Our "go-to" Resources for Mental Health and Self-care Practices

Our "go-to" Resources for Mental Health and Self-care Practices

Elaine Cavazos, LCSW-S, PHM-C

Happy New Year!  All of us at RPC hope that your 2023 has started off well.  We know this is a time when we often reflect upon our goals and hopes for the upcoming year, and we recommit to taking care of ourselves.  Part of that usually includes seeking good sources for information on how to live our best lives or begin to contemplate the changes that we think would help to move us forward.  To support those efforts, we thought we would send you our list of favorite “go-to” podcasts, books, articles about mental health and self-care practices.  We hope you enjoy reading our list and that it supports you as you begin or re-start your wellness journey.  

For those of you with Spotify, here’s a link to RPC’s channel where you can find all of the podcasts linked on our “2023 Self-Care” playlist:  https://open.spotify.com/playlist/7qBD8lNxAmz4jjt6qt2Yg3?si=57e928bd28754d8d

 Dr. Sarah Deal recommends:
“Dear Sugars” by author and advice columnist Cheryl Strayed

Strayed is raw and genuine when she answers people’s deepest dilemmas. She goes straight to the heart of the matter and doesn’t beat around the bush. She doesn’t tell you what you want to hear; she speaks what you need to hear. I’ve used her writings in many therapy sessions to help challenge clients to expand their hearts and minds. In particular, I recommend the episode called:  The Great Reckoning.  This episode can be found here:  https://www.wbur.org/dearsugar/2022/09/10/great-reckoning-encore.

Her book “Tiny Beautiful Things” sits on the table next to my chair, and I reach for it between therapy sessions to ground me.  

Grace Rao recommends:
Dr. Laurie Santos and Kristin Neff discuss how our critical inner monologues keep us from making positive changes on the “Dump Your Inner Drill Sergeant,” episode from the podcast, The Happiness Lab. Kristen Neff is an expert in the field of self-compassion and discusses the debilitating effects of shame and the antidotes of self-compassion using compelling research and personal examples.  

You can find this episode of the Happiness Lab podcast here: https://www.pushkin.fm/podcasts/the-happiness-lab-with-dr-laurie-santos/dump-your-inner-drill-sergeant

Nalleli Cornejo recommends:
Therapy for Black Girls Session 68: Healing After Miscarriage


This episode Dr. Joy Harden Bradford and Jeanae Hopgood, LMFT discuss healing after a miscarrige. I love that they provide a cultural perspective on this topic and Jeanae shares a bit about her personal story. They chat about common challenges of a miscarriage, the impact in a partnership, how to be of support, and helpful resources.

Emily Obront recommends:
How to Encourage Independent Play With Lizzie Assa, from Good Inside with Dr. Becky 

This episode - like so many of Dr. Becky's - addresses the (at times seemingly impossible) paradox of motherhood that is the importance of taking care of ourselves and of intentional, thoughtful parenting practices. Instead of just saying 'you-time' is a must (and thus adding one more thing to the to-do list), she actually grounds us in the knowledge of why independent play is a critical skill for our babies/toddlers/kids to learn...with the added benefit of giving us parents a break. I love any parenting strategy that kills two birds with one stone, so naturally this episode is a favorite of mine.

You can find this episode here: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/how-to-encourage-independent-play-with-lizzie-assa/id1561689671?i=1000575492257

From Kiran Azeez:
Super Soul Special: Oprah Winfrey: Forgiveness

This podcast episode speaks to the power and profundity of forgiveness of yourself and others. Oprah adds a synopsis of the world's greatest spiritual and consciousness teachers sharing how and why forgiveness is the path to liberation. I find this advice helps loosen the grip of ego and calcification around the past events, stories or limitations we continue to tell ourselves. Ultimately, moving us from a state of fear and into the softness of love.

You can find this episode here:  https://www.oprah.com/own-podcasts/oprah-winfrey-forgiveness

Eckhart Tolle, Presence and Letting Go of Control

Eckart Tolle shares insight as to how we can let go of control and future pacing to predict outcomes by radical acceptance and being in the present moment in whatever circumstance you find yourself. He shares that this is the only way to release suffering and inviting in the fullest, most conscious and expanded expression of yourself. I love listening to him speak because his words carry such peace and wisdom but he has the most unexpected and fun sense of humor!

You can find this episode here: https://podcasts.apple.com/gb/podcast/presence-and-letting-go-of-control/id1458654443?i=1000582491596

Dr. Nichelle Haynes recommends:

I really love Nedra Glover Tawwab's book Set Boundaries, Find Peace: A Guide to Reclaiming Yourself. Nedra does an excellent job of making boundaries easy to understand and gives practical advice on how to know where to place boundaries. There are even exercises in the chapters to help you on our journey to better boundaries.

You can find a copy of Nedra Glover Tawwab’s book here: 

Dr. Nicole Scott recommends:
I found "The Body Keeps the Score" by Bessel van der Kolk, MD to be a formative book in terms of really understanding the primary and downstream effects of trauma. The author uses a lot of narratives to describe various presentations and how the trauma response unfolded. It's a heavy one for sure, but I learned a lot!

You can find a copy of Dr. Bessel van der Kolk’s book here:  


Emily Furnari recommends:
I would recommend the book Untamed, by Glennon Doyle. Glennon reads the audiobook herself and is truly inspiring and captivating. She promotes the power of having a strong relationship with yourself and remembering that we all have the freedom to live by our own personal values rather than those impressed on us by our society. Even more empowering is the idea that freeing ourselves frees everyone around us.

You can find a copy of Glennon Doyle’s book here: https://www.bookpeople.com/book/9781984801258

PS Glennon Doyle’s podcast “We Can Do Hard Things” is pretty great too!

Dr. Carmen Colomer recommends:

The Mother To Baby podcast, which can be found in archive format here: https://mothertobaby.org/podcast/

While you are at it, if perinatal mental health issues are on your mind, the other great podcast is Mom and Mind, it can be found here:  https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/mom-and-mind/id1125550872

Mom and Mind is full of topics related to perinatal mood and anxiety disorders.

Elaine Cavazos recommends: 
“I’m Sorry:  How to Apologize and Why It Matters, Part 1 & 2,” from Unlocking Us

I use this podcast in my sessions and my life all the time.  Relationship stressors are at the foundation of many mental health struggles and the roots are often tied to communication.  This podcast unpacks, step-by-step, the foundations of a good apology.  Harriet Lerner and Brené Brown are funny, connected, and warm, as they talk through their own missteps when it comes to apologizing in their own relationships.  I found both episodes to be highly relatable in my personal and professional life.  I find most of Brené Brown’s work to be very meaningful and would recommend her books and podcasts to anyone.

You can find this podcast here:  https://brenebrown.com/podcast/harriet-lerner-and-brene-im-sorry-how-to-apologize-why-it-matters-part-1-of-2/