October 28, 2013

4 Easy Ways to Talk Yourself Out of Overeating Halloween Candy

image: hgtv.com

Here are some helpful tips from psychologist Dr.Susan Albers on how to enjoy Halloween without overeating the candy.

Have a safe and fun Halloween!

October 24, 2013

Enjoy Your Body


I came across the wonderful song by Baz Luhrman. He offers his advice on how to be free. The whole song makes me smile, but I especially appreciated this line about being free in your body.

Enjoy your body, use it every way you can
Don't be afraid of it or what other people think of it
It's the greatest instrument you'll ever own, dance
Even if it you have nowhere to do it but your own living room

If you have 5 minutes, listen to this and see if you don't feel inspired to be free!

October 20, 2013

The 21 Day Gratitude Cleanse


In my mind Thanksgiving has long been a holiday that is about food. Sure, I know that is not what the Pilgrims had in mind when they sat down with the American Indians so many years ago, but somewhere along the way, the mashed potatoes and gravy seem to have won out to giving thanks. But lately, I have been thinking about the importance of expressing gratitude. I have been thinking about the need to take time off to cleanse our minds on a daily basis.

There is a lot of research to support how transformative it is for people to intentionally express gratitude. Robert Emmons, professor of psychology at the University of California-Davis has noted that practicing gratitude in a systematic way can actually changes people by changing brains that are "wired for negativity, for noticing gaps and omissions." He explains, "When you express a feeling, you amplify it. When you express anger, you become angrier: When you express gratitude, you become more grateful." This expression of gratitude has been shown to boost emotional health as well as physical health.

So, my challenge to myself, to my family, and to you reading this today, is to experience the transformative power of gratitude.  For the next 21 days, I encourage you to write down three distinct things you are grateful for every day. Do not repeat anything on your list. See if that does change your attitude in at least some small way. For my kids, I am going to make this easier by getting large rolls of paper that I will post on their bedroom door for them to write out in marker three things they are grateful for every night. If you take this challenge, you may want to try putting a reminder on your daily calendar to express gratitude, or keeping a journal by your bedside table - anything that will help you remember.

I hear about people doing cleanses all the time, and what a difference it makes for them. Think of this as a cleanse for your emotional health. The focus is on keeping negativity out by having a daily, focused intake of gratitude.

After this is all over, I would love to hear any comments you have about your experience.

Struggling with feeling more negative than grateful? We have counselors who can meet with you. Contact our Houston counselors to find out how we can help.