How to Stop The Cycle of Negativity

It’s very hard to break the cycle of negativity … especially if you don’t even realize you’re in it. When we get in a funk or feel hopeless, the thoughts tend to generate so rapidly that it can be a slippery situation to get out of. Suddenly, everything looks really bleak and one bad thing just proceeds to the next. Stepping out of that dark cloud could feel impossible.

But, we all feel negative, sad or dark at times. This is part of our humanity and normal.

Peter J. Economou, Ph.D., ABPP- Board Certified Cognitive and Behavioral Therapy, also known as Dr. Pete, shares that “Research tells us that most of us have negative thoughts— in fact, the majority of our thoughts are negative, so working on accepting them helps people develop a healthier relationship with these thoughts so that they don’t impact the behavior. I like to think of those negative thoughts as passengers on the bus, rather than the bus driver. So, how do we accept these thoughts and cycles, while committing to healthier and more peaceful living? That is key.”

Read More: How to Stop The Cycle of Negativity

Positivity Is Contagious,

Laura

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7 Mental Getaways to Take This Summer

I’d love a real tropical vacation, complete with hot cabana boy and a lot of girly mixed drinks, but unfortunately, it’s not in my budget. I’m sure many of you can relate: you’re jonesing for a vacay, but your budget screams “Don’t even splurge on that mani-pedi for a few weeks.”

But this doesn’t mean that you can’t relish and delight in the relaxation that the summer heat screams. I know it’s not the same as an island or a European tour or Iceland cruise, but you can take these 7 mental vacations to really capitalize on the summer sunshine and get yourself (and your perspective) refreshed.

What It Might Mean If You’re Crying For No Reason

There are many times when I’ve seen someone else, or have myself, burst into tears. Let’s just say pregnancy comes with a lot of teary showers for nine months. And then, postpartum? Those first few days after giving birth, I cried lots of happy, emotional, and exhausted tears.

Even if it may appear on the outside as if you have no reason to cry, we often internally know exactly why we’ve got major tears and are crying for no reason. Some cry when they get mad, and others cry when they’re PMSing. It’s not unusual to cry due to hormonal changes, and exhaustion can also make someone burst into tears. You name it, the list can roll on.

But I was curious to see what experts in the psychology field had to say about people who find themselves crying for no reason and burst into tears without explanation. Here’s what they had to say.

Read More: What It Might Mean If You’re Crying For No Reason

Wipe Those Tears,

Laura

8 Ways Type A and Type B Personalities Express Anxiety Differently

It doesn’t matter whether you’re a Type A, overachieving organizer or a Type B, laid back slacker — many people have to learn how to deal with anxiety. Even people you see as outgoing and “King or Queen of the World,” or those who are so laid back they couldn’t possibly stress a thing, can struggle when it comes to dealing with anxiety.

Sometimes, it’s easier to tell who’s anxious from who’s not, but an individual’s personality type can play into how anxiety presents itself to the outside world. Here are 8 unique ways in which a Type A personality and a Type B personality express anxiety differently.

Read More: 8 Ways Type A and Type B Personalities Express Anxiety Differently

Breathe Deep,

Laura

Real Thoughts I Had When My Teenage Bully Died

I found out through a text from a friend of mine that a high school bully of mine was dead: “Did you hear? She died. She went to our high school. It’s really sad.”

I didn’t say anything at first. Empathetic, warm-hearted me hesitated before answering. I didn’t want to sound like a total insensitive jerk. I knew my friend knew this old bully of mine but I wasn’t sure how friendly they had been, especially after years of trying to learn how to deal with bullies and protect myself. Plus, some of my thoughts didn’t align with who I am inside — a good person with a big heart.

But even good people with big hearts can decide they’ve had enough of toxic people’s garbage, especially when it comes to the past and bullying in schools. They don’t want to forgive someone all that easily when they’ve been done completely wrong.

Read More: Real Thoughts I Had When My Teenage Bully Died

Forgive & Heal,

Laura

5 Behaviors to Shed in the New Year for a Happier Loving Life

New Year, new you?

Well, not if you do the same old stuff you did last year. And so many of us, seem to make the same mistakes repeatedly simply because certain behaviors that were learned or perhaps genetic, have become a habit.

But that doesn’t have to be you. A new year is a shiny new shot at rewriting your story. Remember those “Choose Your Own Adventures” books? If you turned to page 25, you might end up trapped. If you turned to page 50, you might end up a wealthy tycoon … or something like that.

Consider this New Year a chance to “choose your own adventure” by rewriting yourself. Take an honest look at yourself and what worked and what didn’t work for you in 2018. Decide to avoid those pesky traps by shedding old behaviors and replacing them with better attitudes and habits that will bring you joy in 2019. You can’t change every single aspect of yourself or your life, but you can turn the wheel in another direction, or head to page 50 instead of page 25 to change your life this coming year.
Here are a few behaviors to kiss goodbye to and leave in the past as you head into the future on January 1, 2019 …

Read More: 5 Behaviors to Shed in the New Year for a Happier Loving Life

Happy New Year!

Laura

4 Key Ways to Identify Your Doormat Behavior

In the world of female relationships from day one, being nice is stressed; we are told that we should be a good, nice girl … not a bad girl.

Of course, we want our children to be kind. Of course, we want to be kind ourselves. To be good people.

But sometimes, being “nice” is really just a prettier way of framing the fact that you might be a doormat. That you might let others frequently walk, run and fly all over you.

I hear it from women frequently.

“I’m trying to be nice.”

Or, “I felt I needed to be nice.”

And when women say these things, it’s often in a situation where they shouldn’t be nice! Where they shouldn’t just suck it up and deal.

So, how do you know if you’re being kind and respectful, or if you’re being a complete doormat? Because being nice isn’t always the best thing. Sometimes, having a backbone and being tough is the best course of action. All too often, women are dissuaded from being tough, or even tormented for being “bitchy” when really, a woman might just be standing up for herself.

Read More: 4 Key Ways to Identify Your Doormat Behavior

Standing Up For Yourself Is The New Black,

Laura

The Places I Go To Cope With Tough Times

We all have tough times in which we feel as if we will never resurface to the other “peaceful” and happy side. We all have times in which the hits seem to keep coming and the hell seems never-ending. It is hard to summon hope and sustain a positive outlook in the middle of strife, stress, and disappointment. Keeping your thoughts positive when you’re basically sitting in the middle of a metaphorical pile of crap isn’t easy, but it’s necessary.

At some point, when you’re feeling stressed, you need to take matters into your own hands and find ways to shut out the madness and bask in some quiet time and peace.
For me, I have a few places that I turn to for stress relief, peace and quiet and a break from reality. As a single parent whose job is to provide emotional and financial stability for my daughter, I feel it is in my job title to maintain my own emotional health. Ultimately, as parents we need to teach our kids how to cope with emotions and tough times, so never, ever, ever feel selfish for taking care of yourself. Like the old airplane adage, if you don’t have your emergency mask on, how can you put your child/children’s mask/s on?

Here are my go-to places when I need “Serenity Now…”

Read More: The Places I Go To Cope With Tough Times 

Finding Peace,

Laura

Two Spiritual Changes In My Life That I Once Snubbed, But Needed To Make

I am not religious. My parents came from two religious backgrounds, and so we weren’t particularly religious or observant. But growing up, I was completely fascinated by religion and people’s cultural and familial habits. I loved (and still love) learning about what religious beliefs people practice, how they formed or learned about these practices, what texts/traditions and habits surround their beliefs and how they honor/or don’t honor them today as adults. So, I guess you could say that I was always interested in spirituality, but at the same time I feel conflicted. I’ve read a bunch of religious texts and studied around, but I don’t have watertight convictions that I am certain of. I’m half romantic, and half skeptic/scientist. I want proof, I’m not sure there is any proof, but at the same time, I want to believe in faith, hope, and a divine power and being.

So I’ve had a hard time throughout life really figuring out where I fall in because often, religion proves to be too strict or too narrow-minded for me, and yet, spirituality…sounds too open-ended. Or too hippie-ish for me. But as times got harder after my divorce, I realized I needed something for myself…something to help provide a place of peace and happiness. Positivity, even if it’s just a spark of positivity, because sometimes one little spark can set my attitude aflame, in the right kind of way. I started to realize that instead of saying, “Yeah, I should really do this for my own well-being,” I had to actually start doing it instead of simply talking the talk and not walking the walk.

Read More: Two Spiritual Changes In My Life That I Once Snubbed, But Needed To Make 

Breathe Deep & Reflect,

Laura

8 Signs You’re Limiting Yourself After Divorce & How to Stop It

You’ve gotten the divorce and made it this far, but you’re not really happy. It’s as if you’ve got one huge dark cloud over you and you can’t seem to escape it. Mostly, because you seem to keep getting in your own way. Your life was supposed to evolve and get better, which is why you got a divorce in the first place, but it’s as if you’re stuck. The real issue is you are limiting yourself and it’s keeping you from fulfilling your full potential, as well as being happy. Here are 8 signs you’re limiting yourself after divorce.

1) You Act as if the Divorce Happened Yesterday

Even if the divorce was a year ago or more, you’re acting still as if it happened yesterday. You’re mourning. Depressed. Angry. You can’t seem to get past the whole drama of the marriage, even though you say you’ve put it behind you.

You haven’t! It’s the shadow that follows you and it limits your potential.

2) You Have a Million Excuses for Everything

When someone asks you when you’ll start dating, exercising, seeking a raise, or doing anything remotely productive, you’ve got an excuse for it.

It’s never the right “time” you say.

You don’t have enough time, encouragement, money, energy etc.

The list of excuses is Old Testament long. Biblical.

Really, you are the biggest problem you’ve got and you hold yourself back.

Read More: 8 Signs You’re Limiting Yourself After Divorce & How to Stop It
Excuses, Excuses,

Laura