Interpersonal Effectiveness Series # 4 FAST Skills- How to have hard conversations and keep respect for yourself

The last skill in this acronym (DEAR MAN GIVE) is FAST skills. These skills are for “keeping respect for yourself.” For the people pleasers in the crowd (raise your hands) this is the skill for you! It is possible to keep respect for yourself while also keeping your relationship, not being selfish, and still respecting the other person. As a...[ read more ]

Interpersonal Effectiveness Series # 3 GIVE Skills- How to have hard conversations and keep a relationship

The GIVE skills are for the purpose of keeping a relationship. These skills explain how to advocate for yourself while still respecting the other person and maintaining trust in a relationship. They are how to respond to others in heated discussions in a way that is productive rather than destructive. Too often we respond out of strong emotions and either...[ read more ]

Interpersonal Effectiveness Series # 2 DEAR MAN Skills – How to ask for what you want

Oh boy, you are in for a treat! DEAR MAN is by far my favorite skill. This skill has been so helpful in my own life and I frequently teach it to clients. DEAR MAN is an acronym that will be described in full detail below that is a skill for “getting what you want.” And no, this is not...[ read more ]

Interpersonal Effectiveness Series # 1 What the heck is Interpersonal Effectiveness?

Human beings are social creatures who were created to interact with one another. Even though this is the case, there are many factors that may make it difficult for some people to interact with others. These include certain diagnoses such as Autism Spectrum Disorders, which involve difficulties with social communication and interaction, and anxiety and depression, which can impact one’s...[ read more ]

Ways to continue supporting the Black Lives Matter movement

With all of the current events surrounding the murder of George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter movement around the country, there is an increasing focus on how to address racism.    I want to first point out that this is not a new issue. This struggle is long-standing. There are centuries of history leading us to our current day...[ read more ]

5 Ways to Spend Less Time on Your Phone and More Time in Your Life

In today’s busy world it is easy to find yourself more connected to your phone than to others around you. Over the past decade, our world has changed, and we now have everything we want right at our fingertips. This access is both a blessing and a curse. It is wonderful to be able to look up that fact you...[ read more ]

Distress Tolerance Series #7 Half Smiling and Willing Hands

You are almost done with the Distress Tolerance Series, way to go! I hope the skills have been useful.  The last step is about using our bodies to help our minds accept situations. As described previously in the series, our minds and bodies are constantly sending messages to one another. When we are tense, frowning, scowling, and have clenched hands...[ read more ]

Distress Tolerance Series # 6 Willingness vs. Willfulness

man with open arms, free from depression, willing

Willingness is a reality acceptance skill that involves accepting the world as it is without trying to change it. You may be wondering, why should I bother accepting things?   What we know is that rejecting or denying reality does not change reality at all, but usually increases suffering.       If we want to change our reality, we...[ read more ]

Distress Tolerance Series #5 Improving the Moment

Improving the Moment involves intentionally focusing on positive events or experiences in order to overcome difficult times in life. This skill is useful when you are in a long-lasting stressful situation and you have tried distraction skills and self-soothing and they are not working.   Imagery   Improving the moment with imagery allows you to create a better space no...[ read more ]

Distress Tolerance Series #4 Self-soothing and Grounding

Self-soothing involves being nurturing, comforting, gentle, and purposefully kind to oneself.   This set of skills is particularly useful when you are feeling hurt, down, judgmental of yourself, lonely, and in need of some love and support.     Self-soothing uses our senses to help us feel calm and supported. You already know how soothing your senses can be. When...[ read more ]

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