Posts Tagged ‘Attitude’

Meditation/Mindfulness is hard for a novice to understand, the words seem hollow, uneventful



Much of the terminology of meditation/mindfulness makes no sense to a novice. Reading words like be in the moment, no thought stage, remain just words.

No thought seems boring, a useless blank canvas.

I have worked with some who believe their ability to think intelligently defines them. We think what we do or what we have accomplished is who we are.

Being present, in the moment seems a small uneventful situation.

When we meditate, our focus transfers from our left, cognitive hemisphere to our creative, no thought hemisphere.

The left hemisphere has no words, sentences, judgments, right or wrong, god or bad, past or future, none!!!!!!!!!!

Our mind is at its best, most brilliant, most capable, when we are focused and in a no thought stage (Right hemisphere).

Like being in nature, all alone miles from the nearest metropolis, we feel nature through our senses without thought.

We do not introduce ourselves to a bear we encounter, Hi, I am Marty.

Our Ego is worthless out here, the bear could give a shit what my name is, or who I think I am.

When thought subsides with focus and practice, we experience our inner guide, our inner world and our potential happiness.

How will you ever know the true you, surely not by thinking?

How will you ever be truly happy?

Remember happiness has gratitude and giving at its core.

It also has Worry, doubt, fear, jealousy, resentment, anger in perspective.

Happiness only exists in the now.






Think about the attitude, personality and energy we bring to others.

Think about how differently we treat friends and people we do not like or get along with.

We are responsible for how we interact with others.

Can we give up talking about others, gossiping in a harmful manner.

Kindness to others is a boomerang. Are you seen as a friendly, kind person who has a smile and greeting for others?

Build the “Ego” around being a kind, considerate person to others.

Recognize the importance of giving, connected intimately to the core of happiness.

Can we refrain from being right all the time, can we not respond to criticism?

Can we give up being angry about petty things, using that time to be free and focused.

We can practice meditating, building focus, creating a space between stimulus and response.

Others actions should not automatically elicit an emotional response.

We have control of our reactions and behavior.

Can we take a breath, focus, then let go of anger, resentment, jealousy or depression?



Ricard again: pursuing a happy life



“We willingly spend a dozen years in school, then go on to college or professional training for several more; we work out at the gym to stay healthy; we spend a lot of time enhancing our comfort, our wealth, and our social status.

We put a great deal into all this, and yet we do so little to improve the inner condition that determines the very quality of our lives.

What strange hesitancy, fear, or apathy stops us from looking within ourselves, from trying to grasp the true essence of joy and sadness, desire and hatred?”




My two cents: Do we understand what a “Happy” life looks like?

It is not the pursuit of pleasure, the avoidance of critism or the desire for approval.

Happiness flows out of an internal way of being, a way of being grateful for what you have and a desire to help others on this journey.

Happiness may not be a euphoric, blissful condition, but a moment to moment awareness of our mundane life.

An acceptance of ourselves, totally in this mundane moment, is required.



Caring for someone with PTSD can sometimes lead to secondary trauma.


Photo by Grace Ciszkowski

National Institute for the Clinical Application of Behavioral Medicine

Caring for someone with PTSD can sometimes lead to secondary trauma.

And researchers at the University of Utah wondered just how bad that secondary trauma could be.

While completing her graduate studies, Catherine Caska Wallace, PhD and her research team studied two groups of male veterans, along with their female partners. In 32 couples, the veterans suffered from PTSD, and in the control group of 33 couples, PTSD wasn’t a factor.

The veterans in both groups had been deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan at least once in the past decade.

After the researchers interviewed the couples to measure PTSD, depression, marital satisfaction, and areas of disagreement, they asked the couples to undergo a brief experiment.

Researchers asked each couple to have a conversation about a current issue on which they strongly disagreed.

Before and after the conversation, researchers took physiological measurements from both partners, including blood pressure and heart rate.

Some of their findings probably weren’t surprising. Both veterans and partners in the PTSD group reported significantly higher emotional stress, measured through disaffection and disharmony. They also reported problems with frequent and intense emotional conflict.

But when they looked at the physiological measurements, researchers found something particularly interesting.

While the couples in the PTSD group showed elevated blood pressure during the conversation relative to controls, the partners of the veterans in particular showed the highest blood pressure – even compared to the veterans themselves.

It’s important to note that this study didn’t use random assignment when selecting its sample, so there’s a limit to how much we can generalize its results.

Although preliminary, this research suggests that PTSD can have far reaching and significant physiological impact even among people who don’t suffer from it.

Of course, the blood pressure finding stood alone in this study. I’d like to see more research that examines other physiological and mental factors with the partners of post-traumatic stress sufferers.

If PTSD really carries significant health risks for the partners of veterans, more attention should be paid to them in future research.”



Happiness is connected to Acceptance.



If happiness only occurs in the present moment, accepting everything about ourselves right now, is imperative.

Things we do not accept, block us from truly being happy.

Common sense tells me these perceived flaws are the doors to our suffering or joy.

It takes persistence and practice to accept our flaws, our unworthy parts, our devious parts and especially our shameful parts.

All these biased judgments have no power as soon as we release them.

I am not my thoughts, or judgments, or emotions, or my ego!

I am present, focused, aware and following what my senses absorb.

The trick is to not identify with our flaws, trading judgment in for being present for this next mundane moment.



Why Do People Lie to Their Therapists? Here’s the Most Important Reason, by Far By Bella DePaulo, Ph.D



Ideally, psychotherapy offers people the opportunity to be completely honest about their lives, with little risk of being judged and plenty of opportunities to heal. But how honest are clients, really, in their sessions with their therapists?


In a new book, Secrets and Lies in Psychotherapy, Barry A. Farber, Matt Blanchard, and Melanie Love describe the results of what are perhaps the two most important studies ever conducted on lying in therapy. In the first study, 547 psychotherapy clients were shown a list of 58 topics and asked, for each one, if they had ever lied about it to their therapist. In the second, 798 therapy clients indicated whether they had engaged in more routine, ongoing deception about each of 33 topics.


The overall rates of lying were stunningly high. In the first study, 93% of the clients told at least one lie to their therapist. In the second, 83% of the clients said that they routinely lied about at least one topic, or actively avoided discussing it.


But why? Why would people go into therapy and then lie to their therapist?


In the second study, clients were asked to explain, in their own words, what made it hard for them to be honest about the topics they were lying about on an ongoing basis. Here are their answers:


Clients Lying to their Therapists: Most Commonly Reported Motives for Ongoing Dishonesty


61% Embarrassment or shame

27% I didn’t want this to distract from other topics

24% I doubt my therapist can help or understand

19% Practical consequences (e.g., legal problems, hospitalization)

18% It would bring up overwhelming emotions for me

16% My therapist would be upset, hurt, or disappointed

Continue reading

Meditation, nutrition, exercise are ________?


Meditation, nutrition and exercise are rarely used in healthcare, physical or mental.

Physicians pass out pills while clients desire a quick fix. We treat symptoms instead of correcting the root cause of illness.  How often have you heard your therapist demand extensive work between sessions.  That’s what it takes to heal.

Physicians and therapists receive little or no training on nutrition, meditation or exercise.


Our diet causes many of our issues, diabetes, heart disease and obesity. Pills do not address or change our bad behavior. They are quick and effortless though.

Doctors touch on exercise. I have never heard a therapist mention exercise or strenuous aerobic exercise.


We hear the mind-body connection constantly but exercise somehow never is recommended. When my mind was frozen from constant fight or flight firing, aerobic exercise could deplete all the cortisol and adrenaline.

The accomplishment my body enjoyed was shared by my mind. Stressed out, triggered or frozen mentally could not stop my legs from moving. Aerobic exercise gave me so many benefits during my worst PTSD days.

Movement is closer to life, sedentary closer to death.

Doctors rarely address attitude (mind) or ways it impacts physical disease. Some therapists use mindfulness in therapy however few have ever had a regular meditation practice.

Mindfulness (Meditation) if nothing else, gives the client, us, something to practice between therapy sessions. Mindfulness gives us a tool to regulate emotions, to follow the therapists instructions and to use anytime we need to focus and come back to now.

We heal ourselves internally. A pill has never healed PTSD, and never will. Your therapists will not heal you.


Look in the mirror, and know that is who is responsible for your life, healing or suffering.

Next post we will discuss the need for motivation or the skill to motivate clients.

%d bloggers like this: