The art of saying no

A lot of my clients say they have trouble saying “no” to others. It makes sense when you're a sensitive, empathic, creative, soul - you want to help any way you can and you want to make people feel better. But never saying “no” is totally energy sucking and sometimes you're doing it for the wrong reasons.

If you find your days are usually filled with a bunch of things you wish you hadn’t agreed to do, leaving you exhausted and filled with resentment, then you may want to think about where you want to start saying "no". 

How do you figure that out? Try asking yourself these questions:

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What’s your armor?

She’s so cool. Nothing ever phases her.

He’ll never commit.

They know it all.

She lets everyone walk all over her.

He’s so angry all the time.

They’re so stubborn. 

Ever say these things about someone you know? Ever have them said about you

Each and every one of these so-called "personality traits" are actually well-constructed defenses. They're protection against difficult feelings - what Brené Brown refers to as "vulnerability armor". 

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When to ask for help

As a therapist and coach, one of the many questions I get asked is, "How do you know when it's time to ask for help?" I totally get why people ask this. It can be difficult to figure out when to say "when", especially if you're a high-functioning person like most of my clients are. In honor of Mental Health Awareness Month, here are three major signs you could benefit from some outside help:

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Is your relationship cheat-proof?

Let me answer that for you: No, it isn't. There’s no monogamous relationship that’s 100% guaranteed safe from an affair. Sometimes feelings develop for other people. It's only natural. But it can be a signal that something is missing from your relationship or your life.

So, what do you do if you or your partner gets feelings for someone else? This answer is often the key to whether or not your relationship survives an affair or even a potential affair.

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Feelings are real, but they aren't reality

If you're one of my clients, you may have heard me mention this last week. Dan Harmon, the creator of Rick and Morty responded to a fan's tweet looking for advice about depression. His answer was fabulous - you can read the whole thing here. What I found most remarkable was this statement: "Feelings are real, but they aren't reality." I've been saying this in therapeutic ways for years, but Harmon put it so simply, I had to share.

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