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What To Do When You Feel Broken Inside?

10.17.17

In life, there are circumstances in which we simply have no control over; for example, our birthplace, genetic predispositions, cultural background, traumatic events, or illnesses. These among other situations influence the way we see ourselves as well as others. Our natural instinct is to survive and even when there is no physical danger, our mind still does a good job at helping us feel and stay safe. Our amazing problem-solving machine (the mind) gives us advice when it perceives something is not comfortable and pleasant. Though part of our mortal experience includes adversity and challenges, our mind does its best to keep us away from discomfort and pain. We are all broken. There is no single mortal being who does not have an external

Just Right: OCD and Kids

10.10.17

View original article published in Psych Central– Landon was a bright intelligent child. He had excelled academically and also enjoyed sports. However, OCD appeared to be getting in the way of his life. There were times when he could not get out of bed because the thought of having to get dressed overwhelmed him. His socks needed to feel just right as well as his shirt and pants. He would repeat the behaviors until he felt just right about it. He seemed to be late to school every day. Things in his room had to be just so. He would be angry and become aggressive when he noticed someone had been in his room. New belongings were challenging as well. When his parents bought him new items such as a backpack, shoes, or clothes, he refused to use

The OCD Mind and Uncertainty

10.9.17

An introduction to Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) for OCD, particularly as it relates to handling uncertainty and urges. Check it out: link here    

Comparison: The Perfectionist’s Incessant Urge

9.26.17

View original article published in Psych Central– Alice had experienced many successes in her youth. She was gifted with athletic skills, intelligence, and an outgoing personality. She qualified for a scholarship in college and graduated with honors from a prestigious program. Alice enjoyed the praise of others, and felt she should be happy but was not. She had developed the habit of comparing herself with others. When she could not keep up with what she believed were others’ expectations, she felt anxious and depressed. She would say, “If I make a mistake, others will judge me, and I will be nothing!” Perfectionism is a topic of interest to many because of the impact it can have in individuals’ lives. There is nothing wrong with having a d

Pedophilia OCD: When OCD Targets the Children in Your Life

9.11.17

View original article published in Psych Central– Rhonda was a kind and religious woman. Most importantly, she adored her kids. However, one day, a fleeting thought showed up in her mind, “Did I touch Ronnie inappropriately,” as she was buckling her son in his car seat. Rhonda became anxious and couldn’t stop worrying about it. “Did I really touch him? What if I did? Am I a pervert? No, I’m not! I would never do such thing! But then, why do I feel anxious? Does that mean I did something wrong? Otherwise, I would not feel anxious.” These and many similar thoughts began to occupy Rhonda’s mind. The more she tried to “get rid” of the thoughts or figure out why she was having them, the more they stuck. Gary was single with many nephews and niec

What Can Help Children Reach Their Potential? –Answers from Researchers

8.25.17

The article published by Inc. is titled: “According to Science, This 1 Thing Predicts a Student’s Success More Than Any Other” If you didn’t read the article, the answer is “Grit.” What does it mean? Angela Lee Duckworth, psychologist and researcher at the University of Pennsylvania defines grit as: “passion and perseverance for very long-term goals. Grit is having stamina. Grit is sticking with your future, day in, day out, not just for the week, not just for the month, but for years, and working really hard to make that future a reality. Grit is living life like it’s a marathon, not a sprint.”  Duckworth’s research shows that grit is more important than anything else, including talent. Her studies indicate that we all can do a

7 Essentials for Parents of Kids with OCD

8.22.17

View original article published in Psych Central– Looking back to what I now know suggests that my 3 1/2 year old son’s long lasting temper tantrums may have been an indication that something was up. I just didn’t know what it was and wasn’t sure how to become better informed. All I remember is that it seemed like it was his way or the highway. He eventually grew out of those temper tantrums by the time he started pre-school. When Jeff was in elementary school, he would erase numbers and letters until they looked “just right!” At night I would spend a few minutes with each of my sons saying good night. When it was his turn, we would talk and then say good night. But as I was leaving the room he would say, “Say good night mom.” I would say,

5 WAYS TO TEACH YOUR CHILDREN TO BE BRAVE by Siobhan Colgan - SPARTAN LIFE

8.1.17

Published at SPARTAN LIFE – Siobhan, a writer for Spartan reached out to me after reading Got Anxious Kids? Be Brave! She asked me to contribute to the following article. No parent wants their kids’ lives to be difficult. But we also know that part of our job is to prepare our kids for the hard knocks and tough breaks they’re sure to encounter. How do we set them up for success in today’s competitive world if they never learn to get up when they fall, to face misfortune and mess-ups with courage and resolve? We can’t. While helicopter parents won’t want to hear it, our kids can’t learn to be brave unless we’re willing to let them fall, and sometimes fall hard. Here are five ways to encourage your kids to become courageous and self-r

Own Your Anxiety and Become a Discoverer!

7.25.17

View original article published in Psych Central– Nathaniel, a college student had been suffering from anxiety for over two years. He found psychological help through his university but continued to feel lonely in his journey. He had chosen to hide his anxiety from his family and friends for fear of been judged as weak. As he continued with therapy, he decided to be open about his challenges. One day he said, “I feel like I can move on with my life. I don’t need to be thinking about hiding my struggles. I can own it because I’m more than my anxiety!” Nathaniel’s anxiety didn’t completely go away, but he learned to notice his thoughts, feelings, sensations, and urges with flexibility and curiosity. He discovered that when he spoke about his

Insights from the 24th International OCD Conference in San Francisco

7.12.17

This gathering of researchers, treatment providers, clients, relatives, and friends of those struggling with OCD was a special event. Everyone that attended learned, taught, and shared knowledge and experiences. Most importantly, it was inspiring to meet individuals who struggle with OCD and are not giving up. They are fighters and are willing to keep working and learning so that OCD does not defeat them. I have been an advocate because I have seen it first hand through the struggles of my son. However, it was not until after the completion of his treatment that I decided to specialize in treating OCD and OC related disorders. I have come to personally understand the pain and struggles of families and sufferers. At this year’s conference m

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