01 November 2018
You may recall that last month I began a series of newsletters focusing on the personal habits of happy people. Happy people tend to think and behave in ways that allow them to feel peaceful and content, no matter what’s going on around them. With a little effort, we can all learn to do this. The first of these habits, which I wrote about last time, was letting go of grudges. This month I’m going to focus on happiness habit two: how to not take things too personally. I think you’ll agree that many people struggle with this one. Someone says or does something, and before you know it your mood has plummeted and you’re upset or angry….
13 June 2018
Do you constantly compare yourself to other people? Do you often find yourself thinking that other people have more than you or are better than you? The comparison game is as old as humanity itself. I guess we all want to know how we measure up to other people. This drive is a part of our innate desire to understand ourselves, and our place in society. In recent times, however, social comparison has risen to a whole new level thanks to social media. It’s almost become an epidemic. Theodore Roosevelt said, “Comparison is the thief of joy.” And he was right…
22 November 2017
Humour me for a moment and imagine that you have the power to clone yourself so that there are now two identical versions of you out there in the world. Now, let me ask you a question. If you were to meet this other ‘you’ would you be good friends? Would you like ‘you’? I often ask my clients this question and their response gives me an insight into how they see themselves. Their answer tells me a lot about their sense of self-worth and their self-esteem in that moment. Self-worth is defined as “the sense of one’s own value or worth as a person”. Self-esteem is defined as …
18 July 2017
Would it surprise you to learn that your worst enemy is probably living inside your own head? I’m sure you’ve heard of the term ‘inner critic’. In therapy this concept refers to a subpersonality that judges and demeans a person. We all have an internal voice that talks to us about ourselves. For many people, this internal voice is quite negative. If left untamed, it can turn into a constant negative internal commentary on who they are and how they behave - one that can drag them down mentally and emotionally. Perhaps you can relate to some of these common inner critic statements…
14 January 2017
The concept of personal power is one that I deal with a lot in my work. Put simply, this is the degree of influence a person feels they have over their experience and circumstances in life. One of the key goals of therapy is to move a person from a place of disempowerment to a place of empowerment. A disempowered person believes they have no control or power over their circumstances and experience of life. An empowered person believes that they do. When I begin working with a new client one of the first things I do is ….
31 January 2016
If there is one message that any young man who would like to feel happy, healthy and content needs to internalise, it is to let go of other people’s expectations. As parents it is often our expectations of our sons that have the potential to cause them the most harm. Young men are bombarded with “You should…” messages from an early age. These messages are always well-intentioned, and can include expectations on their behaviour, friendships, academic achievement, relationships, career choices and social activities.
15 October 2015
As human beings we are continually in relationship, all day and every day, for the whole of our lives. Sometimes it is with other living beings: humans and animals. Sometimes it’s with inanimate objects - food, clothes, money - or ideas. There is one relationship, above all others, that is critical to our wellbeing. It is impossible to live a peaceful, healthy, happy life if this relationship is not monitored and managed adequately. The relationship to which I’m referring is the one we have with ourselves. Let me ask you a question. How do you habitually relate to yourself? …
14 April 2015
They ensure that their tribe is a positive and empowering one. They know that the people they hang around with affect their mental, emotional, spiritual and physical health so they choose them carefully. They use their feelings to identify the negative, manipulative, toxic people and simply cut them out of their life. And, if they can’t, they put up strong boundaries. They know that this is an issue of…
13 April 2015
I would like to think that, if I were being bullied, I would recognise it and do something about the situation. Wouldn’t you? Bullying is when one person uses their superior strength or influence to intimidate another person, typically to force them to do something. I’ve been asked to write about this issue by a client who, through our work together, has discovered that the controlling behaviour and shrewdness…
11 March 2015
They know that there is little, if anything, to be gained from this habit. They know that this tendency damages their sense of self, kills joy and breeds feelings of envy, low self-confidence and depression. They know that people present an edited version of themselves to the world so what they are comparing against is not real. They know that there is always someone out there who is bigger, better, and more…