Therapy That Works...

The Benefits of Having A Spotter - By Chris Gearing

Friday, June 01, 2012

Watch Dr. Sylvia Gearing on YouTube.com explain why a cheerleader or a spotter can help you perform better at work and in life - click here.

If you’ve gone to your local gym recently, you’ve probably seen the droves of weight lifters with spotters to help manage the weight and to yell encouragement. According to a recent study, body builders may be on to something.

The study found that weight lifters who had encouraging partners were able to lift more weight and showed a marked gain in power and focus. The study went on to say that the findings could be applied to business projects, as well. A partner may help you remain motivated and focused on the task at hand. If you’re pulling long hours on a big project, some helpful encouragement from a great coach or cheerleader may be the push you need to get through!

SOURCE:

Men’s Health, Apr 2012 digital edition

Their Cheating Heart - By Chris Gearing

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Watch Dr. Sylvia Gearing on YouTube.com explain the different reasons men and women have for having affairs - click here.

Most people think that those who cheat on their spouse are terrible people, but the answer is usually much more complex. Affairs begin for different reasons depending on the person and their circumstances. New research has just clarified how the genders are different when it comes to sex outside the marriage.

One out of four married men have had an affair at some point in the marriage, where as only one out of nine married women cheated on their husbands. In fact, most men stray very early into the marriage – usually within the first two to five years. It’s usually not for emotional or psychological reasons – in fact, most cheating men said that they cheated because they had an opportunity and they took it! Wives who cheat often are not meeting their emotional needs at home and look for love and fulfillment outside the marriage.

If your or your spouse engage in an affair, make sure to seek the help of a licensed psychologist who can help you mend your marriage and repair your relationship with your spouse.

SOURCE:

Men’s Health, March 2012

Team Players Are Better Players - By Chris Gearing

Monday, May 28, 2012

Watch Dr. Sylvia Gearing on YouTube.com discuss why team players are actually more effective overall - click here.

The business world can be a cut-throat environment. Many people resort to all kinds of back-stabbing and finger pointing just to protect their career.

However, a new study from the Journal of Sports Sciences has found that team players enhance not only their team’s performance, but also their own performance. The study found that if you focus on your team’s strength and utilizing everyone’s skills to achieve the goal, you will often feel more confident and less anxious. A great team atmosphere can lead to less wasted time, higher levels of focus, and ultimately higher performance! Team players can really draw out everyone’s abilities so that the team can really impress the boss. Truly, a win-win.

SOURCE:

Men’s Health, March 2012

How To Catch A Liar, Part 5 - By Chris Gearing

Friday, May 25, 2012

Here are three more tips to help you tell whether someone is lying or not:

1.) Liars’ voices tend to soften and get very quiet as they continue to tell their story. They are trying to hide their shame for the lie behind the story and are usually trying to make themselves feel better while lying. The falsely accused are usually frustrated angry about being interrogated when they are telling the truth!

2.) Watch for subtle body movements – they are usually telling the real story. A slight shoulder shrug usually indicates a lie like you would shrug if someone asked you a question you didn’t know the answer to. If the liar is smiling while telling you something that is sad or upsetting, they are trying to mask their own discomfort with a smile. Liars also sometimes indicate their true feelings with their heads – for instance, if someone is telling you that they agree with you but they are actually shaking their head.

3.) A smile can be very informative if you suspect someone is lying. Always watch to see if the liar is suppressing a smile – it could be indicative of what Dr Paul Ekman calls “duping delight” or the rush or joy that liars feel when their lies are believed and accepted.

SOURCE:

The Work of Dr. Paul Ekman

Men’s Health, March 2012

How To Catch A Liar, Part 4 - By Chris Gearing

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Most of us think that there are skilled liars and not-so-skilled liars, but professional lie catchers have many methods to detect a lie from almost anyone. Here are three more tips to help you tell whether someone is lying or not:

1.) Liars rehearse their stories before they have to say them. They are usually so locked into their story that any distraction can reveal the truth. While they are telling you what happened, try interjecting with “Why should I believe you?” Liars will usually calmly pick up the story where they left off whereas truth tellers will usually get angry and say “Because I’m telling the truth!”

2.) Another way to check on whether a story is true or false is to have them tell you the events backwards. Most liars rehearse they lies from beginning to end, but they have a much harder time telling the story in reverse.

3.) A final clue to whether someone is lying to you or not is how much body movement they are displaying. Like I mentioned before, liars are usually so locked into telling their story that they don’t act normally. Most of us use gestures or we act things out with our hands when we are telling a story – what Dr Paul Ekman calls “illustrators”. If someone is completely still for the duration of their story – they may be lying to you.

SOURCE:

Men’s Health, March 2012

The Work of Dr. Paul Ekman

Chewing Gum Could Help You Work Better - By Chris Gearing

Monday, May 21, 2012

Everyone has their own ways of waking up the office – maybe it’s a cup of coffee or a trip outside for some fresh air. However, new research from Japan has found that chewing gum can not only make your breath smell better, but it can also improve your mood and help you focus. When workers chewed a piece of gum for at least five minutes twice a day, they cut their rates of depression and workplace fatigue by half!

The researchers thought that the lift in mood and performance came from the repeated act of chewing. They found that chewing increased blood flow to the brain and other parts of the body and it can even reduce the levels of stress hormones in the blood!

SOURCE:

Men’s Health, March 2012

Deion Sanders' Public Divorce - By Chris Gearing

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Watch Dr Sylvia on CBS 11 discuss Deion Sanders' divorce and the media's role in public court battles - click here.

Why do celebrity divorces play out in the media?

Dual Relationship: Celebrities have a dual relationship with the media. They insist on having the media work on their own terms, and they also need the media to stay top of mind with the public. However, they are also subject to media scrutiny when things are difficult or ambiguous. That puts a lot of stress on top of an already terrible situation.

Publicity Makes Things Worse: As the conflict is played out in the media, the publicity can only make things worse. The spouses become highly polarized in the glare of public opinion. They hear exaggerated versions of their spouse’s conversations and they can become even more enraged. Divorces that could have been handled effectively explode into battles that are waged in the public spotlight.

Why do divorces like this get so heated?

Fusion Delusion: Many powerful people tend to idealize and then fuse with their partner. The line between each individual partner ceases to exist in this kind of relationship. They only feel good when they are attached at the hip.

Idealization & Devaluation: Strong personalities love intensely and hate intensely. With some people, you will inevitably disappoint them and when you do, there is a sudden fall in affection. The idealized become the devalued. The partner becomes a walking injury to them.

Control At Any Cost: Control is how they lessen their injuries. Anger is a direct result of anxiety and a feeling of vulnerability. Control is the central issue in divorces that are highly conflicted. Each partner wants to win and that means that the other partner has to lose - it's a zero sum game. The partners struggle to remain in control by bullying and intimidating the other person. There is a rush in being the one who calls the shots and who humiliates the person they once pledged to love forever.

Is being married to a celebrity a harder road?

Unrealistic Expectations: Celebrities are usually driven by relentless ambition and vision. Expecting one another to be emotionally present all the time is unrealistic, especially with the demands of celebrity life. The challenge is to remain grounded, stable, and realistic in the marriage.

Strong Opinions and Big Personalities: Being a celebrity usually demands a big personality that often comes with strong opinions and a lack of compromise. People of influence are often stubborn and they want their way.

Failure to Listen: They fail to understand what the other person is saying to them. They talk but they do not listen. Therefore, if there is a disagreement, things can get heated quickly. Partners are bound to clash when inevitable disappointment occurs.

Many of us have very strong personalities in our lives. Any advice for coping with difficult people we love?

Here are a few tips:

1.) Remain aware of your own tendency to buy into the idealizations and devaluations of charismatic people. Guard your own self interest in a healthy way—owning what is true but keeping things in perspective. We are all imperfect and must be forgiven for our shortcomings.

2.) On the other hand, if you are chronically feeling unhappy, devalued and criticized, ask two sets of questions. Are you accurately understanding what they are saying? If you are, then ask if you are with someone you can never please.

3.) Strong personalities often insist on taking their unhappiness out on you, even when you have nothing to do with their unhappiness. You cannot reason with someone who will not listen to your point of view and strive to work it out with you.

4.) Stay away from people who overly idealize you. There is always a price to pay if you are on a pedestal. The higher you sit in their opinion, the farther you will fall when things don't go perfectly.

5.) Remind yourself that the unkindness is not personal in any way. The person striking out at you does not really understand the damage they are doing.

SOURCE:

"Why Is It Always About You?" by Sandy Hotchkiss

Does Attachment Parenting Go Too Far? - By Chris Gearing

Friday, May 11, 2012

Watch Dr Sylvia on CBS 11 discuss the new TIME Magazine cover about Attachment Parenting and whether or not it goes too far - click here.

When Child Abuse Becomes Murder - By Chris Gearing

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Watch Dr. Sylvia on CBS 11 discuss how child abuse can lead to murder - click here

Why would a parent do this to their own child?

Abusive parents have a lack of conscience along with a lack of self-control that combusts when the child does something that frustrates or angers them. The child is often just being a regular kid and the parent takes his own irritation out on an innocent child who is utterly helpless to defend himself. Remember that parents who resort to such heinous behavior (such as starving a child to death) lack the fundamental tools to parent effectively. The starvation of this child was most likely the end point of a lifetime of abuse and neglect.

What are the characteristics of these parents?

Cycle of Abuse: Abusive parents have often been abused or neglected during their own childhood. One study estimated that approximately one third of abused children will grow up to become abusers themselves. Remember though, that two thirds of kids who are abused do not grow up to abuse others.

Substance Abuse: Substance abuse is highly correlated with the parental mistreatment of a child.

Harsh Discipline: Harsh interactions with the child are typical. They do not reward the adorable things that children do and remain either detached or critical. Studies find that physically abusive mothers are more likely to use harsh discipline strategies such as hitting, isolation and verbal aggression.

Isolated, chaotic, and financially challenged families are more likely inflict harm on a child who is both invisible and marginalized.

Unrealistic Expectations of the Child: A parent’s negative attitudes, misunderstanding, and attributions about a child's behavior may contribute to the abuse. Moms who physically abuse their kids have higher and more negative expectations for their children. These expectations are inaccurate and unjust. Unmet expectations can lead to lashing out at a helpless child.

Viewing the Child as an Object: Tragically some parents relegate a child to the status of a mere object in their lives. The child has no rights, no voice and is never shown compassion in the face of frustration. Such parents are devastating in the life of a child.

What are some signs that concerned adults could look for in the child we’re concerned about?

Remember that many kinds of serious child abuse are often invisible, inaudible and almost always usually committed behind closed doors. However, there are specific signs that you can detect to if you are concerned about a child:

Acts of Humiliation: The active belittling of a child with contemptuous language and behavior. The child is the focus of reprimands and criticisms that make the child feel unworthy and helpless.

Abandonment and Rejection: The child is pushed away either with words and actions.

Isolation: Often the child is alone in this abuse, unable to really explain what they feel or articulate what is going on at home. It is very difficult to complain about your parent who is supposed to be the guardian of your welfare.

Exploiting Trust and Good Will: Child abuse is the ultimate betrayal of a child at the hands of a parent. Our parents are charged with our protection and any abdication of this role—in any way-- is unacceptable.

What are the long-term effects on children who go through this kind of experience?

Invisible and Marginalized: They feel relegated to the role of an object. In those invisible moments you are being emotionally annihilated. You do not develop the sense of yourself that originates in the interactions with others. Normal developmental milestones-- emotional, cognitive and physical are not completed.

Social and Academic Delays: Academic and intellectual delays are common in kids who are treated this way. Social relationships are often immature.

Emotional Scars: Problems in emotional self-regulation is most common and the most significant. If you cannot control your reactions—both emotional and behavioral, you cannot achieve anything. The child who is systematically abused cannot calm down without avoiding. As they grow up, they begin to turn to alcohol, acting out at school or at work, oppositional behaviors and a host of other problems that indicate a basic problem in emotional self-regulation. They cannot tolerate ordinary stress and underperform in life and in relationships.

What can our parents do to avoid all types of emotional abuse?

Accountable to your Child: First of all, audit your own choices and behaviors. It is easy to harshly turn on our kids in lives overrun with stress and discord. However, your first and final responsibility is to your child. Remain accountable to yourself by maintaining strict standards on verbal and emotional blowups and over reactions with your child.

Parents Must Self-Regulate Emotions: Emotional abuse by parents always comes from either a sense of helplessness or a lack of conscience about the welfare of the child. Do not allow your helplessness to morph into verbal and behavioral unkindness to the child who is under your care. If you perceive your own lack of self-control in this area, see a psychologist and learn the emotional regulation skills that you must in turn, teach your child.

Mega-Millions Mania! - By Chris Gearing

Monday, April 02, 2012

Watch Dr Sylvia Gearing on CBS 11 discuss the Mega-Millions mania and how lotto fever can go too far - click here.


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