Recently, I found myself in the presence of someone who was continually spouting shallow, gossipy, racist and demeaning comments about others. I can't stand this type of talk. It really triggers me. I felt myself becoming increasingly tense, indignant and self-righteous. Then I remembered the principles of Shadow Work. Five Step Shadow Work...Read more
What do positive psychology and Ghandi have in common?
This definition of positive psychology should make it obvious...Read more
John was confused.
He came to see me saying, “I don’t know what to do.” As his confusion grew, so did his anxiety and sense of pressure. He was in danger of making a quick decision, thinking it would put an end to his misery. He was about to jump from the frying pan into the fire. I needed to slow him down, and lead him through a path of discernment.
It Used to Be Easier to Hear Ourselves Think...Read more
Resistance to change is natural.
We all do it, often in ways we are not conscious of. This resistance to change can take many forms including addictions, physical illness, accelerating activity, lethargy and depression. (For a wonderful brief read on how insidious resistance is, read The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles. It applies to all of life, not just creative endeavors! It should be required reading for anyone on the path of transformation.)
A plant that is expected to grow in the same pot for too long will become root bound.Read more
Do you suspect that you (or someone you love) are feeling overwhelmed a bit more often, or a bit more easily than others?
The highly sensitive person phenomenon is real. Most experts say that 15% to 20% of the population responds more to the subtleties in their environment. This can easily lead to overwhelm and exhaustion. Highly sensitives need coping skills even more than others. ...Read more
I have never separated Mind Body and Spirit in my psychotherapy practice. I know that if I assign my clients homework in each of these arenas their transformation and healing is accelerated.
Strategy of the Spirit # 13 is called Embody Thyself. Why?
- Your thoughts and emotions have an immediate and profound impact on your body, health and wellbeing. If you are serious about maximizing wholehearted living, you will bring your body along for the ride.
Without the Body, Your Spirit Doesn’t Have a Leg to Stand On. ...Read more
Psycho Spiritual maturity does not happen without doing what is called "Shadow Work".
Recognizing and integrating your psychological shadow is one of the four "essential" spiritual transformation practices. (The other three are: some form of meditation /brain training practice, a "lectio divina" practice, and embodiment practices.)
Shadow Work is Strategy of the Spirit #12
Simply put, shadow work asks us to become whole and integrated. It challenges us to become comfortable with both our light and our shadow....Read more
Denial is a very normal defense mechanism that ALL of us employ (knowingly or unknowingly) throughout our lives. Your elephant may be enormous or tiny, a putrid green or a pastel pink, but at some level we are all in denial somewhere in our lives. By becoming conscious of denial, we learn where our growing edge is. It is only when we let ourselves be aware of an issue that we can choose corrective action. It is only by responding appropriately to life's challenges that we have the opportunity to restore our integrity, dignity and self-esteem.
Denial can be profoundly helpful, even lifesaving at times. ...Read more
“Personal growth” and “personal transformation” just sound like more narcissistic new-age psychobabble to me sometimes.
Yet change is inevitable, no matter what era you were born in. Things change. We are meant to change, continually, throughout our lives. It is a non-negotiable of psycho-spiritual maturity that we accept this and allow life to teach us and to refine us. We are meant to revise our opinions, our perspective and our behavior over time. We either grow up or we grow down. We learn how to rise above the status quo, or we stagnate. ...Read more
Procrastination can be a struggle for me sometimes.
Just in the past week I found myself:
- Looking at Pinterest way too much, checking Facebook and email way more than necessary
- Deciding I needed to dye clothes, make soup stock, clean out birdhouses
- Taking a nap even though I’ve gotten plenty of sleep
- Researching (yet again) how to raise backyard chickens
In short, just about anything BUT, engaging in my truly worthy “to do” list of the day,
So, I decided to look up some facts about procrastination and its serious, debilitating, spirit-robbing effect on our lives and relationships. ...Read more
“Wellbeing” and “work / life balance” sounded like an annoying foreign language to Frank when I first met him.
Frank had been sent to attend a 6-session Mind Body Wellness program by his doctor. He attended only "to get his wife to stop nagging him” and to prove to his doctor that his prior three heart attacks had nothing at all to do with his lifestyle or emotional patterns. ...Read more
That is the first question we should be asking ourselves. Goals based on striving for individual personal achievements, desires, acquisitions or appearances may be missing the point. Ultimately, they are not as rewarding as goals that focus on amplifying core values. ...Read more
Why you need to make more time for friendship
"Social Capital" is the fancy psycho-babble term for friendship: the amount of positive social connection we have in our lives. Regular positive social interaction is vital to our physical and emotional wellbeing. Yet in the past thirty-five years it has been plummeting. Your mother was right: who you hang out with, and where, is of vital importance to who you can become and how you will experience yourself. What our mothers could not have predicted was the disturbing decline in "live" friendship and wholesome human interaction that has been happening these past decades. ...Read more
I have often surprised my psychotherapy clients by the homework I give them.
People sometimes come to a therapist with the idea that simply talking about their issues and analyzing them intellectually will heal them. I am here to tell you that, yes, the insight gained this way is important, but it does NOT necessarily create the desired shifts in behavior or experience.
I will sometimes have my clients read or listen to certain fairy tales to help prepare them for needed change and healing. Consciousness researcher, Robert Ornstein, highly recommends fairy tales, parables and teaching stories as classic methods to strengthen holistic consciousness.Read more