Self-Help

Find support for healing and change in these practical self-help articles.

For Those Thinking of Taking a Leap

In 2001, I took a leap. I up and quit my sexy job in TV to pursue a more meaningful career in the helping professions. It was a needed change, but getting there wasn’t all sunshine and roses. Overnight I went from HBO to the H-E-L-L of unemployment. I was living in New York City at the …

Making Decisions Gets Easier With Practice

I don’t like making decisions, especially about stuff I don’t have strong feelings about. I find it easier to defer to others when I’m not sure what to do. Because guess what: It IS easier to leave decisions to other people. It’s like letting someone else clean your kitchen. How easy is that? Making decisions …

Do You Have an Inner Bully?

One day, almost 20 years ago, I was standing on a corner waiting for the light to change so I could cross the street. I was spaced out, not thinking about much of anything, when I suddenly heard a faint voice inside my head. It wasn’t so much a voice as a feeling. But it …

How to Stop Procrastinating (Or Not)

It’s ironic that it’s taken me so long to share this post with you, but hey, we therapists are only human. Scratch the surface of someone who writes about procrastination and you’ll find a procrastinator underneath. Okay, so now that I’ve outed myself as a some-time procrastinator, I’d like to share a recent post with …

Resources for the Stressed-Out

Well? Did you survive the holidays? Are you more or less stressed out than you were three months ago? I hope you’ve had some time off, as I have, to recharge. But just in case you’re entering the new year in need of some “unlaxing,” I want to share with you a roundup of websites …

When You Feel Empty Inside

Do you feel as if your life lacks meaning or purpose? Do you sense an inner void? If you do, you’re not alone. Click on the following link and try these tips to help you recapture your spirit: ‘I Feel Empty’: How to Overcome Feelings of Emptiness     Photo courtesy of www.FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Left Out? 3 Survival Strategies for the Fifth Wheel

Have you ever been with two other people and felt like the odd one out? Did it seem like nobody would notice or care if you weren’t there? In that case you know what it’s like to be the fifth wheel. Huh? Don’t I mean the third wheel? Not unless you experienced yourself as a …

Why You Shouldn’t Label Yourself

The way people talk about themselves in therapy sometimes, it’s clear that certain things they do are a mystery to them. “I’m really bad at calling people back,” is the kind of generalization I regularly hear as a therapist. “Why do you think so?” I ask. “Um… because I don’t call people back?” Just as …

When You Say the Wrong Thing

The minute it’s out of your mouth you wish you could take it back. But words are like toothpaste squeezed out of the tube. Once it’s out, it’s out. Sometimes, when the stakes are low, you end up with just a slightly awkward or even humorous interaction rather than a damaging one. Never Assume When …

Be Skeptical of Self-Help Articles (Like This One)

I remember a lesson from the very first self-help book I ever read. It said that when someone says or does something hurtful, it’s like they’re handing you a knife and asking you to stab yourself with it. The idea was that you could choose to just drop the knife and walk away unharmed. In …

Should You Self-Improve or Self-Actualize?

There are two kinds of people in the personal development world. As a therapist, I’ve worked with both. The first kind of person, let’s call him the Self-Improver, seems to be looking for specific changes in his behavior. He seeks the kinds of changes that are hard to accomplish but, once in place, help him …

What’s Your Philosophy of Life?

Life is like a box of chocolates. Or is it? Last week I wrote about what you have in common with others, by demonstrating how normal you are compared to me. At the very least, I showed that if you hate sunshine, don’t care to own property, or hope never to retire, you’re not alone. …