A Raleigh Therapist's Blog

Thoughts on counseling, healing, and creating the life you want

Women and the Happiness Gap

Today I read an interesting story in the NY Times about the growing happiness gap between men and women. There have been a bunch of these out lately, piggybacking on a volume of research that suggests that men and women are not equally happy. In fact, women are decidedly more glum, exhausted and frazzled than our male counterparts. According to the newest stuff out, this gap is already apparent as early as high school. Thus, it is not simply a matter of more housework or childcare duties than our husbands or partners. Though, later on, those sorts of issues do play a big part.

 I am interested in this because I am in the business of helping people be happy. And, we live in times in which people are under relentless pressure to be happy, with little room to actually revel in a sense of well-being once we actually stumble upon it. Because, being happy is often called complacency. And, who wants to appear unmotivated? Women, it appears are unhappy not just because they are juggling more kinds of responsibilities than our grandmothers, but because we’re supposed to look so darn good while doing it. College girls report that they are miserable because while they are busy gettings A’s on their physics exams and dominating the field at Lacrosse, they are supposed to be doing it with 10 layers of MAC makeup and a size 2 rear end. I worry deeply about the young women in my office overwhelmed by pressure to be good enough on so many levels, mostly because the “good enough” bar for women has moved so much and in so many directions the past few decades.

If you are feeling overwhelmed and out of step with your goals, counseling may be of great help to you. Come join me for a women’s group dedicated to improving self-esteem and relationship skills. Call or email me for more details.

Your Partner in Healing,

Holly

www.lotustherapycenter.com

twitter ID: HollyCoxLMFT

If you would like a FREE 30-MINUTE CONSULTATION to see how I can help you have your best year yet, please call me at 407.913.4988 or email holly@lotustherapycenter.com

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Spring Cleaning for your Brain

I am having a very good week.

Several of the clients I am most concerned about are doing much better, I got the thumbs up from my doctor to begin planning for a new pregnancy in the fall, and my house is reasonably clean. There are many weeks when I reach Friday by crawling across the finish line rather than sailing over it. But this is one of those rosy-hued swaths of time when everything seems to be going mostly as it should.

Pretty soon now, my practice will being slowing down for the summer, and I will start to make plans for warm weather trips to the beach up to North Carolina to see my folks. I’m already attempting to drag my friends out for a pre-pregnancy trip to Las Vegas. Last time I was there I took my one-year-old munchkin. Not as much fun as one would imagine. Don’t get me wrong, chasing him through the neon jungle of smoke and leather-skinned lounge lizards from Omaha with one shoe on was fun. But, I think I’ll pass on it for next time.

What are your plans for the spring and summer? Will you be using this time as a detox for something big you’re planning? Have you hit your stride and are planning on keeping it that way? Here are a few tips for making this time of the year a real oasis of awesomeness.

1. Be Friendly: I know you guys must think I come up with the hokiest stuff. But, I have started to really take stock of what my clients say when they tally up their happiness quotient. They have told me that when they get their heads out of their own lives and tune into others (not in a codependent way, mind you) they feel better. They are able to clear the air mentally. They feel less bogged down.

2. Practice what you Preach: I have noticed over the years that the speeches people give best to others are the ones that most reflect their own personal areas of challenge. I know that I am consistently giving people the “slow down and smell the roses” talk from my soapbox. I have perfected it because I know of what I speak, and have come up with some pretty good advice for myself about it. As a journal exercise, write down the advice you seem to give most often or most eloquently to others. Reflect deeply on how that wisdom could be used lovingly in your own life to break some nasty emotional habits that are just waiting to be conquered.

3) Roses have Thorns: I am repeating this particular pearl of wisdom that was passed on to me by one of my most insightful and wonderful clients. She told me once that she has realized that boundaries are a good thing because even the most beautiful roses have thorns just to slow the world down from picking them off willy nilly. She’s right about that. Where do you need more boundaries in your life? Do you need them with work or your family? Do you need to develop boundaries with food to address overeating, anorexia, or bulimia? Maybe you need to make a boundary with worry, and set a few moments aside in which worry will not be allowed to intrude.

Good luck with all the big things you’re planning for the upcoming season. I’d love to hear what they are!

Your Partner in Healing,

Holly

www.lotustherapycenter.com

twitter ID: HollyCoxLMFT

If you would like a FREE 30-MINUTE CONSULTATION to see how I can help you have your best year yet, please call me at 407.913.4988 or email holly@lotustherapycenter.com

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FREE PET LOSS SUPPORT GROUP

It’s that time of the month again to remind everyone that the Central Florida Pet Loss Support Group will be meeting at my office tomorrow, March 9th, at 7 p.m. The group is free, and open to anyone in the community who has experienced or is facing the death or loss of a pet.

I am so grateful to be a part of this group because the members are some of the most fantastic people I have ever met. We have both an ever-changing rotation of new folks, and also a core group of veterans that offer the kind of “been there, done that” advice only those who have walked through this kind of grief can give. Also, the veterans bring cookies. Who could ask for more than that–clean tissues and a warm baked good on a hard night? 😉

If you are interested in coming for the group, just drop me an email or give me a ring. I will be glad to answer any further questions you might have.

Your Partner in Healing,

Holly

www.lotustherapycenter.com

twitter ID: HollyCoxLMFT

If you would like a consultation to see how I can help you have your best year yet, please call me at 407.913.4988 or email holly@lotustherapycenter.com

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