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12 Tips to Get Motivated When You’re Stuck in a Life Rut

Don't worry: It's only a temporary rut.

It's common to look at unproductive people and just call them lazy. After all, we all know what laziness "looks" like. We've been lazy ourselves, but it's been a temporary, short-lived condition, and we move on to pursue our goals and dreams with plenty of determination.

But what happens when we lose that determination, and why do we lose it? Have we become one of the "lazy" people we've been so quick to condemn in the past? Or has fear taken over and stopped us dead in our tracks?

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The Brilliant Way We Avoid Our Emotions

Mary picks a fight with her husband at night so she doesn't have to deal with her sex anxiety. Looking for what’s wrong with her husband distracts her from her discomfort and the feelings of vulnerability that are causing her anxiety in the first place. By not directly addressing her core feelings with her husband, Mary misses an opportunity to be understood and problem-solve.

Michael doesn't feel settled or at ease with himself unless he drinks beer after beer. The alcohol calms his physical tension and mental anguish, but that strategy for dealing with his underlying pain is not sustainable. Eventually his drinking will lead to health and relationship problems.

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6 Ways to Cope with the Limitations of Depression

“I ask not for a lighter burden, but for broader shoulders,” says a Jewish proverb. A member of my online depression group, Project Beyond Blue, posted it recently. I asked them for ways they cope with the limitations of depression because I needed inspiration.

My kids have had maybe eight full days of school since before Christmas break. This is a big problem for a highly-sensitive manic-depressive whose desk is in her son’s bedroom. Every time I get a coherent thought -- which isn’t often -- I am interrupted by a yelp or some gross twerking motion, thanks to Miley Cyrus.
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Inspiration & Hope

You Have Permission to Cut Off Your Abuser

I know that other abuse survivors go searching for confirmation that it’s righteous and acceptable to cut their abuser out of their life forever. But when you’ve been abused by your parent, sibling, or other family members, it’s rare that anyone will tell you, "It’s unresolvable" or "Walk away from the relationship completely."

Recovery from child abuse was always bringing up conflicting attitudes for me. 
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Now that I’m Married, How Do I Talk to My Spouse?

A successful marriage requires falling in love many times, always with the same person. -- Mignon McLaughlin
Can you imagine your partner and yourself holding a weekly formal meeting? The idea might intrigue you, but what if it turns into a gripe session or a series of demands?

Knowledge is power, so it’s best to learn how to hold a successful meeting with your spouse before actually trying one. I wrote Marriage Meetings for Lasting Love: 30 Minutes a Week to the Relationship You’ve Always Wanted to provide this information.

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5 Reasons Not to Go Home for Christmas

“Oh, there’s no place like home for the holidays...” So begins one of the Christmas songs that is incessantly on the radio this time of year. The song celebrates the holiday fantasy of a happy family going on a sleigh ride, enjoying themselves around a table laden with holiday foods or gathering around a warm, homey fire. The strong cultural mandate to go “home” is hard to resist. But there are good reasons for staying put in the new home you’ve made.

It’s hard to disappoint the people who will be disappointed, but maybe the healthiest thing you can do for you and yours is to take a bye this year.
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How Internet Addiction Almost Ruined My Life

Is my life that attached to the Internet, or was I using it as an escape from life altogether?

It was nearly a decade ago that I transitioned into a career that involved working almost entirely in the digital space, and social media began to take over my life.

Since basically forever, the online world always held a certain siren's call. ICQ and LiveJournal, IRC and Friendster. I illustrated my mood via cryptic AIM status messages, and exhibited deep feelings of hurt when I'd put someone important to me in my MySpace Top 8 and they didn't do the same for me.
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Brain and Behavior

Head. Heart. Repeat.

We can restore contact with our emotions even after years of them being buried. Psychological suffering, symptoms, and even character armor (the tough defenses we erect to protect ourselves from vulnerability and hurt) can be reversed because our brains are pliable. We have heard much in recent years about neuroplasticity.

Contacting emotions is not enough though. We need to utilize them as a catalyst for change for the better. On our own or with a therapist, we can transform our shame, guilt and anxiety and begin again to sense our core emotions (sadness, fear, anger, joy, disgust, excitement, sexual excitement).

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Anxiety and Panic

Psychology Around the Net: November 28, 2015

Happy Saturday, Psych Central readers!

If you live in America, chances are this was a pretty...eventful week for you, what with the Thanksgiving holiday and the ever-controversial Black Friday.

We hope today is a day a peace and relaxation, and we've gathered all the latest mental health-related news across the 'net to help you settle down and refocus.

This week, you'll learn more about how to manage the holidays when you have anxiety, the most important things everyone should know about seasonal depression, and the one thing you're likely not doing for yourself if you're unhappy.

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Memory and Perception

Tell Your Therapist About the Abuse

“Unresolved emotional pain is the great contagion of our time -- of all time.” ~ Marc Ian Barasch
Imagine you are seeing a therapist and have an abuse history. It's safe to assume that you've already talked to the therapist about the abuse. Right? It would make sense, and yet, again and again I hear other abuse survivors say they've postponed talking to their therapist about the abuse.

The phrase “child abuse” becomes easily stuck in a victim’s throat. The abuser may distort the events that occurred so we aren’t sure of what happened. Sometimes, we’re so young when the abuse occurred we barely understand what was going on. Memory also plays tricks. In an attempt to insulate us from terrifying experiences, memory can become a block of Swiss cheese with holes in it everywhere.
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7 Tips for When Your Young Adult Children Move Back Home

Are you the parent of a young adult who has recently moved back home? If so, you’re not alone. Turns out, according to a 2015 study from the Pew Research Center, one in four young adults ages 18 to 34 are now living with their parents.

The reasons young adults are moving home in record numbers is part economics -- massive student loan debt and outrageous rents in many major cities. But Jeffrey Griffith, Education and Career Specialist at Yellowbrick -- a psychiatric facility based in Evanston, Ill., that focuses on treating those ages 17-30 -- says it’s also partly a result of closer relationships that this generation of parents have developed with their children.

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Getting the Most out of Imago Couples Therapy: Reframe, Remember, Resolve

Couples therapy is a time for learning and growing as a couple. It’s a time to take a moment to sit down in this fast-paced world and really listen to what your partner is saying. Whether you’ve been going to couples therapy for years or are about to have your first appointment, these tips can help you make the most of marriage counseling.

Reframe your belief about couples therapy.

It is not a sentence for bad behavior. It is an opportunity for educational growth. It helps you to become more conscious and learn about yourself, your partner and what is really going on in your relationship.
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