How to *Actually* Communicate

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As much as we talk, sometimes we’re pretty bad at actually communicating. As social beings, though, our well-being depends upon effective communication. In fact, studies show good communication not only helps us meet our basic needs for food and shelter, but it’s key to establishing trusting relationships and achieving higher personal goals such as self-fulfillment.

Communication may be a vital part of our day-to-day interactions, but that doesn’t mean we automatically know how to do it effectively. In fact, in my practice, I find one of the biggest sources of relationship distress centers on communication. So how should you actually communicate? Continue reading How to *Actually* Communicate

6 Tips for Applying for Jobs When You’re Depressed

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When you’re depressed, everything — from the most basic activity like getting out of bed to more arduous tasks like paying bills on time — can feel impossibly challenging. Add sudden unemployment, recently graduating from college, or undergoing a major career transition to the mix, and every day can feel like summiting Mount Everest.

As someone with anxiety and depression who has personally experienced various career changes, I understand firsthand how demoralizing the job hunt can be when you’re struggling with your mental health. It’s difficult to put your best foot forward when you’re not feeling like your best self. When you’re feeling down in the dumps, going through the motions of scouring job posts, writing cover letters, and preparing for interviews can be extremely draining. Continue reading 6 Tips for Applying for Jobs When You’re Depressed

How Financial Issues Impact Your Mental Health

Woman with coins over his eyes

It is fashionable to believe that finances shouldn’t have much of an impact on your mental health. According to the media, mental health should be equivalent across various socioeconomic classes. However, when you are struggling financially, it can have a very real effect on your mental and emotional functioning. Continue reading How Financial Issues Impact Your Mental Health

Is it Okay to Walk Away From Your Career for the Sake of Your Mental Health?

A man in a horse mask jumps on the beach

When I was in high school, my group of nerdy and rather competitive friends liked to play the “how-little-did-I-sleep” game. It was as absurd as it sounds.

Every morning nodding off at our high school science class desks, we would humble-brag about how much homework we had done the night before, how many activities and hours of part time work we had managed to squeeze in, and how little sleep we got. We were hard workers, with cultural messages telling us that hard work was the only way to guarantee success. We figured all that sacrificed sleep would surely pay off in future happiness — right?

Continue reading Is it Okay to Walk Away From Your Career for the Sake of Your Mental Health?

How to Check Your Ambitions When They Affect Your Mental Health

A man in the forest plays guitar while holding a child, next to a ballerina dancing

He was ruthless in his race to the top, picking off his competitors one by one. When he defeated his rivals and finally achieved his dream, things were great — for a moment. But soon, he was haunted by his past, discontent with the position he’d achieved, and what he wanted all along turned out to be his undoing.

Continue reading How to Check Your Ambitions When They Affect Your Mental Health

5 Ways to Bounce Back if You Get Fired

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History is filled with trailblazers who were fired — often publicly — before finding success in their chosen field.

Steve Jobs was a wealthy, global celebrity when he was forced out of the billion-dollar company he had sacrificed everything to build. Oprah was fired from a reporter role early in her career, which led her to a more junior role. Walt Disney had a similar story, being fired from the Kansas City star for “lack of imagination and no good ideas.”

We read these stories, and so many more like them, and hope the best is likely yet to come. But finding out you are being forced out of your job is difficult, no matter how many inspirational stories you hear.

Continue reading 5 Ways to Bounce Back if You Get Fired

Why Are We So Afraid to Feel Happy?

A woman with smeared eye makeup holds a piece of paper with a smile on it in front of her face

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?

Continue reading Why Are We So Afraid to Feel Happy?

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.

Continue reading How to Assert Yourself at Work

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.

Continue reading 4 Tips to Help You Find Meaning at Work

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.

Continue reading How Imposter Syndrome Torpedoes Our Success