Posts by Hans

Coping with Tragedy

Posted by on Oct 2, 2017 in anxiety, Coping Skills, Loss, Sadness, Stress, Trauma, Violence | 0 comments

Faced with yet another horrific news story about a mass shooting today, most of us are saddened, angered and generally overwhelmed with emotion. There is no logic, and it is impossible to find any meaningful explanation for this event.   How we can cope with this on a personal level is a big question.  While much of my work as a therapist utilizes what is called cognitive therapy, cognitive therapy is not going to help much here. There is no positive way to re-frame senseless killing and dying.  There is no good side to this.  Attempting to find different “self-talk” to make it seem even 10%...

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Reconnecting

Posted by on Sep 2, 2015 in anxiety, Communication, Depression, Family, Marriage, Mindfulness, Relationships | 0 comments

Human beings are social animals. Although many people are what psychologists call “introverts”, our ancestors throughout almost all of history have spent their time depending upon each other. From an evolutionary perspective, interpersonal relationships are desirable because our connection to others helps us survive physically. Emotions, however, are integral to our human experience.  Our feeling of connection, or bonding, to other people plays a big role in our identity and our emotional well being. Even the most independent of us still want to know that we have family or close friends who...

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Depression the Distorter

Posted by on Jul 31, 2015 in CBT, Cognitive, Depression, Therapy | 0 comments

Depression can be a debilitating condition, in large part due to how much it distorts our thinking.  These distortions are not hallucinations, but they do skew our vision to make it hard to see things realistically.  Thinking is distorted or filtered by Depression in such a way so that it is hard to see anything good in the world.  Every day life has challenges, road blocks, and sometimes tragedies, and when we are not experiencing Depression, we can see solutions -we have options.  With Depression, we feel like we are stuck, it is hard to see that there are any good options. We may not be...

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Seasonal Toxic Relative Disorder

Posted by on Nov 21, 2014 in Couples, Family, Family Dysfunction, Holiday Blues, Holiday Stress, Marriage, relatives, Seasonal Depression | 0 comments

Perhaps you are feeling the impending doom of embarking on a family trip over the river and through the woods to the wicked witch of the West’s house for Thanksgiving or Christmas.  Or perhaps crazy Uncle Mel will be in town for a week and has nowhere else to stay.  In many families, there are relatives who can wreak havoc on what might otherwise be a peaceful and festive gathering.  A psychological textbook could be written about the ability of one toxic person to inflict chaos and pain upon an extended family during the course of a four day weekend.  For today, however, I’ll outline some...

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Ten Ways to Cope With Grief

Posted by on Oct 29, 2014 in Depression, Existential, Grief, Holiday Stress, Loss | 0 comments

Grief over a loved one dying is a challenge that all of us face at one time or another.  The usual question is: “What can I do to get through this?!”  Time does not always heal all wounds, sometimes we need to actively attend to our grief and find ways to make meaning out of what is often a tragic and traumatic event. One:  Allow Yourself to Feel.  Feel whatever emotions you are feeling at this time, and resist the temptation to label any of that as wrong, weak, or bad. You may go through the classic stages of: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance – or you may go...

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