Early Experience Affects How We Deal With Feelings

adult not understanding kid's feelings“Why do we find it so hard to sit with our own emotions?” asked one of the audience members at a talk I gave last Tuesday about constructive wallowing.

I think there are two reasons:

1. We’re hard-wired to avoid pain. If a feeling is unpleasant, we automatically try not to pay attention to it and hope it goes away.

Example: You’re reading on the patio when a thought strays into your mind … something about a letter from the IRS and unpaid taxes. Read More

4 Tips for Dealing With Stubborn People

Guy with fingers in earsHave you ever offered perfectly good advice to a loved one and been baffled as to why it fell on deaf ears? I have.

When the best course of action is clear and yet remains ignored by the person who most needs that knowledge, what’s going on?

This week I had the privilege of reading the transcript of a recent address by psychoanalyst Elio Frattaroli, author of one of my favorite books, Healing the Soul in the Age of the Brain. Read More

Even Good Parents Damage Kids’ Self-Esteem

It’s often been said, and not just by me, that low self-esteem is a silent epidemic.

There are millions of words bouncing around the Internet on the topic of self-esteem, whether in kids or adults.

In my view, the article you’ll find at the link below is one of the most coherent, accurate and interesting.

Morty Lefkoe’s article clearly explains the mysterious process by which good, loving parents produce children who grow up feeling like there’s something wrong with them. Read More

A Surprising Risk Factor for Depression

Happy family with little girl
It seemed like a good idea at the time.

The results are in, and they’re sobering: 100% of all people who suffer from depression were once children.

Yes, childhood is the #1 risk factor for depression. Having been a child accounts for more depression than job loss, divorce, prison time and the loss of a loved one combined.

Until now, depression — especially of the mild to moderate variety — was considered mysterious. It was often attributed to unexplained chemical imbalances in the brain. Read More