Psychotherapy

Day 1937: What could go right?

In therapy lately, several people have decided to ask themselves “What could go right?” instead of consistently focusing on what could go wrong.

I’m pulling for everyone to have success in this valiant effort to change habitually negative thinking.  Would you like to follow us and redirect your thoughts from what could go wrong to what could go right?

What could go right, here and now?

These photos could go right.

 

IMG_8411

IMG_8417

IMG_8413

IMG_8409

IMG_8414

IMG_0012

IMG_0011

IMG_0010

IMG_8419

For those of us who think about what could go wrong when we can’t fall asleep, it’s a relief to focus on what could go right.

There are endless YouTube videos about what could go wrong and this one about what could go right:

 

Gratitude for those who help me create these daily blog posts and  for you — of course! — always goes right.

img_5602

 

 

Categories: group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Day 1936: Confused

Yesterday, I indicated on my feelings chart that I was confused.

IMG_8403.JPG

If you’re confused about the feelings chart, read this post and that post.

I get confused when

  • people are mean for no apparent reason,
  • bad things happen to good people,
  • people I love leave, and
  • somebody gives me directions for more than 30 seconds.

I love what U.N. Ambassador Nicki Haley said this week when Trump advisor Larry Kudlow remarked that “there might have been some momentary confusion” on her part.

With all due respect, I don’t get confused.

The media called Nicki Haley’s response a “clapback” which confused me, because I’ve never seen that word before.

Is anybody here confused about my other photos from yesterday?

IMG_8399

 

IMG_8404

IMG_8405

IMG_8402

IMG_8407

Does anybody else get confused about how to spell “cancelled”?

Here‘s #1 from ranker.com’s Best Songs About Confusion:

With all due respect, I will not get confused by any comment you might leave below.

I hope nobody is confused by my gratitude for all who helped me create this confused post and — of course! — for YOU.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 18 Comments

Day 1933: Overthinking

Over the past few weeks, I’ve heard several people in therapy express concerns over how they’ve been overthinking.

Overthinking (as described by a thinker at inc.com) “can cause problems. When you overthink, your judgment gets cloudy and your stress gets elevated.  You spend too much time in the negative. It can be difficult to act.”  Overthinking  also interferes with sleep and contributes to anxiety, depression, and self-medicating with food, drugs, or alcohol (there’s more about  overthinking over at thelawofattraction.com).

Last night, I called Michael over to go over my many worried thoughts about matters hanging over me. When my fitful monologue was over, Michael thought over what he’d heard and said, “Ann, the way you’re overthinking borders on the completely ridiculous.”   I realized that the way I was overthinking didn’t border on the completely ridiculous — it actually went over the border into the completely ridiculous.

Michael helps me get control over my overthinking.  However, I’m not over overthinking — it’s a habit that’s hard to get over.  I know I’m overthinking again this morning, because I’m anxious over decisions I made over the long weekend and I’m overthinking the consequences.  However, I’m not thinking that I might be overlinking  to that inc. article about “10 Simple Ways You Can Stop Yourself from Overthinking,” which includes

  • Don’t think about what can go wrong, but what can go right.
  • Distract yourself into happiness.
  • Put things into perspective.
  • Stop waiting for perfection.
  • Change your view of fear.
  • Realize you can’t predict the future.
  • Accept your best.

Yes, I was overthinking many things yesterday, but not my early morning tweeting:

After reading the latest dispatches in these celebrity/political feuds: When did “turn the other cheek” become hit them in the cheek 10 times harder?

And I wasn’t  overthinking when I took these photos:

IMG_8345

IMG_8348

IMG_8346

IMG_8347

IMG_8359

IMG_8365

IMG_8366

IMG_8362

I don’t think I’m all by myself alone in overthinking, even though it drives people bananas. At this point, I don’t want to rethink anything, including my pretzel.

When this post is over, please bring over your thinking about overthinking, rethinking, and other kinds of thinking.

Here’s “Overthinking” by L2M:

The last recommendation in that inc. article about stopping overthinking is “be grateful.”  That’s why I don’t overthink my thanks, I just express them.

IMG_8368

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments

Day 1921: It’s a shame

When you reach out to somebody clearly expressing a wish to connect and you consistently get nothing in return, it’s a shame.  I mean,  that’s not only an unfortunate and perplexing experience, it also triggers the shame response, which (according to Google) looks like this:

studyshowssh

(image found here)

When I experience the shame response, I

  • feel the urge to withdraw and hide,
  • try to figure out why there’s been no reaction to my attempts to connect,
  • remember that experiencing shame in response to perceived devaluation or rejection is a universal human reaction and that there’s no shame in shame, and
  • resolve  to reconnect more effectively — if not to the same person then to others.

What do you do when you experience the shame response to perceived devaluation or rejection?

I think it’s a shame if I don’t share my photos from yesterday.

IMG_8039

IMG_8035

IMG_8025

IMG_8032

IMG_8038

IMG_8036

IMG_8031

IMG_8033.JPG

 

It’s a shame that the last image shows a color copy of a 20 dollar bill and not the real thing.

Here‘s “It’s a Shame” by The Spinners:

 

IMG_8027

Knowing that your input is important to others helps dispel the shame response.  Questions?  Concerns?  Suggestions?

It’s a shame if I don’t remember to thank all who helped me create today’s post and — of course! — YOU.

IMG_7563

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

Day 1914: Commitment

Despite my commitment to creating a daily blog post for the past nineteen hundred and thirteen days (but who’s counting?), I have written only one prior blog post about commitments. That was over four years ago, when I had made a commitment to blog daily for one year. At the end of 2013, I decided to expand the commitment to blog daily for as long as I could.

When things are getting in the way of  your doing something,  it can help to make a commitment to yourself or to others. For example, I’ve been having trouble committing to doing my taxes, so last Sunday I made this commitment to myself:

From now on, I shall work on my taxes one hour every day.

Because I have a commitment to the truth, I’ll tell you that after making that commitment I decided that commitment wouldn’t start until the next day However, I have honored that commitment every day since.  And that commitment has helped me

  • work on my taxes,
  • leave room for other things in my life, and
  • let go of worry, angst, and other painful thoughts and feelings about taxes.

I’m not sure why I have a yearly commitment to feeling bad about taxes, but  I’ve committed to writing other blog posts about that here, here, here  here. here, here, here, hereherehere, here, and here.  While I made a commitment to link to those many other taxing blog posts I don’t expect anybody to make the commitment to reading all of them.

However, here’s a commitment that’s easier to fulfill — looking at my photos from yesterday. Let’s see if any of them show commitments.

IMG_7909

IMG_7912

IMG_7910

IMG_7911

IMG_7906

IMG_7905.JPG

IMG_7907

IMG_7908

IMG_7917

IMG_7916

IMG_7915

I’m so happy I made a commitment last year to moving near the water.

Here‘s a song by The Commitments:

 

If you make a commitment to post a comment, I commit to writing a reply.

Let’s end, as always, with my commitment to thank everyone who helped me commit again to this daily blog and — of course! — YOU.

IMG_7839

 

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 25 Comments

Day 1913: What’s getting in the way?

When somebody (including me) is having trouble doing something, I like to ask, “What’s getting in the way?”

Within the past week, I’ve asked “What’s getting in the way?” about

  • doing one’s taxes,
  • being more assertive,
  • joining an organization,
  • exercising,
  • eating better,
  • sending an email,
  • making a phone call,
  • getting out of the house,
  • attending a therapy session,
  • stating a need,
  • accepting compliments, and
  • saying what’s left unsaid.

Is there something you’re having trouble doing, here and now? Take a moment and ask yourself, “What’s getting in the way?”

Is fear part of the answer?

What’s getting in the way of us getting fear out of the way?

What’s getting in the way of my sharing my photos today?   What’s getting in the way is my fear that I have only four new photos and 25% of of them include language that might get in the way.

IMG_7884

IMG_7885

IMG_7886

IMG_7888

Nothing is getting in the way of my finding two “Gettin’ in the Way” songs on YouTube (here and here).

What’s getting in the way of your leaving a comment?

Nothing is getting in the way of my expressing my thanks to all who helped me get out of my own way to create today’s blog post and — of course! — to YOU.

IMG_7837

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 23 Comments

Day 1909: Reasons Not to Read This Blog

While I appreciate every reader who visits this blog, here are some reasons not to read it.

IMG_7788

  • You dislike cats and/or dogs.

IMG_7693

IMG_7792

IMG_7795

IMG_7794.JPG

IMG_7793

  • Water views make you squeamish.

IMG_7759

  • You avoid puns.

IMG_7696

  • You are in therapy with me. If that is the case, there might be Too Much Information in this blog, which could interfere with the important work we are doing together.  If you are in individual and/or group therapy with me, I strongly recommend we have a conversation about this.

 

 

  • You find gratitude annoying.

IMG_7790

IMG_7791

Warmest thanks to all who help me create this daily blog and — of course! — to YOU.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 36 Comments

Day 1894: Prescriptions

In my work as a therapist, sometimes I write prescriptions for people.  I’m not licensed to prescribe medications, so those prescriptions have included

  • Rx:  Keep doing what you’re doing.
  • Rx:  Be kind to yourself.
  • Rx:  This too shall pass.
  • Rx.  One  day at a time.
  • Rx:  One minute at a time.
  • Rx: Follow your heart.
  • Rx: Stay safe.
  • Rx:  Forgive yourself.
  • Rx:  Love yourself.
  • Rx:  Speak your truth.
  • Rx:  It’s safer than it feels.

I happen to have a blank prescription here.

IMG_7434

What prescription would you write for yourself, here and now?

My daily prescriptions include writing this blog and sharing photos.

IMG_7432

IMG_7431

IMG_7429

IMG_7428

IMG_7441.JPG

IMG_7427

IMG_7440.JPG

IMG_7439.JPG

IMG_7430.JPG

Those Yogi Tea sayings seem like prescriptions to me.

What’s the prescription for the rockin’ pneumonia and the boogie woogie flu?

Prescribed thanks to all who helped me write today’s blog post and — of course! — to YOU.

IMG_7426

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , | 16 Comments

Day 1847: The fear of making things worse

I hope I don’t make this blog worse with today’s topic.

I hear people talking about the fear of making things worse with action AND with inaction.

The fear of making things worse can lead to

  • hesitation,
  • paralysis,
  • second guessing,
  • sleeplessness,
  • indecision,
  • self-judgment,
  • wheel spinning,
  • worry,
  • guilt,
  • anxiety,
  • over-thinking,
  • stress,
  • shame,
  • blame, and
  • all sorts of emotional pain.

Cures for the fear of making things worse include

  • “Just do it!”
  • “Just don’t do it!”
  • “It might get worse but that’s not the end of the story.”
  • “Most things are NOT irrevocable.”
  • “Things will get worse then better then worse then better, no matter what you do or don’t do.”

Yesterday, my boyfriend Michael  did not make things worse with this story about his twin brother, Steve.  When people complain and worry, Steve tells them, “Don’t worry about this! This is nothing! Guaranteed,  something MUCH WORSE is coming along.” I heard that as an unusual invitation to enjoy and appreciate the present, and it made me smile.

Let’s see if any of my recent photos make things worse:

IMG_6495

IMG_6496

IMG_6494

IMG_6497

Janis Joplin makes things better with  “Hesitation Blues.”

If you have any fear of making things worse with a comment, please let that go.

I have no fear of making things worse by expressing gratitude and affection for all who helped me create today’s post and — of course! — for YOU.

IMG_6499

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , , , | 27 Comments

Day 1846: Smile

Even when there are many reasons not to smile, studies show that consciously putting a smile on your face can improve your mood.

I’ve got a smile on my face, right now, because I easily found that article which supports my opening sentence about why we should smile even when we don’t feel like it.

When I smile and when I see other people smile, I feel better.

However, when people tell me to smile, I don’t feel like it.  I smile when I choose to, people.

Any smiles in my photos from yesterday?

IMG_6473

IMG_6468

IMG_6470

IMG_6472

IMG_6466

IMG_6469

IMG_6475

Even though I was tired yesterday, Vivian the social work intern made me smile with the Google art app and her do-it-yourself fortune.

I smile  when I listen to Take 6 sing “Smile.”

A grateful smile for all who helped me create today’s “Smile” post and — of course! — for YOU.

IMG_5601

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 26 Comments

Blog at WordPress.com.