Clinical psychologist, writer. Editor of On the Couch: Practical psychology for everyday life. karen@onthecouch.co.nz

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And why you won’t stay there.

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Image by Jason Goh from Pixabay

I was at a networking event way back when no-one wore masks.

We were all standing around with a drink pretending to be cooler than we really are. With two big events on in our city at the weekend, one woman asked us all: “which conference are you going to?”

When I gave my reply, she raised an eyebrow: “Really? But that conference is for Ordinary Women.”

I tried, probably not very successfully, to hide my smile. Imagine the horror of spending a weekend with Ordinary people? Imagine the nightmare of being Average?

We’re all different, but the same

In a dog-eat-dog world, we’re terrified of being Average. Sick to the stomach with the thought of not making the most of ourselves, of not Making Our Mark on the world. Of not soaring as high as we can soar. …


But I probably wouldn’t have listened to.

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Photo by Aron Visuals on Unsplash

“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.” — Benjamin Franklin

I didn’t set out to become a relationship coach.

But every therapist quickly learns it’s an essential part of the job because relationships are such big players in our lives.

We learn that good relationships are the source of so much happiness and, when they go wrong, so much pain.

And that helping people understand and improve their intimate relationships is often best way to help them improve their lives.

We each have our own relationship “journey” and that means learning some things the hard way, down in the trenches. But, if you’re up for a shortcut, here are some things to ponder. …


“It is what it is. But it will be what you make it.” — Pat Summitt

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Image by Pexels from Pixabay

Are you mentally strong?

The bulletproof few will be nodding their heads. But most of us have times when we wobble under pressure. When we feel more paper than rock.

That’s okay. If we want to go anywhere, do anything, with our lives — if we want to take risks — we’re going to feel the heat. Sometimes to boiling point.

And, even if we’re content with where we’re at, there’s no escaping the ordinary stress of 21st Century life.

The trick is to build your mental game. Not in the way Navy SEALs do it. You don’t have to spend weekends crawling through mud or scaling mountains with packs on. …

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