UHV education school to host mental health presentation

Victoria community members will have the opportunity to learn about how the human brain works and what they can do to better manage their thoughts, emotions, behavior and relationships at a presentation hosted at the University of Houston-Victoria.

The UHV School of Education, Health Professions & Human Development Fall Symposium will feature “Managing Your Crazy Self,” a presentation intended to help people take the crazy out of their lives. The event will be from 7 to 9 p.m. Nov. 28 in the UHV University North Walker Auditorium, 3007 N. Ben Wilson St., and is free and open to the public.

Fred Litton

“This presentation will be helpful for the Victoria community and area counseling professionals,” said Fred Litton, dean of the school. “Mental health has become an important topic in society, and we want to give members of our community access to information that can help them learn about their own health and also how to positively impact others.”

Randy Guttenberger, author of “Managing Your Crazy Self!: Turning Your Turbulence Into Tranquility,” will lead the presentation and explain how the brain works using layman’s terms. His work offers insights that will give attendees vision and hope about how to enjoy their lives instead of relying on coping mechanisms or damaging themselves or their relationships through unhealthy thoughts and emotions.

Wayne Smith, a UHV assistant professor of counselor education, met Guttenberger at a Texas Counseling Association personal development conference. After listening to the author’s presentation, Smith loved the ideas he used to make neuroscience understandable for anyone and decided to bring Guttenberger to UHV.

Wayne Smith

“I want to provide people a way to manage their thoughts and emotions with healthy thinking,” Smith said. “Our brain is designed to warn us constantly using emotions. We feel things, so we tend to react to our feelings instead of manage them. Instead, we should think logically and overcome these emotions.”

Guttenberger uses two characters, an ostrich and a rhino, to illustrate the difference in reacting to moments, like the ostrich, or taking time to think, like the rhino. He also uses real-life examples to explain how destructive thinking patterns are established.

“The ostrich – the instinctive brain – and the rhino – the conscious mind – provide a memorable, fun way to have good mental health,” Smith said. “The ostrich represents our frantic brain warning us about every little thing. It is an illustration of our protection system at work. Our brain – our ostrich – is doing its job protecting us. It isn’t trying to drive us crazy. Having these feelings is fine. Reacting to them is what will drive you crazy. We each have to learn the difference.”

To learn more about the presentation, contact Smith at Continuing Professional Education credits will be available for Licensed Professional Counselors, school counselors and teachers by Texas State Board of Examiners of Professional Counselors and Texas Education Agency-approved providers.

The University of Houston-Victoria, located in the heart of the Coastal Bend region since 1973 in Victoria, Texas, offers courses leading to more than 80 academic programs in the schools of Arts & Sciences; Business Administration; and Education, Health Professions & Human Development. UHV provides face-to-face classes at its Victoria campus, as well as an instructional site in Katy, Texas, and online classes that students can take from anywhere. UHV supports the American Association of State Colleges and Universities Opportunities for All initiative to increase awareness about state colleges and universities and the important role they have in providing a high-quality and accessible education to an increasingly diverse student population, as well as contributing to regional and state economic development.