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 ]

Distress Tolerance Series #3 ACCEPTS Skills 

If you haven’t already checked out the blog posts on 5 ways to handle a crisis, what the heck is distress tolerance, and the TIP skills, they are linked here in case you want more information.   The ACCEPTS skills are various ways in which you can distract yourself from your current stressful circumstances in the short term.    ...[ read more ]

Distress Tolerance Series # 2 TIP Skills

If you haven’t already checked out the blog posts on 5 Ways to Handle a Crisis and What the Heck is Distress Tolerance, they are linked here in case you want more information. The TIP skills are for managing extreme emotional arousal and will be described in more detail in the acronym below. These skills help to literally change your...[ read more ]

Distress Tolerance Series # 1 What the heck is distress tolerance?

According to Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), Distress tolerance is the idea of getting through a crisis situation without making the situation worse. As discussed in my blog post on surviving a crisis , often when in crisis we end up doing things that inherently make the situation worse. The ultimate goal of distress tolerance is to buy more time for...[ read more ]

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