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Practical psychology for everyday life.

And how you’ll know you’re making progress.

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As Byron Katie, philosopher and author of Loving What Is says: “If you argue with reality, you will only lose 100% of the time.”

When life dishes up something you don’t want or denies you something you do want, it’s human to resist. And that sums up the story of my life — every time I resist ‘what is,’ I’m arguing with reality. And I lose every time.

Sure, I sometimes get what I want but, more often than not, it’s the other way around. The ‘easy, no problems, I have everything I need’ moments of my life are fewer…

Stop sighing at the mention of date night.

Photo by Matheus Ferrero on Unsplash

Want a great relationship?

Or at least a better one than you have now?

It’s a fair aim. Not easy though, is it? Not when you’re busting ass at work, still folding laundry at midnight and that dishevelled person slumped on the couch in their sweatpants will still want to have sex when you’re done.

Ah relationships. I sometimes wonder how any two people stay together, ever. We all get stressed. We all have annoying bits. We all drive each other crazy. But, still, we feel compelled to try. …

Who would you go to lunch with?

Photo by Farhad Ibrahimzade on Unsplash

Who would you most like to go to lunch with?

I know, weird question, but I got asked it recently. There were rules: It was a Lavish Lunch. You didn’t have to pay for it. You couldn’t choose your partner or family. Nor someone dead.

To be honest, I was fine with that. Why would I select my family for a lavish, free meal when I could have toast with them in the kitchen? And a dead person would make for a pretty quiet lunch.

But it made me think about who I admire. Being a therapist teaches you to…

What’s in your Love Bucket?

Photo by Cathal Mac an Bheatha on Unsplash

“I like the bad girls,” my client said.

He was in therapy after his toxic relationship ended. The two years with his ex had taken a significant psychological toll. It had left him mildly depressed, anxious, almost traumatised.

At 33 he’d had three significant relationships, all of them unhealthy. Despite knowing that, he believed there was a high chance his next relationship would be the same.

“It’s like I’m a sucker for punishment. Why do I keep falling for the wrong women?” he said.

Good question. But we needed to explore: Was he drawn to a particular type of woman…

Especially the one about sex.

Photo by nathan gordon on Unsplash

So you want to live big and bold?

Achieve great things? Or, you know, anything at all?

Then you’ll need to step up to the plate and play in the big arena. Which means you’ll have to stare down hard at the things that will threaten your dreams.

We all have bad habits. We all fall at their feet sometimes because THEY FEEL SO GOOD. But, in the end, an obsession with ciggies or porn or food or Netflix might not do us justice.

It might keep us stuck. It might make us envious of others who didn’t do those…

It’s time to give yourself more credit for the little things.

Photo by Gita Krishnamurti on Unsplash

Some people dream of touching thousands of lives with their contributions — but many of us already do that unawares in small ways.

You probably don’t keep score, but some of the tiny gestures you discount as nothing end up making tremendous impacts on the lives of others.

Modesty is good, but so is giving yourself credit

While modesty is an excellent trait , it’s just as important to give yourself due credit for some qualities you possess.

Tony Robbins says: “By giving yourself credit, you actually instil confidence, self-compassion and self-love that will take you to greater and greater achievements.”

Life is not a comparison game, but when…

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Nothing can take away your power without your consent

Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash

I hit a wall.

I felt my creativity juice was sucked out of me after writing listicles and working with clients. I know it’s never them to blame, so I decided to take my creative power back.

I set out to write that feature film script that I promised to finish. Forty pages in I stopped. I wanted to vomit.

Seriously, I felt nauseous and light-headed — which I doubt was attributed to my low blood pressure. It struck me I needed to replenish my creativity; it felt as urgent as saving my sanity.

Instead of turning to the Internet…

Who are you — really?

Photo by Simon Rae on Unsplash

People come to therapy to figure out who they are.

Sometimes, they’re not aware of this. They come through the door seeking relief from the stress, anxiety and pain they are feeling. Validation. A place to cry. Ways to cope. Strategies for feeling less overwhelmed, more fulfilled, calmer, happier.

But, beyond that, they want to know who they are. Which is a smart goal because the more you “get” yourself, the better you navigate the world and all the people in it. The better your quality of life.

So a large chunk of therapy is devoted to helping people get…

And how can we mold music to our goals.

What’s causing your reaction to a certain song? It might be one (or more) of these triggers. Photo by Jamakassi from Unsplash

Humans are the only species that likes and systematically listens to music.

Its ability to induce emotions is like a magnet to us.

We keep returning for more.

But how can it move us to tears or make our whole body feel euphoric?

Let’s dive into music-induced emotions.

#1 — Acoustical features trigger the brain’s most primitive reactions to a stimulus

Music is mostly perceived in its simplest form, as a sound.

Think of it from an evolutionary point of view.

We’re constantly scanning our environment to detect relevant changes for survival purposes. What doesn’t stand out doesn’t need to worry us.

Sudden or extreme sounds activate our central nervous system and they…

On The Couch

Practical psychology for everyday life.

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