Psychology Tip of the Week

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Our minds are more powerful than most of us give them credit for. One of the most amazing things about our minds is how our thoughts can not only influence our feelings and interactions with the world, but physically change the structure of our brains! Even seemingly small shifts in the way we think or act can lead to significant improvement in our wellbeing and satisfaction with life. Introducing “Psychology tip of the week.” Each tip is designed to give you something small to work on to improve your quality of life. I encourage you to treat each one as an experiment—try it out for a week and see how it feels, then continue using the ones that work best for you.

Tip 1: “What ifs” cause anxiety that can rob today of its joy over fear of something potentially bad (that may or may not actually happen) in the future. In some cases, this fear feels worse than it would feel if the “bad” thing actually happened. This week, try focusing on “what is” instead of “what if…?”

 

Coping with the emotions of Harvey—practicing what I preach

Few things are more stressful than natural disasters. They are unpredictable, often happen with little notice or time for preparation, and feel completely out of our control. For this reason, I often use the “hurricane example” when teaching stress management techniques—particularly the importance of differentiating what you can and cannot control, making a plan to control what you can, and coping with the emotions of what you can’t.