How to Be a Better Listener

By Holly Brown, LMFT • 2 min read

listening240There’s a lot out there about how to talk to your kids, especially about difficult topics like drugs and sex.  But what might be of greater value to your relationship and to their development is if you become a better listener.

Here are some tips.

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Irritable Much?

By Holly Brown, LMFT • 1 min read

stressedIf you’ve been feeling irritable or short-tempered, there could be a number of possible causes.  Figuring out what’s bugging you, deep down, is the first step to feeling better.)

Here are some potential culprits:

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Aging Well

By Holly Brown, LMFT • 2 min read

shutterstock_54026566I was going to use the phrase “aging gracefully” but honestly, I’ve never done anything gracefully in my life.  I’m more of a lurcher.  And I’m okay with that.

That’s the key point of this blog, and–I believe–the key to aging well: being okay with who and where you are (or if you’re not, figuring out what to do about it, using the wisdom you’ve gained from your years on this planet.)

Where to start?

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When Your Ex is a Narcissist

By Holly Brown, LMFT • 2 min read

So you’re no longer romantically involved, but you can’t cut all ties.  Let’s say you have a child together, or property, or some other link that can’t be easily severed.

Here are some thoughts on how to best keep your sanity through it all.

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How to Stay Calm When Your Toddler’s Melting Down

By Holly Brown, LMFT • 2 min read

shutterstock_93516394I’ve got some pretty recent experience with this one, as my almost three-year-old has been alternating between intensely delightful and intensely–well, intense.

This can apply to your toddler’s tantrums (which tend to be brief) or meltdowns (which are protracted bouts of screaming and oppositional behavior that can go on for minutes to–worst case scenarios–more than an hour.)  What’s key is focusing not on what they’re doing, but on what you should be doing yourself.

Challenging, I know, but here  are some ideas to get you on a better path.

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5 Year-Ending Questions to Ask Yourself

By Holly Brown, LMFT • 2 min read

As one year ends, it’s important to take stock. That New Year’s resolution will never stick if you don’t.   So here are some questions to ask yourself about your mental health, your relationships, and your future.  Ready, set, go! (as my almost three-year-old loves to say.)

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Holiday Survival Guide

By Holly Brown, LMFT • 1 min read

shutterstock_26490736If you’re one of the many people who goes into a downward spiral during the holiday season (or if you love someone who does), this one’s for you.

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Our Children: Our Reflection?

By Holly Brown, LMFT • 2 min read

shutterstock_104434844I think most parents have had this experience: You’re out somewhere and your child (toddler, teenager, anywhere in between) is behaving in a way that you find embarrassing, and that you hope is not reflective of your parenting.  But you feel the shame anyway, and the judgment of others, and you wonder: Is this my fault?  Is my child my reflection?

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How to Stop Comparing and Start Enjoying

By Holly Brown, LMFT • 1 min read

shutterstock_192268793Around the holidays, I notice that people compare themselves more to others.  It’s because this is a time of year when people’s lives seem to be on greater display.  You see other people’s Christmas cards, you see their Facebook and Instagram posts, and all those tidings of comfort and joy can send you down the rabbit hole of depression.

So if you’re getting stuck on the comparison merry-go-round, here’s how to get off.

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Giving Thanks (When It’s Been a Crap Year)

By Holly Brown, LMFT • 1 min read

shutterstock_123420286You might be wondering why I’m even suggesting the idea of gratitude when you’ve had a lousy time of it.

It’s because appreciation beats the alternative: spending your holidays in an extended wallow, reinforcing your helplessness over your life.

If you’re reading, you’re considering. So I hope you’ll read on. This post isn’t about finding a silver lining.  It’s about marshaling your strength so that 2015 treats you better.

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Recent Comments
  • Holly Brown, LMFT: Thanks! I thought it was applicable to a variety of situations and relationships.
  • Marine Pat: Love this. These questions can trickle up to everyone you encounter in your life. i see so many that are...
  • Holly Brown, LMFT: The first question is “What’s my baseline mood state?” It’s in there.
  • Becky: The first question is not listed.
  • Holly Brown, LMFT: Hadn’t thought of the Mean Girl mentality of the stepmother (she’s the ringleader for...
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