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Free Live Webinar: How to Develop A Daily Practice

In this webinar, our instructor, Victoria Gigante, explains just what a daily practice is for, the different forms it can take, and how it can help each and every one of us. She gives advice on how to start one, and explores the many reasons why people think they are unable to do so. This webinar is free of charge, but registration is required. All registrants will receive a link to the recording.

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How to Feel Normal Again

“The possibility of stepping into a higher plane is quite real for everyone. It requires no force or effort or sacrifice. It involves little more than changing our ideas about what is normal.” – Deepak Chopra

When I was a young girl, I often felt as if I was not normal. It wasn’t that I had a noticeable birth defect or considered myself ugly or stupid, though. My feelings likely stemmed more from a sense that I was too sensitive or fragile or in need of protection and couldn’t stand up for myself. I had an older brother who sometimes was tough on me, yet I loved him dearly. He was my protector against the bullies in the neighborhood. Still, I wondered why I didn’t feel normal. My quest to achieve what I considered to be normal took many years. Maybe some of these hard-learned tips can help others learn how to feel normal, or normal again.
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What a Beautiful Life: The Fulfillment of Failure

Can you imagine things going right on the first try?

It would be fantastically … boring!

Just picture sitting down to center clay on the pottery wheel. Your hands wrap around the mud. Your foot hits the pedal. And within seconds, the job is done. Instead of clay flying out to splatter your neighbor’s face with a roar of laughter, it stays put. Instead of trying and trying and finally learning something new, you simply know how to craft a pot from the start. The sense of accomplishment would be lost. The beauty of brilliant artwork would be commonplace.
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The Basics of Self-Love

“It’s surprising how many persons go through life without ever recognizing that their feelings toward other people are largely determined by their feelings toward themselves, and if you’re not comfortable within yourself, you can’t be comfortable with others.”
– Sidney J. Harris

It is very difficult to find a loving partner if you don’t love yourself. Yes, love. Love means acceptance, compassion and a general positive, even affectionate feeling about who you are. Finding unconditional love from someone else is almost impossible. Everyone has some conditions. But acknowledging and deserving unconditional self-love is the basis for having a loving adult relationship. Why? Because you can’t expect others to love you if you don’t.
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How to Use Writing to Ease Your Depression

After receiving another round of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), which she’d been receiving every other day, Elizabeth Maynard Schaefer, Ph.D., lay in a hospital room and felt hopeless. In the past ECT had “worked wonders” in treating her deep depressions, the devastating lows part of her bipolar disorder. But lately it’d seemed futile.

As she writes in her beautiful, thoughtful, inspiring book Writing Through the Darkness: Easing Your Depression with Paper and Pen, “Desperate, I reached for an empty notebook. My brain was too flat and blurred to put together sentences, so I scribbled a list of words about my situation and slammed the book shut. Immediately, I felt some lifting of the black cloud of depression, so bleak that it scrambled my thoughts and choked my breath.”
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Children and Teens

Perfectionism Among College Students Grows

For many of us, perfectionism is often confused with the genuine drive and desire to obtain excellence. What perfectionism actually is, however, is the quest for the unobtainable.

In this post on perfectionism, Dr. Michael Ashworth explains:

Individuals caught up in perfectionistic thinking or behavior commonly experience significant personal distress as well as chronic health and emotional problems. Such individuals can also provoke extremely negative reactions from others due to their unrealistically high standards and quest to avoid failure and rejection…
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Alternative and Nutritional Supplements

4 Easy Steps to a Better Brain

Did you ever think that the ability for your brain to achieve its maximum superpowers resides well within you? Scientific research suggests that doing just these 4 simple things listed below will help not just preserve your brain power, but maximize it so you can feel like you are functioning well, maybe even at your very best, and feel energized no matter what your age and circumstance of life is.
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10 Small Ways to Create Brighter, More Inspiring Days

Small habits can create significant benefits. For instance, even though I’m often bleary-eyed as I get up, writing before the sun rises, in a still, quiet house, energizes and inspires me. Listening to music often does the same. These small changes have shifted my perspective and the tone for the rest of the day.

Sometimes, we think we need to overhaul our days and our lives in order to feel more satisfied and uplifted. We want to burn it all down and start fresh. But really the smallest activities can do wonders for us.
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ADHD and Adults: When You’re Having a Difficult Day

You wake up, and already feel absolutely drained. It’s as though the energy has been sucked out of your body. It’s as though your brain left the building while you were sleeping. You’re having a hard time concentrating. You can’t seem to find anything, from your keys to your bag to your lunch. Everything feels extra difficult.

For Roberto Olivardia, Ph.D, a clinical psychologist and ADHD expert who also has ADHD, a difficult day is when he feels out of control. “Unexpected traffic, my computer malfunctioning, feeling way behind on the to-do list or too many days of sleep debt create a sense of chaos and stress.”
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Psychology Around the Net: February 3, 2018

Well, ol' Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow yesterday, so we might be looking at six more weeks of winter -- "might," because he's usually wrong.

However, if he's right, there's plenty of cozy wintertime activities to get us through the days and nights when it's too cold or snowy to go out. One of my favorites? Reading! Coincidentally, in this week's Psychology Around the Net we have a list of 10 new mental health books out in 2018!

We also have the latest on the anti-diarrhea medicine overdoses, a psychologist's controversial research regarding how we distinguish physical features of gay and straight people, unusual habits that actually could have health benefits, and more.

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Anxiety and Panic

How to Ditch Perfectionism

I was sitting in a coffee shop with my friend, watching her scroll through Facebook. “I don’t want to deal with another summer. I can’t handle the bikini selfies.”

Summer is still several months away, but I understand the sentiment. On Facebook, everyone seems perfect. Even the photographs themselves are perfectly lit with photo editing software or phone apps that let you clear blemishes or play with exposure. Whether my friend and I are uncomfortable because of seemingly unattainable ‘yoga bodies’ or because destination weddings are a trend, perfection seems not only achievable, but expected.
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