Category: General

Using Pop Culture to Impact Positive Change

Seven years ago, a colleague and I attended an annual conference in Washington DC called the Psychotherapy Networker Symposium. We were excited about meeting one of the key note speakers, John Gottman, a marriage and relationship researcher and expert whom we learned about while in grad school. We kept seeing a man of similar stature walking through the hallways of the hotel but were disappointed each time to realize that he wasn’t John. Upon arriving home and looking at the

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The Gift of Failure

I recently watched a wonderful documentary, The Barkley Marathons, about an ultra endurance trail race that takes place in the Tennessee mountains.  Only 40 runners are accepted into the race each year.  Covering the entire distance of 160 kilometres (100 mile) or more also requires climbing and descending the equivalent of Mount Everest – twice.  To be successful, runners must complete the course in 60 hours.  In most years, none of the racers finish the race.  In some years, only one or

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Secrets to Replenishing Sleep: How many sheep can you count?

The Question: ‘How are you?’. The Answer: ‘Tired’.  The Problem: All too common.  Whether it’s walking through a crowd or sitting in a coffee shop, I hear too many conversations starting just that way.  People are sleep deprived! Makes me wonder if Mr. Sandman is on vacation…so how does one start to improve sleep? Tip 1: Avoid caffeine 4-6 hours before bedtime. Caffeine is a tricky thing.  Some associate caffeine only with coffee or energy drinks.  It’s also in soda,

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You Gotta Do the Work

  I woke up on a recent Saturday morning feeling tired and lethargic.  I thought of my list of things-to-do and decided that the best course of action was to enjoy my coffee in my easy chair. This plan didn’t require as much energy or focus. I waited to feel the motivation necessary to get on with the day.  It didn’t come. However, I knew that if I didn’t force myself to get “up and at ‘em”, the hours would

Posted in General

Marriage Can Be Miserable

When a couple marries, they can be truly miserable if they follow a few simple rules! When life is busy and stress levels are high, it is important to “do one’s own thing.”  Take time to unwind and relax; this is far more important than conversing with your spouse. If a conversation should happen to break out, be sure to react and avoid understanding what is being said to you. Feel free to be upset or annoyed; it is their

Posted in Depression, Family & Parenting, General, Marriage & Relationships, Personal Growth, Stress & Anxiety

The Gifts of Introversion (or being quiet)

Very few people are completely extroverted or introverted, but for those who are closer to the introverted end of the spectrum, please read on.  Extroversion has been seen as the ideal personality type. What we are now recognizing is that introversion is also a normal variation of personality. Research shows that the brains of introverts are more active than those of extroverts. This explains why introverts limit how much comes in, while extroverts go where the action is.  In brief, these mostly

Posted in General

Caught in the Middle: Supporting the Child Through Parental Divorce

Last week I learned that a young couple I know had recently separated.  I remembered their wedding and the promising future they imagined together.  I don’t know the circumstances of their separation but I do hope that they have tried hard to make their marriage work; that knowledge will be important to their children.  I also hope that they are committed to working on an effective partnership as co-parents to their two young girls.  I hope that they are supported

Posted in Family & Parenting, General, Marriage & Relationships

Orthorexia Nervosa: When Healing Becomes Unhealthy

Sally scrolls through her social media and an article catches her eye. She clicks on the link and begins to read about how processed foods can be harmful to health. She resonates with the article and slowly stops eating processed foods such as cereals and canned soups. Sally becomes more curious and starts researching more about food, its production, and the impact on our health. She begins to cut out other food categories believing they are bad for her, such

Posted in Addictions, Depression, General, Personal Growth, Stress & Anxiety, Therapy

5 Tips for Successful Self-Sabotage

We don’t intend to sabotage ourselves.  But if we take the time to observe how we are living our life on a daily basis, we might catch glimpses of how we seem to thwart our own best interests by the habits we keep, the attitudes we hold or the behavior we extend towards others.  Based on over twenty-five years of “professional” observation, I’ve noticed there are common themes in “self-sabotage”.  We can easily sabotage our lives by not attending to

Posted in Depression, General, Personal Growth, Stress & Anxiety, Therapy

EMDR: A Client and Therapist Perspective

EMDR has been used and researched for 25 years, and is considered a highly effective therapy for resolving trauma. Nevertheless, it remains somewhat mysterious and misunderstood. Written explanations can become jargon filled very quickly. Visual demonstrations of the process can raise concerns as it looks strange. In an effort to shed some light on the EMDR process, we offer a personal account of EMDR therapy and a discussion of some common questions about EMDR. Mia: My husband and I suffered

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