The miracle is not to fly in the air, or to walk on the water, but to walk on the earth.

~Chinese Proverb~

Blog posts : "emotions"

How Our Words and Feelings Influence Each Other

Maybe you have noticed that many positively charged words contain the “i” sound (e.g., like, high), while many negatively charged words have an “o” sound (e.g. lonely, low).

Some scientists noticed this is true in many languages, and wondered why. Their research shows that the way our mouth…

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Solid, Liquid, Gas: Water Can Teach Us Thought Management

We know that water can be a solid, liquid or gas. That makes water an excellent metaphor or illustration for thoughts, which can also be a solid, liquid or gas.

What we feel has much to do with how we think. Knowing the difference between “types” of thoughts can help us manage our depression, anxie…

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Parents, kids, and anger: Emotions are a message, not a problem

People who counsel adults know how crucial it is for children to have good role models for managing emotions. Unfortunately, many problematic emotional habits get handed down from one generation to the next, especially where anger is concerned.   

Looking at this issue has nothing to do with assi…

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The Four Faces of Nostalgia: Tis the Season

Have you ever read a quote that makes an instant, permanent path in your neural network? It might be the words of Frank Zappa, “It isn’t necessary to imagine the world ending in fire or ice. There are two other possibilities: one is paperwork, and the other is nostalgia.” 

From then on, the …

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Depression: Lincoln's Black Dog

How interesting that the movie Lincoln opened during the U.S. voting season because if Lincoln were running for President today he would never win. Imagine headlines during the campaign such as, “Lincoln Rumored to See a Psychiatrist.” A week later another might read, “Pharmacist admits filling anti…

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Happiness: Increasing yours is not a daydream

It seems that even when listening to music, working on a craft, enjoying a walk, or a conversation our thinking mind spends up to 70% of that time daydreaming, or wandering away from what we are doing (presidential debates excluded?). This is not to say that all daydreaming is useless, but i…

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Stress less: Easy ways to be still without sitting still

We usually use the word stillness to indicate lack of movement, but stillness can also be the lack of apparent movement. A top spinning so quickly that it appears still illustrates how stillness can be motion-without-conflict; conflict would make the top wobble. 

The stillness of motion-wi…

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Golf and life: Winning the mind game

Scanning information on golf psychology confirms that, without doubt, life is a game. The primary mental mistakes that golfers make are the same mistakes we all make while schlepping through our days. 

What separates great golfers from the average weekend hacker is avoiding the mental pond…

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PTSD: Looking from the inside out

Knowing the symptoms of PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder) gives us an idea of what having it is like, but reading a list of symptoms does not trigger our emotions. With words we share concepts. We understand or empathize with each other because we share the same emotional language. 

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Suicide in the military: Operation prevention

The primary reason for death in the US Army is not vehicle accidents or combat; it is suicide.  

Army suicides rose 18% during the first six months of 2012, when compared to the same period in 2011. In the 26 year period of 1977 to 2003 there were 80% fewer suicides than between 2004 and 200…

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Who are you? Sorting through your clothes can be a revelation

Miguel de Cervantes wrote, “Make it thy business to know thyself, which is the most difficult lesson in the world.” He obviously never sorted through a closet stuffed with years of accumulated clothes (probably too busy with windmills). The way we do or do not let go of items we own tells us…

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The mental game of gymnastics and relationships

The mental discipline that gymnasts demonstrate is amazing. They have a fair amount of downtime waiting for their turn on an event, and that is when anxious thoughts easily erupt.

It takes guts to put so much time and training on the line, especially a line that is stretched around the worl…

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The What, Why, and Who of Math Anxiety

If you have math anxiety, your issue with solving number problems may have nothing to do with your math capability, or a disdain of numbers. A study done in England reveals it might have a little to do with your gender, however.

Researchers from Oxford and Cambridge Universities define math …

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Migraines and depression: Brain pain and emotional pain somehow linked

It seems that everything can be correlated to an increased risk of depression, but sometimes the increased risk is significant enough to warrant an alert. If you are a female and currently experience migraine headaches, or have a history of migraines, you are 40% more likely to develop sympt…

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Managing depression: Tips from a cantankerous counselor

No matter why you are depressed, it is certain that your ego mind will contribute as much mud as it is allowed to throw. It will sling thoughts such as:

1. I’m stupid
2. I don’t matter, nothing matters, nothing I do matters
3. I hate myself
4. Nobody cares, including me
5. I shouldn’t be angr…

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Helping A Friend Who Is Grieving

The death of a loved one sends people on a bittersweet inner journey they would rather not take. When the journeyer is a friend most of us would like to be of help. What does that mean?

Sometimes we keep our distance because we feel awkward or do not want to get in the way. Others of us, with…

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Obamacare, mental health, and what is normal anyway?

When you work in mental health the question of what is and isn’t normal always floats in the back caverns of the mind, waiting for another opportunity to ask itself. A more interesting question is, “Why do people put up with so many things that a sensible and even partly compassionate person…

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Crohn’s and depression: If it isn’t one end it’s the other

Receiving a diagnosis of any illness can knock the wind out of us. It takes a while to breath normally again. We may experience symptoms of depression while we adjust to the chronic diagnosis and learn to manage it. After a period of adjustment, the depressive symptoms usually diminish, but …

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The dance of diabetes and depression: Why you should learn the steps

Type 2 diabetes and depression have some things in common. They share the risk factors of obesity, inactivity, family history, blood pressure problems, and coronary artery disease. Some signs of very high or low blood sugar are also depressive symptoms, such as anxiety, fatigue, irritability…

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Protests, passion, and change: Do your emotions rule you or fuel you?

Historically, both small and significant changes have started with anger or outrage over an injustice, or a need unmet. People use channels available to them, such as protests, to make their sentiments heard and felt. If that does not work and people know of no other recourse, violence can e…

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