Why Are We So Afraid to Feel Happy?

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Many people struggle with the fear of success, fear of closeness, or fear of happiness. Let’s say your father suffered from depression and ranted about the workplace being a dog-eat-dog environment where everyone has to watch his back.

As a child, you, like all kids, want to think of your father as intelligent and perceptive. You listened to him and thought that his worldview made sense. Even if you later realized, as an adult, that your father was a very negative and depressed person, his impact on your own worldview may be very difficult to change.

Although it isn’t rational, many people subconsciously steer themselves away from experiences where they feel good about themselves, or where they end up feeling happy. But why is this and what can you do about it?

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How to Assert Yourself at Work

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For as long as I remember, I’ve wanted to be a journalist.

Even before I knew of Sex and the City’s Carrie Bradshaw, The Devil Wears Prada’s Andy Sachs or How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days’ Andie, I knew I was destined to chase deadlines. So, when I graduated during the recession of 2008 and was given my first full-time editorial opportunity, I knew how much of a privilege it was. I was elated to be fulfilling a 10-year dream.

Even though it was a very junior position for a very small magazine publisher, I knew it was an important stepping stone, and I wanted to give it my all. So, I took on everything.

You need your three-hour interview transcribed? I’m on it. Six pieces need to be written and published by Monday? Don’t ask anyone else, my weekend is yours. Slowly, I began to be seen as the one in the office you could count on doing what you didn’t want to do.

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4 Tips to Help You Find Meaning at Work

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Work. It wakes us in the middle of the night, it consumes a majority of our days, and yet we rely on it to provide for the actual life we want to lead. Given its significance and presence in your life, it’s sad to experience work as empty or, worse, dreadful — sapping energy from your soul.

But so many workers do. According to a 2015 Gallup survey, less than a third of employees are fully engaged in their jobs.

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How Imposter Syndrome Torpedoes Our Success

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You go forth into the world to follow your dreams and shine your beautiful light — only to feel like a fraud on the inside. You begin working on something, and self-doubt and anxiety creep into your brain. So, you choose over preparation and exert overreaching effort. You may even accomplish your goal through luck. But truly, you just want relief, and it comes only temporarily, until you push back any form of positive feedback — resulting in a loop back to anxiety and feeling like a fraud.

This is the cycle of imposter syndrome.

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Why Successful People Struggle with Mental Illness

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It doesn’t take long to assemble an impressive list of successful people who also struggle with mental illness. Comedian/actor Jim Carrey experienced clinical depression, Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling also combatted depression, entrepreneur/business mogul/founder of CNN Ted Turner lives with bipolar disorder, accomplished athlete Herschel Walker revealed he has dissociative identity disorder, and Brian Wilson of Beach Boys fame has been diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder.

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What to Do if You ‘Lose It’ at Work

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It’s no wonder that work stresses so many of us out. Americans work longer hours with less vacation time than anyone in the developed world. This can make it difficult to balance work life with family life, friendships, and your own emotional and physical self-care.

For some of us, this stress can take a real toll on our performance at work, and when stress reaches a breaking point, some of us are apt to “lose it” — perhaps lashing out at colleagues, acting unreasonably, or losing our tempers.

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4 Ways to Support Your Mental Health While Unemployed

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Losing a job — or even leaving one voluntarily — can take a huge toll on your mental health. First and foremost is the stress and worry about how you will stay afloat financially. Your daily routine also gets thrown off, and your self-esteem and identity might take a hit as well. And if you have family or a spouse to support, it can be easy to fall into the trap of guilt and shame over the inability to provide income in the short-term.

Unemployment means living with an uncertain future, and this alone can trigger depression and anxiety in many of us. But you should know that almost all of us have been there at one time or another, and you are not alone. Most importantly, there are actionable things you can do to protect your mental health.

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How Marginalized People Can Overcome Imposter Syndrome

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Studies show it, anecdotes illustrate it, and entire movements are built around it: When it comes to professional and even personal success, historically marginalized people — women, racial minorities, sexual minorities, people with disabilities, and others — are judged negatively for their strengths.

Whether it’s women being punished for academic success or people of color being judged less competent than their less-qualified white peers, discrimination continues to hamper us, from the classroom to the boardroom.

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Do You Work for a Psychopath? 6 Warning Signs

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Do You Work for a Psychopath? 6 Warning Signs” originally appeared on Fairygodboss, an advice site that helps women get hard-to-ask career questions answered.

Every boss has his or her moments when grumpiness or a negative attitude takes hold, causing them to lash out. Our superiors are human, after all, and they are entitled to bad days just like anyone else.

But have you ever worked for someone who seemed to constantly run hot and cold: charming and funny one second, then vicious and manipulative the next? If a power-wielding bully dominates your workplace, you could very likely be working for a psychopath.

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