You are in charge of your own behaviour

How many of us go pop! in response to the jagged threats of narcissism, bullying, or passive-aggressive behavior? How many of us try and set appropriate boundaries in life? Reflecting back on this year, I am horrified at what I permitted inside the confines of my personal bubble: negative nonsense …

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Point out common ground

Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself. We sometimes walk in unusual environments that are unstable underfoot, such as while on a boat at sea, or inside an aeroplane in turbulence. Walking while the ground moves - something deeply unnatural and unsettling - can demonstrate how the vestibular system …

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Outside the family

If you have a particular urge for a food, you are probably not hungry, but you are simply greedy. If, on the contrary, you eat the first food on your way, then you are probably really hungry. Find another way to fulfill your emotional needs and eat only when you …

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Be a broken record

Better late than never, of course! Unfortunately, it has taken some of these students a decade or more to learn this lesson. Because I don't know why Julia didn't respond to my text and whether or not she is annoyed by texts like that, I will make a point of …

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Why is meditation important?

Note that each of these thoughts is a particular type of desolation (to use Saint Ignatius' term), because each one makes it more difficult to draw near to God or to cooperate with his grace. These thoughts make it harder to pursue meaningful, intimate, and virtuous responses to our problems …

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It's ok to ask for time

The person who catastrophizes lives in a perpetual state of "But what if? What if?" When feelings are not dealt with, they become bottled up and create a blockage, both personally and interpersonally. This, in turn, isolates you from yourself and your world. The fastest and surest way to become …

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Learn what you can

The picking on each other started and continued. "If she could drop just a few pounds." "That laugh is so shrill." "Those socks are too short," and "I can't stand the way he drives." "He watches way too much TV." "She is so uptight about money," your parents might have …

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Plan for the unexpected

Instead she must adapt a false self in order to cope with her world. This is a coping mechanism or facade. The compulsive drive to feel whole, complete, adequate, and euphoric in any form comes from the innate emptiness or void inside. The pursuit of inner peace or wholeness takes …

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Stand up for what you believe

My first experience with brain freeze was on my first test in college. It was a chemistry test, the first test in my life that I had any doubt about. I wrote my name on the answer sheet, looked at the questions, didn't have a clue, and froze. My brain …

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Discover your rainbow

But where do the "I cant's" originate? How do they become imprinted? When do we internalize them as our own? Why do we do this? These are good questions and deserve a thoughtful response, but first it is essential that the issue of loyalty be addressed. Your parents brought you …

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Expressing an opinion

Wrong! In fact, achievement perfectionists are likely to be in a state of constant anxiety, whether or not they are producing good prose. They never know when the productivity might come to a screeching halt. If Julia has been mean or disrespectful in the past, it may very well be …

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Giving and receiving praise

I texted my friend and didn't get a response! How could I NOT feel anxious and upset?" The problem is that this statement assumes that everyone would feel the exact same way about this event as you do. Although many people feel anxious when a friend doesn't text them back …

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Implementing your plan

Not if we have ADD. That was on the notes home from school, "Johnny needs to try harder." Then we had to deal with the reaction from home. "Why don't you try harder?" (the underlying meaning of Wilton's "You can do better." ) This had a significant effect on us, on …

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When things get hard

I do. Interestingly, Dotty notes that she has also become less critical of other people and she is getting along better with some of them, not just with her husband. Therapy can produce some wonderful results. Flare-ups are a normal part of life for those with persistent pain. Many flare-ups …

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Your gut knows best

In the 1960s, my dad was an astute businessman, entrepreneur, and an avid runner. As a preteen, I can recall many times I'd joined him as he ran around the lake in Denver, Colorado. Being so young and not really understanding the health benefits of running, one day I asked …

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Can i really change this?

The people in one group were asked to sit or stand in `power poses'. Some were seated at desks, asked to put their feet up on the table, look straight ahead and interlock their hands behind the back of their heads. Others stood straight, feet apart, head up and hands …

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Why we resist self-care

He drew a breath and said, "You're bigger than those stacks of papers, David. Just do it!" My neighbor's words made me feel worse. The two of us batted the topic back and forth like a tennis ball. He would say, "You have power over these things." Then I'd reply …

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How to worry constructively

And here's what most of us don't see and understand - it's all just a mirage. It's not real. The people you're watching who appear to have these flawless lives are painting a picture of what they WANT you to see - not what's 100% accurate and true about themselves. Athletes, musicians …

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Problem-solving communication

I don't allow myself to put them anywhere else, not "just for now," not "just this time," not "because I'm busy." No. On the front table. I do not leave them in my jacket pocket. I do not lay them on my desk or on the bureau top. I put …

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Dealing with stress

Giving up a long held belief or lifestyle, even one that works against you, isn't easy. Beating up on yourself doesn't help, nor does trying to hurry the process along. Like a cigarette smoker who only wants to stop smoking--but never gives stopping an honest try, wishing alone doesn't help …

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Do i have time to do what i would like to?

During this stage you become aware of what is happening but seem unable to do anything about it. This is the awareness stage: for example, realizing the ways in which you make yourself feel anxious by seeing everything in all-or-nothing terms but not being able to stop. You now have …

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Persistent pain and sleep

If, on the other hand, he contributed effort, or in some way assumed responsibility for the task, either of those options would probably go a long way towards insuring the outcome that the habitual procrastinator so desperately seeks. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is an overall term describing a range of …

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Procrastination and depression

Stop allowing things to get in your way. Stop allowing people and things to make your job harder. Do what's necessary to make absolutely sure the path to your goals and getting your act together is clear and free of distraction. Then, keep it that way. We're spending time on …

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Take what other people say to you in stride

opening your presents Christmas morning rather than Christmas Eve." He continues on to further list his preferences and opinions. Now we have a deeper idea of who the character is, what he values. Using that as an example, and with input from my friends, I made a list of my …

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Getting angry has its perks

Another variable is age of onset--the age at which you first experience your depressive symptoms. The earlier the age of onset for unipolar or bipolar depression increases the probability of a return of depressive illness. Severity and length of depression, sometimes called "chronicity," will heighten the odds for relapse and …

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How do my beliefs affect me?

What values do you have about the role of religion or spirituality in your life? What values do you have related to your physical health and emotional well-being? What does it mean to value self-care? Is this something you value? Why or why not? Psychoanalysis is a deep-exploration therapy whose …

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Developing the willingness to change

Reaction formation made her seem overly kindly when on the inside she was boiling with rage. Her perceptions of others were tinged with distrust, a mild form of compromised reality testing that left her bereft and with little hope for a better life. Farther down the gradient are defenses that …

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Honest empathy

Taking a walk in nature is an escape that is good for your body, your emotions, and your brain. Watching a favorite comedy is another escape that won't complicate your life or add to your stress after the credits roll. Finally, you can cultivate healthy habits that you can practice …

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Stop seeking likes

But you don't have to go the whole way to reap benefits. The benefits start right away, and they pile up over the years. It is a cumulative function: the more you sit, the more you learn about the real nature of your own existence. The more hours you spend …

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Sharing news of success with the other

At the time, going to the gym couldn't have been easier--the fully equipped facility was located in my apartment complex. I couldn't blame my no-shows on traffic, nor could I blame it on membership dues, because membership was free for residents. Even taking a long walk would be better than …

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Building your self-esteem and confidence

statistics, 60 percent of depression sufferers between the ages of twelve and seventeen fail to get any form of treatment. Of those who do get treatment, only 19 percent receive both psychotherapy and medication. For the rest, almost all receive counseling alone, with only 2 percent receiving some form of …

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Fight, flight or freeze

The experience of pain is like a complex symphony; every pain experience is unique and each person's brain will play a different "pain song" when it processes danger messages. After the pain signals have traveled to the different areas of the brain, the brain automatically decides how best to interpret …

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Make each goal as specific as possible

As the saying goes, it is about the journey, not just the destination. Absorbing this attitude can help you create an optimal psychological environment for success. Recognize that positive expectations create a virtuous cycle and a self-fulfilling prophecy! Whether you like it or not, delivering and getting results is how …

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