The Psych Central Report
Issue 11, December 2005
Finding a New Meaning for the Holidays
Traditionally, Thanksgiving and Christmas have been times for families to come together and celebrate, if not the original traditions of the holidays, then family memories of days gone by that flood the mind and the heart. For some, childhood memories are filled with festivities, warmth, good food, camaraderie and love. These people look forward to more of the same year after year.
For others, their childhood memories aren't so happy. Memories of drunkenness, abuse, arguments and fighting are remembered instead. The holidays are dreaded and are filled with anguish, depression, indecision and anxiety.
Reducing Holiday Stress:
One Woman's Story
It's in the commercial; they're playing it in retail stores, which also have numerous decorations and signs. The music and the surroundings are constant reminders that Christmas is approaching - fast.
It's amazing how quickly the year has gone by. I'm not ready for Christmas. Nope - definitely not. I try hard not to think about it. I ignore all the signs, music, and decorations from stores. I change the channel when a Christmas commercial comes on, and I try not to look at the month on the calendar.
A news update of some of the most important psychology, mental and behavioral health news items from around the 'Net in the past few weeks.
Sharing Yourself Online: Privacy While Blogging
By John M. Grohol, Psy.D.
As blogging has become mainstream and students from middle-school on up through college and graduate school have taken to it as quickly as wildfire, some bloggers are getting caught up in privacy concerns. Bloggers tend to think, "Write about it now, worry about it later," believing the catharsis of writing is more important than the responsibility of privacy.
Since so many bloggers are actually diarists, writing in a free-association style that is cathartic, this is not unexpected. In fact, such an exercise is likely beneficial to the writer and helps them socialize in our connected society (and their very connected peer group). But writers need to understand the consequences of such writing up front, and edit as they go (or go back later to edit accordingly).
The Locked Room
By Alex Williams
At a meditation group I attended recently a therapist talked about the idea that each of us keeps a "locked room" within ourselves in which we store our deepest beliefs, the ones that seem to be a part of us, and which define our lives. These are often beliefs about ourselves which we learned in childhood and which we just can't let go of, even if we really want to. In many cases the beliefs are at the root of behaviours that hold us back throughout our lives. Although we try to keep the door to the room locked, and to move on, these beliefs are so entrenched that they carry a painful emotional charge. This charge hits us whenever we are in certain situations. Health professionals often call these unpleasant experiences, "triggers."
What's New on Psych Central
A listing of updated or new resources added to Psych Central during the month of November 2005.
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