Archives for Psychotherapy

Coping Skills

Creating Hope

In 1965 Martin Seligman "discovered" learned helplessness. He found that when animals are subjected to difficult situations they cannot control, they  stop trying to escape. They become passive. Human beings are the same. If you have experienced devastating defeats, a persistent situation that you couldn't change, or experienced terror and been out of control of escape from that terror, then you may have lost hope for your ability to change your life or to change...
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Coping Skills

Loneliness: Additional Survey Results



Soon large crowds will gather in hotel rooms and toast the New Year. Others will party in Times Square and still others will ring in 2013 with a small group of friends. New Year's Eve is generally viewed  as a time for celebrating with friends and can be a particularly lonely time for those who struggle with relationships.

Your survey responses show that for...
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Coping Skills

Open Heart Vulnerability


 

Based on the research on happiness, having close relationships is associated with life satisfaction. At the same time, connecting with others in a meaningful way requires allowing yourself be vulnerable. To connect meaningfully is to shed pretense, to take off whatever mask you wear and allow the authentic you to be present. Brene Brown has excellent TED talks and books that discuss her research on vulnerability.

Emotionally sensitive people tend...
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Coping Skills

Effective Conversations About Difficult Issues


When emotions are high and there are different viewpoints among participants, having an effective conversation can be challenging. In addition, emotions usually run highest when the outcome of the conversation means the most. People get tense and hyper-alert, bracing themselves for the worst. For example, consider your reaction when someone says "We need to talk. "  Most people prepare for a difficult interaction by putting up barriers to defend themselves, not by relaxing and focusing on being...
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Coping Skills

Emotionally Sensitive People and Food


While it's not true for everyone, many emotionally sensitive people tend to use food as self-comfort. Eating is one of those strategies that works in the short-term but can have long-term consequences that add to your stress level.

When you go into your closet and nothing fits, that's a miserable feeling. When your chest is tight and you feel so stuffed with food you can't move, that's miserable too.


One of...
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Coping Skills

What’s Your Story? The Self-Narrative of the Emotionally Sensitive

In conversation with new friends, at some point a version of "What's your story?" will be asked. That question has a deeper meaning than the one given in casual encounters at parties. The deeper meaning of "your story" affects how you interact with the world and with other people.

Everyone has basic core beliefs about themselves, a "story" that reflects their how they see themselves. That...
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Borderline Personality Disorder

More About Understanding Self-Control

Self-control or willpower is the ability to effectively manage your attention, emotions and desires. Understanding how willpower works can help you better manage your emotions and make the changes you want to make in your life.

When you are working to build more effective coping skills, you may find that no matter how strong your commitment to practicing new ways of soothing yourself, solving problems effectively,...
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Borderline Personality Disorder

A Few Thoughts About Saying No


Emotionally sensitive people often have a difficult time with saying no. Some have difficulty saying it at all and others say it too often. Some say it timidly and others say it too harshly. Sometimes out of fear or discomfort people give lots of reasons for refusing a request or invitation or apologize for not being able to say yes though they really may not want to...
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Borderline Personality Disorder

Expressive Writing

When thinking about people who are emotionally sensitive, you might be most likely to think of the individual who cries easily and who shows her emotions openly. But there are many different types of emotionally sensitive people.

Type C Person

In the book The Spiritual Anatomy of Emotions, Michael Jawer discusses the Type C person. A Type C individual is a stoic, a denier of strong feelings and has a calm, unemotional demeanor.

This...
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Borderline Personality Disorder

Understanding Invalidation

Emotional invalidation is when a person's thoughts and feelings are rejected, ignored, or judged. Invalidation is emotionally upsetting for anyone, but particularly hurtful for someone who is emotionally sensitive.

Invalidation disrupts relationships and creates emotional distance. When people invalidate themselves, they create alienation from the self and make building their identity very challenging.

Self-invalidation and invalidation by others make recovery from depression and anxiety particularly...
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