By definition, the work therapists do requires our clients to be vulnerable in ways that they probably never experience otherwise in their lives — most clients know this well! What we are all perhaps less familiar with is the ways in which our role requires vulnerability of the therapist as well. In his quintessential work, On Being a Therapist, Dr. Jeffrey Kottler reports that some researchers have wondered whether “therapists are masochists and gluttons for punishment. What else could possibly explain our willingness to spend so much time exploring the darkest recesses of...Read More
When we suffer a loss, all of a sudden a million things demand our attention: making arrangements, handling business, making sure the children are ok and dealing with our own feelings of grief and loss. It’s easy during these stressful times to forget to take care of ourselves. We may think we’re doing fine because we are still getting through the day. Suffering a loss is one of the most emotionally intense experiences we will ever face. Grief affects us emotionally, physically, spiritually, mentally and socially. Your strength will be called upon and challenged in the coming days and weeks....Read More
I’ve been a little depressed lately.
Wait…did I say that out loud?
Doesn’t matter. It’s true either way. That’s right. I’m a therapist, and I’ve been depressed lately. It’s actually remarkable how predictable this sort of thing is for me.
Thinking positively about the people in our lives acknowledges that they have flaws and faults which may have an impact on us, and allows us to make informed decisions about how to interact while still choosing to think of them positively. We do this by learning to expect nothing more than what they are capable of, and allowing ourselves the privilege of feeling warmly toward them about that helpful portion, however small it may be. There is no need for anger or frustration about the rest — we no longer expect it of them and trust them to be who they are (even if that means we...Read More
I reached the apex of my childhood popularity in eighth grade, having rotated into the “most sought after guy” slot relatively frequently to that point with a handful of two or three others.
Then something happened.Read More
Whether we’re celebrating Advent, Hanukah, Kwanzaa, the arrival of Saint Nick, or good old-fashioned family-togetherness, it’s only natural that we look forward to this time of year with hope and eagerness in our hearts.
But sometimes all of that hope and eagerness can begin to look an awful lot like expectations. You know, the kind that inevitably lead to disappointment, frustration, or sadness. They seem especially potent around the holidays.Read More