Blog Posts

Currents: September 2017


Currents is published monthly by Windhorse Integrative Mental Health of Northampton, 211 North St., Suite 1, Northampton, MA 01060. Executive Director is Victoria Yoshen. For questions, concerns and suggestions about Currents, contact us at

Upcoming Events

mark your calendarMark your calendars for community gatherings this month!

Community Events:

Hiking Group’s first meeting
Tuesday, September 26th, 12-2pm, meeting at the Windhorse office.
See New Hiking Group Starts at Windhorse for more information.

Community Council
Wednesday, September 27th, 5-8pm in the Windhorse Community Room.
See September Community Council for more information.

Synthesis of Strategic Planning
Wednesday, October 4th, 9:30-11am in the Windhorse Community Room. 
See Planning for Next Year’s Budget for more information.

Community Lunch:
Tuesday, October 10th, 12:30-1:30pm in the Windhorse office kitchen.

For more information, contact us at

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New Hiking Group Starts at Windhorse

Fall is almost here, and it’s a great time of year to go hiking. That’s why Windhorse is starting a new hiking group!

Breathing in the cool, crisp air, admiring the colorful foliage, working up an appetite for treats like apple cider and donuts… Let’s  savor the seasonal splendor together, while experiencing  hiking’s many physical benefits!

What: The Hiking Group will meet for weekly hikes. The hikes will be easy to moderate and vary in length from 1 to 1.5 hours. All fitness levels are welcome; no one will be left behind!

Who: The Hiking Group is open to the Windhorse community, (including its four-legged friends!)

When: Tuesdays through November, 12-2pm, except for the Tuesdays of Community Lunches (held from 12:30-1:30pm on the 2nd Tuesday of each month)

Where: We will meet at the Windhorse office and drive to a variety of local hiking areas. If you need transportation, please contact Grace or Katherine (contact information provided below) A list of hikes has been created, but it is flexible and we welcome suggestions from participants! The first hike will be at the Ashley Reservoir in Holyoke. Click here for more information about the hike.

Why: As the great naturalist, John Muir, said: “In every walk with nature, one receives far more than he seeks.” Also, it’s a great workout!

What else: Participants should wear sturdy sneakers or hiking boots and dress in layers. We recommend bringing a water bottle and you might want to bring a snack.

Questions? Contact Grace Janove: or Katherine Parker:

We hope you can join us!

Written by Grace Janove and Katherine Parker.

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September Community Council

This month’s community event is a Community Council. Council is an opportunity for us to gather together as a community and speak with each other openly. The format is inclusive and confidential. We sit in a circle with a “beautyway” in the center.  There is a ceremonial quality and a history to the practice from many cultures.  Council encourages people to speak and listen from the heart, to be true to what is real in the moment, and to listen to others with compassion and understanding. Through this we often get to know each other a bit better and feel closer and more integrated into the community. There is often a theme provided, which people may speak to during the council, but it is offered only as a starting point. People are free to speak about whatever arises that they sense needs to be spoken in the moment.

We hope you will consider joining us for Council, which is taking place on Wednesday, September 27th from 5 to 8pm at the Windhorse office.

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Mindful, a Poem by Mary Oliver



by Mary Oliver

I see or hear
that more or less

kills me
with delight,
that leaves me
like a needle

in the haystack
of light.
It was what I was born for —
to look, to listen,

to lose myself
inside this soft world —
to instruct myself
over and over

in joy,
and acclamation.
Nor am I talking
about the exceptional,

the fearful, the dreadful,
the very extravagant —
but of the ordinary,
the common, the very drab,

the daily presentations.
Oh, good scholar,
I say to myself,
how can you help

but grow wise
with such teachings
as these —
the untrimmable light

of the world,
the ocean’s shine,
the prayers that are made
out of grass?

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Planning for Next Year’s Budget

Over the last month, Windhorse has been engaged in operational planning, which helps influence and inform the creation of next year’s budget. Phoebe, our Clinical Director, has been leading the different realms and role group gatherings of Windhorse through a visioning process as part of this planning procedure. She has also contacted families of clients and sent them each a questionnaire so that they, too, can contribute to this process.

During these initial visioning meetings Phoebe has interviewed the collected participants using a form of Anticipation Dialogue that has been adapted from Dialogical Processes that are used in Open Dialogue. She has asked participants to look ahead one year (or whatever time frame they are comfortable with) and imagine that they are doing well and that Windhorse is a healthy and smoothly functioning community. She then asked participants to describe what they saw in that image and she presented the following types of questions: What is contributing to this state of healthy well-being for you and for Windhorse as a whole? What is working? What is happening around you? Compared to the current state of your life and of Windhorse, what is different in your image of the future? What worried you about getting to this point in the future and what helped reduce those worries?

Now that Phoebe has met with the various groups, she is working to synthesize the information she collected and she will present it at a meeting next month.  We would like to open up this meeting to the entire community so that all interested community members may hear from Phoebe about the information she collected and what we as a community envision for the future of Windhorse. This meeting will take place on Wednesday, October 4th from 9:30 to 11am in the Windhorse office community room.

In addition, the Windhorse community has expressed a desire for Victoria to make the strategic plan-to-budget relationship more transparent, and to discuss how this all relates to Windhorse’s underlying values. In answer to this desire, on Wednesday, November 1st we will have another meeting that is open to the community, this one taking place in the Windhorse office community room from 10 to 11am. During this meeting Victoria will present an overview of how the synthesis fed next year’s budget and how the different realms of Windhorse and our organizational values are represented in the budget.

If you have any questions or are interested in attending one of these open meetings, please contact Windhorse at

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Warming Up with Winter Squash!

We’re still having some warm, summer-like days here in western Mass, but it won’t be long before the leaves start to change color in earnest, and there’s a chill to the air. We are well into September after all, and the real autumn weather is not far away. Along with cooling temperatures comes the winter squash harvest season. There’s no need to wait until full-blown winter to enjoy these sweet and delicious veggies; they are ready now. Winter squash is scrumptious when it’s simply roasted (perhaps with a bit of butter. a little salt, and a touch of brown sugar) and it’s equally good when combined with other flavors in more complex recipes. It can be used in everything from muffins and soups to casseroles and salads. Here are a few recipes that look worthy of winter squash. Please let us know if you try them and enjoy the fruits of your labor.

Pasta with Butternut Squash, Sausage, and Sage

Simple Winter Squash Soup

Mushroom, Apple, and Walnut-Stuffed Acorn Squash


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New to the Windhorse Library

Healing the Fragmented Selves of Trauma Survivors: Overcoming Internal Self-Alienation by Janina Fisher

Healing the Fragmented Selves of Trauma Survivors integrates a neurobiologically informed understanding of trauma, dissociation, and attachment with a practical approach to treatment, all communicated in straightforward language accessible to both client and therapist. Readers will be exposed to a model that emphasizes “resolution”―a transformation in the relationship to one’s self, replacing shame, self-loathing, and assumptions of guilt with compassionate acceptance. Its unique interventions have been adapted from a number of cutting-edge therapeutic approaches, including Sensorimotor Psychotherapy, Internal Family Systems, mindfulness-based therapies, and clinical hypnosis. Readers will close the pages of Healing the Fragmented Selves of Trauma Survivors with a solid grasp of therapeutic approaches to traumatic attachment, working with undiagnosed dissociative symptoms and disorders, integrating “right brain-to-right brain” treatment methods, and much more. Most of all, they will come away with tools for helping clients create an internal sense of safety and compassionate connection to even their most dis-owned selves.
~from the back cover


The Mindfulness Solution: Everyday Practices for Everyday Problems by Ronald D. Siegel, PsyD

Mindfulness offers a path to well-being and tools for coping with life’s inevitable hurdles. And though mindfulness may sound exotic, you can cultivate it–and reap its proven benefits–without special training or lots of spare time. Trusted therapist and mindfulness expert Dr. Ronald Siegel shows exactly how in this inviting guide. You’ll get effective strategies to use while driving to work, walking the dog, or washing the dishes, plus tips on creating a formal practice routine in as little as 20 minutes a day. Flexible, step-by-step action plans will help you become more focused and efficient in daily life; cope with difficult feelings, such as anger and sadness; deepen your connection to your spouse or partner; feel more rested and less stressed; curb unhealthy habits; find relief from anxiety and depression; and resolve stress-related pain, insomnia, and other physical problems… Start living a more balanced life–today.
~from the back cover

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  • Hannah has joined Windhorse as a new Intern.
  • Suzanne has joined Windhorse as a new Intern.
  • Devin has left his role as Housemate but continues his role as Team Counselor.

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