I know you are already working diligently on your long to-do list and goals for 2017. I am excited for you! I’m doing the same thing. However, I want you to add one more thing to that list.
That thing is counseling. I know as the year begins, we see and hear so many people committing to these elaborate plans. We attend vision board parties and we scroll through countless Instagram posts with awesome inspirational quotes.
The one thing people are not talking about is counseling.
I know you got it all together with your fly and fabulous self. Your kids are super perfect, you have the best boyfriend or husband in the world and your bank account is overflowing with money. On the other hand, there are some of us, who have kids that are tripping in school and at home, we aren’t connecting with the men in our lives, and we are refusing to answer the phone because it’s another bill collector.
I have been all of these at the same time and then some. I totally get the frustration and dread of facing these situations. There are just some things your sister and your girlfriends can’t help you with. I don’t care how many double stuffed Oreos you eat with your favorite wine or how many episodes of Insecure you binge on, life can still be overwhelming.
Here’s my suggestion to get you on track: dust off your insurance card, call the number on the back and ask about your EAP benefits.
According to OPM.gov, “Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is a voluntary, work-based program that offers free and confidential assessments, short-term counseling, referrals, and follow-up services to employees who have personal and/or work-related problems. EAPs address a broad and complex body of issues affecting mental and emotional well-being, such as alcohol and other substance abuse, stress, grief, family problems, and psychological disorders.”
Most companies give you eight free sessions.
Count them up: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8. I use them every year to get my mind back on track. Since Don switched jobs last year, I was able to get eight more free sessions. I used them over the summer while I went through a re-branding of my website. The counselor was great and she even allowed me to start a relationship support group with her clients after she learned about The Real Wife Movement. We’ve also used our EAP benefit for marriage counseling as well as for our daughter when she was struggling with school last year. Don is even opting to get his free eight sessions this month.
Counseling is one thing we don’t talk about in our community. It’s so taboo but folks are suffering in silence. I implore you to look into using your free sessions for whatever you want. It can be for stress on the job, moving, having a new baby or like I did, starting a brand-new business. Have this conversation with your boo, your family, and your friends. Let them know they are leaving free services on the table every single year.
So do yourself a favor, add some counseling sessions to your 2017 goal list. Allow a counselor to help you jumpstart your new year. You will be glad you did.
List of Work-Life Agency Coordinators for all federal government agencies.
Have you ever heard of Employee Assistance Program (EAP)?