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General

How to Start Loving Yourself

There’s a great quote attributed to Lucille Ball: “Love yourself first and everything else falls into line. You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world.” And you really have to love yourself to love others, and to create a fulfilling life.

However, many of us aren’t sure what self-love even looks like. Once something becomes a buzzword, it tends to lose its meaning and significance. It becomes relegated to a trend. It gets dismissed.

So what does it mean to love ourselves?
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Anxiety and Panic

The Sandwich Effect: Starting and Ending Our Day to Be Our Best Selves

How we show up each day is largely determined by our attitude and outlook. Despite the challenges that we might be facing in the day ahead, what we choose to focus on plays a big role in how we get through our day.

I have had days filled with stressors and hurdles that I have moved through with grace, courage, and presence, while on other days, filled with far fewer stressors, I have plodded through with irritability, negativity or anxiety.

It didn’t have to do with what was unfolding during the day as much as what was happening in the space between my ears. When I wake up too early and can’t fall back to sleep, and focus on thoughts of how tired I am going to be and predictions of doom and gloom for my day ahead, I set myself up for irritability. On the other hand, on the mornings when I wake up too early but sit outside and take in the early morning solitude that I so often miss at this hour, I show up very differently in my day.
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Anger

The Surprising Health Benefits of Swearing

No one needs to tell you that having a potty mouth is crass and vulgar. In fact, ever since we were little children we were told not to curse or swear excessively. While this advice seems well intentioned with respect to social decorum, science says otherwise. In fact, science reveals that a little cursing here and there can actually be a balm for our soul. How so? Let us examine how this seemingly bad habit can turn into something surprisingly comforting when the moment calls for it.
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Anxiety and Panic

Requiem for a Nightmare


I am a recovering praise fiend.  

As a little boy, I would sprint home and unload my day’s events to my nonplussed mother.

“Hi, Mom, I earned an A on my English paper,” I would gush. And then my tone would drop an octave, “But I earned a B on that math quiz.” Dropping my head, I would then sulk to the kitchen table. That B would invoke a night of heavy soul-searching and, at times, self-flagellation (“What happened? How could I get a B on that math quiz?”). While amusing now -- in an awkward, semi-embarrassed way, my self-reporting entailed more than a daily academic update. It represented my unquenchable thirst for praise.
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Habits

Overwhelmed by Difficult Emotions? Take Charge and Calm Emotional Storms


Feelings come in waves, often appearing out of the blue, triggered by a memory, words overheard, pictures or experiences. The more we are trying to reign them in, suppress or ignore them, the stronger and more persistent they get -- if not in the moment then sometime later, even after many years. Many people find emotions bubbling up decades after they thought they had dealt with them or they were no longer relevant.
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Creativity

When Procrastination is Persistent, Pervasive and Pointless

Sure we all procrastinate sometimes. Why not? Let’s see, shall I spend the evening doing mind-numbing clean-up chores or enjoy a good time with my friends? Shall I do tedious paperwork or plop down on the couch and watch my favorite show? It’s never been easy to control our urges, especially when what we “should” be doing goes against our grain.

In the digital world, however, procrastination is even harder to conquer. Accessible, appealing, addictive distractions are everywhere. Beepers beckon. Entertainment entices. Digital devices ding. Social networks seduce. Gaming, blogging, chat rooms, You-Tube, video streaming -- and more -- easily lead us astray. Digital temptations are just so much more seductive. Exciting, fast-paced entertainment actually changes the way our brains operate. If a task doesn’t immediately hold our interest, our minds gravitate to other matters.
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Habits

OCD and Sleep Timing

I’ve been writing about obsessive-compulsive disorder for about ten years now, and my most-read posts, by far, are those that discuss sleep and sleep deprivation. OCD, by its very nature, is unconducive to a good night’s sleep. How can you sleep when you have to continually check to make sure the door is locked or the stove is off? How can you relax when you need to review your entire day in your head to make sure you didn’t do anything wrong? How can you breathe easily when you find yourself ruminating on, of all things, not being able to sleep? Really, as anybody with OCD most likely knows, the possibilities are endless.
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Creativity

Finding Your Creativity

Throughout my life, my most at peace moments were when I spent time being creative. Creativity, in my opinion is a gift from a spiritual realm, in my belief system, it is from God.

Have you ever had a new idea on a book you could write, business you could create or even a painting you could paint? This has happened to me often, and to be honest, these visions and ideas have been coming to me as early as I can remember. A pastor preached one Sunday on the importance of tuning into our gifts that we are born with or God might just give them to someone else who will use them. 
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General

The #1 Skill During Uncertainty: Psychological Flexibility

Life is rarely a smooth ride where everything goes to plan.

There are many uncertainties, unpredictabilities and hiccups along the way. But the more you are able to adapt to new conditions, the less painful the process becomes.

Psychological flexibility includes lateral thinking, the ability - or at least willingness - to adapt to changed conditions, and the resolve to tolerate discomfort. It is the opposite to being mentally rigid, with fixed ideas, set expectations and unbending attitudes. Here are the characteristics to develop or strengthen if you want to enhance your ability to navigate unpredictable events and challenges.
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Creativity

How to Become a More Mindful Person

We all have heard of the concept of becoming more mindful. But what does that actually mean in our everyday lives? Is it strictly tied to various forms of meditation or breathing exercises? It can be, according to the experts, but in actuality it is more practical and something you can even do on a daily basis.

Utilize the ideas below to become a more mindful person, and your body and mind will thank you.
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General

How to Recognize Your Innate Self-Worth

You don’t feel very good about yourself. You search for a boost everywhere. In relationships. On the scale. At a job you don’t even like. Even at the bottom of a shot glass.

You feel the need to earn your self-worth, as though it were a bulletin board with gold stars; stars you earn by performing certain deeds and achieving certain accomplishments.

What you forget—or what others helped you forget—is that you are inherently worthy.
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