The Baking Therapist

I'm a Mental Health Counselor in training and I make amazing cupcakes.

Reclaiming my “therapist” role, and passing along some relationship advise December 6, 2013

Filed under: My Thoughts On Life — thebakingtherapist2013 @ 4:55 pm
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How to be better in relationships

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After looking over the blog I’ve realized that over the past several months I have somewhat neglected my “therapist” role. As stated in the “About Me” section I alluded to periodically posting about my experiences as a therapist. Apparently I’ve have one psychology-related post.

My primary interest as a counselor is to work with couples and families, so naturally interpersonal relationships completely fascinate me. This may stem from the tendencies of my family and friends to seek out my advise for relationships (though being unmarried and in NO way a relationship expert, I’m not really sure why), or from dealing with my own parents’ divorce, or perhaps listening to my married friends talk about their experiences, who knows.

So, in an effort to procrastinate turning in a final assignment before completing my Master’s degree in a few days, I’ve attached a link to a video with some excellent relationship advise. This is applicable to almost anyone, whether you are single, dating, engaged, married, divorced…basically if you have any interest in someday being in a defined monogamous relationship. I will preface this by saying that this is a link to a sermon series by a Christian pastor, Andy Stanley. However, whether or not you choose to identify with a religion the message is still worth a listen. The rest of the series is really great too, especially the “Gentleman’s Club” message that speaks directly to men about the oppressive nature of our society that allows objectification of women to seem natural and appropriate.

Though the advise seems simple and almost naturally intuitive, it’s amazing how often we fall into the exact traps that Stanley speaks about. We assume too often that as long as we find our “perfect” or “right” person that everything in our relationship(s) will naturally work out. However, we forget that just as we are imperfect, so is our partner. And when we (inevitably) discover that our partner is imperfect, we begin to suddenly question if we made a mistake in identifying them as the “right person.” Having a successful marriage (or long-term partnership) begins with practicing these principles in our dating relationships. If a friend told you that he/she woke up yesterday and decided to run a marathon, you would tell your friend that he/she is completely crazy and will most likely end up with some serious injuries and will inevitably fail. The same is true with relationships.

And now I should probably stop procrastinating and finish this last paper…

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“‘The Baking Therapist’? What’s that about?” May 22, 2013

Filed under: My Thoughts On Life — thebakingtherapist2013 @ 6:28 am

I’m often asked how I came up with the title of my blog (and business). The terms “baking” and “therapy” may seem like they would go together like “elephants” and “ballet.” However, the title “The Baking Therapist” was something that I came up with to encompass the two things in life that I am most passionate about: baking and counseling.

Why not just bake?

People often tell me that I should bake for a living rather than pursue a career as a Mental Health Counselor. While I understand that this is meant to be taken as a compliment to my culinary skills, I can’t help but to sometimes feel slightly wounded by such a remark. As cliche as it may sound, I feel that being a counselor is my calling in life. I believe that God intended for me to be a voice of compassion in a world of suffering. I truly love what I do, even on the days that I find myself completely overwhelmed. It’s incredibly humbling and rewarding to be able to hear another person’s innermost struggles. Furthermore, the feedback I’ve received about my counseling skills has been overwhelmingly positive, which leads me to believe that I’m doing something right.

Therapy for the therapist

It has often been suggested to me to incorporate baking into therapy sessions. As great as that sounds, in all honesty (and at the risk of sounding completely selfish) baking is my personal form of therapy. In training we are constantly reminded of the importance of “self care,” or those things we do to help clear our heads and unwind. While many counselors take up yoga, shopping, or enjoying a cocktail, I find baking and running to be most therapeutic. There are few things I enjoy more than going into my kitchen, putting on some John Mayer, and creating something unique and delicious. Part of the enjoyment for me is also being able to see others enjoy what I create. So it’s nothing personal…but I’d like to keep the baking for myself, thanks.

“You should go on that Cupcake Wars Show!”

I had a conversation with a friend who also has a cupcake business about this a few days ago. While in theory it sounds like a good idea, get a little publicity, possibly win a little cash… But what many people don’t take into consideration is the amount of pressure you’re under to create something amazing. For me, baking is meant to be therapeutic. Trying to figure out how to incorporate lavender and sardines into a cupcake in 30 minutes just doesn’t sound very relaxing to me.

And this concludes today’s Q & A!