our clients, Palmetto Counseling is now 

offering Saturday appointments. For more information or to schedule an appointment

call (803) 329-9639

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'+' Thought for Today - Pass it On!

The happiestII

Thought for today... Pass on the '+'

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Palmetto Counseling Has Moved!

Village Oaks Professional Pars 1721 Ebenezer Road Suitee 225 Rock Hill SC 29732 800x440

Palmetto Counseling & Consulting Services, LLC has moved to.....

Village Oaks Professional Park(Behind Hardees & Rite Aid on Herlong Avenue)

1721 Ebenezer Road, Suite 225

Rock Hill, SC  29732

(803) 329-9639 

Dear Clients and Colleagues:

After careful thought, consideration, and months of planning, we are very excited to announce that we have relocated Palmetto Counseling & Consulting Services, LLC. We recently moved our practice to one of the medical suites located in Village Oaks Professional Park. Our practice is now located on 1721 Ebenezer Road, Suite #225, Rock Hill, SC 29732 [the former Speech and Hearing Center]; which is conveniently located near Piedmont Hospital, Rite Aid, and Hardees off Herlong Avenue.

In addition to renovations for the practice, our new space is much larger; which will allow us to expand our waiting and reception areas, plans to bring on additional clinicians, offer group therapy sessions, expanded office hours, play therapy for pediatric clients, and continue to improve ways to serve you.

We look forward to continuing our relationships with each and every one of our clients and fellow providers, and we will strive to make this transition as seamless as possible. For your convenience, we have included a Google map to our new office. During the transition, please feel free to contact us at (803) 329-9639 if you have any questions or concerns.

Thank you for your patience and understanding during this time.

Yours in Health,

Palmetto Counseling

1721 Ebenezer Road

Suite #225

Rock Hill, SC 29732

Phone: (803) 329-9639

Fax: (803) 329-5830.

Meet the newest Team Members at Palmetto Counseling

Please Welcome Mr. Robert Johnson, III, MA, LPC, GCDF

Robert Johnson III Rev10.11.14

"Always wake up in prayer, positivity and persistence to change your life and others." These are the words that Robert A. Johnson, III, MA, LPC, GCDF, lives by in his life. Mr. Johnson completed his Bachelor's degree at West Virginia State College and finished his Master's Degree in Counseling at West Virginia State College and finished his Master's Degree in Counseling from Marshall University. Robert is a Licensed Professional Counselor in South Carolina.

He specializes in the treatment of Psychotic Disorders such as Schizophrenia, Delusional Disorder and Schizoaffective Disorder, Depression, Anxiety, PTSD, Learning Disabilities, Cognitive Disorders, Developmental and Intellectual Disabilities, Christian Counseling and Vocational and Occupational Problems. As a seasoned professional in the field of Human Services, Mr. Johnson has over 17 years of experience working with diverse populations and holds certifications as a Global Career Development Facilitator [GCDF] as well as his Lean Six Sigma Green Belt Certification. He enjoys working with adolescents, adults, and seniors.

As a spiritually driven person, Robert is very active in his church and enjoys several activities including running, playing ball and travel. Robert works part-time at Palmetto Counseling and is currently accepting new client referrals. 

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Wheel of Life

           Wheel of Life
         If you put your wheel on your car – how smooth of a ride would it be?


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Tips on Goal Achievement for 2014

Crush Your Goals


Tips On Goal Achievement for 2014


Happy 2014!!! Instead of making a New Year's Resolution this year [they always seem to get broken somehow]...maybe it's time for a new strategy??


Tips on Goal Achievement for 2014:




1). Care: Set a realistic goal that is important to you. If you don't care enough about it or possess the desire and passion to achieve it.....you will more than likely abandon, give up, or engage in self-sabotage when things get tough and you experience challenges along the way.




2). Visualize: Start with the End [of your Goal] in Mind....Try to visualize yourself achieving your goal. What does it look like? How will it make you feel? How will it impact you or others in your life?




3). Action: Start by writing down your goal...take your idea out of your head and make it real. Don't over-think, don't over-analyze....just begin with some reasonable objectives that will help get you started and write them down. Transform your wish or desire and make it a reality...push aside barriers like negative thinking [e.g., What if I try it and can't achieve it? What if I fail? What if it's too hard? Etc.]......If your goal is important enough to you [see Step #1] - then it is worthy enough to begin your journey. Don't be afraid to try!!!!  




4). Give Yourself Permission to Make Mistakes: It's ok if you make mistakes as you work on your goal. Nobody is perfect. Think of any mistakes or setbacks you encounter as 'learning opportunities' and 'teachable moments' that reveal both your Strengths and Weaknesses.....Again, the purpose of your goal is to help push yourself, grow, and develop. Although testing your own limits can be challenging - it can also be very freeing and rewarding as you push and challenge yourself in ways you haven't thought possible.




5). Prepare: How will you prepare yourself when you encounter difficulties, challenges, or obstacles? Prepare a list [again, Write These Down] of ways to gain support [e.g., share your goal with a family member, friend, or someone you trust]....who can encourage you, give you support, provide positive feedback, and help you be accountable as you work towards your goal.


Crush It


6). Crush It!!!!!  Give yourself a well-deserved pat on the back and be proud of what you accomplish!!!!


Wishing Everyone the Best for the New Year,


Rich Schlauch, MSW, LISW-CP, LCSW

Palmetto Counseling & Consulting Services, LLC


Good Habits = Good Outcomes; Bad Habits = Bad Outcomes

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Take Time To Pause, Think, & Deeply Reflect Before Acting On That First Impulse!

Justine Sacco 

Justine Sacco - A PR executive fired after tweeting a racist message about Aids in Africa


Take Time To Pause, Think, & Deeply Reflect Before Acting On That First Impulse!


"With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility" - Stan Lee


The Internet Is NOT A TOY...Be Careful What You Post or Tweet!


I was reminded of Stan Lee's memorable quote, "With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility" after reading trending on-line articles about 30 year-old Justine Sacco, a former PR executive with IAC Media Company who literally tweeted herself out of a job after igniting a storm of controversy on Twitter from her "needless and careless tweet" about AIDS in Africa.


What makes the debacle Sacco created so shocking, is the fact that she was head of corporate communications for IAC, a media company that operates websites such as The Daily Beast, About.com, CollegeHumor and Match.com along with many others. Sacco's job duties were to communicate with reporters from the media; which made her Twitter comment about the AIDS epidemic in Africa even more shocking and disturbing. You would expect that in her position as a Public Relations Executive, Sacco should have known better and exercised some impulse control. Once you post or tweet your inner thoughts or beliefs into cyberspace - they become available for the entire world to not only see, and in Sacco's case - the potential to cause a significant and swift reaction if these thoughts are offensive to others. 


While waiting to board a flight from London to Cape Town, South Africa, Sacco tweeted the following from her personal Twitter account:


During the course of an 11-hour flight and without access to Internet Wi-Fi, Sacco had no idea that her highly offensive and racist remarks had been re-tweeted nearly 3,000 times - which demonstrates the amazing power and speed of how quickly information can be shared over the Internet. Her comment was eventually picked up by Buzzfeed and literally went viral on Twitterwith the hashtag #HasJustineLandedYet; and turned the former Public Relations Executive into an unknowing and infamous Twitter superstar before she even landed in Cape Town. 


After Sacco landed and discovered that her offensive comments about AIDS had gone viral, she deleted the tweet as well as disabling her Twitter and FaceBook accounts - but by then, it was too late. Sacco was swiftly sacked by her employer. 

IAC, the parent company for over 100 websites including a dating site for African-Americans, released a statement regarding the offensive tweet:

It read: "The offensive comment does not reflect the views and values of IAC. We take this issue very seriously, and we have parted ways with the employee in question."  


Take Time to Pause, Think, and Deeply Reflect Before Acting on that First Impulse! 

While the power of the Internet can be used for many positive things [e.g., to promote inclusion, raise social consciousness and our awareness to address social challenges], it also can be used as a negative force as well. Bottom line - take time to pause, think, and deeply reflect on how your ideas may be received before blindly posting that tweet or responding to someone's post.... or be prepared to face the consequences. 

Wishing You All The Best For The Coming New Year,

Rich Schlauch, MSW, LISW-CP, LCSW

'Good Habits = Good Outcomes; Bad Habits = Bad Outcomes'

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Recent comments

  • Guest (Garry)

    Great article, it's time for thinking!
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