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PsychNotes December 2015
by Monica A. Frank, Ph.D.
Clinical and Sport Psychologist

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December 28, 2015

Reflecting on a Time of Change for Me

meadow
I haven't written much lately because I have been busy wrapping up my old life to start a new life. Recently, I retired from my clinical practice which also involved selling my home and moving to another part of the state. Having grown up and lived in the suburbs of a large metropolitan area, I will now be adjusting to living on forty acres in a very rural area. Instead of a clinical practice, I will be able to focus more on my writing and app development.

Although this change in my life is by choice and something I am looking forward to, change involves loss. I will miss the direct contact I have with clients. I will miss the tears and the laughter. I will miss sharing their successes and commiserating over their losses. Read more...



December 22, 2015

Cognitive Diary Training Example: Back-stabbing Doctor

The following is a two-part response which includes both this Cognitive Diary Training Example and a Passive-Aggressive Example.

EVENT: Colleague is passive-aggressive in front of the residents.

EMOTIONS: frustration, hurt, distress

DISTRESS RATING: 9--Feeling desperate

THOUGHTS: "A doctor I work with feels I am "too proud" and independent in my work. He dislikes my personality, and that's ok--we don't have to be buddies. But he has taken to telling each new group of residents that there is no point discussing anything with me because I am overbearing. He tells them they should just avoid discussion and agree with me. When I present an assessment in rounds he covers his eyes and bows his head. After he leaves, if I need to speak to one of the residents about a patient having problems, I can see them bracing themselves as I approach or rolling their eyes even though we may have never yet spoken to each other! I am viewed as a competant and compassionate doctor by families and co-workers, but this treatment is distracting and disheartening. It is making it difficult to provide safe care, to the point that I have considered leaving my practice.”

CAN YOU IDENTIFY THE IRRATIONAL THINKING IN THIS EXAMPLE? There are at least 3 irrational beliefs.

HOW CAN YOU CHANGE THE THINKING? What is another way of thinking about the situation that won't cause the feelings of frustration, hurt, and distress?

TAP HERE FOR ANSWER



December 19, 2015

Passive-Aggressive Example: Back-stabbing Doctor

Question: A doctor I work with feels I am "too proud" and independent in my work. He dislikes my personality, and that's ok--we don't have to be buddies. But he has taken to telling each new group of residents that there is no point discussing anything with me because I am overbearing. He tells them they should just avoid discussion and agree with me. When I present an assessment in rounds he covers his eyes and bows his head. After he leaves, if I need to speak to one of the residents about a patient having problems, I can see them bracing themselves as I approach or rolling their eyes even though we may have never yet spoken to each other! I am viewed as a competant and compassionate doctor by families and co-workers, but this treatment is distracting and disheartening. It is making it difficult to provide safe care, to the point that I have considered leaving my practice.

TAP HERE FOR RESPONSE



December 12, 2015

Do You Understand Me? Conflict in Relationships

conflict No matter what, people will have conflict. Two people will never have the same exact needs as one another. One person is too hot; one person is too cold. One person likes Chinese food; one person likes Italian. One person spends more; one person is thrifty. Some differences may cause more conflict than others but differences always exists.

Why is it that conflict can cause serious problems in some relationships but does not seem to affect others? Researchers Gordon and Chen (2015) examined the quality of relationships based upon whether the partners felt understood by the other. They found that conflict is less likely to be harmful to a relationship when the partners feel understood. Read more...



December 10, 2015

Children Prefer Activity

active child When given the choice, children prefer being active. We worry about the problem of obesity and inactivity in children, yet it appears the problem has more to do with opportunity than with preference. Of course children like to play games, and if their only opportunity is to play sedentary, solitary games that is what they will play. However, when children, especially boys and normal-weight children, have the opportunity to play physically interactive games or similar non-physical games, they will choose the more active games (Sit, et al., 2010). Read more...



December 2, 2015

The Truth about Aging and Dieting

One good thing about aging is that older adults can stick to a diet better than younger adults. One of the more common causes of dieting failure is the use of food to regulate emotions. Older adults are better at managing emotional reactions and less likely to feel bad about themselves due to a diet failure. Instead of becoming discouraged by diet lapses and eating more they tend to control eating better. Instead of “I failed in my diet today. I'll start over tomorrow” they are more likely to think “I'll try to do better for the rest of the day.” Read more...

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