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Archives for November, 2012

Recovery

Emotional Addiction

In my continued exploration of habitual anxiety - specifically, mine - I have also noticed a far more disturbing habit at work within me.

I have become addicted TO emotion itself.

I am also starting to suspect I am not alone in this.

Everything in our culture, in society itself, is set up to foster a continual seeking out of emotion - its highs, its lows, its sheer adrenaline rush of...
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Recovery

Attacking Habitual Anxiety

I have been on the warpath of late against what I now call "habitual anxiety".

I have also discovered that anxiety (in all of its forms) makes a formidable opponent.

Habitual anxiety, by my very unscientific and totally unverifiable definition, is that inner state which occurs when a being - human or animal - becomes so accustomed to feeling anxious that any other feeling - including peace - actually feels unnatural or even unpleasant.

I suppose...
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Recovery

Retaining a Sense of Wonder

The older I get, the younger I feel.

And I'm not talking about in my body.

When I was young, I was always teased for being "a little adult". I was so serious! I didn't smile much, and I used big words. I'm not sure why I was like this - I just remember feeling very aware of the weight of the world beginning at a very young age. Perhaps I was depressed....
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Shannon Cutts

The Battle of the Preferences

In my ongoing quest to pounce on and capture inner peace for my very own (a task which to date appears to require sleuthing skills that could qualify me to join the CIA) I have noticed a persistent, repetitive obstacle which it likes to hide behind.

Preferences. Specifically, mine.

I have noticed that I vastly prefer some things over others. For instance, vacation. When offered a choice between work and vacation, I prefer vacation. I...
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Recovery

Learning Peace

I have learned something quite surprising over the last couple of years.

It seems that inner peace - solitude, stillness, equipoise, contentment, serenity - is QUITE hard to maintain. At least for me personally.

It is not hard to learn, it would seem - we all have those split-second glimpses (or I am assuming we all do) of a sudden blindingly clear sense of "all is well"...like finding the perfect comfy warm spot in the...
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Celebrity Mentors

Less Emotion

Recently I watched a surprisingly wonderful movie called "10 Questions for the Dalai Lama".

I am not sure why it was so surprising to me that it was wonderful - perhaps because on that particularly night I was browsing my new neighborhood's vintage Blockbuster store (perhaps the only one left in my part of a city of six million residents!) for much lighter fare.

Yet, in an...
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Relationships

The Limits of Family

It recently occurred to me that I have spent most of my 41 years to date expecting far too much from my family.

I have also been willing to give far too little in return for what I was expecting them to be able to offer me.

Family, I have discovered, is comprised of people. My people (much as I may wish to believe otherwise) are not programmed differently than other...
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Animal Mentors

Learning How to Greet Stress When it Arrives

My bird, Pearl, is always freaking out about something.

Whether it is the sight of a butterfly flitting by outside, the sound of my large silver hairdryer, or the experience of watching Mommy round the corner and disappear from her line-of-sight view, the phrase I speak most frequently to my diminutive grey and white avian companion is a soothing, "Don't worry".

She never listens.

Freaking out is in a cockatiel's nature, as it turns...
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