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Sarcasm Is Contempt

sarcasm

Sarcasm is an odd issue to tackle. The reason is that it is highly contextual, often subtle, and totally ubiquitous. My title says “Sarcasm is contempt” but that is 100% dependent on the context in which it is being leveled. Here is an example:

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Procrastination: Why Bother?

procrastination

There are many reasons why people engage in procrastination. Here’s my opinion of the top five, and how to get off dead center when you’re “in the stew.”

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Unlearn Your Inner Bully

inner critic

What do I mean by your inner bully? Simply put, it is self criticism. And why would you want to put a cork in that beast? And furthermore, why bother, since no doubt you think being self critical is a valuable habit that will improve your performance and keep you safe. The paradox is that the self criticism will stop you from doing something that you fear failing at, or that might result in a painful consequence like rejection.

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Social Worker, Psychologist, or Psychiatrist: Who Ya Gonna Call?

social worker, psychologists, or psychiatrists

Definitions are in order for these three designations: social worker, psychologist and psychiatrist. How else will you know the answer to ‘Who ya gonna call?’ Recently the local newspaper had a front page article in the “Your Health” section called “No Room On the Couch.” I was quite happy to see this coverage, especially in light of the opioid epidemic. And I am going to say right up front there are no easy answers to this problem. The mental health profession can be draining and not particularly financially rewarding compared with other medical endeavors, but the job is unique in its reward system. By that I mean it is always interesting and challenging, and the joy received from seeing an individual make connections that lead them to live better lives is hard to describe. I get to see the lights go on! So, on to definitions, and how to decide who to call for what.

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Anxiety: Rumination Or Seeking Certainty?

rumination

People who know me understand how I define anxiety. One version is rumination. This is when you are focused on the past, on memories about something that occurred. Perhaps it was a conversation that went wrong, or you are worried about someone’s opinion of you in those circumstances. Or it is this…

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Fortune Telling: You Should Just Know What I Need

fortune telling

One thing I often hear about partners, spouses, and coworkers–indeed, even bosses, is that the person feels they “Should just know what I need” because the person with this particular narrative has been with them for umpteen days, months, or years. But have you said this to them? Ever? “Well, no, but they should just know!” In other words, you expect them to get out their crystal ball and engage in a bit of fortune telling.

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Curious About Emotion

curious

I am so fascinated by why emotions have such a low value in our culture. People are simply not aware of the power their emotions exert over their behavior. They do not investigate them. They are not curious about emotion. And Brené Brown’s research has shown that people who do investigate their emotions have learned to do so in one of three ways. How I wish they were as curious as this little boy staring at his fish!

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What’s Your Score?

trust

What’s your score? I mean, do you know your credit score? Equifax has certainly been in the news lately for their huge data breach. “There’s a good chance that you’re one of the 143 million American consumers whose sensitive personal information was exposed in a data breach at Equifax, one of the nation’s three major credit reporting agencies” according to the FTC (Federal Trade Commission). That is one whopping betrayal of trust of sensitive financial data. This got me thinking.

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Nine Things When Lonely

lonely

Being lonely is part of the human condition. We all succumb once in a while. Here are nine things when lonely you can do to change your mood. And remember, moods and feelings come and go. That is their nature. I would love your comments, and invite you to add the “tenth thing” to the list. You will have to read to idea #7 to understand the photo here!

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Hypnosis: No Conscious Control

hypnosis

I get a lot of requests for hypnosis, so today I want to share my personal philosophy about its therapeutic use. Generally, it is best used for an activity or thought you have no conscious control over. In other words, it just happens. Examples include cravings, insomnia, migraines, and panic. It has been used successfully in treating IBS, pain control, and  boosting the immune system during chemotherapy. I consider it to be one type of intervention best used in conjunction with an understanding of other emotional and behavioral issues you might be experiencing. Here is a picture of what it is not: a magic wand.

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