Symptoms Articles

How To Handle Two Kinds of Failure

Wednesday, February 4th, 2015

beastI used to see failure as “me.”

If something went wrong, I was the point of failure. Failure was internal, an inevitable part of who I was. I did not know I was seeing myself as failure. If I had known, I might have been able to question what I was doing.

At any rate, this unconscious view was draining. Life was a burden and I was the donkey.

Now, I see failure in one of two ways:

1) Failure can be a real event.

As in – “I gave it my best effort and did not accomplish my goal.” For example, you might run your very best race and someone simply runs faster than you. You failed to win. You lost because you did not have the ability to run fast enough to win that particular race against that particular person.

This is a kind of failure to deal with realistically and accept. You did your best. What did you learn? How can you adapt? What is there to celebrate?

When you can say, “I put forth my best effort. I gave it my all and lost,” it hurts. But this hurt is very, very different than the self-imposed failure of self-sabotage. You can ultimately recover and live with no regrets when you know you’ve done your best.

2) The second kind of failure is an attitude that involves self-sabotage.

I sometimes indulge in this one – an attitude that prevents me from running my best race and letting the chips fall where they may. This attitude is full of excuses, as if I am trying to justify losing so I can indulge in feeling bad.

beastWith this kind of failure, I am finding that it is most useful to visualize it as a little green monster and punch it right in the face. It is not who I am. It’s an attitude. I can symbolize this attitude that doesn’t represent who I really am – in the form of a little green monster. It’s super goofy, yes. But …

20 Mental Health Symptoms of Food-Borne Metal Toxicity

Wednesday, February 4th, 2015

366We typically think that our food supply has to be safe for human consumption, right?

Although this is an assumption that makes us feel better, it is one that could be dangerous. There are, in fact, quite a few toxic metals that are common in our food, air, water and other consumer goods. Known as “heavy metals,” these substances could be affecting your mental health.

Metals are naturally occurring in the earth, and flow through the food chain, ultimately finding their way to your dinner plate – and even into your glass of wine, according to WebMD.

Here, we will tell you about three of these metals.

3 Sure Signs of Inner Conflict

Monday, February 2nd, 2015



Is it inner conflict that holds you back?

Inner conflict can stop you in your tracks and keep you preoccupied with all the wrong things. Rather than produce real, rewarding results in the world, inner conflict would have you spin out on your inner dynamics.

One of the keys to overcoming inner conflict and it’s frustrating symptoms is to identify it. You cannot resolve inner conflict intentionally until you know how it operates in your psyche.

Toward that end, here are three sure signs of inner conflict.

1. The Big Obvious Sign of Inner Conflict

The big obvious sign of inner conflict is that you have a critical inner voice that opposes what you consciously want. The voice tells you things like:

Don’t bother.
You’re an idiot for thinking you can do that.
You’re going to fail.
You’ll never amount to anything.

Here’s the scenario: You want something. You have an inner voice that appears to oppose what you want. This is a sure sign of inner conflict.

2. Inner Conflict That Makes You A Quitter

When you set goals, it makes perfect sense to keep a positive attitude, overcome obstacles and keep going until you get there.

Some of us, however, quit goals too easily. We may suddenly stop trying, “forget” to do what we need to do, or even doubt that it was a good idea in the first place. Quitting goals is another sign that you are conflicted about what you really want.

3. Inner Conflict That Keeps You Spinning Your Wheels

You find yourself saying something like, “On the one hand I want this, but on the other hand I want that. Inner conflict such as this can make decision-making brutal. In fact, it can halt the process entirely, leaving you spinning on your conflict indefinitely.

What to do about inner conflict?

1.  Acknowledge it.
2.  Identify any elements of self-sabotage.
3.  Communicate with your inner parts to find out what they want.
4.  Find resolution through negotiation with yourself.
5. Look for opportunities to fail, then Punch Failure in the Face! I know this last step may seem odd – but this attitude of not accepting …

27 Common, Twisted Thoughts That Block Happiness

Tuesday, January 27th, 2015

If it weren’t for twisted logic, life might be too boring for many of us.

Most people I know, myself included, have a knack for twisting the truth. And some of the time that little twist is a perfect happiness block.

What follows are 27 examples of how you can prevent the happiness that might have been yours. All it takes is a tiny, twisted whisper in your mind.

liespreventhappinessHere are 27 examples of twisted thoughts that block happiness:

1. When I am happy, bad news is coming, because happiness can’t last.

2. When I am happy, I am setting myself up for disappointment.

3. When I am happy, people expect more of me.

4. When I am happy, I have no excuse to be lazy.

5. When I am happy, I am letting my negligent parents off the hook.

6. When I am happy, it will draw too much attention to me.

7. When I am happy, I’ll have to be nice to people I don’t like.

8. When I am happy, I am deluding myself.

Punch Failure in the Face: Here’s How

Saturday, January 24th, 2015

Do you want to eliminate all obstacles in the way of your goals?

You can. I’m going to show you how, right here and now. In fact, you’re going to punch failure right in the face and knock it out.

punch3The process begins by recognizing self-sabotage. Don’t worry. It’s all going to be obvious by the end of this post.

Self-sabotage: the truly nasty tendency to do the very thing that hurts you.

Four Bottom-Side-Up Self-Esteem Tips

Tuesday, January 20th, 2015



Throw out convention.

It’s time for some counter-intuitive tips to increase your self-esteem.

These self-esteem tips work. And they will work for you if you practice them with an open mind.

One of the hallmarks of healthy self-esteem is self-respect. Self-respect involves accepting and honoring every part of you. Let’s stop pretending that our darker natures don’t exist and begin to respect ourselves on every level.

The following tips will move you squarely in that direction.

5 Signs That You are Depriving Yourself of Happiness

Friday, January 16th, 2015

hugs from a young womanHappiness is the result of choices and so is unhappiness. The problem is, many of our choices happen outside conscious awareness.

To increase happiness, you may need to think outside the box. What follows are four ways we commonly deprive ourselves of happiness. They usually occur on autopilot, without conscious choice.

Once we understand them, we can take actions to remedy the negative effects.

Here they are:

1. Suppressing Positive Emotions

Squashing positive emotions that naturally surface throughout the day is shockingly common. In fact, research reveals that suppressing positive emotions is a common yet little-known cause of depression.

This is actually good news. It means that you do have spontaneous positive emotions that surface regularly. If you learn to avoid chasing them away, then these uplifting emotions might stick around longer.

Pay attention to when you feel positive emotions wanting to rise. Then allow yourself to feel them!

2. When you are happy, you get nervous.

The late Nathaniel Branden called it happiness anxiety. It happens when you become nervous after a period of feeling happy. Many people subconsciously believe that happiness can never last. Something will always come along to ruin it.

So, they preempt the bad news by ditching happiness before they are inevitably hurt or disappointed. It’s sort of like breaking up with someone because you’re afraid they’re going to break up with you.

When you’re feeling happy, reassure yourself that if bad news comes, you can deal with it. Until then, allow yourself to enjoy it!

3. You keep yourself distracted.

Some of us stay too distracted and busy to enjoy much of anything. Happiness seems to be related to slowing down.

Making too many commitments, endless to-do lists, lack of personal boundaries (can’t say no), obsession with your electronic device – all of these distractions may be direct obstacles to your inner state of happiness.

4. Obliterating Happiness Through Self-Criticism

There’s no better way to destroy happiness than to criticize yourself. And the relentlessness of it for some of us is astounding. Self-criticism prevents happiness. And it obliterates any happiness that might slip through the cracks.

Self-criticism may …

Weight Loss: How Paying Attention to your Emotions Increases Success

Friday, December 12th, 2014

imagesDo you believe you need a better nutritional strategy in order to lose weight?

Research has shown that, chances are very high that you already know enough about how to eat well and lose weight. That isn’t the problem at all!

Our good friend Dr. Jeremy Dean  from the superb PsyBlog points out that according to research, the greater challenge is self-awareness. Those who learn to pay attention to their emotions are much more likely to make healthy choices and lose weight.

In fact, paying attention to your emotions may be the most powerful weight loss strategy of all.

The study’s authors concluded:

“With a better understanding of how they feel and how to use emotions to make better decisions, people will not only eat better, they will also likely be happier and healthier because they relate better to others and are more concerned with their overall well-being.”

People with emotional training choose better foods consistently. And that is the key to losing weight. And here are some additional, equally compelling facts…

6 Facts About How Emotions Drive Weight Gain and Loss

1. Most people with weight issues tend to eat mindlessly. In other words, their underlying emotions determine what goes in their mouths, not their conscious minds. When you increase emotional awareness, you also increase your level of conscious choice.

2. Most people assume that “comfort foods” reduce stress, while this is a scientifically proven fallacy.

3. Most people, after receiving some basic emotional training, are surprised at how easy it is to make better food choices.

4. Most people discover that the negative emotions they experience after overeating are actually psychological attachments that they have been subconsciously seeking (yes, you read that right – we seek familiar negativity all too often).

5. Many people – based on experience in the AHA Weight Loss Coaching Group, have discovered that losing weight is the emotional equivalent of betraying someone close to them.

For example, if you come from a family that tends to be overweight, then there is often a deeply unconscious expectation to be heavy. If you lose weight, you feel …

5 Simple Steps to Avoid Overeating this Holiday Season

Monday, December 8th, 2014


When you tip the scale on January 2nd, 2015, what number do you want to see? Your current weight plus 10-15 pounds?

I didn’t think so.

The problem is, so many of us succumb to the desire for immediate, temporary tastebud gratification (even though most holiday treats don’t really taste that great if you really think about it).

How do you get past the sudden desire to indulge in junk?

5 Ways to Reclaim your Dormant Positive Emotions

Monday, November 17th, 2014

Inner Adult

If you believe that negative emotions are the only ones people avoid, consider the following.

A psychological study recently confirmed that depression is not caused by the simple presence of a negative state of mind. There is another huge, overlooked factor.

That factor is the avoidance of positive emotions that you already have.

In other words, each of us experiences natural positive emotions that want to surface every single day. Then, something mind-boggling happens.

When the positive emotions start to rise, they get repressed!


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Recent Comments
  • zzizek: I don’t think everything of this is masochism. Some of this points are basicly sadistic. To argue with...
  • Be Brain Fit: Great list! I’ve shared it with my readers. After all, who doesn’t want to be happier? If...
  • Bonnie: The staying with people who hurt you needs to go. It could imply the relationships involved in domestic...
  • Marie Hemel: I do this. In fact my whole family does this, and for every reason you listed. Do you have more...
  • oldblackdog: They all made me smile, too. Better than cats.
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