I believe that the hyper-individualistic culture in America, which reached its zenith in the “me decade”, fostered regression to magical and narcissistic levels. I believe that the breakdown of more socially cohesive structures turned individuals back on their own resources, and this also helped reactivate narcissistic tendencies. Angels, yoga, tarot cards & crystals characterize the great packaging, but Ken Wilber believes that the appealing surface of the new age movement conceals both narcissism and magical thinking. Are there any dangers in the metaphysical funfairs?
Have you ever wondered why happiness is so elusive and no-matter how much you zip around, work and accumulate things; happiness always seems to be unattainable. Even if we do manage to feel happy; it is only momentarily and before we know it we find ourselves down in the doldrums of fear, doubt and anxiety once again. So what is the key to lasting happiness? Is it achievable in a lifetime? Is it necessary for us to spend a decade in the monasteries in Tibet or the ashrams in India?
What exactly is the ego? The Eastern wisdom traditions assume that the ego is a mental construct that constantly need confirmation in order to feel whole and valuable. Most people identify with a little ego that strives for status, material goods, more money or other things to assert itself. Strong identification with material belongings, physical attributes, status, power, wealth, or lack thereof; or even a mental position – “I am right” – is the ego at work. Ego leads you away from the moment, looking for intended happiness in the future, but during this persistent hike, you may miss out on life itself. Can we free ourselves form the destructive forces in ego?
Many of our thoughts are automatic and often repeat themselves without our conscious influence. It creates mental noise and causes distress and depression according to Eckhart Tolle. What then, is the key to mental balance? Well, a number of outstanding professionals claim that openness and attention is the key to freedom of spinning thoughts and existential anxiety.
Fear in the face of danger is of course a normal reaction. But when we react with fear in situations that are not really dangerous, we sometimes call it anxiety. Phobia is another word for misplaced fear. There are many different phobias, but the theory that will be explored in this article suggests that each phobia is a combination of five underlying fears.
The main symptoms of depression are loss of interest and lack of energy. Around 25% of women and 15% of men will experience depression requiring treatment during their lifetime. If you recognize any of the signs of depression listed in this article, it is important to look at the possibility for help or self-help as soon as possible.
When you recall the past, the resident memories carry the emotional content of the moment. A tremendous exercise in control is required to isolate the event from the emotion. Some are trapped in the past in a way that previous trauma prevents personal growth and development, but when all is said and done, we can to some extent affect the way we interpret our past and then be the author of our future. We must accept the painful memories as part of our personal history, and then make sure the bad memories do not prevent us from living here and now. This is sometimes a difficult task.
Trust and distrust often represents a difficult dilemma. Trust fosters confidence, while distrust can ruin a good relationship, but we can`t always trust our children? The question is when can and should we actually trust our children and give them freedom and responsibility, and when should we act as mentors and provide guidelines and restrictions? The troubles of being a parent.
Vera was neglected as a child. She grew up, married and had to kids. In her marriage she behaves badly, as if she would like to be abandoned and disliked so the story of her past can repeat itself. To change her life, Vera has to forgive the past, and then she has to forgive herself before she can reinvent her life. Forgiving doesn't mean forgetting, nor does it mean that you've given the message that what someone did was okay. It just means that you've let go of the anger or guilt towards someone, or towards yourself.
Negative emotions cloud out perspective and bring in a state of self-doubt. A daunting wall of apprehension, disgust, and self-hate is formed and stands in the way of the ability to look at life with a positive mind. This is a story about the psychology of lost confidence and low self-esteem.
Many of us view realism to be a scientific and rational choice. Yet, there are times in our lives when we will question whether realism is helping us to experience life and all it offers or limiting our experiences.
Dreams are the source of the belief in something better. Dreams and visions might save us when we feel we have reached the bottom. Dreams and reality are not always compatible, and the challenge is how to find a good balance between reality and dreams in relation to important choices in life.
The trouble with viewing oneself to be a victim is that it allows the ‘victim’ to carry out any wrongdoings or hurt others and not see the effect or own responsibility for their actions.
Juliet struggles with aggression and low self-esteem, which probably relates to her difficult childhood. An overly involved mother and the use of corporal punishment has left Juliet with emotional trauma. How can she manage her anger problems?
Good communication can be difficult to maintain in stressful daily life. The ability to talk to each other is an essential ingredient in what is called quality time. How is this in a relationship? ‘Quality of life’, ‘quality time’ and other terms related to ‘quality’ are in regular use. Pause and think about what this means.
Memories can suddenly strike and inflict anxiety and panic in an otherwise harmless situation. Mental noise disrupts the lives of many people. Memories have the capacity to alter our feelings, change our world view and perception of the realities that surround us.
Loneliness – that universal human feeling – can do things to the most rational among us. Loneliness that comes along with a feeling of despair can be a very difficult phase that affects us mentally and physically.
When we go to a family that has just faced a tragic loss, we are trying to express solidarity with the survivors. It can often be difficult to meet people in grief. How should you behave and what to say? How can we offer our condolences in a good way? Here are some guidelines.
Urban environments can drain our mental resources with constant and urgent stimuli. Paying attention to nature seems to reboot, restore and refresh our ability to pay attention and deal with stress.
The real problem with placebos is the ethical considerations of their use. Is it ethical for a doctor to misinform or mislead a patient? The placebo effect is a well-known phenomenon, but also a controversial phenomenon. Can our mental abilities affect the chemistry in our body? Does the way we think, our habit of mind, have a real impact on our physical health? The answer is “YES”.
Can positive thinking affect pain? Absolutely. Pain is a very subjective experience. Expectations, stress, social support and underlying beliefs can influence the degree of pain one feels.
Positive psychology seeks to identify those things that contribute to well-being, hope and evolution, not only for the individual but also for society. Happiness is probably not wealth, eternal youth or good weather, but rather the ability to engage deeply in our life and be able to install a larger meaning in our daily businesse. So, what makes us happy?
Are we all at risk to develop Internet addiction or are some more likely to than others? How many people are actually addicted to Internet and is there a treatment? Internet Addiction is considered a new diagnosis. Less social activity and lack of sleep are some of the symptoms. For some people will internet represent a convenient opportunity to escape from themselves, their feelings and life's challenges, responsibility and commitment.
Alcohol, tobacco, drugs, gambling, shopping, sex, food, video games, internet and work are the 10 most common forms of addiction. What characterizes these forms of addiction? And how can we understand this phenomenon?
Is addiction a disease or a choice? Is it caused by genetics and/or physiology? Is it the substance or behavior that enslaves people or is it a matter of personal characteristics?
Psychosis is a catch-all term that describes an inability to perceive and react to reality. Modern therapy goals directly deal with quality of life issues along with symptom control. With several agents available, one might find the best fit for any particular patient.
Anxiety is a part of life, but some people are stuck in this state, unable to calm down. It is a state of physical symptoms, feelings of paralyzing fear and loss of control. How can drug and non-drug therapy help?
A sedative is meant to calm combative or over-active patients or reduce the impact of impending stress. A hypnotic is primarily meant to promote sleep. How do these medications actually work?
Depression affects many of us, and in some cases medication is needed. Antidepressant acts on the "balance" in the brains "neurochemistry", but how do they work? And what characterizes a depression? Anyway, depression remains an illness that needs better treatment options. The trend is for newer agents to either be more specific or have a better side effect profile.
Psychopharmaceuticals are used to treat psychiatric disorders. They are prescribed subsequent to a diagnosis by a physician qualified to treat mental illness, but how does it work? In today's psychiatry, the benefits and risks of drug therapy will be considered for each patient. There are difficult issues that require sufficient knowledge of psychotropic drugs.
Depression can be cured by medication and psychotherapy, but meditation can also have a very healing effect.
As our minds continuously focus on the externals, we might end up feeling empty. This emptiness deepens with time as relationships fail and there is emotional trauma. The mind is in a state of inertia.
There are two types of criticism. One is nonthreatening and impartial, while the other comes from critical people that compensate for their own sense of dissatisfaction by complaining about others. How do we express and receive criticism? How can we distinguish the constructive form of criticism from the more malignant types?
Obedience and loyalty ensures that people reach their goals together, but by blind conformity we risk losing ourselves and our values. It can be dangerous!
Some people carry misplaced guilt that causes anxiety and depression. Others may lie to save themselves or falsely place blame on others without any feeling of guilt. How can we understand the psychology of guilt?
Some suicides are impulsive, others are carefully planned and some suicides are due to depression or chronic stress. Here we discuss the circumstances and train of thought that can lead to suicide.