defenses

Stop the Blame Game to Improve Your Relationship

When it comes to placing blame in a relationship, it’s almost always easier to see the faults in our partner than in ourselves. One of the problems with couples pointing fingers is that usually both parties are right, and both are wrong. Every person is full of flaws and certain ways that we attempt to… Read more »

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The Human Experience

Human beings are cursed with a conscious awareness of their own mortality. Human beings, unlike other species, are cursed with a conscious awareness of their own mortality. I believe that the tragedy of the human condition is that people’s awareness and true self consciousness concerning this existential issue contributes to an ultimate irony: Human beings… Read more »

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Becoming Your Real Self: Shedding the Baggage of Your Past

“To be what we are, and to become what we are capable of becoming, is the only end of life.” – Robert Louis Stevenson What gives a person’s life meaning is unique to every individual. At one point or another, most of us find ourselves asking if we are truly living a life that is… Read more »

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Self-Esteem vs. Narcissism

As a culture, we are highly concerned with self-esteem. And this is a good thing. How we feel about ourselves determines how we treat those around us and vice versa. In 1890, William James identified self-esteem as a fundamental human need, no less essential for survival than emotions such as anger and fear. And yet,… Read more »

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A New Look at Differentiation

Remaining undifferentiated renders one unable to fully accept the gift of life and, instead, leaves one merely living out the life of another. The Self Under Siege I believe a fundamental question for people to consider is whose life are they living? Are they pursuing the things that really light them up, that matter to… Read more »

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Three Ways We Make Communication Impossible

Strong communication is often said to be at the core of a solid relationship. But for communication to exist, these qualities must not. It’s sensible to imagine that when two people truly like each other, they’re willing to listen to each other’s struggles and stories, and respond with interest and compassion. But, very often, other… Read more »

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VIDEO: The Nature of Anger

Donald Meichenbaum, Ph.D. is  a founder of Cognitive Behavioral Modification and has been voted one of the 10 most influential psychotherapists of the Century. As a clinician and researcher, he has treated all age groups for traumas suffered from violence, abuse, accidents, and illness. In this interview, Dr. Meichenbaum talks about ways of handling anger…. Read more »

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5 Strategies for Dealing With Your Partner’s Fear of Intimacy

As a therapist, I often hear couples complain that whenever one partner tries to get close, the other pulls away. It’s a painful reality that love isn’t always as easy to give and receive as we’d like to think. Many people have developed defenses that make them intolerant of too much love, attention or affection…. Read more »

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Fear of Intimacy: Understanding Why People Fear Intimacy

What is Fear of Intimacy? Fear of intimacy is an often subconscious fear of closeness that frequently affects people’s personal relationships. This fear of physical and/or emotional intimacy tends to show up in people’s closest and most meaningful relationships. Where Does This Fear of Intimacy Come From? While there are times when we are aware… Read more »

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It Is Immoral To Stop People From Loving You

Some of the most destructive behaviors, commonplace in relationships, are those that people act out in an attempt to ward off loving responses from their partner. In The Ethics of Interpersonal Relationships, I wrote about the dynamics underlying this phenomenon, explaining why we often punish the very person who appreciates and acknowledges us for our positive… Read more »

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