On Gratitude

finding gratitudeBelow are a few quotes on gratitude.  This time of year, it’s helpful to be mindful of what we have, rather than what we’re missing.

At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.  Albert Schweitzer

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Are You Highly Emotionally Sensitive?

are you emotionally sensitive?Does the world feel dangerous to you?  Do you feel powerless, vulnerable or unacceptable?  Do you often think in terms of fair, unfair, should, shouldn’t, right and wrong?

People who are highly sensitive to emotions often experience the world as unsafe and feel helpless.  When you’re emotionally sensitive you’re frequently overcome by emotion and have trouble tolerating emotional pain.

People with significant difficulties with impulsive and self-destructive behaviors, problems controlling emotions, depression, aggression, attention, substance abuse, and other impulse behaviors often have problems with their emotion regulation system.  In DBT, these emotional problems are seen as a result of your biological makeup and your past experiences.  Continue reading “Are You Highly Emotionally Sensitive?” »

DBT and Distressed Elephants: An Expert Interview with Renee Hoekstra

An Elephant in the Room

I recently had the opportunity to speak with Renee Hoekstra, Psy.D. about her practice, finding a quiet moment and how elephants can teach us something about our emotions.  I’m happy to share with you, today, what she had to say.

Christy:  In your practice you focus on reducing suffering that accompanies misery, isolation, disconnection, alienation and loneliness.  How do you approach these problems?

Renee:  These problems can be very profound and rarely made public. What I really enjoy about some of the DBT material is that if offers qualitative information about the types of experiences people have, the reasons and causes for some of these experiences, and a way of making sense, sort of speak, of these experiences.

Clients come to my groups and have tremendous difficulty putting words on experience as well as organizing and understanding their own behaviors. It can be quite powerful to find they are not alone. Continue reading “DBT and Distressed Elephants: An Expert Interview with Renee Hoekstra” »

2010 APA Stress Survey

stress survey resultsHow stressed is America?  How stressed are you?  In recognition of the high levels of stress many Americans experience on a daily basis, The American Psychological Association conducts an annual survey to better understand where our stress is coming from.

Stress is an important issue.  It affects both our mental health and our physical health.   Many people find themselves managing stress by doing things that ultimately lead to more problems.  Over or under eating, drinking and smoking are a  few of the behaviors that can create both physical and psychological problems and increase stress over time.

The following are some of the findings reported in a press release from the 2010 APA Stress in America survey. Continue reading “2010 APA Stress Survey” »