One of the Most Powerful Questions to Cut Through Anxiety (Relationships, Health, Parenting, Friendship)

When addressing anxiety effectively, we must attend to all four realms of self: physical, emotional, cognitive, and soul – or body, heart, mind, and soul. Attending only to one of the four realms is helpful, but it won’t help you heal anxiety from the root. By “attend” I mean we need tools to work with all four realms, and the tool I’m going to share today will help you on the cognitive/mind realm.

When we’re caught in an anxious storm, it’s often because we’re caught in a story that is powered by fear. By the way, I prefer to talk about the key areas where our wounds constellate as “stories” instead of beliefs or thoughts because a story is a holistic word that encapsulates our whole self, and stories often live in the emotional body as much as the mental realm. These stories can vary depending on the theme of … Click here to continue reading...

There's Something Broken But It's Not You

I spend a lot of time thinking about our culture, and it’s a topic I bring up almost every week in my blog and courses in some form. Lately, I’ve been thinking about how terribly sad and actually tragic it is that culture should support its members into becoming more of who they are, but we, in Western culture, suffer under a mainstream mindset that undermines the realization of our full development.

For us, culture is a force we have to fight against instead of a net into which we can lean. No wonder so many people suffer from anxiety, depression, insomnia, intrusive thoughts, and addictions. Humans are not meant to figure out life alone, and we’re certainly not meant to have to break through the myths and unrealistic expectations we’ve been fed from a young age simply to have healthy relationships and make loving choices for ourselves.

It might … Click here to continue reading...

Explode the #1 Block to Healing from Anxiety (Relationship and Otherwise)

A few weeks ago, as I was cleaning out our closet, I stumbled upon a stack of papers from my grandmother. Most of the papers were familiar, but one unfamiliar packet literally dropped onto my lap, a stapled report for an adult-education class in psychology that she took in 1963 that I had never read before. The title was, “My Psychograph and Its Evaluation.”

It was like stumbling upon a lost treasure: A window into my past, my history, and my beloved grandmother’s inner world. Here was a twelve-page, carefully crafted essay written on delicate typing paper (this was long before the ease of computers and printers) where she analyzed the results of several different psychological tests. The results of the test in terms of numbers are irrelevant to me, but her interpretation and reflections reverberated inside of me on so many levels. Like many people of her generation, my … Click here to continue reading...

How to Shatter the Myths that Are Keeping You Stuck

A great deal of my work centers around shattering myths about love, romance, and intimacy that cause untold amounts of anxiety in relationships and sexuality. If we start with the very basic “doubt means don’t” slogan that permeates the culture of romantic love, we see immediately what happens when we dismantle this pernicious myth: we’re free to experience the very common and often necessary doubt that arises in the face of real risk, and we realize that the more we make room for the doubt, the more it shrinks. This is the paradox of acceptance: once we accept what we fear most, the fear eventually falls away.

But the myths that keep us stuck aren’t only centered on love. We carry myths about friendship, myths about work, and myths about life itself. If only our early educational years focused more on the reality of life and less on the … Click here to continue reading...

The 3 Biggest Mistakes People Make in Relationships and...

For this week’s blog post, I’m directing you to two articles that I recently wrote for MindBodyGreen, one on relationships and one on parenting. Here are the excerpts:

The 3 Biggest Mistakes People Make in Relationships

Over the nearly two decades that I’ve walked people through the tricky terrain of intimate relationships, I’ve seen the same three stumbling blocks arise repeatedly. If one person in a partnership falls prey to the stumbling block, the relationship usually ends with time. But if the stumbling blocks are met with the awareness that they’re an essential part of the journey of learning how to love, the relationship will not only remain alive but will be well on the way to thrive.

You see, the problem isn’t the stumbling blocks themselves. Blocks arise so that you can push through them and create a stronger relationship both to yourself and your partner. The problem is … Click here to continue reading...