Something You Can Do About Intrusive Thoughts

Some of my thoughts are almost as old as I am, but they still don’t know enough to knock before they come into my mind. I’d like them to make an appointment, see a receptionist, and fill out a six page registration form before we meet. For some, it’s been years since they took aContinue reading “Something You Can Do About Intrusive Thoughts”

Can You Sort Out Your Feelings?

For as long as people have been having feelings, they’ve tried to understand them by sorting them out and classifying them. It works for trees. Any field guide to trees will tell you that the blue spruce in front of you is a conifer and, as such, has a lot in common with pines. CanContinue reading “Can You Sort Out Your Feelings?”

How Linus Created the World

At Least the One Inside Your Head You remember Linus, the comic strip character who drags his blanket around? His blanket is helping him transition from being a baby to someone who can take care of himself. Linus has learned he can’t count on someone always being there when he cries. So, he’s begun toContinue reading “How Linus Created the World”

How to Understand Yourself

A very smart man once came to me and said he wanted to understand himself. “Have you read Freud?” I asked. “No.” “Jung?” “No.” “Lacan? Winnicott? Bion? Kline?” “Never heard of any of them.” “Did you ever take psychology?” “I took a course or two. I graduated from Stanford summa cum laude, with a doubleContinue reading “How to Understand Yourself”

It’s Three in the Morning, Do You Know Where Your Schemas Are?

You’ll Need Them If CBT Doesn’t Work One of the nice things about being a reflective eclectic is I have loads of methods I can use to help people who see me for psychotherapy. Sometimes it’s simple. If you come in and say you’re anxious, I can teach you a method of breathing that mayContinue reading “It’s Three in the Morning, Do You Know Where Your Schemas Are?”

Just What is a Good Grief, Charlie Brown?

Here was the world famous authority on grief; and there I was, your humble writer and shrinker of heads, sitting with him in a conference. He had just spoken about grief, the things that will cause it, what it does to people, and how to help them heal. He had many wise things to say,Continue reading “Just What is a Good Grief, Charlie Brown?”

What is the Evidence that You Are Plural?

A Review of “Many Minds, One Self” By Schwartz and Falconer I have an image of being a practical, no-nonsense kind of therapist to uphold. A certain sort of underserved clientele flock to me because they think the mental health world is glutted with flakiness. Should I really be telling them that they are inhabitedContinue reading “What is the Evidence that You Are Plural?”

Wrapping Your Head Around the Inexplicable

Part Two: Taming Wild Thoughts Lots of inexplicable things happen all the time. The ones that disturb our dreams, we call trauma. But, if you allow yourself to look, the inexplicable is all over the place. We try to stuff it in mental boxes, so we don’t have to live in that mess, but notContinue reading “Wrapping Your Head Around the Inexplicable”

Wrapping Your Head Around the Inexplicable

Part One: Listening Without Memory, Desire, or Understanding You don’t get it. Your husband cheated on you when you thought your marriage was fine. Your teenage daughter used to be sweet, but now she says she hates you. You told your wife a hundred times how to load the dishwasher and she still does itContinue reading “Wrapping Your Head Around the Inexplicable”

The Hatred of Sex

The Point of Sex is Not Just to Come, But to Come Undone Why would anyone hate sex? Yes, sex is pleasurable, but it’s also dangerous. It’s often most pleasurable when it’s the most dangerous. It lures you in with the promise of satisfaction and leaves you with a disease. It’s a tool of abuseContinue reading “The Hatred of Sex”