Insights and Connections and Strategies and Hope… What brings you to Love? Joy? …Peace?
Some important messages have resonated in 2023 so far and perhaps they resonate with you too.
Who are you and can you change? Should you change? Do you want to change? Are you capable of change? Try not to answer this too quickly and instead try something different. Be curious about this answer. When we are curious, we tend to be more self-compassionate about why we are behaving and thinking in certain ways, and at the same time we tend to be more compassionate towards others as we stop making assumptions and respond with openness and empathy.
One of my first blogs ever (2010!) talked about how to be happy. This is still a topic many people talk about and think about. This 9 minute listen from NPR talks about the key being that people should invest in their relationships with other people. We are a lonelier generation than we were before and small gestures go a long way. Investments can be quick. TODAY did a segment about this too where they talk about our parental responsibility to teach kindness. Again, a blog I did “way back when” discussed our priority in teaching compassion (along with confidence and respect).
That was a long time ago, and kids have changed… with some concerns rising.
The Week, The Chicago Tribune, Time.com and the Washington Post have published articles in just this last month with titles like “The Kids are Not OK”, Teen Girls: An Epidemic of Despair, “Teen girls ‘engulfed’ in violence and trauma, CDC finds” (the link to the CDC results are here). I have been immersed with the book “Girls on the Brink” which not only explains a lot of what I am seeing happening with our teen clients (and daughters of adult clients) but gives so many quality suggestions, such as how to help our girls experience safety so she can in turn become strong and resilient, and other ways to familially support them.
Are you unsure if the phone is contributing to all of this? I have old phone-contracts I created based on others that were out there, and have talked through this conundrum of logistics and rules and parameters and boundaries for over a decade with many parents. The NYT has a recent article with quotes and guidance from other experts (one of my favorite parts, which is tried and true, is the value of sleep… for ALL of us!).
Is all of this information giving you anxiety and stress?
For some practical strategies, here is a quick read for coping with that, as well as with ruminating (not to mention EMDR therapy which you can use in conjunction with therapy or on it’s own via my associate David or another trained therapist).
Most importantly, so many of us are so lonely and so sad that there is hopelessness and despair. Overdoses, suicidal ideation, self-harming and other behaviors have been present in my office this year as I am sure you can imagine. Clancy Martin published an excerpt from his recent book “How Not to Kill Yourself” and it hits home. Please seek support and encourage (insist on) support for yourself and loved ones and friends and others who need it.
Thinking of all of you, warmly and sincerely,