Psychotherapy

Day 3052: Do you feel like people get you?

Yesterday, I asked this question on Twitter:

Apparently a lot of people got that, as you can see by all the retweets, quote tweets and likes I got, which I usually don’t get.

Very soon, a Lyft driver is going to get me and take me to the airport for my flight to Nashville, so I’m sure people will get me if I publish a short post today.

Do people get my activity on Twitter yesterday?

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People didn’t seem to get me there. Maybe more people will get my photos.

I get the Daily Bitch and sometimes I feel like the Daily Bitch gets me.

I wonder if friends, enemies, or anybody else will get me at the Open Mic tonight at the Tennessee Brew Works between 6 – 8 PM. I hope somebody who gets or doesn’t get me will record the performance, so I can share it tomorrow with people who get me here.

By the way, whenever I pack for a trip, I feel like I’m forgetting something important. Do you get that? It helps to remember that whatever I forget, I’ll be able to get it in Nashville.

When I search YouTube for “Do you feel like people get you?” I get this:

I get it now that I am NOT a highly sensitive person. But I feel like I get others who are.

Do you feel like I get you when I end each blog post with gratitude for YOU?

Categories: life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , , , | 17 Comments

Day 3044: Your thoughts

Your thoughts, I’m thinking, go everywhere. Your thoughts go into the future, sometimes with anxiety and fear. They go into the past, sometimes with regret. Your thoughts go all around the world.

Your thoughts, for whatever reason, have trouble staying in the here and now.

Your thoughts can keep you awake when you are trying to sleep.

Your thoughts can be unhelpful cognitive distortions, like personalization, catastrophizing, mind-reading, and blaming.

Your thoughts can be busy, serene, hopeless, hopeful, rigid, flexible, judgmental, open, quick, slow, mean, loving, painful, and reassuring.

Your thoughts affect your feelings and your behaviors.

Whatever your thoughts are, more thoughts are coming.

What are your thoughts about today’s images?

When I search YouTube for “your thoughts,” this is what I find:

Feel free to express your thoughts in a comment, below.

As always, at the end of every blog post, my thoughts turn to gratitude for everything, including YOU.

Categories: life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 17 Comments

Day 3039: Personal growth

Every day, no matter what this blog is about, I categorize it as “Personal growth” in the settings (which appear at the end of each post).

Do you see personal growth in today’s images?

I don’t know if the Daily Bitch would agree with this, but I believe that personal growth is mutual — if we witness somebody else’s personal growth, we personally grow too.

Yesterday, in therapy with someone who struggles with confrontation (and dealing effectively with confrontation is part of everyone’s personal growth), I mentioned how David Letterman used to make difficult phone calls for studio audience members.

Do you see personal growth in this 1995 David Letterman segment I was able to find on YouTube?

Here’s something that Pat Metheny (who was sitting in with Dave’s band that night and who has helped me with my personal growth for decades) was playing with his group in 1995:

If you make a comment, that might help everybody’s personal growth.

Gratitude is part of personal growth, so thanks to everyone who accompanies me on this blogging journey, including YOU.

Categories: group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 15 Comments

Day 3024: Pro (and con)-crastination

These days, many people in therapy are talking about procrastination.

Without procrastination, I’ll tell you why: People feel guilt and shame about not getting more done during the coronavirus pandemic when “I had so much more time on my hands!”

I wish people would stop procrastinating letting go of guilt and shame about procrastination. Procrastination is NOT a sin. Procrastination occurs when you

  • have to do something you dislike doing,
  • are focusing on the prospect of failure,
  • don’t have the information or resources you need to complete the task, and/or
  • are not at your best and think you would do a better job if you waited until you felt better.

When you consider that, it’s amazing any of us are getting ANYTHING done.

I’m now procrastinating sharing something I just realized. I not only procrastinate, I also do the opposite of procrastination, which I’m calling concrastination.

What is concrastination? It’s the need to do something immediately, without putting it off to a better time. I concrastinate the following:

  • responding to emails, texts, and phone calls,
  • meeting people’s expressed needs,
  • trying to solve perceived problems,
  • exploring new ideas,
  • expressing my feelings, and
  • creating blog posts after I wake up, even if it’s in the middle of the night.

Do you see procrastination or concrastination in any of today’s images?

Here is PROCRASTINATION – The Musical by AVbyte:

I’m concrastinating asking for comments, below, and expressing thanks to all who help me create these daily blogs, including YOU!

Categories: life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 21 Comments

Day 3021: Word choices

This week in therapy, I’ve been suggesting that people replace the words “my fault” (or “my bad”) with

  • my choice,
  • my decision, or
  • my responsibility.

My choice, decision, and responsibility as a therapist is to use less shaming and more adult words. Our blaming and judgmental thoughts (also called cognitive distortions) ignore the complexity of situations, keeping us stuck in negative feelings rather than moving towards actions and solutions.

What do you think of the word choices in today’s images?

My husband, Michael, whose word choices (and food choices) I always appreciate, recently relieved my anxiety about resuming a more “normal” life in the near future with these words: “It’s going to be like when you return to work after a long vacation. On the first day back, it’ll soon seem like you were never away.”

Here‘s The Life-Changing Power of Words, a TED talk by Kristin Rivas:

I hope you choose to listen to her words and I look forward to your word choices in the comments section below.

At the end of each post, my word choices are all about gratitude.

Categories: life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 21 Comments

Day 3017: Preferences

My preferences for creating this daily blog include capturing images the day before and then deciding on the theme and title soon after I wake up.

Another preference is to share experiences that might help others. Last week in therapy, I expressed my preferences for helpful labels over minimizing and critical ones like “loser,” “superficial,” “screwed up”, and “hopeless.” My preference is to give homework assignments, so I gave this one: every time you catch yourself applying a negative label to yourself, change that label to “human.”

Somebody over the weekend, who wanted to assign me a complimentary label, tried “captivating” first and then settled on “engaging.” I told them my preference was “captivating.”

Can you see preferences in these engaging and maybe even captivating images from yesterday? (And for those of you whose preferences run to photos over Twitter captures, keep scrolling.)

The Daily Bitch prefers sarcasm, obviously.

My preferences include Love and Peace.

My preference is that you leave a comment about your preferences, below.

Anyone who reads this blog knows that my preferences also include gratitude, so thanks to all, including YOU.

Categories: life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 20 Comments

Day 2993: An hour a day

In a therapy hour yesterday, I suggested that somebody spend an hour a day taking care of a task they’d been avoiding — cleaning up and organizing their home. This person had tried breaking down the overwhelming job in other ways, and those hadn’t worked.

I like to take my own advice, so I am going to spend an hour a day taking care of tasks I avoid like

  • doing my taxes,
  • filling out other forms,
  • contacting bureaucracies,
  • calling people I don’t know,
  • risking failure or rejection,
  • talking to unpleasant people,
  • organizing closets, and
  • throwing away things I don’t need.

As usual, spending an hour a day blogging is helping me face the day ahead.

I spend at least an hour a day walking, taking photos, and tweeting.

Here’s “The Working Hour” by Tears for Fears (allegedly the best song with an hour in the title):

How might you spend an hour a day?

I spend much more than an hour a day giving thanks for all I have, including wonderful readers like YOU.

Categories: life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

Day 2921: Unexpected gifts

During a holiday season when we did not exchange any material gifts, there were still unexpected gifts, including delicious vegetarian manicotti and Christmas cookies from my ex-in-laws.

I also got some unexpected gifts mailed to me from work.

Here’s another unexpected gift: the bitcoin that I won from my wager on the results of the USA Presidential election has already increased by 26%! That is even more of a gift because when I collected my winnings recently from the online betting site I was agonizing over my unexpected inability to figure out how to convert bitcoin into cash. My husband Michael, who is always a gift to me, suggested I just keep the bitcoin and “have fun watching it.” Having fun with the unexpected is always a gift.

Do you see unexpected gifts in these recent images?

Another unexpected gift — I am no longer worrying about pissing people off. That’s because of the gift that keeps on giving: therapy.

When I search YouTube for “unexpected gifts” this comes up first:

Are there any unexpected gifts you would like to share in a comment below?

An expected gift at the end of each of my daily posts is the gift of gratitude, so thanks to all who contributed unexpected gifts today, including YOU!

Categories: life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Day 2910: Problems to ignore

There are so many problems these days we cannot ignore, that I think it might be helpful to focus on the problems we can ignore, here and now.

For example, I can ignore the problem that I forgot to stop recording on ZOOM last night at the remote Open Mic, so this video includes much of the next performance:

I can also ignore the problem that when I was performing last night I was not on my screen, because I AM on screen in that recorded video.

Here are other problems to ignore:

  • I still struggle with some aspects of the new editor here, so creating a bulleted list is harder for me than with the old editor.
  • I had to use bitcoin to get my winnings out of a betting site on the results of the U.S. Presidential election and now I have no idea how to safely convert bitcoin to cash.
  • I’m off on vacation for a week, so I’ll miss doing my Coping and Healing groups.
  • My son is returning to Scotland next month to live with his girlfriend and be closer to the University of Edinburgh for his last semester there, so I’ll miss him when he leaves.
  • I immodestly think my original songs are awesome and have no idea how to reach a wider audience.
  • My likes here on WordPress are half of what they were a year ago.
  • Almost every time I tweet on twitter, I get no response.
  • I’ve gained four pounds in the last month even though I’m eating really heathy and going for long walks.
  • My INR has been lower than I expected the last two times I’ve tested it.
  • Three people over the last few years have stopped talking to me.
  • I’m turning 68 in two months, and I don’t look as great as I did when I was younger.
  • I have no idea how much to inflate my new wobble cushion for optimal results.

Even though those are problems to ignore, I have trouble ignoring them. As I tell others, the human brain is for focusing on problems, even those it should ignore.

Are there problems to ignore in these recent images?

I cannot ignore the fact that Michael’s delicious cooking MIGHT be the reason I’ve gained four pounds recently. He tells me to ignore that problem of weight gain every winter.

If you leave a comment below, it will not be ignored.

If gratitude is a problem for you, please ignore the ending of this post.

Categories: 2020 U.S. Presidential election, life during the pandemic, original song, personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , | 23 Comments

Day 2899: Insignificant

Is it insignificant that I did NOT call the Internal Revenue System yesterday about my significantly late tax refund, despite resolving to do so in my morning blog post?

Did I not call because I dislike how insignificant I feel whenever I deal with a huge bureaucracy? Or was it because the work I needed to do yesterday (remote psychotherapy and responding to crisis calls) made my contacting the IRS insignificant in comparison? Or did I have significant fear about what I might find out — that because my identity was stolen my tax refund was stolen too?

Sometimes, my confusion about the motives for my behavior is not insignificant.

Is the actual inspiration for today’s title insignificant?

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The Daily Bitch is never insignificant to me. Are today’s other images insignificant?

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I’ve done significant work to try to get to the point described in that last quote. Nevertheless, my mood shifted yesterday based on the insignificant actions of somebody else. Significantly, I communicated with that person and my mood shifted again. I believe that is not insignificant, although I clearly have more significant work to do.

Here is “Insignificant” by Spencer Elliott.

I hope you know your reactions to my posts are never insignificant to me.

My expressions of thanks here are insignificant in comparison with the gratitude I feel for all who help me blog every day, including YOU!

Categories: life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy, quotes | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 19 Comments

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