Thursday, December 31, 2020

Bring Your COVID-19 Coping Skills Forward Into The New Year


There’s considerable research in psychology to suggest that after a trauma we can come back stronger than before. We can become more resilient. Tragedy can trigger the development of new coping skills.

This is the case with the coronavirus pandemic.

Now is the time to notice any positive habits you've developed and decide to keep them moving into 2021. No one expects the virus to vanish on January 1st, but we're edging closer, so deciding on your intentions post-virus can help you maintain those healthy routines.

Here are some examples:

People are exercising and getting outside more. A combination of not having much to do and wanting to get out of the house yielded a huge crop of new walkers, runners and cyclists. Like seesaw dieters, it could be a situation where once things return to their new normal, the newly fit ditch their new habits. This need not be the case. Once you have established the habit, you simply need to recognize that, as life changes, you may have to tweak the schedule or location. Remember, the habit change made you feel better. In the future, with no pandemic, it is still likely to make you feel better.

Read more here...

Thursday, October 29, 2020

'Hamilton' Has Become the Score of My Global Pandemic

Photo by Sudan Ouyang on Unsplash

The pandemic thus far has dealt me one unexpected disappointment: the postponement of Hamilton in Atlanta. 

Live performance is something we often experience as uplifting and renewing. Another balm unavailable to us during the COVID crisis.

In no way am I suggesting that this is a big deal. I have mercifully been spared a variety of painful decisions, tragedies and heartbreaks, but the musical has become a touchstone for me.

 The proverbial opportunity to turn lemons into lemonade appeared when I was able to watch Hamilton, with millions of others, as Disney started streaming the original cast production. It was a remarkable opportunity to see an amazing ensemble and the play itself is simply mesmerizing.

Since my month of streaming had not yet expired, I started listening to it while cleaning my house. 

I'd have to say, and being a clinical psychologist, I’m qualified to say, things started to get a little obsessive. As you might guess, paying someone to clean my house means I really don't like cleaning. Nevertheless, I've lately been looking forward to cleaning because it's become my Hamilton time. 

I sing along, even though I've been told I should stick to my day job. I dance; no one has to tell me to stick to my day job. I'm tempted to bound into rooms at the end of my workday belting out, So what've I missed?, as if I'm Jefferson returning from Paris. 

Sunday, March 22, 2020

How To Keep Calm And Carry On Despite COVID-19 Concerns

One of the (many) atypical things about COVID-19, is that the people helping you cope are experiencing and coping with the same thing, at the same time. Whatever your profession, you’re probably also a parent, partner, adult child or friend, and, as we try to help others through this pandemic, we are also trying to help ourselves.

Even as we recognize that everyone has their own specific large and small crises, we can still have a great deal of understanding and empathy, by virtue of being in the same boat.

Whether you have to separate your child from their grandparents, be mindful of your, or someone else’s, compromised immune system, or console your high school grad who will be missing experiences they’ve anticipated for years, there’s still a lot of common ground.

There are some things we must all figure out in order to cope.

How do we manage (a lot of) unstructured time?
Due to a meeting cancelled at the eleventh hour, I had an entire day completely free.

Normally a dream for a busy person, it felt a little more like a nightmare because of the circumstances. It wasn’t like I decided to take a little staycation. It was last minute, so I didn’t have a plan. It was out of my control. Routine was lacking. Hence, it felt more like a worry than a wow.

Friday, March 13, 2020

Why It’s Healthy To Feel Your Negative Emotions

We call it toxic positivity because sometimes experiencing negative emotions can be healthy. My take:

“'Toxic positivity"keeps you from embracing the discomfort of negative emotions. But consider that you must welcome the fear, pain, and anxiety of a challenge to run your first marathon, return to school after a hiatus, go on your first meditation retreat, or try your first post-break-up date. Allowing the negative feelings in opens you up to new, enriching experiences. Pursue something a little scary — this is the true road to happiness."

Read more here...

Thursday, January 30, 2020

3 Simple Hacks To Help You Lose Weight, Get Fit And Maintain A Healthy Lifestyle

Is your freezer filled with meals from that expensive diet you abandoned a year ago? Maybe you saw the perfect piece of exercise equipment in an infomercial, spent a small fortune, and now it languishes in your spare room. Perhaps it’s the fitness tracker that tells you what you no longer want to know about your sleep, diet and exercise.

Those items are wonderful if you use them as part of your bigger plan to get and stay healthy in mind, body and spirit.
It’s not the diet or equipment that gets you to your fitness goals, it’s the determination and intention to be in it for the long-haul. That, and a few simple things to keep in mind to avoid the fads and the flops:

1.      Beware of fads. If it sounds too good to be true, it is. Consider the claims made about that Clear Quartz in your water bottle. Read more here...

Sunday, September 8, 2019

8 Ways To Figure Out If Your Partner Is 'The One' Based On Marie Kondo's 'KonMari' Method

If you're a Marie Kondo fan, then you know her KonMari method for decluttering your life is amazing and starts with a simple question: "Does this spark joy?"
But the Marie Kondo method for how to declutter is amazing when applied to other areas of your life too, like love and relationships. Yes, there is a way to use KonMari to declutter your mind and reorganize your thoughts when it comes down to finding out if your partner is really "the one."
"Does it spark joy?" might also be the perfect relationship question. Can you look at your partner — the person you fell in love with — and answer yes when asking yourself, “Does he spark joy?” 
Read more here to see how her method can be used to explore your relationship.

Monday, August 26, 2019

Life Coach Notes, Summer 2019

Click here to see my Summer, 2019 Newsletter, with my recent articles about health and wellness, relationships and making meaningful changes in your life. Read it here.