Clarity Counseling Seattle, P.S.

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In Praise of Mediocrity: The pursuit of excellence has infiltrated & corrupted the world of leisure

Someone recently told me about the following NYT article and I'm so glad they did, as I believe it makes an extremely important point about how we spend our time and the expectations & judgment we place on ourselves for achievement and the pursuit of perfection.

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I’m a little surprised by how many people tell me they have no hobbies. It may seem a small thing, but — at the risk of sounding grandiose — I see it as a sign of a civilization in decline. The idea of leisure, after all, is a hard-won achievement; it presupposes that we have overcome the exigencies of brute survival. Yet here in the ...

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I'm not much into poetry, however

I have always loved this poem. My closest lifelong friend read it to me probably 25 years ago when I needed to hear this kind of thing, and it has come in handy ever since, for myself and for my clients. For those issues in which we're simply unable to gain the clarity we need, we can find the value of simply living the questions themselves. Sometimes that really is all we can do, yet we have been driving ourselves nuts trying to find answers that are not yet available to us. Surrendering to living the questions can be extremely liberating and healing:

Be patient toward all that is unsolved in ...

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The Gift of Menopause (but this is for everyone to read)

Close up of field of flowers | Therapist Seattle WA

Someone recently sent me this NYT article, and though it's about the changes brought about my menopause, it contains some great wisdom that I wanted to share. She's a 56-year-old woman, forced to reflect on aging as she has recently been rejected in hopes of adopting a puppy (I guess you can be too old for that). She is trying to adjust to the changes brought about by menopause, but more so by the process of aging itself, and how this is teaching her to redefine what's important to pay attention to, worry about, and to cherish in life.

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I’m grateful to have reached it [age 56]. I’ve buried too ...

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The Stress Diagram

Someone sent me this a while ago and I've found it invaluable in helping clients to understand the distinction between what happens when we gain mindfulness skills. The left side is typically what we experience when we haven't put time & effort (and it really does take both time & effort!) into acquiring skills around being present and connected to our bodies. The right side shows the ways in which we can healthily influence the physical, emotional, and mental experience we have when dealing with stressors. In my practice I have seen many, many folks over the years learn to move from the left side of this diagram ...

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36 Questions to Fall in Love

Younger Couples hugging | Therapy Seattle WA

Maybe you've heard of this, or even done this activity already. It was from a New York Times article a few years ago as part of a research study measuring how people fall in love. Not surprisingly that includes getting to know someone much more deeply and openly through, among other things, the sharing of feelings, opinions, dreams, and desires.

If you're in a relationship and haven't done the exercise below, give it a try! Just make sure you set up an environment that's conducive to a meaningful interaction: phones & tv off, without others around, while sober, and sitting near each other where you can make eye-contact. See how ...

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Who am I?

"who am I? what am i? are no longer important questions.
           knowing that i am is finally enough..."

Los Angeles poet Wanda Coleman

 

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