DBT

Tough Love Therapy

Is there a place for tough love in therapy?  Or should therapy be about unconditional acceptance?

There are many schools of thought on how to conduct therapy.  A new dichotomy seems to be growing between those who favor tough love and those who focus on acceptance.

In a recent Wall Street Journal Article, clients and therapists discuss how with “tough love” therapists try to eliminate their client's whining.  These therapists might limit what...
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DBT

Give Back to Mom on Mother’s Day

Wondering what to give mom for mother’s day?  How about a little gratitude?

Motherhood can be rewarding, but often it’s hard.  It can mean sleepless nights, worry, letting go of your own desires to prioritize those of others, making difficult choices, making mistakes, going unrecognized and at times, feeling powerless.

We each have a unique relationship with our mothers and the mothers in our lives (for example, wives, aunts, grandmothers or...
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DBT

Practical Strategies to Boost Your Willpower: Part II

In part I, which was posted on May 3rd, I discussed how people often engage in problematic behaviors, such as over or under eating, drinking and smoking in response to stress.  In an American Psychological Association survey on stress, people reported lack of willpower as preventing them from making the lifestyle and behavior changes recommended by a health care provider.

In order to improve their willpower, women said they needed to decrease...
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Depression

Heroes of Hope: Building Resilience for America’s Children

What do Jamie Lee Curtis, Cyndi Lauper, Goldie Hawn, Hershel Walker and Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius have in common?  They have all been involved in shining a light on the importance of every child’s mental health.

Recently, I had the pleasure of interviewing Gary M. Blau, , who is involved in wide variety of programs designed to improve the lives of children and families and who has been working to...
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DBT

The Most Ignored Strategy For Staying Motivated

Are you trying to make positive changes in your life?  When we want to do something differently, say, to stop smoking, curb our temper or exercise more frequently, we often start with enthusiasm.  But habits are hard to change. After an initial burst of energy, it’s easy to fall back into old patterns of behavior.

What we too frequently ignore when we try to make changes is what is happening...
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DBT

Practical Strategies to Boost Your Willpower: Part 1

Many Americans experience stress on a daily basis.  To better understand the stress faced by average people in America, the American Psychological Association (APA) conducts an annual survey to determine where our stress is coming from.

The levels of stress you experience can have significant negative effects on your life.  Often people engage in problematic behaviors, such as over or under eating, drinking and smoking in response to stress.  These types...
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DBT

Quotes to Inspire Mindful Living

Mindfulness is the simple yet complex act of being present in the moment.  It is paying attention, on purpose.  Mindfulness might mean noticing the swirl of milk that rises in a freshly brewed cup of coffee or the touch of a breeze on the back of your neck.

When mindful, we do not judge. Instead we notice and observe what is. In doing so, we let go of mental clutter, are released...
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DBT

10 Signs of a Confident Communicator

How you interact matters, as much as and sometimes more than, the words that you say.  Imagine someone asking for a raise.  One person does so with a smile and straightforward gaze, while another says the same words with a frown and stares at her shoes and hangs her head.

Your body language and style not only affect the outcome, but also the way you feel.  Sometimes we interact in ways that wear...
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DBT

What to Say When Someone Takes Advantage of You

“Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.” Dr. Suess

Situation:  Someone “borrows” things from you and doesn’t return them

Try this:  Explain the situation, “I’m out of cash and need the $5 you borrowed.” Express how you feel, “I keep worrying about it and I’d be relieved to have it back.” Ask (and possibly offer a solution), “can...
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DBT

10 Thoughts that May be Stressing You Out

Much of the strain and conflict that causes stress in relationships occurs when your wants are consistently side-lined by your internalized sense of how you should behave.

Are you stuck “doing the right thing” while sacrificing what you want? Often, we're stressed out not because others are expecting things from us, but because we expect them from ourselves. These internal “shoulds” may have originated in external expectations, moral codes or rules that you...
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