Emotional Offenders: Taking Them on Giuliani Style.

By |2017-05-21T16:05:52-07:00December 18th, 2014|General|

Back in the mid-nineties when New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani embarked on his lofty mission to clean up the Big Apple and tackle its infamously high crime rate, one might be surprised to learn that his strategy did not focus on going after the big time, hardened, or most dangerous criminals. Instead, he began by literally cleaning up the city. He did this by installing thousands more public garbage cans, restoring many run down historical buildings, removing an exorbitant amount of graffiti, and cracking down hard on more minor violations and small time offenders. [...]

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Influential People: How Do They Do It?

By |2017-05-21T16:05:52-07:00December 12th, 2014|General|

In his runaway bestselling book TheTipping Point, Malcolm Gladwell writes about a certain type of person he calls “senders.” These people, he writes, “Are those who are very good at expressing their emotions and feelings [in a positive and uplifting way], which means they are far more emotionally contagious than the rest of us.” These are the types of people who, after spending some time in their presence, we can’t help but absorb, take on, and be influenced by the energy they are sending out. Have you ever been feeling kind of blah and then [...]

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How to Ease Holiday Stress and Anxiety: 5 Great Strategies.

By |2017-05-21T16:05:53-07:00December 3rd, 2014|General|

Tis the season to often feel a little (re: a lot) overwhelmed, stressed, and anxious. Part of the reason for this is because often times the Christmas Season comes with a whole lot of obligations, commitments, invitations, and engagements. There are presents to buy, parties to attend, open houses to show up at, baking to get done, guests to house, travelling to do and many, many other unspoken expectations to fulfill. It can be enough to make anyone lose their cool and have a freak out. Or 2. Or 10. Although it feels like you [...]

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How To Have A Really Bad Day.

By |2017-05-21T16:05:53-07:00November 28th, 2014|General|

1. Compare yourself to others: Really focus hard on what others have that you don't. 2. Criticize yourself in whatever you do: Even if you have a success, tell yourself why it's not good enough and why it should have been more or better. 3. Criticize others in whatever they do: Expect others to be perfect, be able to read your mind, and anticipate all your needs without ever actually telling them what your wants and needs are. 4. Call yourself down for any and every mistake you make… or have ever made: Really focus [...]

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Five Steps to Help You Reach Your Lofty Goals.

By |2017-05-21T16:05:53-07:00November 27th, 2014|General|

Having ideas are great, having goals are extremely important, and being ambitious, determined, hardworking, and focused are all really solid and respectable qualities. But many of us make the mistake of becoming too ambitious and have too big of goals that we try to chew off in one giant bite, and soon realize it's much more than we can handle and end up giving up pretty quickly. And that NEVER feels good, or allows us to grow and flourish as individuals. That said, there are a few pretty simple and straightforward steps you can take [...]

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We Have So Much. So Why Aren’t We Happier?

By |2017-05-21T16:05:53-07:00November 21st, 2014|General|

Depression is on the rise. Current research tells us this is so, which may not be too much of a shocker. In fact, by some estimates depression is 10 times more common than it was 60 years ago. And before you think this is because 60 years ago most people didn't have the term “Major Depressive Disorder” in their personal dictionary so couldn't actually identify it as such, much of this research is based on tens of thousands of door to door surveys asking people about histories of crying for days on end, making attempts [...]

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You Are A Lot Tougher Than You Think.

By |2017-05-21T16:05:53-07:00November 19th, 2014|General|

Remember that time when that thing turned out to be not as bad as you thought it would? AKA – pretty much each and every time with pretty much each and every thing? So what makes us worry our precious heads and hearts to pieces thinking about how things, circumstances, or experiences in our lives could go terribly awry, thereby causing us to lose sleep, fun, relationships and quality of life over? The truth is, if we take a moment and reflect on it, often most situations in our lives go at least somewhat according [...]

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Turn A Bad Day Into A Good One With One Simple Exercise.

By |2017-05-21T16:05:53-07:00November 12th, 2014|General|

As you've probably heard, Mindfulness is all the rage right now. And if you haven’t heard, Mindfulness is all the rage right now. So what is mindfulness? According to Wikipedia, “Mindfulness is the intentional, accepting and non-judgmental focus of one's attention on the emotions, thoughts and sensations occurring in the present moment, which can be trained by meditational practices.” Basically it’s about living in the now. It's a great skill to hone and really helps with stress reduction, focusing and becoming more production. It sounds easy, but it’s not always. Personally, I've always had a [...]

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Why Facebook Can Be Bad For Us.

By |2017-05-21T16:05:53-07:00November 6th, 2014|General|

  When I hear something once I listen closely. When I hear something twice it seems like a theme might be forming. When I hear something three times in the same day from three different clients I start to become concerned that we have a bigger problem here than I had originally thought. Word has been spreading, but I’m not sure if everyone has received the message yet – More and more evidence has been coming out saying that Facebook is really not good for us – in many ways. But the one I am [...]

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Why People Treat Us the Way they Do.

By |2017-05-21T16:05:53-07:00October 28th, 2014|General|

There’s an idea out there in the psychology world that we create, to a large extent, how people treat us. This is a big one that I've recently been finding myself thinking and philosophizing about more than usual. Now obviously if we are rude and mean to someone most likely they will respond to us with anger or resentment… nothing profound there. And, sometimes bosses, coworkers, friends, loved ones, and even complete strangers will be overtly rude to us for no apparent reason… I’m not saying we necessarily caused them to treat us in this [...]

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One of the Most Important Skills You Can Use.

By |2017-05-21T16:05:53-07:00October 24th, 2014|General|

Recently I came across some psychology literature that caught my attention. The author, well-known psychiatrist Scott M. Peck, points out that one of the most important skills we can teach our children, and also practice more of ourselves, is delaying gratification. When we wait a few minutes/hours/days before indulging in a decadent dessert/buying a new pair of shoes/or becoming the first time owner of a new sports car we appreciate and enjoy the object of our desire much more, or, the other thing that happens is we lose interest in said item and decide not [...]

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Is It Better to Work Hard or Take A Step Back?

By |2017-05-21T16:05:54-07:00October 20th, 2014|General|

When in your golden years and reflecting back on that which has been your life thus far, what would you like to say to yourself? “Gosh, I wish I would have just chilled out more and taken time to rest, relax, and spend time with the people I love.” Or “Oh man, I sure wish I would have just gotten over my fears, hesitations, excuses, and lack of belief in myself and just gone for the goals and dreams I really wanted to work toward and accomplish.” This is a tough one because neither is [...]

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No One Is Going to Pay You to Do What You Love.

By |2017-05-21T16:05:54-07:00October 2nd, 2014|General|

I could have sworn that I've written about this before, but can’t, for the life of me, find where. So, I guess I must have talked about it so much I just assumed I’d actually put it out there in to cyber space for a larger audience to be aware of. It’s true. No one is going to pay you to do what you love. Well, I guess it’s true… sort of. There are some people who really are lucky enough to love and be passionate about the work they are involved in, and actually [...]

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Allowing Ourselves to be Imperfect.

By |2017-05-21T16:05:54-07:00September 11th, 2014|General|

I’m not always sure if it was society, or parents, the media, or the kid down the street who told us we need to be someone we’re not in order to be good enough, worthwhile or have any value as human beings. Wherever it came from, it’s not nice. And how it has translated in to adult hood is by cultivating a breed of individuals who believe they need to be perfect, beautiful, always put together, beyond reproach, completely on the top of their game, who never show signs of having limits, emotions or boundaries and [...]

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The Ice Bucket Challenge: Maybe Not So Great After all

By |2017-05-21T16:05:54-07:00August 27th, 2014|General|

So I’m not on Facebook (I think we’re actually a dying race) but when I heard through the grapevine about the ALS Ice Bucket challenge I was confused, and then awe struck. BRILLIANT I thought. I love clever marketing that gets mass buy-in literally overnight. I thought the whole thing was a great idea, and having been somewhat familiar with ALS after reading Tuesdays With Morrie several years ago and learning about how devastating and tragic this illness is, I was immediately in support. Until I read this article by MACLEANS Magazine. Although the tone [...]

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The Power Of…

By |2017-05-21T16:05:54-07:00August 21st, 2014|General|

Does focusing on the positive make you a more positive person in general? I’m going to go ahead and say yes. If any of this brain research that’s been all the rage over the past couple years regarding brain plasticity and how quite a good part of our brains are made up of that which we put in to them, then it stands to reason that if we put pessimism and negativity into the old noggin (i.e. by focusing on what we might think sucks about an interaction, a situation or, our lives), then that’s [...]

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As the Tide.

By |2017-05-21T16:05:54-07:00July 29th, 2014|General|

  The truth about our emotions is that sometimes those sneaky little buggers get the best of us by making us wholeheartedly believe that what we’re feeling in a moment of discontent is an accurate portrayal of reality. If I feel like an idiot or a reject then I must be an idiot or a reject. The truth is, though, our emotions lie to us. If you think about it, we know how we may be feeling in a given moment can’t possibly be the total and utter truth because we’ve all had times of [...]

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Who Says? and Who Cares?

By |2017-05-21T16:05:54-07:00July 17th, 2014|General|

I find it curious when people talk about how they feel bad because they think they should be more interesting by being more interested in something that’s “cool” (I’m not really sure who’s the official word on what’s cool and what’s not, but anyway…) Let’s look at this. Feeling crummy about yourself because you think you should be more interested in x, y, or z in order to make yourself more interesting. But what happens if you’re NOT actually really all that interested in x, y, or z? Some of the ones I've heard are: [...]

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The BIG HURT.

By |2017-05-21T16:05:54-07:00July 8th, 2014|General|

One day when I was in Junior High, seemingly out of nowhere I was targeted and forced out of the little posse of 12 year old girls that was my friend group. For some reason, to this day I still have no idea why, the leader of our little group of pre-teen girls decided she didn’t like me and didn’t want me in the group and was able to convince the others of the same (talk about an influential person! I hope she’s using her powers for good now). Anyway, I was out. I say [...]

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The Next Three.

By |2017-05-21T16:05:54-07:00July 3rd, 2014|General|

As promised the continuation from last time, here they are: THE FINAL 3 THINGS YOU CAN START WORKING ON IN YOUR PURSUIT TO BECOME A MORE ADAPTABLE PERSON 1. Experience Rejection without Blaming Yourself: You know it and I know it. Rejection is painful. It’s like stubbing your big toe. It often causes our self-esteem to be wounded as a result. What many of us do then, is kick ourselves when we’re down: we blame and criticise ourselves and are quick to tell ourselves why we’re no good and not worthy of success or acceptance. [...]

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State or Trait

By |2017-05-21T16:05:54-07:00June 29th, 2014|General|

Believe it or not, there is a pretty basic trait that you may not realize will really help to make you a much happier person. It’s the ability to be adaptable. And the good news is that even if adaptability doesn’t come naturally to you, it is something you can intentionally work on and learn to become more of. We all face different challenging circumstances and interactions on a daily basis and how we respond to these can vary greatly. Some of us buckle under the pressure of emotional discomfort and often find ourselves feeling hopeless or [...]

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The Vancouver Real Estate Market: Missed the Boat.

By |2017-05-21T16:05:54-07:00June 20th, 2014|General|

It's SO easy to get caught up in things that are really rather menial, but in the moment seem like the BIGGEST DEALS EVER! Just last night I was boo hooing to my most patient, calm, and rational husband about how in the last 10 years Vancouver went from being an expensive city to a totally unaffordable city, real estate wise… at least if you’d rather a family of 4 NOT live in a 500 square foot apartment in a sort of dodgy area of town. I could go on about my discouragement and frustrations [...]

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No Change.

By |2017-05-21T16:05:55-07:00April 24th, 2014|General|

If I always think the way I have always thought, I will always feel the way I have always felt. If I always feel the ways I’ve always felt, I will always do what I’ve always done. If I always do what I’ve always done, I will always get what I’ve always got. If I always get what I’ve always got, There is no change. And if there is no change, There is no change. ~Anonymous Some of the work that I do as a clinical counsellor is intervening on that first level: our thoughts. [...]

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Never Be Disappointed Again: A How-To Guide

By |2017-05-21T16:05:55-07:00January 3rd, 2014|General|

Let's start with a word: Expectations. They can be so dangerous sometimes. It’s so easy, though, to muster up and place big fat expectations on ourselves, and sometimes worse, others and situations that are relatively out of our control. I say it’s sometimes worse to have big lofty expectations of others because, as we’ve discussed previously, it’s really hard (read: impossible) to control others. At least when it’s about us we do often have a little more control… sometimes. Anyway, expectations of others, especially really big ones: not good. People are not always as kind, [...]

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Two Four 2

By |2017-05-21T16:05:55-07:00May 1st, 2013|General|

A while ago I wrote this posting about being responsible for ourselves and to others. To sum up, what this means is that we are responsible FOR our own thoughts, behaviours, reactions, emotions, but we are not responsible FOR those same things in others. We are, however, responsible TO others. It is our responsibility TO be kind, respectful, understanding, and compassionate toward others. It’s not okay, and it rarely turns out well when we try to take on someone else's downward spiralling emotions and then try to fix them, nor is it all that useful [...]

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The Dance.

By |2017-05-21T16:05:55-07:00April 3rd, 2013|General|

While doing a little spring cleaning on my I came across one of my favourite communication tools for identifying and resolving issues with others. It’s called the Awareness Wheel and it’s a great little diddy for identifying what’s really going on in a given situation and then working through the issue – especially with someone you are close to like a partner, parent, sibling, or close friend. We’re not always aware of what’s actually going on when in the crux of a conflict with someone (or even with ourselves) so using this tool can really [...]

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Just A Moment.

By |2017-05-21T16:05:55-07:00March 28th, 2013|General|

I speak and write often of gratitude and of taking time to be grateful because it really is something that is so simple to do and yet so powerful. Being regularly and intentionally grateful for even the small things in life has been shown to significantly impact ones overall happiness and well being. It can often even instantly turn a sour mood into feelings of contentment and joy. It really can make a signficant difference - like I said, it's pretty powerful stuff. So then, I propose we take just a moment right now to [...]

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More Than Words.

By |2017-05-21T16:05:55-07:00March 18th, 2013|General|

This past weekend I partook in my new Saturday morning yoga ritual at the lovely little yoga studio just down the street from my house. Now I wouldn’t call myself an avid yogi because, to be honest, I often find yoga a little too low key and breathy for my personal preference – I tend to be a mover, a goer, and a doer – which likely means that participating in the slow and steady from time to time is exactly what would be best for me. I digress. Anyway, I have been getting myself [...]

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Something Like a Phenomenon.

By |2017-05-21T16:05:55-07:00March 11th, 2013|General|

I’m always a bit tickled when the same theme seems to pop up out of nowhere several times within a few days. This weeks theme: The Impostor Phenomenon. Now, what is that you ask? The impostor phenomenon is a thing that's experienced by those who just cannot believe in or take any credit for their successes, abilities, or accomplishments. People who have this experience often attribute their successes to such things to luck, timing, or being really good at faking it and deceiving others into believing they are something they, in fact, are not. This [...]

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