Without fundamental change in our laws and attitudes, I fear for the future of the human race. I do believe in people’s ability to change — otherwise I couldn’t do my job as a psychotherapist. However, I just don’t know if the human race can change quickly enough.
As I change over to the visual part of today’s blog, do you see change in my images for today?
My son Aaron — who experienced a change in his appearance yesterday (thanks to the amazing Mia at MiAlisa Salon) — used to call a playground a “bahgo” before we all went through many changes. I’m proud of the young man he has turned out to be.
Yesterday, I asked this question about self acceptance on Twitter:
Many people responded about the positive and healing aspects of self acceptance. Some people expressed a belief/fear that if they accepted themselves exactly the way they are, they would stay stuck, be settling for less, and would never change.
My observation and experience is that self acceptance is usually the first step to being balanced, present, and more able to see the way clear to taking the next positive and achievable step towards self improvement.
Personally, I find self acceptance freeing and energizing. Do you see self acceptance in my other images for today?
My sense is that the Daily Bitch accepts herself exactly the way she is.
Here’s what I find on YouTube when I search for “self acceptance.”
What are your thoughts and feelings about self acceptance?
Please accept my gratitude for your acceptance, here and now!
This week in therapy, I’ve been suggesting that people replace the words “my fault” (or “my bad”) with
my decision, or
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.”
In therapy, when people feel overwhelmed, I ask them to identify an achievable next step.
For me, here and now, achievable next steps include:
sending an email inviting somebody to connect with me via ZOOM,
opening up 2020 tax preparation software for the first time,
entering some tax data,
sending my video of “Vaccinated Women” to another TV show,
calling my health insurance company about family coverage,
calling a new company about my flexible spending health accountability account,
sharing these images with you:
According to the CDC, achievable next steps are definitely changing. Change is stressful, even those changes you desperately want. I would suggest choosing and practicing an achievable next step for reducing stress.
For me, sharing music I love is an achievable next step. Here are international women taking achievable next dance steps to “So What” by Miles Davis.
Is an achievable next step for you leaving a comment about this achievable-next-step post?
Gratitude is always an achievable next step for me.
This is what I’m having for lunch on the 7th anniversary of my first contact with Michael, which was a message about how we both disliked beets.
Here’s the first message I sent to my boyfriend Michael seven years ago after I saw his OkCupid profile, which was hilarious and adorable and quirky and mentioned his dislike of beets.
I also hate beets. You actually didn’t use the word “hate.” You were much more diplomatic.
Michael didn’t miss a beat and wrote back:
Well, you have to be diplomatic in public forums. I mean, you never know who’ll have a disturbing passion for beets or something and send you psychotic messages for the next seven months. Between you and me, I detest beets.
Since then, we’ve grown fonder of beets and of each other.
Let’s celebrate our anniversary to the beat of some music and photos!
I’m looking forward to many more beets, beats, delicious meals, sunrises, and sunsets in the future.
Thanks to Michael and everyone else who contributed to every beat and beet of this post and thanks to YOU — of course! — for staying to celebrate our anniversary.
“How People Change” is a topic of extreme interest to psychotherapists.
“How People Change” was also the topic that my therapy group — filled with people who are very interested in change — discussed yesterday morning.
Therefore, “How People Change” is the topic of today’s post.
I, a person, change every day. However, I do not change certain things — like including recent photos in my daily blog.
Because I’m not sure how WordPress is changing the size of that photograph on your current screen, here’s what I wrote about “How People Change” in yesterday’s group:
Everybody changes in different ways.
Flexibility is important!
Changes we choose are much easier to tolerate than changes we do not choose.
We deal with change a lot in this group because people come and go.
After the group, I changed the “angel card” in that description of change, just for the sake of change.
What do you think of that change, people?
Do you see evidence of how people change in my other photos from yesterday?
The reality is that I recited/sang these lyrics from the David Bowie song “Changes” in group yesterday.
(Turn and face the strange)
Don’t want to be a richer man
(Turn and face the strange)
Just gonna have to be a different man
Time may change me
But I can’t trace time
See and hear how David Bowie changed singing “Changes” as time changed him (here, here, and here on YouTube)
In my therapy groups, after I write on the board the themes and topics I hear in the room, I say, “I miss a lot of things,” because
I’m inviting people to make sure that everything that’s important to them is listed on the board and
I miss a lot of things.
I miss a lot of things because my imperfect mind is incapable of noticing and retaining everything that happens around me.
I also miss a lot of things because, no matter what we do, people leave and things change.
Do I miss a lot of things, here and now?
my late parents,
our previous President,
people I used to work with,
some of my classmates, and
living near the ocean, as I did when I was a child.
Do you miss a lot of things?
I miss a lot of things when I take pictures. Here’s the latest batch:
Did you miss the bunny kisses? The soap, in two photos? The glue? The misplaced meal? My new custom-made t-shirt? Boston? Something I brought home from a hotel in Edinburgh? Two cartoons I missed when I first published this post an hour ago? If you missed those things, look again.
I miss a lot of things, but today I’m not missing music …
… and I’m not missing the opportunity to thank those who helped me create this post and to thank YOU.