New York Times: What Brand Is Your Therapist?

This article came out in yesterday’s New York Times.  In it the author, Lori Gottlieb writes about some changes and innovations in the field of psychotherapy.  I was lucky enough to be interviewed for the article and have a quote in the middle of the article.  Check it out here.  I am still working on writing up my thoughts about the ideas presented in the article.  Hint: I’m not sure I agree with Ms. Gottlieb’s conclusions.  Stay tuned!

New York Times: 11/25/2012

Stressed? Take a Hike!

Last spring I was interviewed for this article in the Yuma Sun. I have to be honest, I never would have thought of starting a nature club with my family had the reporter, Chris McDaniel, given me the idea.  After reading the article and the ideas provided, I think it sounds like a lot of fun!  Here’s a quote:

“Sometimes we as parents think that we need to spend lots of money or drive long distances to find things our kids will think are fun. This is rarely the case. Most kids just like to spend time with their parents doing something together. This can be a simple walk around the block, or an exploration trip at the nearest park.”

I gave this quote in the spring, but it seems particularly pertinent this time of year with the holidays – and all the craziness that accompanies them – right around the corner.  Just last night I started to feel a little hint of holiday stress when I caught a glimpse of a kids clothing catalog and started summing up the cash for three coordinating outfits for my kids.  I think I might be taking my own advice today and ditch the expensive things we don’t really need, and head out for a walk in the fall leaves instead.

Yuma Sun April 2012

Psychotherapy: It Works

Full-disclosure: I work closely with the American Psychological Association (APA) as the Public Education Coordinator for Colorado, and in other capacities.  I think they are generally a great organization which does important work for psychologists AND the public.  APA works for mental health treatment, and stands up for the rights of psychologists in the US (and Canada, actually).  As awesome as I think the organization is, it rarely has a sense of humor.  So imagine my delight when I watched this new video.  Funny, a bit irreverent, and right on the money in terms of psychotherapy vs. meds – it is worth a minute of your time.

A Romantic Lunch Date

Most folks who have been in a romantic relationship lasting more than a year or two are looking for ways to keep things exciting, fresh, and romantic.  I had forgotten about this old post of mine until I saw some excerpts pop up on  I think I had some good ideas for squeezing in a quick romantic lunch with your sweetie.  Thanks for sharing my post, rockinmarriage!  And thanks for reminding us that “Having a romantic lunch date can feel much more illicit and adventurous and it also reduces some of the stress of trying to find time and make arrangements for a date night.” on 9/14/12

Do Your Friends Add Up?

Photo by NBC

A friend of mine was recently telling me about a tough time she had been having for the last several months. She told me about her stressors with some health issues, some financial concerns she and her partner were having, and the annoyance she was feeling about her poorly-behaved dog.  After she explained all these ailments, she noted that as bad as those were, her “friends” were even worse.

“You wouldn’t believe how they drain me!” she said.  “I realized that far too many of my friends take and take from me, and I never get anything back!”  She explained that on her journey back towards mental health, she forced herself to take stock of her relationships, assigning each person a point value. Negative values were assigned to those who made her feel bad, unhappy, or poorly about herself.  Positive values were assigned to those who helped her feel more like the person she wanted to be (kind, strong, loving, intelligent).

Now, it may sound a little harsh, scoring your friends on what they add or subtract from your life, but I love her idea.  Too often we hang onto relationships we wish would be better, hope would be closer, or feel desperate to change.  And I’m not just talking about romantic relationships – more often these are friendships with old high school friends, a neighbor, or a parent of a child’s friend.

No relationship is perfect, but one that drains for a long period of time can be downright damaging.  Maybe it’s time to take stock of the people in your life and see how they add up?