Understanding Perfectionism, Eating Disorders, and Body Shame

It’s hard to feel good about your body and appearance. From an early age you’re bombarded with messages about what the ideal body should look like. You learned that you should count calories (or cut out entire food groups), workout every day, color your hair, and get a bit of Botox and then you just might look like the airbrushed images in every women’s magazine.

Instead of feeling good...


22 Ways to Love Yourself More

Before anybody else can love you, you have to love yourself.
You've heard this many times before. But what does it mean to love yourself? And how do you actually love yourself?

For various reasons, many of us find it easier to love others than to love ourselves. Sometimes we're truly quite awful to ourselves. We subject ourselves to a harsh inner critic, unhealthy relationships, toxic substances, and self-mutilation. I know how easy...


Using Your Strengths to Get Happier

How do you see yourself? It may be hard to get a realistic picture of yourself, but you do have a choice in how you see yourself. You can choose to focus on your weakness or you can choose to focus on your strengths. When you choose to emphasize your best self, you open the door to happiness - success at work, deep connections, meaningful activities, healthy habits.

It's easy to focus on what's wrong and...


Why You’re Saying Yes, When You Really Mean No

Your coworker asked you to work late for him on Friday. As soon as the yes was out of your mouth, you regretted it. You have plans to go see that new Leonardo DiCaprio movie with your girlfriend. Now, you're going to have to cancel on her.

You were invited to have coffee with some of the moms from your daughter's class. The only problem is you have...


10 Hacks for Preventing Burnout

Jason came to see me looking for help managing his anxiety and stress. He practically lived at the high-tech start up company where he worked. He ate all his meals there, hadn't seen friends outside of work in months, and barely went home to sleep a few hours. Jason loved his job when he started a year ago, but now he couldn't stand his boss who would micromanage...


Are You a Workaholic?

I work as a psychotherapist in Silicon Valley. It’s the hub of the high-tech world. We’ve got technology giants like Google, Facebook, and Apple. It's a center of innovation (think iPhones, Pixar movies, and high-tech start-ups) that attracts driven, creative, high-achievers. It’s the perfect breeding ground for workaholics.

You don’t have to live in Silicon Valley, of course, to be a workaholic.


6 Easy Ways to Stop Criticizing and Improve Your Relationships


Do you frequently criticize your family, friends, or colleagues? Do you focus on their faults? If you recognize (or someone's told you) that you're critical of others, this post is for you.

Some people find it hard to stop themselves from making negative comments about everything and everyone around them. Others hold in their hurt and angry feelings until they can't take it anymore. Then they burst into...


What is Perfectionism?

In my opinion, perfectionism isn't helpful or healthy for most people. However, sometimes people argue that perfectionism is striving for excellence. Striving for excellence is fantastic, but it's not what I mean when I write or talk about perfectionism.

I consulted Merriam-Webster Dictionary for an official definition. The dictionary defines perfectionism as "a disposition to regard anything short of perfection as unacceptable". The word unacceptable is central to understanding perfectionism.

Perfectionism is not the...


Is it Fear of Failure or Fear of Success?

Should you take a chance or should you play it safe? Whether you want to ask someone on a date or run a marathon, there are both potential risks and rewards. Logically you know that if you don't try anything, you also don't gain anything. So, what's holding you back from achieving your goals and living your dreams? It may be fear of failure or fear of success or...


How to be More Assertive When You’re a People-Pleaser

Assertive communication is healthy communication. Communication problems arise when you're too passive (not speaking up for yourself) or too aggressive (yelling, criticizing, or other expressions that are disrespectful or hurtful to others). Neither passive nor aggressive communication gets your message across or your needs met.

If you're a people-pleaser, you probably tend toward being too passive and/or passive-aggressive. You have trouble saying "no." You're agreeable....