Why Therapy Isn’t Just for “People with Problems”

Huddle hand stack

I recently had a discussion with a friend considering therapy for the first time. Though she had been ruminating on it for a few months, she remained hesitant.

“I just feel like there’s nothing really that wrong with me, you know? All things considered, I’m doing alright. I should just deal with it,” she told me.

I did know. Just a few years ago, I was in the same boat. Despite lifelong anxiety and years of depressive episodes, I was convinced I didn’t need therapy. The ups and downs were normal, just a part of life. I managed to tell myself that my particularly bad stretches were merely situational: a response to the challenges of graduating college and navigating the real world, of tackling work stressors, and dealing with failed romantic endeavors.

This worked for awhile. Until it didn’t. Continue reading Why Therapy Isn’t Just for “People with Problems”

Is Anger Therapy Right For You? Tips for Controlling Your Anger

A man holds up a painted piece of cardboard with an angry face

We’ve all experienced anger. But if your temper is hijacking your life, making you feel like you’re at the mercy of an unpredictable, overbearing, powerful emotion, it may be appropriate to use professional counseling or psychotherapy solutions — anger therapy — to help with your anger issues.

Maybe you’ve felt the full spectrum — from fleeting annoyance to uncontrollable rage — maybe multiple times a week. And for the most part, some anger is to be expected in life. Anger is a necessary human emotion, one that’s usually healthy and normal. But there are times it can get out of control and be destructive, hurting personal and professional relationships and one’s overall quality of life. Continue reading Is Anger Therapy Right For You? Tips for Controlling Your Anger

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) Therapy – What it Is, How it Works

Organized tools

Many who struggle with recurrent, intrusive thoughts and behaviors wonder if obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) therapy can help them. The disorder is one of the most difficult psychiatric illnesses to understand and, only a few decades ago, it was believed to be a rare psychiatric illness that affected only a small fraction of the population. But now, OCD is known to impact millions of Americans at any given time.

It is a complex and difficult-to-treat condition if not managed correctly by a skilled professional. Thankfully, there are therapy practices that can help alleviate some of the anxiety individuals with OCD feel. Continue reading Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) Therapy – What it Is, How it Works

When One Person Controls the Relationship

A bird, quite possibly a finch, eats from the hand of a man

It would be nice if every relationship had a straight 50/50 power dynamic split…but those in relationships will tell you that’s probably not the case in their partnership. Relationships should be about a shared, equal bond, where partners are teammates who make compromises and share power, rather than a coach versus team member dynamic. Right?

Continue reading When One Person Controls the Relationship

Chemistry or Consistency: What Makes for a Better Relationship

Color in water

The night of my first date with my ex, I felt strong, instant chemistry. The butterflies in my stomach felt more like large birds, and each kiss felt like 4th of July fireworks. Actually, even just looking at him made me feel fireworks!

We became official, and from there…it went downhill. Why? We were lacking consistency and things that came along with it, like trust. Once I wasn’t so blinded by chemistry, I realized we weren’t compatible and there were aspects of the relationship that were not healthy. When it came down to it, we wanted different things in life. There were parts of him I could not accept and parts of me that he could not accept. Continue reading Chemistry or Consistency: What Makes for a Better Relationship

6 Ways to Deal With People Who Are Distant

Astronaut in space

Some people keep feelings and emotions close to the vest. They aren’t bad people, but it can be frustrating when we’re only treated to occasional glimmers of their sparkling personality. Their slow message response times (leaving you “on read”) and unaccepted invitations make you feel unwanted, or that you’re the only person putting in any effort.

Having a heart-to-heart with a cheerful, friendly person, however, rarely feels like a struggle. But if everyone was cheerful and friendly, we’d already have world peace. Dealing with people who are distant seems to present a bigger challenge. Continue reading 6 Ways to Deal With People Who Are Distant

5 Reasons for Your Commitment Issues

Crying eggs

For many people, marriage and monogamy sound like an ideal state. These lucky people often couple up and ride off into a beautiful sunset…until, of course, life stressors get in the way and interrupt the honeymoon phase.

Other people, however, see commitment in less idealized terms. It is common to say that there is something wrong with people who have “commitment issues,” but that’s reductive and a little simplistic in most cases. In actuality, there are many factors contributing to what we call commitment issues, and they run the gamut from psychological to evolutionary. Continue reading 5 Reasons for Your Commitment Issues

Can You Really Exercise Away Depression and Anxiety?

Woman stretching on exercise ball

On the internet, there are endless lists of the things you can do to heal yourself of any ailment: from depression to migraines, from anxiety to irritable bowel syndrome. Apparently you can cure anything simply chant positive mantras, drink enough water to become a camel, and practice yoga 24/7…maybe even shower while standing on one’s head.

The internet would like us to believe that this is particularly true when it comes to mental illnesses such as anxiety and depression. If I had a dime for every time I’ve heard “just do X to snap out of Y,” I’d be retired, sipping umbrella drinks in Tahiti. Continue reading Can You Really Exercise Away Depression and Anxiety?

Why We Procrastinate (and How to Stop)

Man sleeping with a book on his face

When you’re looking down the barrel of a school midterm report or a major work project, finding inspiration should be easy. You’re on deadline, after all! But the urge to procrastinate strikes us all, and often at the worst times.

Procrastination takes many forms, and leans on avoidant traits that end up harming us in the long run.. Here are the main reasons we procrastinate — and how to stop. Continue reading Why We Procrastinate (and How to Stop)

Is it Ever Okay to Lie?

Pinocchio puppets

At a young age, many of us are taught that telling a lie is absolutely bad. Yet as we grow up, we slowly become exposed to small, “white” lies — those told to keep us from becoming upset or sad. Even as we transition into adulthood, well-meaning lies are often told to shield a person from criticism or added hardship. But can we ever be sure telling a lie is the right thing to do? Continue reading Is it Ever Okay to Lie?