Happy Fall! This is my favorite season and we sure have a lot going on to celebrate! The newsletter has some tips from managing your anxiety so you can get out and enjoy what life has to offer! Scroll down to see a special surprise we made for our Plymouth community!

Looking forward to seeing you this afternoon at our Brighton office fall festival/open house!

All my best,

Dr. Pam McCaskill

McCaskill Family Services Newsletter
Term: Fall Issue 33| September 30, 2022
Anxiety. The word of the decade.
Anxiety is an emotion that most of us have felt at some point in our lives. It pops up in many different ways: feeling nervous about a public speaking event, anxiety about making a mistake, worries about our future or feeling anxiously attached to those we love. Anxiety is a very necessary emotion in our life, as it protects us and calls us to action. Without anxiety, we wouldn't be as alert during that public speaking event, we wouldn't take steps to plan for our future-self, and we would neglect to take action if our dog ran out into the road unexpectedly.

So whilst we need anxiety to help us survive, when we have too much of it, it can cause a lot of distress. Anxiety can cause us to isolate from the people we love, avoid experiences we might enjoy, negatively impact our self-esteem, and even cause somatic symptoms such as migraines, stomachaches and high blood pressure.

This month, Sierra Hill, LLP shares with us some of her favorite strategies for managing anxiety, utilizing Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) practices. These practices are based in the theory that anxiety is (and always will be) a part of our lives, and that once we start to acknowledge and accept it's presence, we can further work with it in an adaptive way.
At McCaskill Family Services, we specialize in working with children and adults who are struggling with all kinds of presenting mental health issues. If your family or someone you know could benefit from our services, please contact us. Our clinicians are trained and experienced in empirically-based techniques, and would be happy to promptly schedule an appointment in person or via tele-health. We can be reached by phone at 734-416-9098 or by email at [email protected].
Fall Quotes
Scarecrows in DTP
It's that time of year again! MFS snagged a spot in Kellog park to create a Scarecrow that represents a topic near and dear to our hears. With our growing Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) for Eating Disorders, we thought we would focus on spreading a message of self-love throughout our community. The spirit animal of the giraffe symbolizes self-acceptance, finding beauty in its uniqueness. It is proud of its appearance and does not waste time wishing it was someone else. Furthermore, no two giraffes have the same amount or pattern of spots. Just like each and every one of us, they are truly, one of a kind.
Stop by Kellogg Park to see the final product! Snap your photo with our giraffe and tag us on instagram or facebook@mccaskillfamilyservices
Get to Know Our Staff
Staff Spotlight
Sierra earned her Master's degree in Clinical Health Psychology from the University of Michigan. She works with adolescents and young adults who may be struggling with anxiety, depression, self-esteem, and body-image related concerns. Her treatment approach is integrative, using a variety of evidence-based treatment approaches, including Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Motivational Interviewing, and mindfulness-based interventions, to create a treatment plan that best suits the client’s therapeutic goals.

When she's not in the office, Sierra enjoys traveling, hiking, kayaking, photography, exploring and spending time with the people she loves most: her friends, family, partner and her adorable little rescue cat.
Anxiety Screener
The GAD-7 is a simple and quick self-assessment for anxiety. As clinicians, we find this to be a helpful tool for keeping track of fluctuating anxiety symptoms and noticing patterns over time.

Please remember that regardless of your score, seeking professional help is ALWAYS an option!
Fall treats are the tastiest
Spiced Apple Cider
  • 1 gallon apple cider
  • 1/2 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tbsp ground nutmeg
  • 3 lemon slices 
  • 3 orange slices 
  • 4 apple slices 
  • 3 cinnamon sticks
  • 6 whole cloves
  • 5 star anise pieces up to 6
Recipe by Grandbabycakes
  • In a 5 quart crock pot on low heat, add the apple cider, cinnamon, nutmeg, lemon slices, orange slices, apple slices, cinnamon sticks, whole cloves and star anise.
  • Allow the punch to warm for 3-4 hours. Serve warm. Ladle into serving glasses.
  • Top with whipped cream and caramel if desired.
  • You can serve chilled by removing the fruit slices, cinnamon sticks, cloves and star anise pieces after it’s cooked and storing the punch in the fridge overnight.
  • NOTE: You can add water to the punch if it's too sweet for your taste.
Don't forget your invite..
this afternoon!
Newsletter Editor's Notes
Journaling to relieve anxiety

Psychology was born on the basis of catharsis. This means that when we release emotions through the form of expression, we experience relief. This expression can come in any form: verbal, written, movement, music, etc. During the process of catharsis, our emotion becomes acknowledged, allowing us to eventually release it and move forward. Think of it as letting go of something heavy you've been holding on to.

The process of journaling allows us to experience catharsis by encouraging acceptance of our feelings, organizing our thoughts, distracting us from the current stressor, and helps us to practice mindfulness and reflection. It involves no one but yourself, it's free, and it doesn't even require a pen and paper.

I encourage you to give journaling a try! It's a habit that is most effective when used in the moment, or flexibly scheduled into your routine , especially if you struggle with ongoing feelings of anxiety, depression, or stress. Don't know how to start? See below for a few tips.
Journaling Tips
  • Your journal doesn't have to be on paper! Type up a word document, use 'notes' on your phone, download an app, or talk into an audio recorder. Any form works.
  • Write anytime of the day. It doesn't need to be in the morning or at night (contrary to popular belief).
  • Take your journal with you; this allows you to write in the moment or jot down notes for things you may want to write about later.
  • Reflect on your previous passages. You may start to notice that things you wrote about were actually more manageable than they felt in that moment, or you may have come up with solution that would be helpful to employ next time you feel that way.
  • When you don't know what to write about, write about gratitude.
  • Journaling isn't all about feelings. Use it for brainstorming possible solutions, list things you would like to accomplish, identify things that you hope for in your future, or write down some things you love about yourself.
  • Get creative; add some personal photos, doodle on your pages etc. Your journal should be uniquely you.
Happy Writing! -Jaclyn

Welcome. I'm Jaclyn, a masters level clinician at McCaskill Family Services who specializes in the treatment of OCD, anxiety, self-harm, and eating disorders for all ages. I co-run the McCaskill Family Services DBT groups for teens and specialize in psychological assessment. I am also our monthly newsletter editor and social media manager!

I'd like to personally thank you for staying in touch with our practice, and hope you find this newsletter inspirational and informative. If you or someone you know would like to schedule an appointment with me, please contact our office at 734-416-9098 or email us at [email protected]. I look forward to working with you!