How to be Present

By Holly Brown, LMFT

shutterstock_159921983In this social media-saturated, smart phone world, it’s harder than ever to be present.  And healthy relationships require presence.  Giving someone your full and undivided attention makes them feel valued and secure.  If we never turn off our phone and really focus, how can we expect our children to do so?

Here are some ideas for how to be present, and how to model that for your children.

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Healing Past Hurts, Opening Up Again

By Holly Brown, LMFT

shutterstock_194030540For some people, opening up comes easily (maybe too easily–which leaves them prey to manipulation or rejection or worse.)  Some people never open up at all.  The healthiest approach is the middle ground: Finding a person who is worth trusting, and then taking the emotional risk of opening up.  In many cases, the best way to heal old pain (including childhood pain) is to build a healthy, mutual relationship.

Once you’ve determined that a person is worthy of your trust (for more on how to make this determination, read my post Who Should You Trust), you might find you’re still holding back.  Here are some ideas on how to break that cycle so that you can create connections that heal past hurt, instead of reactivating it.

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Who Should You Trust?

By Holly Brown, LMFT

shutterstock_161941682Once you’ve been burned (especially if it’s by a parent in your early life), it can be hard to open up again.  In some cases, with some people, you really shouldn’t open up.  But how do you know who you should trust, and who you shouldn’t?  And how can you learn to trust yourself to make that determination?

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5 Tips for More Effective Parenting

By Holly Brown, LMFT

shutterstock_177053420These are equal opportunity parenting tips.  They apply no matter the age of your kids (be they toddlers, teenagers, somewhere in between, or even adult children.)  Once you’re a parent, you can’t really quit or retire, so might as well keep doing it better.

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Instant Self-Esteem Boosters

By Holly Brown, LMFT

shutterstock_159890216Maybe you’ve been in a slump lately.  Maybe it’s situational (you lost your job, and the market’s brutal, or are having relationship issues.)  Maybe you’re chronically struggling with self-esteem.  Or maybe I just caught you on a bad day.  For anyone who’s feeling low, these boosters should help.

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Getting in Touch with Your Anger

By Holly Brown, LMFT

shutterstock_134581205Sometimes you need to get angry a little more often.  Here’s why.

 

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Dealing with Difficult People

By Holly Brown, LMFT

shutterstock_175547297We all have occasional run-ins with the disagreeable and the unreasonable.  But what if it’s become a chronic facet of life?  Here are some thoughts on how to handle your relationships (and yourself)!

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5 Tips To Quit Overthinking

By Holly Brown, LMFT

shutterstock_195684722An astute reader commented that thinking can become an addiction.  We spend so much thinking, we forget to really experience our lives.  Here are some tips to break out of that cycle.

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Negotiating with Your Teen

By Holly Brown, LMFT

shutterstock_150999815Sometimes parents want to negotiate with their teenagers but aren’t sure how.  We don’t want to be pushovers, but we don’t want to be dictators either.  So where to start?

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The Parenting Trick That Saves My Sanity

By Holly Brown, LMFT

shutterstock_120028159This one is for all the parents of toddlers out there.  I started doing it three weeks ago and since then, no tantrums (from her, or from me!).  So I thought it was my civic duty to pass it on.

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