Happiness Quota: How Happy Are You Allowed to Be?

Happiness QuotaImagine this scene: A mother is in the hospital just having given birth to her baby. She is excited and happy. The nurse gives her the newborn. The baby turns her head toward mother and snuggles.

The baby is searching for warmth and comfort. The child probably is not hungry because it has just spent nine months with all its needs met. The baby is mostly traumatized and seeking comfort and safety. Continue reading

Expectations and Patterns

Expectations and patternsHave you ever asked yourself, ”What was I thinking?” after saying or doing something?  Or made a decision, then wondered if you had lost your mind?  Have there been times when your feelings about someone else’s actions or words confused you? Have you ever found yourself in a friendship or romantic relationship, and after a few weeks ask yourself what you ever saw in that person?

In each of these examples, decisions, feelings, or thoughts that seemed fine in the moment made no sense in hindsight.  Today, we will look as a possible reason why.


Advances in neuroscience are beginning to offer scientific proof of what psychotherapists have believed all along: memories, feelings or thoughts from the past get activated in present experiences and relationships. When this happens, we will feel and think in ways that are influenced by previous events. Continue reading

Symptoms: the Roadmap to Self Discovery

Symptoms a Roadmap to self discoveryThe man came into my office and told me he was here to be “fixed”. He told me he had an anger problem and needed someone to help him get rid of it.

When I inquired why he felt his anger was such a problem, he said that his wife and family did not like that he was angry all the time, and that the way he expressed his anger scared them.

The man talked about feeling that his needs were fulfilled after everyone else’s in the family. He had elderly parents who required a lot of time and care. He had a demanding job in healthcare and suffered from serious back problems, which caused him pain most of the time.

No wonder he acted angry all the time! I suggested that perhaps he had feelings that were hiding under the anger, hurt and sadness. He was surprised by that idea. It had never occurred to him that he might be feeling any emotion other than anger.

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The Power of Shame

power of shameEver have that feeling that something is a little bit off in the way you’re taking on life?

On the outside, you look like you have it all together and everything is going well in your life. Other people may even see you as successful, giving and caring, but inside you feel awful because you can’t get things “right”?


Underneath the image you project, you know that what the world sees is a false front 
crafted to hide the self-doubt, fear, anger and resentment you often feel. You work hard, yet never seem to live up to your own expectations.
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