5 Signs You Need to Handle Stress Differently

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Stress is an overarching theme in most of our lives. Though we’re all busy, everyone finds time to talk about being stressed, unable to meet the competing demands of work and family, not to mention friends, hobbies, and self-care.

This is a difficult way to live — and whether or not our culture requires such stressful excess — maintaining a breakneck pace can sabotage your ability to enjoy your day-to-day existence. Everyone handles stress differently, but some people are less able to adapt to it than others.

Continue reading 5 Signs You Need to Handle Stress Differently

5 Ways to Manage Your Mental Health After Graduation

Woman in graduation cap

Nothing quite beats the exhilaration of the final weeks of college. After surviving four years of packed lecture halls and grueling exams, it’s time to celebrate. You successfully navigated living on your own, pushing beyond your comfort zone, and expanding your horizons. And maybe you even learned a thing or two. Cheers are in order!

Reaching the end of college is undoubtedly exciting, but graduation can also be daunting. Approaching the precipice of adulthood and looking out at the uncertainties of the real world can be a deeply scary time, whether you have a cushy job lined up or not. Continue reading 5 Ways to Manage Your Mental Health After Graduation

How Neglecting Physical Health impacts Your Mental Health (and How to Improve Both)

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Sunny days, warmer temperatures, barbecues and pool parties are just a few things you might think of when someone mentions the month of June. However, did you know June also happens to be Men’s Health Month? To honor this time and raise awareness of the issues men face, we’re sharing some tips on how to listen to your body when it’s telling you something’s not right. The reason? Failing to care for yourself physically, or not encouraging others to care for themselves, can result in poor mental health outcomes. It’s been estimated that 1/3rd of those with chronic illness suffer from depression. Keep reading for ways in which you can stay physically and mentally healthy and spread this positivity to other men in your life. Continue reading How Neglecting Physical Health impacts Your Mental Health (and How to Improve Both)

How the Pressures to Get Into College are Harming People’s Mental Health

Person with face in book

Being back in school as a grad student, I’m reminded of the ways the academic system brings out the worst in me.

My obsession with grades. My workaholism. My comparison-itis. My drive to be perfect.

It brings me back to when I was a teenager and it felt like my goodness as a person was tied to my GPA, the number of leadership roles I took on, and how many extracurriculars I participated in. On the surface, I was excelling. But on the inside, I was suffering. Continue reading How the Pressures to Get Into College are Harming People’s Mental Health

When to Ditch a Toxic Friendship (According to a Therapist)

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The notion of “toxic” people is popular these days, with most advice leaning toward cutting such people out of your life. In some situations, such as domestic violence, this should be the obvious choice. Friendships are a little different, however. It’s harder to know when you need to set limits.

Just like any other relationship, friendships require give and take. In addition, we have the idea that true friends stick together through thick and thin, so we you put up with foibles for the sake of the relationship. Sometimes, though, friendships are unhealthy. Continue reading When to Ditch a Toxic Friendship (According to a Therapist)

Where Am I Now? An Interview with Actor Mara Wilson

Mara Wilson

You can’t compare the practice of self-care to cats. At least, not according to Mara Wilson.

“Cats are weird, alien creatures, and I’m surrounded by them as we speak,” she said.

Instead, the actor/storyteller/playwright/author/voice-over actor/performer would equate self-care to taking care of dogs — or even small children.

“Self-care isn’t about spoiling yourself,” she said, “It’s about disciplining yourself. It’s like how you need to train dogs. You do it out of love. If they make mistakes, you don’t hate them forever — you love them.” Continue reading Where Am I Now? An Interview with Actor Mara Wilson

Why Self-Medicating is a Bad Idea

Person drinking liquor

I thought I was just like everyone else.

Joining my friends for happy hour, sipping on nice wine at client dinners, and spending Sunday afternoons at the local beer garden. It seemed perfectly normal that my social life revolved around alcohol. Since my drinking patterns did not seem any different from my peers, it never occurred to me to question them or view them as a form of self-medicating.

According to Kimberly Leitch, LCSW-R, and Talkspace therapist, there are many different forms of self-medicating. “Some of the more common forms of self-medicating that my clients engage in are the use of marijuana, alcohol, and sleeping pills,” Leitch said. From her perspective, self-medicating behaviors are often tied to poor coping skills. Continue reading Why Self-Medicating is a Bad Idea

Can Ketamine Really Treat Depression?

IV tube

With Denver recently legalizing psilocybin mushrooms, discussions of microdosing — using a tiny dose of a psychoactive drug that is too small to induce a “trip” — are on the rise. One of the most popular microdosing treatments being studied is using ketamine for treatment-resistant depression, i.e. depression with an inadequate response to two or more antidepressants of adequate dose and duration.

But does it work? Initial studies are mixed, and it must be cautioned that further inquiry is needed. Continue reading Can Ketamine Really Treat Depression?

Rumination: How Obsessive Thinking Impacts Depression and Anxiety

Stressed woman in cafe

Some people know rumination — the repetition of the same thought in your head over and over — as obsessive thinking, and for those who experience it, ruminating can be a frustrating state.

Thinking over and over about a missed opportunity, an ex, or when you misspoke — it’s bad enough to live through a negative experience once without beating yourself up in an unvirtuous mental loop. While it can often be beneficial to allow yourself the time and space to think about things that are important, too much of a good thing might actually be a bad thing. And when it comes to dealing with issues like depression or anxiety, allowing too much time to ruminate could keep you stuck in a mental rut. Continue reading Rumination: How Obsessive Thinking Impacts Depression and Anxiety