General

Navigating Your Natural Tendencies When You’re a Highly Sensitive Person

Being a highly sensitive person (HSP) comes with gifts -- such as greater empathy -- and some challenges. For instance, HSPs tend to get overwhelmed by their environments. We’re bothered by everything from big crowds to bright lights. (In an earlier piece we shared five ways to navigate this overwhelm.)

HSPs also are keenly aware of their shortcomings, and they’re especially critical of themselves, said
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Happiness

Psychology Around the Net: February 13, 2016


Happy Valentine's...er, Weekend, my sweet Psych Central readers!

Yes, whether you love it, hate it, or couldn't care less about it, Valentine's Day is officially upon us.

As such, I've compiled a list of psychology-related articles dealing with why memories of our first loves stick with us, how to spread the love even when you're divorced (or single), why the gift of presence might be the best gift of all, and more.

Enjoy!

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General

4 Signs You’re Overdue for a Breakup

Like a carton of milk, there may come a time when your relationship starts going sour. Fighting, crying, suspicious behavior… none of these are great signs for relationship longevity. But how do you know if it’s just a rough patch or time to cut your loses? What behaviors indicate it's time to call it quits?

Here are four signs that indicate a relationship should have already ended:

You keep having the same fight over...
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Family

Learn to Love Yourself First

Most psychologists will agree that being loved and being able to love is crucial to our happiness. Sigmund Freud once said, “love and work ... work and love. That’s all there is.” But for many, the search for love causes a great deal of frustration and unhappiness. And what about self-love and its significance to our quality of life?

Whether you’re single, happily in a relationship, or in an “it’s complicated” couple, it’s our relationship with ourselves that sets the foundation for all of our other interactions and is the secret to having fulfilling and healthy intimate relationships.
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Anxiety and Panic

Networking for Introverts: 4 Secrets to Meet New People

Networking can be, at times, awkward and even produce anxiety. The thought of reaching out to people you don’t know to build potential business relationships can seem daunting. How do those “super connector” social butterflies carry themselves with such confidence while others stammer and stutter?

As it turns out, there’s a psychology to relationship building that will not only help you feel more secure when meeting new people, but will also transform your stack of business cards into meaningful connections that may advance your career.
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Books

A Great Way to Cultivate Gratitude

We know that being grateful is important. It boosts our energy and well-being. It helps us to cope with stress. Simply, it brightens our mood and helps us feel good. But sometimes we forget to give thanks. Sometimes, we give thanks only on certain days (such as holidays) and not on others (the days we’re exhausted, overwhelmed, burnt out). Sometimes, we count a few blessings to ourselves but quickly move on to something else.

In his book Gratitude Works! A 21-Day Program for Creating Emotional Prosperity author and psychology professor Robert A. Emmons, Ph.D, includes practices for cultivating, or growing, our gratitude. Because as he writes, “Through practice, giving thanks grows from the ground of one’s being. Grateful feelings, once buried, can surface if we take the time to notice and reflect… Gratitude is like fertilizer to the mind, spreading connections and improving its function in nearly every realm of experience.”
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General

8 Effective Ways to Keep Your Partner Interested

Being in a relationship involves time, commitment, patience, a willingness to forgive, an openness and vulnerability, and giving without expectation of anything in return. This sounds like a lot of work and it is, but the potential rewards are well worth the effort. Yet even as you work at your relationship, you also need to endeavor to keep it fresh. Here are eight tips for doing so:

Make an effort to be present.
You might think that being in the same room with your partner is enough to be present. But that doesn’t hold true in a society where it’s easier to text than communicate even when two people are in the same room. Everyone’s buried in their electronic devices. Put the devices on mute. Your physical presence is one way to keep your partner interested, but there’s more at stake than simply occupying space.

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Anger

3 Ways Fighting Can Actually Help Your Relationship

Have it out! It's good for you.

There's something wholesome and good to be said for couples that never ever fight with each other -- I just don't know what it is. That hasn't been my experience so I really can't say whether that makes any particular love affair better.

My guess is that couples who never argue or have it out are probably building up a good head of steam inside themselves. Human nature -- even for the most zen among us -- seems to dictate that we speak our minds rather than bite our lips. The world doesn't move forward on the backs of lip biters.
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Friends

The One Word that Can Kill a Friendship

There’s this word you use all the time. It’s a seemingly harmless word -- it’s close to meaningless, really -- but it’s slowly, subversively tainting your relationships. Look back over any recent texts and emails you’ve sent to friends. If they look something like this, you’re caught on this word’s lure.

“I’d love to hang out! But I’m really busy.”

“Sorry I didn’t get back to you earlier! I’ve been so busy.”

“What’s going on with me? Just busy as usual!”
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General

3 Myths about Healthy Marriages that Most People Think Are True

There are many myths about what a healthy marriage looks and feels like. When we start seeing these myths as facts, we get into problematic territory. Many myths create unrealistic standards, which when we bring into our homes and apply to our relationship can hinder them. For instance, if you think you should only attend therapy when your problems are dire, you might be waiting way too long.

Below, Lena Aburdene Derhally, MS, LPC, a psychotherapist and relationship expert, shared three myths and the associated facts, along with several practical tips.
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General

How to Recover from Failure

You create a presentation that does not go well. You launch a product that only 10 people buy. Your relationship is over. You don’t get the promotion or new job you really wanted. You get fired. You do something else, and feel like you’ve fallen flat on your face.

Understandably, you’re devastated. After all, you failed.

But failure doesn’t have to be a demoralizing letdown, a crushing catastrophe or a window into some bleak future. Because failure is what we make of it.
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