IMPORTANT NOTE: If you are in therapy with me (or are considering being in individual or group therapy with me),  please have a conversation with me about this blog before you read further.


When asked what I do for a living, I sometimes say I’m a clinical social worker, sometimes I say I’m a psychotherapist. Whatever title I use, I work with people at a major teaching hospital, and I specialize in group therapy.

For quite a while, I’ve been thinking of writing a book that combines personal memories with the work I love to do, and I actually started writing something in August, 2012.  Working titles for that book include “AFOG: Another F***ing Opportunity for Growth”, “How To Be The Hero Of Your Own Story” and “Doing More of What Works (and Less of What Doesn’t Work) For You.”

As you can see, I sometimes have trouble making decisions. Or, to look at this another — perhaps less judgmental way — I’m an Extroverted Intuitive Feeling Perceiver, according to the Myers-Briggs test (which I recommend as one way to investigate how your and other people’s “styles” interact).  To translate that into English, that just means that (1) I feel more energized being around people, (2) I’m interested in possibilities and patterns, (3) I tend to go with my “gut”, and (4) I  sometimes have trouble making decisions.

Something else about me: I am the owner of a very unusual heart — I have congenitally corrected transposition of the great vessels, which is super rare.   This wasn’t diagnosed  until I was an adult; however, I was diagnosed at birth as having  a complete heart block.  Because of my heart, I spent a lot of time in the hospital when I was a kid. Plus, I am (probably) the second longest surviving person in the world with a cardiac pacemaker.

This medical part of my story has had a profound impact on me, of course. However,  it’s a part of my life which — up until I started writing this blog — I was pretty secretive about (at least, beyond close friends and family).   Not these years, though!


This blog is part of my creative process.

It’s also a way to work on my  growing acceptance and appreciation of life, and to share and develop some of the wisdom I’ve been slowly accumulating. My original commitment was to start on January 1, 2013 and to blog once daily for a year. Since blogging has helped me so much, I’ve extended that commitment through 2014 and beyond!

This blog is also another way for me to take risks,  to venture out into the world in new ways, and to embrace and express all my different human feelings — joy, fear, sadness, anger, the whole Emotional Enchilada.  I plan to engage in my well-developed sense of play, and approach some painful material, also.

So this blog does a lot for me!


The original title — The Year of Living Non-Judgmentally — came to me in December 2012, out of the blue, and I knew I wanted to write a blog with that title  (even though I had never written a blog before). Then, on January 1, 2014, after the first year was over, I added the “s” (to cover it all).

I wonder if readers might misunderstand the intent of this blog, because of the title. By no means do I expect that I (or anybody else) will attain a perfect state of Non-Judgment, no matter what the year.

As I say in my first post in this blog, judgment is something that I invite myself and my clients to let go of, as much as possible.  So this blog is, also, my commitment to Walk that Walk and to Talk that Talk — to strive, day by day, for  Years of Living Non-Judgmentally (the best that I can).

Being Non-Judgmental is an ideal beyond any human’s grasp.  It’s like the ideal of being perfectly in the moment — another (I believe, at this point) unattainable ideal. As I discuss with clients, human minds aren’t built to stay in the moment or to be non-judgmental. Instead, our minds naturally veer off —  into the past and the future, and into judgment of ourselves (and whatever else we encounter).  The best we can do is to notice these human meanderings of our minds, and gently re-focus (to the moment and to letting go of judgment) over and over again.

I have to say that I’m really excited about this journey, and I’m honored that you are joining me right now —  and for  any additional part of it that you choose.

NOTE: Several of the posts in this blog contain references to Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT),  Narrative Therapy, and other therapeutic techniques I use when working with people. On 2/10/13, I started a second blog here, specifically for posting  reference materials about these therapy techniques. (For example, see here for a handout containing definitions of all 13 Cognitive Distortions discussed in this blog.)

ANOTHER NOTE: As of January 20, 2014, I am finally stating my preference regarding WordPress Awards. If it pleases you to nominate me for one, it also pleases me to express sincere gratitude for the nomination (but that’s all I will do in return).


741 thoughts on “About

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  1. Thanks so much for the follow. Your blog sounds fascinating! I look forward to seeing you around the neighborhood! 🙂

  2. Soul Gifts

    Thank you Ann, so much for the follow. Truly appreciate it. I like the honesty and tongue in cheek humour of your ABout page. And the fact that you work in mental health of course piques my interest, having done that myself for many decades. I’m sure we’ll be seeing more of each other around the traps 🙂

  3. I am so excited to find you. Thank you for following my blog. You have an extraordinary story. Sending many blessings your way, and looking forward to reading more. 💜

  4. My daughter just got her LCSW today and she didn’t have time to study due to her intense job. Now there are two of us in a generational row. Happy day!

  5. Thank you for the follow on my blog. I look forward to being here and reading!

  6. Hi there 🙂

    Thanks for the follow! How have you been and how’s your blog doing?
    I don’t know if you know that I moved my blog to a self-hosted platform. This has prevented me from connecting with WordPress bloggers like I used to. I would still like to remain in contact with your blog. Do you have an RSS feed I can subscribe to?
    If you would still like to follow my blog, may I add you to my mailing list? I send out one email per day with all the blogs posted for the day including blogging tips. You can also unsubscribe at any time if you feel you want to stop receiving the emails. If you are happy for me to subscribe you, please send me your email address.
    Also, I created a blogger tips group to connect with all my long last WordPress blogger friends, and to help all of us to learn from each other. I would love for you to share your knowledge in the group and connect with other bloggers. Here’s the link:
    Blogger Tips Group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/1601156120192716/)

    Finally, here’s a blog I thought you may find interesting:
    The Ripple Effect of Blogging

    Best regards,
    Founder of Healthy Living

  7. You’re awesome 🙂 Love your writings and postings 🙂 All the love ❤

  8. Nice to meet you and have you follow my blog. I look forward to reading your new posts as well as delving into your previous work. Hope you have a great day.

  9. Pingback: Robmoji’s List: Latest Followers | Just Ruminating

  10. We should probably never have a “meet-up” without going to the loo first….not “meet” in the loo…or do anything untoward….just (and even separately which now seems like the better idea) to spend a penny in readiness for the “meet-up”….know what I mean? Oh geez….tell me you know what I mean……

  11. You are a brave heart Ann, no wonder you are the longest surviving person with a pacemaker. 🙂
    I am so glad we connected.

    • I’m actually the second longest surviving person with a pacemaker, but who’s counting? I’m so glad I’ve survived to read your comment and I’m so glad we’ve connected, too. And, I believe it takes one brave heart to know another one. ❤

  12. What a pleasure to “meet” you! I would buy AFOG in a hot second. The CBT skills I’ve learned thanks to a very talented LCSW have made all the difference in coping with my depression and living life with two special needs sons. Thank you so much for following my blog. I look forward to reading yours!

  13. Roseelaineblog

    Looking forward to reading more of your posts 😉

  14. This is beautiful…
    Thank you very much for stopping by my blog and for following along as well! I look forward to gaining more insights into life by reading what you have to say 🙂 Have a great weekend!

  15. Interesting life and writing. I am looking forward to reading and getting to know you better.

    • Many thanks for this kind comment, Bernadette. I’m interested in reading and getting to know you better, too.

  16. I have been reading a few of your posts this evening and have really enjoyed the experience. Thank-you very much for visiting my blog and for the follow.

  17. That’s one of my favorite sayings,
    “Walk the talk” and thank you for following me. I’m looking forward to your insights and will poke around soon.😊

  18. Wow! Amazing you and you have an amazing blog! (♡ ὅ ◡ ὅ )ʃ♡

  19. galacticjoel

    Hello,I would like to let you know that I have nominated you for the One Lovely Blog Award. For more information visit: https://meditation539.wordpress.com/2017/07/12/one-lovely-blog-award/

  20. Being the second oldest living person with a pacemaker is still wonderful news in my book. I got mine about 3 &1/2 years ago at the age of 78 after my afib meds had a profound effect on me. It was implanted under local anesthesia. My heart rate slowed to 24 beats per minute by the time I called for an ambulance to get me to the hospital.

    Love your about and I think that I’ve followed you for sometime. I just never commented but I have been very busy and things are slowing down a bit now.

  21. Thank you so much for finding my blog and liking a post and following me. Sorry it has taken so long to pop by. Hope you come back again soon


  22. Pingback: Day 1810: What do you know! | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  23. Reading your posts relaxes me and brings a smile to my face. Glad to have found you on WP. 🙂

  24. Pingback: Day 1852: Please pardon us | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  25. Pingback: Day 1853: Free | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  26. Pingback: Day 1900: What is life? | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  27. Pingback: The Original Intent | Kentucky Angel Flies Again

  28. Pingback: Day 2080: Negative filter | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  29. Pingback: Day 2124: Space | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  30. Pingback: Day 2132: Judgment Day | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  31. Hi Ann, I’d love to connect with you–my email to your BIDMC address bounced back. NSGP related question—thank you, schurjocelyn@gmail.com

  32. Pingback: Day 2364: Where would you go in a time machine? | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  33. Pingback: Day 2404: ACT | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

    • Thank you, Ray! I hope you’re not judging me for finding this comment so many months later. I love what you shared here.

  34. came across your site courtesy of Ray V.; look forward to reading more of your posts

  35. Pingback: Day 2467: Everything | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  36. Pingback: Day 2583: What’s this? | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  37. Pingback: Day 2587: Kind of a Big Deal | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  38. Pingback: Day 2591: What is this place? | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  39. Pingback: Day 2607: Battles | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  40. Pingback: Day 2757: Here and now, with all of it. | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  41. Pingback: Day 2820: Details | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  42. Pingback: Day 2959: Your Opinion | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  43. Pingback: Rocking the chair – The Balance Wheel

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