Emotional Wholeness

The Hidden Root of Toxic Behavior

By Alison Cook | October 5, 2021

You don’t really care about me. You only care about yourself. These words lingered in Mya’s mind as she came to my office for counseling. Earlier that week, her mother had lashed out at her—again. The truth was that Mya was trying to help her arrange for transportation to and from the hospital. But, her...

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is-it-wrong-to-focus-on-myself

Is it Wrong to Focus on Myself?

By Alison Cook | August 26, 2021

As I’ve read and studied over the past few years, I am struck with two opposing messages that infiltrate our current cultural landscape. In the first message, you are taught to deny yourself in a way that I do not believe is of God. You are taught that you should bury your feelings, shrink, self-flagellate,...

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why-doesn't-god-fix-it

Why Doesn’t God Just Fix It?

By Alison Cook | August 5, 2021

My son has gone off the rails. Our marriage is imploding. I can’t get my ex to stop spreading lies about me. Why are my parents so cruel to me? These are just a few of the stories that show up in my counseling office. I hear these stories from people who are working hard...

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self-sabotaging relationships

What are Self-Sabotaging Messages and How Can You Spot Them?

By Alison Cook | July 29, 2021

As you may know if you’ve been following along these past few weeks, I’m writing a book this summer. Shortly after signing the contract, I started noticing old self-sabotaging behaviors that I haven’t seen in a decade. Suddenly, the house was clean, old files were organized. I was even starting to sleuth through a random...

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gaslighting-in-the-bible

Gaslighting and the Bible: How to Respond When Someone is Manipulating You

By Alison Cook | July 22, 2021

Have you ever felt trapped in the web of somebody’s words? No matter what you say, this person takes your words, spins them into something else, and uses them to get you to doubt yourself or do things you do not want to do. For example, a conversation might go something like this: You: “I’m...

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loving-your-inner-enemies

Loving Your Inner Enemies

By Alison Cook | May 13, 2021

“Put away your sword,” Jesus told a disciple poised to defend him from armed forces sent by political leaders in the Garden of Gethsemane. The king of heaven and earth could have commanded the angels to destroy his enemies and prevent his arrest and execution (Matt. 26:53). Instead, motivated by love, he hung on the...

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showing-up-for-yourself

How to Stop Pleasing Others and Start Showing Up for Yourself

By Alison Cook | May 6, 2021

The most important gift you have to give your relationships is the ability to show up for yourself. When you start showing up for yourself, you learn to see yourself as God sees you. This means that you start to engage yourself from the core, or center, of your heart (1 Sam. 16:7). You learn...

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emotional-hijack

The Surprising Benefits of an Emotional Hijack

By Alison Cook | April 8, 2021

Nobody likes to be hijacked by emotions. It can be scary to find yourself overtaken with emotions or acting out in ways that don’t make sense. When your emotions hijack you, they take over and bypass your rational thought processes. You have an intense emotional reaction to a person or situation that is in excess...

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spiritual-gaslighting

Gaslighting and The Importance of a Good B.S. Detector

By Alison Cook | April 1, 2021

We live in a culture of gaslighting. That is, we live in a culture where people are adept at manipulating the truth to serve their own ego. It cuts across political parties, media, and even faith communities. It might have permeated your family. In today’s blog post, I will help you understand gaslighting, how it...

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does-god-want-me-to-stay-small

Does God want me to stay small?

By Alison Cook | March 18, 2021

Have you ever been told you are too much, too emotional, or too intimidating? For that matter, maybe you’ve felt too ambitious or too strong. This word, “too” comes up all the time in my conversations with women. Maybe it’s the men in your life who have suggested you dial it back. Or, maybe it’s...

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I-feel-invisible

Why do I feel invisible in my relationships?

By Alison Cook | March 4, 2021

“Why do I feel invisible? Why do I feel like no one ever really sees me?” Lucy asked with a hint of desperate loneliness. I remember our first meeting vividly, though it was years ago. I was a relatively new counselor, interning at a college counseling center. She was a bright young graduate student –...

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pray-my-stress-away

Can I pray negative thoughts away?

By Alison Cook | February 17, 2021

Many people struggle with negative thinking, without even realizing it. It’s not good for your mental or emotional health, and it doesn’t lead you toward the loving relationship God wants with you. Negative thoughts can lead you down a road toward helplessness, increase stress chemicals, and contribute to depression and anxiety. At the same time,...

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While Dr. Cook is a counselor, the content of this website and any of the products provided by Dr. Cook are not specific counseling advice nor are they a substitute for individual counseling. The content and products provided on this website are for informational purposes only.

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