Signs You’ve Outgrown Your Therapist

tall tree

In a therapeutic relationship — just like any other relationship — feelings shift over time. Sometimes in therapy, we feel bored or dissatisfied. When this happens, it’s hard to tell if we’ve just grown too familiar with our therapist or if it’s because this relationship isn’t a good fit anymore. But it’s an important question: what should you do if you suspect you’ve outgrown your therapist?

Therapy Progress vs Outgrowth

If you suspect it might be time to leave your therapist, consider: are these thoughts motivated by real progress or do you sense you’ve reached a stalemate? If you’re making any gains, the relationship might still hold some benefits. Here are a few differences between progress and stagnation: Continue reading Signs You’ve Outgrown Your Therapist

Is Therapy Different From Advice?

woman giving advice

Why should you go to therapy? Why not just talk to friends or family when you have trouble? After all, therapy can be expensive or inconvenient, and frankly, it can just feel weird talking to a stranger about your problems.

Furthermore, how do you know if your problem is big enough to need therapy? Could it all be solved over dinner and wine with your best friend?

These are valid questions, and they all boil down to knowing how therapy and advice are different. Continue reading Is Therapy Different From Advice?

What is Transference?

two women walking and talking

Originated by psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud, transference is the experience of a person’s expectations, feelings, and desires unconsciously transferring and being applied to another person. Often this term refers to a person’s experience in therapy, wherein the person who is in a therapy session begins redirecting certain unresolved conflicts and emotions toward the therapist. While it may be surprising, this experience is a normal part of therapy, and it can happen both on the part of a person seeking treatment, as well as on the part of the therapist. Continue reading What is Transference?

The Dirty Lowdown on Anticipatory Anxiety

The Dirty Lowdown on Anticipatory Anxiety

Anticipatory anxiety is a discomforting and disquieting mind game you play on yourself.

Here are a few examples: You’re going to the dentist and you feel anxious. You’re about to go take a test and you feel anxious. You’ve been asked to have a meeting with your supervisor and you feel anxious. Do you see a pattern? It’s all about the expectation of something stressful. This is what it means to experience anticipatory anxiety — you dread the future without evidential cause. Continue reading The Dirty Lowdown on Anticipatory Anxiety

5 Signs You’re Too Hard On Yourself

woman staring at herself in the mirror

For many people, it’s easy to forgive someone else, but a lot harder to forgive him of herself. Holding yourself to an impossible standard of perfectionism is a common cause of this inability to forgive yourself. Ignoring positives and solely focusing on the negatives during self-reflection can lead to wrong turns, missed opportunities, and mistakes. Of course, striving to be the best version of yourself and continuously improving yourself isn’t a bad thing, but if you’re constantly focusing on your own shortcomings and errors, it can take a toll on your mental health.

“The tone of your self-talk is the key,” said Amy Cirbus, a New York-based Talkspace therapist. “There’s a difference between saying ‘That didn’t work out, I think I might be able to do that better’ versus ‘I can never get this right, I’m such a failure.’ Continue reading 5 Signs You’re Too Hard On Yourself

On Being Human: Interview with Jennifer Pastiloff

Jen_Pastiloff

Jennifer Pastilloff has brought her unique style of teaching — and radical listening — to thousands of women while traveling the world for her On Being Human workshops. She describes these workshops as “a hybrid of yoga related movement, writing, sharing out loud, letting the snot fly, and the occasional dance party.”

Jennifer’s work is driven by her very real struggles with depression and anorexia, which exposed her to the self-help and wellness industries, as well as to the benefits of therapy. While chatting with Jennifer, we asked her more about her personal journey, how she overcame low points — including the early loss of her father and the gradual loss of her hearing — and how teaching has changed her perspective: empowering her, while she helps empower others. 

She has been featured on Good Morning America, New York Magazine, Health Magazine, and CBS News. Jennifer is also the founder of the online magazine, The Manifest Station. When Jen is not traveling, she is based in Los Angeles where she lives with her husband and son.

We discussed her work and book, On Being Human, via email.

Continue reading On Being Human: Interview with Jennifer Pastiloff

Why Aren’t College Students Getting The Mental Health Support They Need?

college student with backpack walking out the door of a building

It was around 10pm when I got a knock on my freshman college dorm room. I probably had been up since 8am studying, squirreled away for most of the day in my favorite cubicle on the no-talking floor in the library. 12-hour study days were the norm for me. Monday through Sunday. No days off.

I heard the knock again and got up from my scratchy desk chair to open the door. My best friend from school was there, holding an Oreo cake in his hands.

“Come on,” he said, peeling me away from my textbooks. “It’s time to eat cake!”

It was my 18th birthday. Continue reading Why Aren’t College Students Getting The Mental Health Support They Need?

4 Reasons Young People Are Struggling With Mental Health Issues

Sign that reads: "We don't have time"

Today’s generation of young people are experiencing more mental health issues than ever.

According to the World Health Organization, 10-20% of children and adolescents worldwide experience mental health disorders. The American Journal of Managed Care cites that “between 2008 and 2017, the amount of adults that experienced serious psychological distress in the last month increased among most age groups, with the largest increases seen among younger adults aged 18-25 (71%).” Continue reading 4 Reasons Young People Are Struggling With Mental Health Issues

Can Living Alone Harm Your Mental Health?

woman staring out of closed window

“You can pull over by that white awning,” I told my Lyft driver.

I hauled my two large army-green duffles, red Osprey suitcase, black backpack and canvas bag — filled with essentials like my electric kettle and drum from Sedona—out of the trunk and onto the curb. I noticed a group of graduate students greeting new residents at the door wearing Columbia University t-shirts that said Office of Residential Services on the front. It still felt weird to be back at school.

After I checked myself in, one of the students wearing the Office of Residential Services t-shirts came over with a giant yellow bin and asked me if I would like help bringing my stuff up to my apartment. I happily accepted, tossed all of my stuff into the yellow bin, and we rolled it to the elevator together.

“What floor?” the student asked.

“Sixteen,” I replied. Continue reading Can Living Alone Harm Your Mental Health?

When Your Friends Are in Different Stages of Life Than You

two girls sitting on swings facing each other

When they were dating each other, I was single. When they were engaged and wedding planning, I was attempting and failing at the dating scene. Married? We were still hanging out, calling ourselves a well-oiled tricycle.

I’ve had friendships fade as we journey through different life stages, but I’m convinced that strong friendships — like mine with high school friends who ended up with the same last name — can last through it all.

Research shows that Americans, on average, only have one close friend. This makes it even more critical to nurture the ones you have as life evolves at a different pace for each person. Here’s how you can stay friends even if you’re not at the same point on the path or if you’re on a different path altogether. Continue reading When Your Friends Are in Different Stages of Life Than You