Disorders

7 Self-Compassionate Practices and Habits for the New Year

Inevitably every holiday season, there are lots of articles about adopting punitive habits as resolutions -- everything from "work out every single day" (whether you like it or not) to "cut out all that dessert you consumed at Christmas."

This leads many of us to think that rigid rules, strict regimens and even self-criticism are the way to go.

But self-compassion is a lot more powerful. Self-criticism keeps us stagnant. Self-compassion helps us to learn and grow. It helps us to better understand ourselves. And it helps us to lead healthier, happier and more fulfilling lives.

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Anger

Sadness in the Midst of Gladness

It’s a happy time of year. A time to be joyous. A time to be together with family. But I'm listening to a sad story. A young woman died in an instant. A bone got stuck in her throat. A stupid, senseless, useless death.

A mom is in shock. She can’t believe what has happened. People come to pay respects. They bring food. They shed tears. They embrace. They offer their deepest sympathies. They ask if there’s anything they can do. But they all know that the one thing they wish they could do, they can’t.

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Anger

A Holiday Guide for Abuse Survivors

Hardly anyone would claim to be a stranger to holiday stress. From money woes to holiday travel, traditions, and family tension, at some point everyone has struggled to make it to January. But the holidays can be a particularly tough time of year for anyone with a family history of abuse, whether it’s emotional or physical.

The idea that one shouldn’t be alone during the holiday season is drilled into our heads and we want familiar people near, even if those people can be toxic to us. Memories of trauma may become more salient. Some holiday encounters could open old wounds. You're not just trying to make it to January -- you're trying to avoid being retraumatized.
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Eating Disorders

9 Ways to Avoid Emotional Eating During the Holidays

For anyone with an inclination to use food as comfort -- which basically includes all of us -- the two months between Halloween and New Years provide one temptation after another.

For me it starts the hour the trick-or-treaters have left and I assess the supply of tootsie rolls, Kit Kats, and Reese’s Cups that did not make it into the pillow cases or plastic pumpkins of our guests. I tell myself they are absolutely off limits as I climb up on the kitchen counter to hide them in a place that requires much physical effort to get to.

Then come all the holiday festivities where everything I am not supposed to be eating and drinking (sugar, gluten, dairy, alcohol) is there, available, in my face, taunting me … “come on, you know you want me … I can make you feel better.”
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Addiction

How to Recognize Holiday Binge Drinking

Holiday party season is in full swing. With many celebrations happening around us, even people who consider themselves social drinkers may go overboard by binge drinking.

Binge drinking is the most common pattern of excess alcohol use in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Dr. Indra Cidambi, a leading addiction expert, wants to alert people to five common signs of alcohol abuse this holiday season:

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General

Resisting Reaching for the Smartphone Temptation This Holiday Season

When you're gathering with your family or friends this holiday season, I suggest you try something unthinkable: don't take your smartphone out or check it.

I know... It's a crazy idea. But it's one that'll help remind us of something that's really important -- being in the moment with the human beings that are physically present with you.

Why should you keep your phone in your pocket or purse?

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Anxiety and Panic

How to Thrive — Not Just Survive — the Holiday Season

If the sights and sounds of Christmas evoke dread, anxiety or depression, you’re certainly not alone. It’s likely that many of your friends, family members, co-workers and neighbors experience similar emotions. There’s just so much to do -- last-minute shopping for gifts and meal items, decorating the home, figuring out tax-saving strategies to implement before the end of the year, determining where to hide the presents so prying eyes won’t find them -- and on and on. It’s enough to make you want to take a break.

Here are some tips for getting through the holidays with a minimum of struggle.

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Anxiety and Panic

Psychology Around the Net: December 12, 2015


This week's Psychology Around the Net is full of some surprising information (for example, did you know many doctors in training suffer from depression?) as well as helpful suggestions (such as how to handle awkward personal questions during your next family gathering).

Dig in!

Signs of Depression Are 'Unacceptably High' Among Doctors in Training, Study Finds: Are all those years of medical training actually providing a "crash course in depression," too?

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General

Millennials Most Likely to Experience Anxiety at Work this Christmas

Occupational anxiety, or anxiety triggered at or because of work, is raging -- and for many there is a mounting feeling of dread as the festive season approaches.

Business coach Sean Redmond said that it’s the millennials, workers in their 20s and early 30s, that are most struggling with anxiety at this time of year. “They are significantly more stressed and anxious than older workers,” he said.

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