Are you feeling pissed off a lot lately? Do you go straight from neutral to irate in an instant, snapping at loved ones or anyone who looks at you wrong? Is there a constant tightness in your chest or throat? If so, you’re not alone. According to my informal poll of pretty much everyone alive right now (and by that I mean me, my friends, family, and clients), simmering rage is the dominant emotion.
Why are we angry all of the time? In large part because so much has been taken from us over the past 20 months, and we’re feeling resentful. To gain some insight into what’s happening to us, we have to understand the relationship between resentment and anger.
The Cambridge Dictionary defines resentment as “a feeling of anger because you have been forced to accept something that you do not like.”
Happy 1-1-1 Friday!
This week I’m thinking about the role our values and emotions play when making big decisions.
1 idea from me
I did it. I finally figured out how to see my out-of-state family during a pandemic AND keep everyone safe. I bought a campervan! OK, so this isn’t as wacky (or simple a decision) as it may sound...I’ve wanted one of these for over 20 years. Covid just moved the timeline up :)
It was a heck of a decision to make. These things are expensive! How would I finance it? Would I need to sell my house? Isn’t it ridiculous to make a large purchase with so much economic uncertainty? I’m still building my business, how will I work from the road? I should be contributing more to my retirement, blah blah blah…the fear of financial ruin was strong.
The swirl in my brain was making me anxious and depressed. I was tempted to do what I always do: make the financially...
While several of my subscribers are medical types, many are not. And with so much misinformation spreading about, I’d like to provide a clinician’s take on the current pandemic as it relates to those of us in the U.S. This is not meant to scare you, but to help explain why we must flatten the "curve."
Every day, friends, family, and business contacts ask me what I think about the pandemic. Should we be concerned? Is it really as bad as they say it is? Are you worried about it, Christine?
Yes, I’m extremely worried. But not for the reason you think.
Yes, we should all be very concerned. Which is why we must act now.
We’ve known this was coming. Virologists and epidemiologists have been regularly telling anyone who’d listen that we are overdue for an outbreak like this for some time. So most clinicians are not surprised right now. In fact, you may be shocked or even dismayed by their lack of panic.
But here’s the...
Note: In this post I discuss how our minds can distort our realities, and link that idea to some of the irrational purchasing behavior we’re currently seeing in North America. In no way am I making light of this pandemic and its impact on people and economies. COVID-19 appears to be a significant infectious concern, especially for high-risk groups, including older folks and those with chronic underlying disease. And it will significantly strain on our medical infrastructure. Find accurate COVID-19 information here.
I have a confession to make: I don’t always have my sh*t together.
As a recovering high-achieving perfectionist, this is hard to admit.
But guess what? None of us has it together all of the time.
Friends, these are trying times.
Sometimes our coping skills can’t keep up with all that life throws at us.
There’s a lot of crap going on in the world right now. It would be difficult to be aware and not be freaked the hell...
Cover photo: Rolling Stone
I'd intended to write about a different topic today. But I can't stop thinking about Kobe and Gianna Bryant's untimely deaths yesterday, so I decided to explore why celebrity deaths hit us so hard and how we can use their deaths to live our own lives more fully.
Why are we so upset when a celebrity dies?
Before last night, I didn’t know much about Kobe Bryant. Sure, I knew he was a famous basketball player, but I couldn’t tell you his team, his stats, or whether he was still playing. Yet I felt gut-punched when I read the early reports that Bryant, 41, died in a helicopter crash yesterday along with his 13-year old daughter Gianna and 7 others. Why? Was it because he was 8 years younger than me (so young)? The cruelty of his daughter perishing alongside him, just as she entered adolescence? Imagining mother and wife Vanessa reeling from her unimaginable double loss? Was it the randomness of the accident? Or the fact that fame...
Every year, January compels us to decide we’re going to finally become the (insert virtue here-->strong and flexible, morning meditator, daily drinker of 64-ounces of water …) person we aspire to be.
But how many resolutions have you actually kept? Be honest with yourself. None? You’re in good company.
Studies indicate that 30-50% of people don’t even make it through January. And 80-90% don’t make it through one year!
Hmmmmm. So it seems like most of us are setting ourselves up for failure with traditional resolutions.
Why do resolutions fail?
Resolutions are habit changes, and most of us choose resolutions that require a lot of willpower.
Your willpower sucks
In his fantastic book Atomic Habits, James Clear explains that willpower is essentially the ability to delay gratification. It is impacted by two factors: your environment and how rested you are. If we just assume we have the willpower to make a habit change without considering these...