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10 Tips for Using Credit Cards Responsibly When You Have ADHD

The very nature of ADHD makes it difficult for adults with the disorder to use credit cards responsibly. “Impulsivity, for one thing, means an adult with ADHD will see something they want and without thinking it through, will pull out their credit card and make a purchase,” according to Terry Matlen, ACSW, a psychotherapist and author of Survival Tips for Women with AD/HD.

It also doesn’t help that credit cards are so easy to use. “Credit cards are rather intangible. They're plastic, easy to store and don't look like money. It's much easier handing a card to a clerk than reaching for cash that generally has more meaning and is more concrete.”

Psychotherapist Stephanie Sarkis, Ph.D, agreed. “Credit cards can give the illusion that one is not really spending ‘real’ money.”

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Best of Our Blogs

Best of Our Blogs: April 26, 2013

Have you or someone you loved been recently diagnosed with a physical or mental illness? Aside from the initial shock, most of us feel both relief and anxiety. It's validating to finally know what's wrong, yet what's next is uncertain. How do you cope when you've been recently diagnosed?

It's difficult to stay hopeful when there is still so much you need to know. Give yourself time to grieve over your compromised health. Surround yourself with supportive, understanding and loving people. And be cognizant of what you can do. Taking care of yourself is of the utmost importance.

This week you'll learn how to integrate more moments of self-care in your life, which will help regardless of your diagnosis. Scroll down below and feel more at peace with a short meditation practice, understand why what people say can really hurt you and learn ways to cope with your negative inner thoughts.
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Unspoken Bargains in Our Daily Relationships

Did you ever find yourself questioning an arrangement between yourself and another person? Not an arrangement that was mutually agreed upon or even spoken about –- but a habit, or series of habits that detrimentally affect you but which you find yourself continuing to do nevertheless?

It could be between yourself and a partner, a parent, a co-worker -- even a boss, an adult sibling or an annoying someone you run into every day on your way to work. Likely, it is doing something to temporarily boost yourself or the other person in the mix. Ultimately, however, it is not to anyone’s benefit.

Unspoken bargains, these so-called “arrangements,” are those things that rear their heads in times of challenge, chaos, crisis or just haste. They appear out of nowhere and can be maddening, upon first reflection, demanding us to ask ourselves, “why did I say or do that again to this person?”

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Hyundai Thinks Suicide Should Help Sell Cars: The Pipe Job Ad

Hyundai, the world's fourth largest automobile manufacturer in the world, apparently believes showing a man trying to kill himself in one of their vehicles is good marketing. The ad, called "Pipe Job" and created by the ad agency Innocean Europe, depicts a man taping a hose from a Hyundai ix35's exhaust pipe into the cabin, trying to commit suicide.

It then shows the man sitting in the cabin, waiting to die.

A few frames later, the garage lights come back on, and the man opens the garage door. The tag line is, "The New ix35 with 100% water emissions."

Yes, very tasteful. Maybe if you were brain and dead and haven't been alive for the past three decades. Nothing like making fun of people with mental illness, clinical depression, or a disability, is there Hyundai (and Innocean)??

Warning, we've included a copy of the video below. Do not continue on if you don't wish to watch it.

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5 Things About Life, the Universe & Everything

Admit it: You like reading articles that contain lists. You know the ones I mean. The ones that contain those snippets that'll explain how you can change your life if you follow a five-step plan to being a better person. The five steps to being wealthy; five beauty tips of the stars; five things that will help you beat procrastination, depression or anxiety. Come on, I know you like them -- because I do too!

There's something strangely comforting in looking at these lists and hoping that our life problems can be boiled down into five simple steps. I read them hoping for the answers, because I too want the secret to life, the universe, and everything.

However, I think the reality is this: As much as some lists offer interesting ideas, the majority mislead people about change. They offer false hope instead of facts. They generally encourage people to think their lives can be simpler if only they do those five secret things that may have worked for another person.

Come on, really? Life is so complex and the reasons why we feel and do what we do also are complex.

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Children and Teens

5 Ways to Help Your Kids Use Social Media Responsibly

“For most teens, the Internet is a fundamental part of life,” according to Dana Udall-Weiner, Ph.D, a psychologist who specializes in media literacy. It’s how they communicate and interact. Teens use social media sites like Facebook for everything from casual talks to breakups, she said.

With social media a major part of teens’ lives, it’s important they have a healthy relationship with the Internet. What does this look like?

According to Udall-Weiner, it resembles any healthy relationship: It has boundaries.

It also shouldn’t have to meet all their needs, including emotional, social, intellectual and spiritual, she said. For instance, sites like Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest should never replace face-to-face interactions, she said. Instead, they should supplement them. That’s because online interactions lack the emotional depth and support of real-time relationships. “…[I]t’s hard to know whether someone is trustworthy, loyal, and invested in your well-being."

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Children and Teens

20 Years of Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day

One day, when two of my children were only 4 and 3 years old, they wanted to play “let’s pretend” with their dad and me. My older daughter, as older children often do, declared herself the director.

“You and Dad sit over there”, she commanded. “Now, my brother and I are going to be the father and mother you are the day care center.”

With that, the two of them brought us a couple of dolls, kissed them goodbye and went to the next room.

“What happens next?” I called.

“Oh, you play with the babies and then we go to work for awhile and come back and give you a check.”

“And what are you doing at work?” By now I’m curious about where this is going.

“We talk to people and do stuff and get tired.”

With that, they came back in the room, handed us “checks” made of some coupons I had lying around and took their babies off for bath time and stories.

It was hard for my husband and me not to laugh. They were so serious about it. Ahh. A kids’-eye view of adult life. We go do something mysterious at this thing called work, get tired, and then collect them and real life begins again. That was my first indication that maybe we needed to tell our kids a little bit more about the work that took us away from them all day.

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Children and Teens

Do Kids Have Too Much Freedom?

There are many reasons why kids need parents. They need parents to love them, teach them, support them, take them places and buy them stuff.

But do you know what else kids need parents for? Want to guess? Whatever you’re thinking is probably true, but I doubt it’s the answer I’m thinking of.

Kids need parents to restrict their freedom.

What?! That sounds like heresy in a freedom-loving culture.

Shouldn’t we all have freedom to follow our desires? To do what we want? To venture down the road we find most appealing? Isn’t that what our social movements (civil rights, women’s movement, gay liberation) have been about? Remove the restrictions! We want the freedom to indulge in our inclinations!

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The Power of Commitment & Pursuing Your Dream

“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits to oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamt would have come his way. I learned a deep respect for one of Goethe’s couplets:

‘Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it.
Boldness has genius, power and magic in it!’"

~W. H. Murray

As we ride the planet around the sun, life can sometimes be hard and complicated. We dream of living better lives or achieving great goals. For many, our present lives result from being born into difficult circumstances or surviving tragedies.

No matter where we find ourselves, it is also a result of all the choices we’ve made along the way.

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Children and Teens

Go the $%#@ to Sleep: 3 Tips to Use Threats Effectively

I have read every parenting sleep book that has been published in the last 20 years. I’ve been told by neighbors, mothers, siblings, friends, and strangers why my children don’t sleep and how to make them miraculously nod off.

But 11 years after the first insomniac was born, I’m still exhausted, as I am convinced he emerged from my womb with no need of sleep, and then his sister two years later with the same curse. I’m not sure how it happened, being that I’ve always needed eight hours of sleep to stay sane.

The last two months there has been a lot of cussing in our house after 8 p.m., when we begin the rituals. In desperation I headed to my shelf of expert advice to see if any nuggets in there would apply, or at least not nauseate me. I came away empty-handed. Great intentions. Perfect principles. Wise stuff. Just not going to work on my rebels, who defy traditional rules and procedures.

So I’m back to threatening. However, threatening, itself, can be complicated, and deserves its own guidelines.

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Best of Our Blogs

Best of Our Blogs: April 23, 2013

There is a lot of emphasis these days on narcissistic and selfish behavior. It's true that a consistent pattern of putting yourself first ends up eating at your own joy and happiness. But the same is true if you neglect yourself.

I've met too many people who "pretend" to be giving and generous out of obligation or a fear of being unloved. As a result, they turn resentful when doling out favors. Instead of helping others out of the goodness of their heart, their empty tank of self-love causes them to ask the question, "What's in it for me?"

When you are compassionate with others and generous in spirit, do you also offer that same love to yourself? Putting the proverbial oxygen mask on you first is not an act of narcissism or selfishness. It's a practice in self-care.

How do you counteract being giving to others with giving to yourself? Spend time with people who are compassionate and loving and minimize time with those who are negative and draining. And when you're having a tough time, be as generous, kind, and understanding to yourself as you would be to those you love. Our top post this week will give you more ideas on how to improve your relationship with yourself and that in return should boost your relationship with everyone else.
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When Reality Doesn’t Match Up to My Imagination

Recently, I had a very strong yet puzzling emotional experience, and I realized that I’ve felt before. I wish there were some wonderful term for this (perhaps there is, in German or Japanese).

I was reading a description of someone, and it said, “He lives with his wife and children on the Upper East Side of Manhattan.” As I read this line, I had a fleeting yet complete vision of what that life would be like–the life of a person living with his family on the Upper East Side.

But in the next moment, I realized, “Wait, that’s my life, I live in that neighborhood myself, with my family!”

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