Psychology Articles

A Codependent’s Take on the Disney Song ‘Let It Go’

Saturday, July 5th, 2014

A Codependent's Take on the Disney Song "Let It Go"I finally broke down and watched the movie Frozen. I just don’t have any compelling reasons to watch Disney these days, with no kids under 10 in my household. So it took me a while to get around to it.

Of course, I’d heard the hit song during and after the Academy Awards (who could have missed all the chatter about Travolta’s gaffe with Idina Menzel’s name?). Quite honestly, the song just didn’t do that much for me.

You Are Not Alone in Your Diagnosis of Mental Illness

Thursday, July 3rd, 2014

You Are Not Alone in Your Diagnosis of Mental IllnessIn the eight years I’ve lived with schizophrenia I’ve seen horrible days and I’ve seen days where the sun seemed to shine just right on my face and strike a certain happiness in my soul.

Throughout every day, though, I’ve struggled with my thoughts.

There isn’t a day that goes by where a bit of panic doesn’t creep up into me. In those moments it can feel like the world is against you. It can feel like you are the only person alive who is feeling that certain kind of panic, but I’m here to tell you that you’re not.

How to Help a High-Functioning Alcoholic in Denial

Thursday, July 3rd, 2014

How to Help a High-Functioning Alcoholic in DenialHigh-functioning alcoholics might be one of the most dangerous types. They often are in denial about their alcoholism. They don’t realize how hard their drinking is on family members and friends, and since they seem to function normally, they don’t see a problem with it.

High-functioning alcoholics do not fit the “drunk” stereotype. They might reason that because they go to work and school, interact with their family, manage a household, and fulfill their everyday responsibilities, they can’t possibly have an alcohol problem.

Introducing Reflections from a Children’s Therapist

Thursday, July 3rd, 2014

Introducing Reflections from a Children's Therapist

There are a lot of interesting developments in the world of children’s psychology and childhood development. Being a children’s therapist brings a lot of challenges — but a lot of insights that can be beneficial outside of the office too.

What are good, effective child therapy practices in today’s world? What’s new in the world of play therapy and what new interesting research is coming out?

What are some of the most effective treatment techniques that may help you with your child clients?

How Facebook’s Squishy Ethics Got Them Into Trouble

Tuesday, July 1st, 2014

How Facebook's Squishy Ethics Got Them Into TroubleAh, how quickly folks backpedal when they’re caught doing something a little less than transparent. And perhaps something a little bit… squishy, ethics-wise.

That’s what Facebook “data scientist” Adam D.I. Kramer was doing on Sunday, when he posted a status update to his own Facebook page trying to explain why Facebook ran a bad experiment and manipulated — more than usual — what people saw in their news feed.

For some Tuesday-morning humor, let’s take a look at what Kramer said on Sunday, versus what he wrote in the study.

Mass Shooters = Mental Illness?

Sunday, June 29th, 2014

Mass Shooters = Mental Illness?In the wake of yet another mass school shooting, we mourn. We are angry. Why is this happening in our country? What is going on? And yet, as I flip on my television — what do I see? It’s certainly not anything about gun control or raising children properly, but alas, mental illness.

No one is disputing that our mental health system is a wreck. I know from firsthand experience that it is a travesty. I must admit, however, that the media’s portrayal of these shooters is uncomfortable and offensive.

5 Things to Do When You Get the Worries

Sunday, June 29th, 2014

Unknown-1Sometimes the best way to learn a subject is to teach it. That was certainly the case last weekend.

I took a group of 10-year-old girls to see the movie, “Heaven Is For Real.” I walked away from the big screen inspired that maybe there is no anxiety and depression in the afterlife, that if I can summon the courage to live as gracefully as I can in this life, I might enjoy some repose when all of my struggling is over. One of the little girls I took, however, did not leave with a warm fuzzy.

Why We All Have Fear of Failure

Monday, June 23rd, 2014

Why We All Have Fear of FailureSure, fear of failure affects lots of people. But how about you? Let’s start off by taking a short quiz.

Answer each question below honestly:

No Time for Meditation? Squeeze in a Little Laughter Instead

Saturday, June 21st, 2014

laughing-1

Seeking out something to laugh about on a daily basis — such as watching your favorite comedian online — may be just what you need to create a more relaxed, zen-like state of mind.

A new study by Loma Linda University Health reveals that joyful laughter produces an abundance of gamma brain waves, similar to those found in a person who meditates often.

Using laughter as a form of therapy — also known as Humor Associated with Mirthful Laughter (HAML) — is increasing in popularity as a holistic and non-pharmacological treatment.

Bullied in the Workplace? Don’t Lose Your Power by Emotional Dumping

Friday, June 20th, 2014

Lose Your Power by Emotional DumpingEmotional dumping is when you verbally offload the intense rage or fear you feel onto someone you think should care and fix it now. For example, if you’ve been the target of workplace bullying, you might spew forth your outrage onto human resources or senior managers. You might expect them to do something, but become even more upset when they react in an oppositional way.

As a therapist, I regularly encounter this phenomenon, often from otherwise intelligent and articulate women who feel OK about seeking help and solace from others (men usually find it more difficult).

The Importance of a Support Structure After a Mental Illness Diagnosis

Thursday, June 19th, 2014

The Importance of a Support Structure After a Diagnosis of Mental IllnessWhen I was diagnosed with schizophrenia eight years ago it was like walking in a fog. I was lost in my delusions, I was confused about what was happening to me and I was trying to grapple with what exactly reality was.

My family was suffering too.

They had no background with mental illness and no frame of reference about what to expect with it.

I had asked for help a few times but they just thought my skewed thinking was a result of smoking marijuana and that once I stopped everything I would be fine. It didn’t click for them until after my first major episode, when they took me to the hospital and I was finally diagnosed.

The Role of Connection in “Her”

Wednesday, June 18th, 2014

The Role of Connection in "Her"Spike Jonze’s “Her” made its debut in theaters last year. This refreshing and bold narrative emphasizes how connection unfolds in a society where technological advancement can potentially substitute substantial and tangible human contact.

Set in Los Angeles in the near future, “Her” features Theodore Twombly — a kind, lonely and introverted man who’s trying to navigate through the heartache of his recently failed marriage. (I personally found him to be an endearing character who warrants lots of hugs.)

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