Mobilizing your energy is critical towards lifting yourself up from the down feeling, or the lethargy, caused by depression. Yet this stirring oneself to action comes at time when you may feel as heavy as a stone. So how can you even begin? Here is a surefire way to start, and that is all you need to do—just begin.
I saw this story and it had no author attributed to it, and I loved the analogy. It is one I use frequently with clients who are attached to ideas and habits that bring them pain repeatedly.
Having just returned from the Psychotherapy Networker Symposium in Washington, DC, I am bursting with new ideas and approaches to try both professionally and personally. This annual conference has a cadre of instructors that represent the best psychotherapy has to offer in the the field: Jon Kabat-Zinn, John and Julie Gottman, Esther Perel, Daniel Siegel, Bessel van der Kolk, Diane Ackerman, Margaret Wehrenberg just to name a few.
There is so much evidence out there that we humans are great at jumping on bad news and dwelling there, shining our light, and focusing on it because we are wired from an evolutionary/survival standpoint to do just that. However, there is a vast and growing body of evidence from the fields of positive psychology and neurobiology that actively focusing on the small, positive events that occur on a weekly basis deserves our attention.
Last week I hinted about the simplest way to start a habit change. This is a subject that has been written about extensively, and remains difficult for most people. Why?
Habits are a bit like pointillism, a period of art, as in this picture of Georges Seurat’s best-known and largest painting, where he depicted people relaxing in a suburban park on an island in the Seine River called La Grande Jatte.
According to Barry Schwartz in his excellent book The Paradox of Choice, you become a satisficer. You make choices that are “good enough.”
In my last post, I introduced the idea of making a small change in a behavior pattern in order to achieve a new, more positive outcome.
And what about the niggling sense you may have at times when in relationships that something is amiss? Do you trust your gut? Or do you wait for evidence?
If you are trying to actively listen, that is okay. But to really hear someone, you must be truly curious about what they have to say.
PAGE RUTLEDGE, LCSW, CHt | Anxiety Therapy
5006 Randall Parkway (close to UNCW)
Wilmington, NC 28403
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