Anxiety and Panic

How to Handle Panic Attacks

There are many things in life to be afraid of. You can be injured or killed in myriad ways. You can get lost. You can make a fool of yourself. Something can happen to your loved ones. Another terrorist attack can happen at any moment. So much to be frightened of. It’s enough to make you fearful of leaving your house!

And so you don’t. Or, you do with much trepidation. And when you do, you may feel your heart racing, your body trembling, your breathing tight. You may feel chest pain and wonder if you’re having a heart attack. You may feel sweaty and wonder why your body temperature is out of whack. You may feel dizzy, unsteady, faint and more.

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Brain and Behavior

Genetic Testing for Psychiatric Drugs: Not There Yet

Just because you can do something doesn't mean you should do it. Many of us could drive a bicycle on a freeway, but it wouldn't be a wise thing to do. Many of us could pay money for "brain games," but it wouldn't necessarily help our brains' health.

And so it is with genetic testing for psychiatric drugs. While you could pay for such a test to help you better understand how your body might react to certain psychiatric drugs, you're probably better off not. At least not at this point.

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Best of Our Blogs

Best of Our Blogs: October 6, 2015

TED Talk speaker, author, and former business school professor Srikumar Rao once said, "If you have an ongoing relationship with a person, think of everything positive about that person that you possibly can and enter your interaction from that space."

Today, let's set aside the "negative" for a minute and figure out how (and if) we can productively move forward based on the positive.

Today's Best of Our Blogs offers some insight on overcoming emotional unavailability, tips for...
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5 Fun Tricks to Bring Excitement Back to Everyday Life

Happiness is not a destination you reach; it's a mindset you embrace, right!

If you're like most people, you think happiness is a destination -- and that, of course, YOU have a one-way ticket there.

You might also believe that happiness comes with having everything you want. But thinking this way can really mislead us and results in us looking for happiness in all the wrong places while comparing ourselves against impossible ideals.

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ADHD & Adults: 4 Things that Cause Overwhelm and What You Can Do

When you have ADHD, many things can cause you to feel overwhelmed. In fact, you might feel like you’re constantly behind and playing catch-up. You might run around all day long and yet not get much done.

The symptoms of ADHD affect your ability to be organized and efficient, said Juli Shulem, PCC, a productivity coach and organizing expert who specializes in helping people with ADHD. Maybe you can relate to what Shulem’s client said: “Life just happens at me.”

The good news is that you can do something -- a lot of things -- to help you navigate and reduce your overwhelm.
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Congress & Policymakers: Stop Scapegoating Mental Illness in Mass Shootings

It's time that the United States Congress and national policymakers stop scapegoating mental illness for mass shootings in America. It's a simplistic -- but entirely wrong -- answer to mass shootings and gun violence in the United States. And it's also time that we hold our representatives in Congress accountable to have them stop shamelessly using another violent shooting to push their own agenda -- and blaming mental illness as the cause.

Mass shootings are generally not committed by people with a mental illness. People who commit violent acts with a gun are far more likely to have no history of mental illness. This includes the nearly-daily mass shootings we've experienced in the past three years.

It's time to have a serious, nuanced conversation about this issue -- and stop the simplistic fear-mongering that politicians and policymakers with their own agendas to push seem to revel in.

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3 Easy Ways to Happiness

Slightly raise the corners of your mouth while reading this, even if you don’t feel happy. Go ahead, try it. You know you’re curious. What do you have to lose?

Smiling makes you feel happy and relaxed. Those in drug or alcohol recovery are probably familiar with the phrase “fake it till you make it," which means action sometimes precedes or inspires feelings or desire. In his 2012 Psychology Today blog post, Dr. Alex Korb explains that...
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Is Love Enough?

Were the Beatles right? Is love really all you need for a good marriage? Actually, that’s a terribly destructive myth.

Love at first sight is a popular notion. Some relationships begin this way and, as luck would have it, blossom into good marriages. But usually when people immediately think that they’ve found him (or her) at last, they’re in fantasy land. They are imagining a wonderful kind of life together with someone they barely know. If they marry impulsively, they may soon find that they have too little in common for a lifelong relationship. Consequently, the chemistry fades away and not much else is left to build on.

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What It Really Means to Practice Radical Acceptance

There are many misconceptions about what radical acceptance -- a skill taught in dialectical behavior therapy -- actually looks like. One of the biggest myths is that radical acceptance means agreeing with what happened. People assume that acceptance is akin to approval.

If I accept what happened, then I approve of it. Then I like it. Then I’m OK with it. Then I excuse the abuse. Then I absolve the person who deeply hurt me of all responsibility. Then I allow the infidelity. Then I can’t do anything about losing my job or losing my home. I can’t change it. Then I resign myself to being miserable. Then I keep wallowing and suffering.

Radical acceptance doesn’t mean any of these things.
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Join Us! 5th Annual Mental Health Day Blog Party

Next Saturday, October 10th, we’re celebrating World Mental Health Day. If you’re a blogger (on any topic), we'd like you to join us for our 5th annual blog party.

World Mental Health Day is promoted by the World Health Organization to help raise awareness about mental health issues. The day promotes open discussion of mental disorders, as well as what the world's governments and health organizations are doing in mental health prevention, promotion and treatment services. This year’s theme is "dignity in mental health," but you’re welcomed to blog on any topic in mental health you’d like.

This year, we’re inviting you to join us for our 5th annual blog party on Saturday, October 10.

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The Fear of Acceptance: Are We Afraid of Being Rejected or Accepted?

Attachment Theory suggests that we’re wired to seek love and acceptance. So the fear of rejection is understandable. But might there be a corresponding fear that is less visible -- a fear of being accepted?

Much has been written about the fear of rejection, but not much about the fear of acceptance. The fear of rejection makes obvious sense. If we’ve had a steady diet of being shamed, blamed, and criticized, we learned that the world is not a safe place. Something within us mobilizes to protect our tender heart from further stings and insults.

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Brain and Behavior

4 Steps to Stop Seeking Approval from Others

Humans share an innate drive to connect with others. We’re evolutionarily wired to crave inclusion. Eons ago, this was linked with our survival; in prehistoric times, rejection triggered fear. If someone became isolated or was ousted from the group, his or her life would be at risk.

Because the consequences of being rejected were so extreme, our brains and behavior adapted to avoid disapproval from others. In fact, research has shown that social rejection activates many of the same brain regions involved in physical pain, which helps explains why disapproval stings.
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