How Do We Figure out What We Really Want: Listening to Our Inner Voice [Link Post] Permalink

Posted on Tuesday June 22, 2021 by Jacob Campbell.

Episode #8

Jacob and Judy use The Rider-Waite Tarot Deck to pull the XVI The Tower_ and the Wisdom of the Oracle Divination Cards to pull the 33 Chaos and Conflict card. They talk about times of transition and the principle of three. They also talk about motivation and how to help clients connect with some of their desires.

Breaking Through the Eye Wall of the Storm into Summer

Posted on Monday June 21, 2021 by Jacob Campbell.

It seems like I don’t know how to stop myself from being busy, but this year has seemed especially so. I returned to working as a social worker for the Pasco School District and continued to teach for Heritage University. In my academic studies, I have finished all of the coursework required for my Ph.D. program1. This last semester included completing the two required comprehensive exams for my program. In the fall, I plan to submit the proposal for my dissertation and start going through the process of approval from the Human Research Review Committee. Once I have had my proposal approved, I will advance to candidacy (e.g., I’m a Ph.D. Candidate and no longer a “student”).

Because my jobs and academic program are all in the educational systems, one of the significant benefits of my current lifestyle is summer break. Every year, having a couple of months to recharge and connect with life makes it all worth it. In thinking about this annual cycle, I started reading about hurricanes. It’s not a perfect analogy, but in many ways, time in the summer is like the eye of the storm. It is a moment of calm in between the chaos of regular life. In reading the article Explainer: The furious eye(wall) of a hurricane or typhoon, they describe that the eyewall of the storm (the section on the edge of the calm center) is the “the scariest, nastiest, gnarliest part of the storm.” While it has been a hectic year, I don’t know if it feels like a hurricane has hit me, but I am happy for the start of summer.

This start of summer has been filled as well. One inspiring thing is our oldest graduated high school. While he has only been in my life for a short time, I am very proud of him. He did it, having had a baby just six months ago (yes, I’m a grandpa, which still feels unreal to say). You can see some photos at 2021 Angel’s High School Graduation.

2021 Angel's High School Graduation

To give some context to my breaking through the eyewall of the storm, last Saturday was a graduation ceremony, some family visits, and a graduation party. Then, I had a couple of days focused on finishing up my work at the school district, and Wednesday was my last day of school for myself and my kids. I got the opportunity on Thursday to spend time with some colleagues and have our annual end-of-the-year BBQ. On Friday, my family all went to Silverwood Theme Park. Growing up, I got the opportunity to go to Silverwood many times. It has always been a lot of fun. I love roller coasters, although I can’t handle anything that spins. I have a lot of great memories of visiting the theme park, even in college.

Photo of my friends and I jumping up and clicking our heels.
Photo of some of my friends when I was working on my AA all trying to jump up and click our heels at the same time. It is actually a lot harder than it looks to be synchronized.

Weather During our Trip

Two years ago, we took the kids to Silverwood. It was a fun trip, but we ended up being there during a storm that included massive amounts of rain and even hail. It meant that the lines were really short for rides, but we didn’t stay as much as we would have liked. This year, the weather was beautiful, and we spent about half of our time at Boulder Beach, which is perfect when the weather is in the high 80 and sunny. The kids all seemed to enjoy themselves as well.

Photo of my family sitting in front of the boulder beach sign
Family in front of the Boulder Beach Entrance Rock

After getting back from Silverwood at about 1 in the morning, getting some sleep, it was time to get up and get ready for a Quinceañera for one of my wife’s cousin’s in Walla Walla. They had live music, and it was an enjoyable event that again didn’t let us get home until the early hours of the morning. Finally, Sunday came, and it was Father’s Day. We went out for Breakfast at Andy’s North and had a little party at my sister-in-laws house.

All in all, this last week, breaking through to the other side of the storm’s eyewall has been good, but I’m looking forward to some slowness, hopefully as well.

  1. I do have one more class that I am doing this summer. I was too overwhelmed earlier this year with classwork and could put off an elective and take it now. If you are interested, it is called The Lost Knowledge of the Imagination, and it is pretty great so far. 

Some of the Story of My Dad [Link Post] Permalink

Posted on Tuesday June 8, 2021 by Jacob Campbell.

I’ve been a bit behind on posting. I have another episode that I still need to edit and then I’m recording another one today with my mom. So expect me to be posting a couple in the next week or two. This episode was really good, but it is hard to talk about my dad and his history.

Episode #7

Jacob and Judy use the OSHO Zen Tarot Deck and pull the major arcana card, II Inner Voice. We talked about listening to our inner voices and how that can look. Judy shares some experiences hearing/following that voice and other times that she did not recognize it. We also spent time talking about the story of Judy and my Dad meeting, starting their relationship, and what led up to the murders he committed.

Envisioning a Better Future: An Interview with My Kids [YouTube Video]

Posted on Saturday May 1, 2021 by Jacob Campbell.

Following on the concepts of Rob Hopkin’s Book, From What is to What If: Unleashing the Power of Imagination to Create the Future We Want and a thought experiment proposed by Donella Meadows’ speech at Third Biennial Meeting of the International Society for Ecological Economics. You can also find the transcript of the 1994 speech.

It was a fun project to do, but I have determined it is so much harder than I thought to make a documentary-style video.

The Right People at the Right Time [Link Post] Permalink

Posted on Tuesday April 27, 2021 by Jacob Campbell.

Episode #6

Jacob and Judy start their talk by taking a couple of moments of silence to center themselves. Judy pulls the number eight - tribe from Wisdom of the Oracle Divination Cards. They talk about seeing the needs within a community and ourselves and what it is like to start new things. Judy shares about some of the community organizations she has helped create.

Completion is Not Final, It’s More of a Phase [Link Post] Permalink

Posted on Saturday April 10, 2021 by Jacob Campbell.

Episode #5

Jacob and Judy pull the Major Arcana card XXI Completion from the Osho Zed Tarot deck. We decide that completion is not always about the specific result but is more of a phase that we go through. There can be many completions that happen. We talk about the need to slow down and look at Judy’s morning ritual as a way of centering herself and connecting with the land. We also discussed our Indigenous ancestors and the land we live on, and how we should be honoring those that came before us.

Challenges in Starting Psychiatric Medications

Posted on Friday March 26, 2021 by Jacob Campbell.

Over the years, I have talked with many families and individual clients about medications. It is a scary proposition for clients to consider starting a regime of medication. Every family has different reasons to both want to start or not start medication. In my practice, it is crucial to be centered around the client’s desires for medication. My role is often focused on talking through options with clients, discussing where they can get more information, and processing some of their feelings.

Many of my clients have been worried about the length of time they might need to use medications. Sometimes the medicines that people take are indefinite, and they will always need the support offered. Other times, people need more of a short-term intervention. The symptoms that they are experiencing are so severe that it hinders their ability to make any forward progress. One metaphor I have used is that of going up a mountain. They need the help of the medication to make it to a place where they can learn new coping skills and have a period of time that is successful before they are ready to maintain that progress without the support of the medications.

Graphic I created showing a cart going up a hill
Sometimes medication help us make up a hill that felt insurmountable

My own experience of quitting smoking is not a one-to-one correlation to the support that psychiatric medications can help, but it feels very related to me. During the start of the Pandemic, I got extremely sick and was struggling to breathe. Since I was a child, I’ve often had an illness that affected my lungs. This last time scared me enough that I decided that I needed to quit smoking finally. Since I was about fourteen years old, I’ve been smoking. This means it has been well over half of my life that I’ve been a smoker. I’ve tried quitting a number of times, but never successfully. I have often, sardonically said that I quit quitting… because I don’t like failing. I decided to talk to my doctor about stopping smoking and was prescribed Chantix. It helped curve my cravings for long enough that once I stopped taking the medication, I was able to stay strong and not restart smoking. It has been almost a year since I quit smoking now. I don’t think I could have done it without the support of Chantix.

A recent study by Bentley and Thissen (2021) completed a survey looking to understand feelings related to psychiatric medications. Their study, Family Conundrums With Psychiatric Medication: An Inquiry Into Experiences, Beliefs, and Desires was able to see two latent profiles of their respondents. These profiles included those where are skeptical and those that are supportive of a medical model.

The study was completed by a survey sent out to members of National Alliance on Mental Illness, there is also a NAMI Tri-Cities locally. As a case manager years ago at Tri-Cities Community Health, I went with one of my clients to their meetings. I have frequently referred clients to NAMI and feel their organization is a pretty awesome service to the community and those with mental health (and their families). Their mission is “Dedicated to improving the quality of life for people with mental illness and their families through support, education, and advocacy.”

In Bentley and Thissen’s (2021) study, most of the respondents were parents of those with mental illness. Their sons and daughters’ medications were most frequently antidepressants, anti-psychotics, anti-anxiety medications, and mood stabilizers. The responses were most frequently from parents of those with mental illness. Out of their report, I found the narrative description their participants provided the most useful as a practitioner. For example, the following is some advice that participants wished they could give to mental health providers:

  • Increase family inclusion in care: believe, involve, appreciate
  • Show respect through honesty and access
  • Educate patients and caregivers in an unbiased and balanced manner
  • Listen more fully to stories of lived experience
  • Seek knowledge on new treatments
  • Embrace collaboration with families and other providers
  • Be upfront about costs and strive to use affordable options
  • Provide a milieu of open dialogue, hope, and empathy
  • Slow down and be kinder and more patient


Bentley, K. J., & Thissen, R. (2021). Family conundrums with psychiatric medication: An inquiry into experiences, beliefs, and desires. Community Mental Health Journal.