Old Library Books

Important Books for Private Practice Therapists

Starting up a private practice can be overwhelming, intimidating, and often a huge financial risk. Taking steps to mitigate the dangers involved demands approaching things from a business perspective; the dilemma is that this is the anthesis of what we consider a genuine therapist should be. Finding a way to blend the two – business skills with the therapist mindset and ethics – is the key. One of the services I offer is being a business mentor for mental health therapists (psychologists, social workers, licensed professional counselors, nurse practitioners, etc.) who are interested in starting, or refining, an independent private...
painting a landscape

How Sex and Affairs Act Like an Antidepressant

What is it that causes people to become involved in extra-marital affairs? There are multiple reasons that affairs happen. What has rarely been explored is how depression is a strong motivating factor in the initiation and continuing nature of affairs. Understanding a number of factors might be of some help in thinking as one finds themselves trapped in temptation. Resistance to Reality Changes The one thing that is always happening in life is the one thing that we resist the most: change! We are constantly faced by the issues of change in life whether it be the changing of one day to the...
codependent

Am I Codependent?

Counselors, therapists and psychologists frequently talk about co-dependent relationships as something that is not healthy. Understanding dysfunctional relationships requires that we examine how we approach relating to other people who are important to us. Codpendencey Defined Codependency is best understood as a relationship where you do all the work, suffer all the consequences, the other person does not grow or change, others don’t even notice all you do, or appreciate it, and you end up WORN-OUT, EXHAUSTED, AND POOPED!! – Blamed! Co-dependent relating is one where there is TOO MUCH CARING AND HELPING. Helping others is fine. However, if we try to...
Therapy Models

Standards of Care for Effective Psychotherapy

There is an increasing emphasis in psychology, psychiatry, clinical social work, and counseling about the need for the development of "standards of care" in the provision of psychological treatment services. Insurers, other professionals, and legislators ask us to describe what we actually do in psychotherapy. This becomes a particularly important question in an insurance and political era of providers having to be more accountable and focused in the provision of treatment services. There is a concern from insurers, employers, and public policy makers that psychotherapy can keep patients dependent and is of no real benefit, even though research strongly...

Why Does it Hurt So Much When We Fight?

The process of "becoming a couple" is filled with many emotions, feelings, attitudes, risking and identification with another person. Relationship problems happen when these same emotions are injured in any way.  When one "sees and hears" much blaming and emotions between a couple, it is clear that there has been an "attachment bond injury" that has to be healed before the relationship can continue and be healed. Attachment-Bonding We know that an infant and parent need to develop a close bond of trust if the child is to grow. Without this bond, the child will experience a "failure to thrive" which may...

Dogs, Anxiety and Learned Helplessness

Learned helplessness is the basis for understanding the root causes of depression and panic anxiety. Early researchers discovered that when dogs were given electrical shocks that they could not control, they later showed signs of anxiety and depression. If the experiment went on for too long, the dogs didn’t even try to escape the shocks and instead just collapsed in a corner of their cage. If a "safe area" was made in the cage where the dogs could go to in order to not receive any shocks, they would act helpless and not move. If they were picked up and...

Growing Up with Emotional Abuse

When children's development of self-esteem, social skills or capacity for intimacy is jeopardized by their parents' behavior or neglect, they may be the victim of emotional abuse. Whether it is alcohol or other drugs, mental illness, compulsive behavior (eating, working, religion, etc.), or any one of a thousand other things that deplete a family's emotional life, the results are the same. Children are left to their own devices to make sense of the pain and loneliness in their life. In the end, they are the victims of emotional abuse: A pattern of rejecting, isolating, terrorizing, ignoring and corrupting behavior from...

Crisis Points of Relationships and Marriage

Marriage is most open to crisis when it is rigid and inflexible. Whatever won't bend will break, or push others away. Rigid people, who expect specific roles in relationships only create more crises at different relationship developmental points. When the relationship demands that there be isolation from outside supports, such as family, the focus becomes one of control and fear. Problems can also develop when the relationship is seen as needing to be on the high of a romance. Romance seduces people into expecting too much. Romance after courtship can fade fast. Some people have never learned the difference between love, romance, sex, and growing...

Midlife Crisis – What Are the Signs?

We all have heard about someone having a midlife crisis. Yet we rarely recognize it when it happens to us. Early in our life, we have many hopes and desires about how we want our lives to turn out. We sometimes plan, or just live, expecting that someday we will arrive and have it. Unfortunately, we often live our life as such a fast pace that we end up in crisis. Midlife Crisis in Action By the time we arrive at adulthood, we desire to experience it all. At first, we experience the fun of arriving at adulthood, wanting to live...
blurry indifferent bleak background

Why Can’t I Feel Joy?

We all know the condition. The boundaries of depression and bleak, sad moods, are very fluid and always changing. Depression is something that is treatable with psychological therapy and/or medication; however, the variations of moods may best be countered by spiritual practices and personal discipline of becoming more aware of how one functions in one’s internal psychological “world.” Bleak moods, known as “the noonday demon,” is the cause of the most serious troubles in life. It runs through our culture and is known in many forms: Indifference, workaholism, lethargy, no motivation, lack of a sense of meaning, feeling stuck, wanting...