by Drew Coster
A friend of mine recently told me about her experience of starting psychotherapy. She said she would have liked a list of pointers to help her understand what she was getting into before she started. That sounded like a good idea to me.
It’s not uncommon to want a few signposts when we start a journey. Inspired by her, here are 10 things I think might be helpful to you if you’re new to, or thinking about, therapy.
by Alexandra Katehakis, MFT, CST, CSAT
For love addicts, finding balance in life can be a struggle. Understanding and respecting their own boundaries requires that they have a knowledge of themselves and their limits and, as well, an honesty regarding the unmanageability that love addiction and toxic relationships can cause.
Entering a 12-step program such as Sex & Love Addicts Anonymous (SLAA) can be a very important part of the recovery work from love addiction. Modeled after the 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous, the 12 steps for recovery from love addiction look similar, with a few differences that address the addiction specifically.
by Therese J. Borchard
For most of my life I aspired to do just one thing: write and publish my memoir.
I had spent more than 15 years networking among editors and literary agents to make this happen. I invested more than a few hours designing a publicity campaign comprised of the media connections that I had virtually stalked over the years. I tried to climb aboard the speaking circuit.
And yet despite all of my hopes and expectations, a few months after hardcopies hit the bookshelves, I felt the familiar pangs of depression. What was going on?
by Margarita Tartakovsky, M.S.
Couples who have strong bonds remain interested in each other. They remain curious about each other’s experiences and inner lives, such as their thoughts, feelings, and fears.
As such, a great way to cultivate your connection is to talk about these inner worlds — because good communication goes beyond talk of tasks, errands and kids. (Those topics, of course, also are important. But so is delving into the intimate and often overlooked conversations.)
We asked several relationship experts for their suggestions for meaningful, fun or thought-provoking questions that partners can ask each other. Here’s what they shared…
by Lauren Suval
When we can no longer change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.
~ Viktor Frankl
In life, some circumstances are beyond the scope of our control. Maybe it’s a debilitating illness, a tumultuous storm, an unstable job market, or a one-sided end to a relationship. All we can do is choose how we respond. What is the narrative that we are telling ourselves? How can we shift our perspective? Only we can decide how to interpret a situation at hand.
A few months ago, I was told that I should have surgery on my thyroid. And as soon as anyone mentions the word, “surgery,” my antennae perk up, and my insides become a tad squeamish.
by John Amodeo, PhD
Our eyes are one of life’s most amazing mysteries. Through our eyes, we let the world in. We see the beauty of what is — along with what’s not so beautiful.
Through our eyes we search for each other, we see each other, we connect — or have the potential to connect — with our fellow humans. We convey that we’re here, we’re interested, and we value the person we’re with in this precious moment.
by Brandi-Ann Uyemura, M.A.
I’ll be happy when I’m free of ____. (Fill in the blank with your personal physical or emotional affliction.)
It’s lovely to imagine a life before your illness. It’s easy, in fact, to get attached to what life could have been. But thinking this way can sink you in deep. Instead of living your life as it was meant to be lived, you’ll be walking in the shadows of some perfect life you’ll never lead.
And it’s not just the big things like depression. It could be the constant thoughts you have, the what-ifs, the decision to live where you live, ordering the tuna sandwich instead of the egg salad. It seems benign, but those small self-doubts add up to over time. They pick at who you are, the life you have, and rob you of what is.
And is what you have so bad? Sure on a bad day, it is. But shift things around a bit and you might realize that in this moment, you’re breathing, you’ve got a few good friends and the sun is finally out. Maybe, just maybe, these are the good enough moments that make up a life.
This week’s post will give reason to begin accepting your life for what it is whether or not you’re suffering from depression, have a child with behavioral problems or are just looking for ways to fulfill a dream or change your negativity. It’s all about first learning to accept your situation and building a life upon that.
by Sophie Henshaw, DPsych
On January 1, 2014 in Australia, anti-bullying legislation was introduced. Workers now can apply to to the Fair Work Commission (FWC) for an order to stop the bullying. Once an application has been received, the FWC has two weeks to investigate the complaint.
Legislators expected an overwhelming demand: Bullying affects over 30 percent — more than 3 million — Australian workers and costs the economy between $6 billion and $36 billion dollars a year.
It seemed reasonable to expect that applications should have numbered in the thousands by now when results from a parliamentary inquiry in 2012-13 showed that workers’ most desired outcome was that they just wanted the bullying to stop.
However, only 44 applications have been received so far in 2014, six of which were withdrawn. Why?
by John M. Grohol, Psy.D.
Some hype in the media has been made about an “over-diagnosis” of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). But parents with children who actually have ADHD are left scratching their heads — why are some people demonizing their child’s disorder? Would a journalist go after pediatric cancer with the same gusto?
I don’t have the answer to those kinds of questions, but I do have some tips to share with parents of children with ADHD. Raising a child with ADHD presents unique opportunities and challenges. But it’s the challenges that can sometimes throw parents for a loop.
by Mike Hedrick
I’ve never been in a relationship. I’ve been on dates, sure, but none of the potential relationships lasted past the second date.
I’ve heard that I’m picky, that I’m not vulnerable enough or that I’m just plain afraid of being in a relationship. I don’t think others’ thoughts hold any real bearing on my thoughts and emotions when the prospect of a relationship presents itself.
I know what I’m looking for. I know what my type is. Either because of a poor fit or because I’ve been too nervous, pushy or paranoid, it’s never clicked.
by Margarita Tartakovsky, M.S.
Most of us use some kind of to-do list, whether it’s tasks scribbled on a sticky note (like me), projects typed into a computer or an app on your phone, or a snapshot of your day written into a planner.
Author Sam Bennett finds to-do lists to be “too dictatorial.” It makes her feel like a high schooler who’s being told to do her homework.
Instead, she prefers creating a could-do list.
These very words, “could do,” remind her that she has a choice about the tasks she works on.
by John M. Grohol, Psy.D.
New research, published earlier this week in the Proceedings of the National Academies of Science, purported to identify the first biomarker for clinical depression.
What most media outlets failed to note was that this was not the first study to look at cortisol levels and their relationship to depression. In fact, it’s an area of research that has quite a few studies.
And what has the vast majority of the research in this area found? That a saliva biomarker test for depression is still a long ways away from becoming a reality.