Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Psychology 101: Freud

A few videos back I asked if anybody was interested in learning more about Freud's theory of the unconscious and the Id, Ego, and Superego.

I received a few comments graciously asking for more, so I made this video with a lot of pictures and graphics and visuals in order to aid my accent and my lack of expertise in psychoanalysis so that I could briefly explain nothing less than Freud's studies on the unconscious and personality structure. 

I hope you enjoy it!

Friday, October 26, 2018

Create Joyful Rituals For Selfcare & Wellbeing

What are some of your daily rituals?

Mine is a quiet breakfast...

Rituals are behaviors that are performed after or before a special event. This action has meaning attached to it. When we do them we expect a certain outcome. And you know what? Research proved that people that engaged in rituals obtained the results they were expecting.

More on that in today's video.

Thursday, October 25, 2018

How To Deal With The Inner Critic

The Inner Critic is that voice that, when it works for us, it helps us make choices that contribute to our well-being. However it can be very harmful when it engages in excessive negative self-talk. Definitely unhealthy and debilitating.

The inner critic is similar to Freud's Superego and Jung's negative animus. Those too can beat us up with feelings of guilt, worthlessness and inadequacy, if we let them...

There are some effective ways of dealing with the "inflamed" inner critic. But for now I'm going to tell you about my favorite. 

1) Become aware of why you are feeling guilty, sad, or inadequate. 

2) Try to identify the voice of the inner critic. Meditation work is great to become a master at this.

3) Think of yourself as your best friend. Would you be so hard on on a friend? I'm sure the answer is no. We would never say that to them. We wouldn't even think in that way. We are often compassionate and loving with them. So? Then replace the negative self-talk with gentler affirmations, the nicer the better.

A warning. This isn't easy to do. But with practice, and awareness you'll get there. 

In this video I talk a little bit about the Id the Ego and the Superego and a little bit about the inner critic. 

Friday, October 19, 2018

What's the Thinking Behind Setting Boundaries?

Setting boundaries is a life long process. In my case at least, the older I am, the better I get at honoring how I feel about other people's requests, needs and wants. One thing that comes with age is wisdom, and that compensates for all the other things that are usually not so well received.

What I know about boundaries is that:

1) It's not easy to set them at first. But it gets easier with practice. 

2) We go through a short lived uneasiness when we say NO

3) That uneasiness is so worth it. In exchange you get: a strong sense of self-love which boosts your self esteem.

4) If you do set them, you will find that people that don't respect your boundaries are not worth having around.

5) Those who don't respect your boundaries are usually the toxic bunch.

Find today's video here.

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Two Ways To Deal With Toxic People

Dealing with the passive aggressive requires ninja-like abilities. Here are two ways to handle these kinds of situations. 

Grey Rock Technique: Cluster B personalities feed off of drama and emotional reactions. This technique is the one where you become as dull and boring as possible while trying to show no emotional reaction and zero interest. We want monotone and short answers in these scenarios!

Responding vs Reacting: Is based on the same idea as the Grey Rock Technique. Respond, don't reactIt's more of a mantra to follow when dealing with toxic people. You want to answer the accusation disguised as a question or remark, especially if you are dealing with your boss for example, but limit yourself to one short answer. The purpose is to avoid becoming entangled in the accusations and lies. Again, try to put your feelings aside.

These two tactics are very effective ways of avoiding being re traumatized.

 However, after the encounter is over, find a way to vent your true feelings. Maybe hit the gym. Go for a walk or call a trustworthy good friend. The idea is to express yourself, just not with the toxic person.

In today's video I bring some reality and humanity to these otherwise seemingly perfect techniques. 

Don't get me wrong I think that these tools are great, and that you should go for them whenever you can. 

I'm simply giving you a heads up to let you know that if you are unable to become a rock every time, I hear you! We are humans after all. Not rocks. So the occasional slip is just bound to happen, especially at the beginning.

Friday, October 12, 2018

Don't Be Afraid Of Sadness

In our culture, sadness is often looked at with caution and fear. We definitely try not dwell in it. 

"Don't cry" is what we are programmed to say when we see somebody in pain.

Sometimes we even go to the extent of turning into skilled acrobats to avoid our own sadness: "must avoid it at any cost" Food? Shopping? Alcohol? 

Addictions and obsessions are usually the downside of not dealing with sadness and trying to understand why we feel sad.

Sadness is definitely not fun, and it's also painful. But so necessary.

If you want to truly heal, evolve, and grow; then, you need to go through sadness, and feel the feels! 

There's a reason why we feel like we feel. Sadness forces us to pay attention to what matters to us, and see what is bothering or hurting us. 

In today's video I talk about sadness and healing. 

Have you watched Inside Out? What a great movie to watch with kids!

Friday, October 5, 2018

How To Meditate. Meditation For Beginners.

About three years ago I started researching mindfulness and the science behind it. As a counselor I see a lot of benefits that come from it, and I even use it in my private practice.

Having said that, I don't consider myself an expert in the meditation arena. I go back to it whenever I need to re center but I wish I'd do it more often.

In today's video I explain how I meditate and I give you a few resources which will be linked in the info box below the video. There's a specific video at google headquarters that gave me, at the time, the final push I needed to start meditating. If you are interested in meditating I strongly recommend you watching the master of masters, Matthieu Ricard, conduct a meditation and guide you through the reasoning.

How I meditate:

1. Find a quiet place and sit comfortably. Doesn't have to be under a Cherry Blossom tree in full bloom - to paraphrase Ricard, only he mentioned a "mango tree" which sounds so yummy oh well...- It can be in your kitchen, or even at the train station (sometimes the busiest places are where we actually need to practice our meditation and calming skills the most) 

2. Breathe in, long breath out.

3. If a thought pops up, see it, look at it, and try to let it go.

4. Go back to your breath, focus on your breath.

That's the basics. If you are interested in the whys and more hows, and why we need to add love and kindness to the meditation, check out today's Fill Your Cup Friday video. 

You've got this!