Kindness.

Sunday Inspiration.     Post by David Joel Miller.

Kindness.

kindness-1197351_1280 (1)

“Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a harder battle.”

― Plato

“Three things in human life are important: the first is to be kind; the second is to be kind; and the third is to be kind.”

― Henry James

“Do your little bit of good where you are; it’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.”

― Desmond Tutu

Wanted to share some inspirational quotes with you.  Today seemed like a good time to do this. If any of these quotes strike a chord with you, please share them.

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

Belonging.

Sunday Inspiration.          Post by David Joel Miller.

Belonging.

Belonging

Belonging.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

“How could you ever feel comfortable if no matter where you went you felt like you belonged someplace else?”

― Mark Peter Hughes, Lemonade Mouth

“I didn’t belong as a kid, and that always bothered me. If only I’d known that one day my differentness would be an asset, then my early life would have been much easier.”

― Bette Midler

“The desire to belong is in every mind.”

― Debasish Mridha

Wanted to share some inspirational quotes with you.  Today seemed like a good time to do this. If any of these quotes strike a chord with you, please share them.

Could you have a Mental Illness?

By David Joel Miller.

You think you might have a mental illness, what should you do?

Could you be mentally ill?

What Causes Mental Illness?

Have you ever thought that you were someone close to you might have a mental illness?  Being faced with mental illness doesn’t mean you’re crazy or have lost your mind.  Many people go through episodes of depression, or you may have excess anxiety.  Sometimes the stress of life just is overwhelming.  Or you may be having conflicts with your family, your spouse, or your children.  If you are having difficulties with your thinking, feeling, or behavior you may be at risk for developing a mental illness.  If so what should you do in this situation?  Below are some do’s and do not’s for people who are at risk for emotional problems.

Don’t ignore it, get help.

Just like physical illnesses, mental, emotional, or behavioral problems don’t get better without attention.  Pretending you don’t have an illness doesn’t keep you healthy.  There’s no great virtue in toughing it out and suffering.  Seeking help when under stress can help prevent more serious emotional problems from developing.

Discuss your problem with someone who feels safe.

If you are thinking your problems have gotten out of control, now is the time to find someone safe you can talk to about it.  Sometimes that trusted person will be your friend or family member.

Talk about your symptoms with your medical doctor.

Whenever you’re feeling out of sorts, the first thing you need to do is talk to a medical doctor. Physical problems can often look like mental health symptoms.  It is important to make sure that your feelings of sadness or depression are not a physical illness.  Sometimes prescription medications can create symptoms that look like emotional disorders.

See a counselor or therapist.

Going to see a counselor or therapist does not mean that you have given in to mental illness.  Professional athletes have coaches, because they can help them improve their performance.  In the emotional area it helps to see a counselor to work on your stress and issues before they turn into something more serious.  Counselors are specially trained to listen to what’s going on in your life, evaluate your symptoms, and decide whether what you’re experiencing is normal or qualifies for a mental illness diagnosis.

Reduce your stress.

A little bit of stress is good for you.  We exercise to keep our bodies in top condition.  But holding onto too much stress over too long a period of time can overwhelm our emotional system.  Often it is not a huge overwhelming stress the causes people difficulty, it’s the accumulations of lots of little stress day after day.  Work on ways to reduce those little stressors and learn to stop stressing over the things that don’t really matter.

Increase your self-care.

Failing to take care of yourself is not a value.  Learn to take good care of yourself physically and emotionally.  Get plenty of sleep, exercise, and eat as healthy a diet as possible.

Work on solving those other life problems.

Often emotional crises are the result of failure to deal with other real life problems.  Work on career problems.  Get some help with financial issues.  Tackle those legal problems you’ve been putting off.

Consider taking medication for your problems.

Taking medication to help you live a healthy life is a reasonable thing to do.  It doesn’t matter whether those problems are physical or emotional, medications can sometimes help.  Have that talk with your doctor, and see if there’s some medication which might help you deal with your depression, anxiety or other emotional issues.

Taking inventory of where you are at.

After looking at all the possibilities listed above if you’re thinking that you might be experiencing a mental, emotional, or behavioral issues, something we might call a mental illness, now is the time to take action.  I hope some of the suggestions in this blog post are helpful.

Want to sign up for my mailing list?

Get the latest updates on my books, due out later this year by signing up for my newsletter. Newsletter subscribers will also be notified about live training opportunities and free or discounted books. Sign up here – Newsletter. I promise not to share your email or to send you spam and you can unsubscribe at any time.

For more about David Joel Miller and my work in the areas of mental health, substance abuse and Co-occurring disorders see the about the author page. For information about my other writing work beyond this blog check out my Google+ page or the Facebook author’s page, up under David Joel Miller. Posts to the “books, trainings and classes” category will tell you about those activities. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com. A list of books I have read and can recommend is over at Recommended Books

Love better by loving yourself.

By David Joel Miller.

It is hard to love others when you are starving for self-love.

Selflove

Learn to love yourself.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

You grow love in your life by daily creating small actions that nurture that love, for yourself and for others.  If you don’t love yourself no matter how much others love you it will never be enough.  Enlarge your feeling of being loved by working on the ability to love yourself.  Below are some tips on how to feel better about yourself and develop that self-love.

Give yourself a round of applause. Recognize your accomplishments.

In order to feel better about yourself you need to recognize the things you do well.  Learn to praise yourself.  You do not need to do great things to feel well about yourself. If you pay attention to the small things that you accomplish each day, over time this will add up to large accomplishments.

Unfortunately, many people were taught to be suspicious of recognition for their accomplishments.  People used to think that the way to get better behavior from children was to constantly point out all their flaws.  The result of this practice was to create non-affirming homes.  If you grew up that way you are likely to find it difficult to recognize when you do things well.  There’s no evidence that beating yourself up will make you a better person.  There’s plenty of evidence that recognizing positive qualities improves your ability to feel good about yourself and raises your self-esteem.

Invest in your support system.

Having a team of people who support you will make you feel better about yourself.  Developing that support system requires the investment of time and effort.  Make sure that each day you spend some time calling or talking to a friend. Good friendships revolve around shared activities.  Get out there and make friends.

Humans need other humans.  When you don’t feel of a good about yourself it is hard to be around others.  Developing friendships requires an investment of time and effort.  Make that investment in developing friends and creating a support system and it will pay dividends in the form of you feeling better about yourself.  People who spend time socializing with other people feel more loved.

Make friends with your feelings.

Learn to make your feelings useful friends.  Feelings provide you with information, don’t try to ignore those feelings.  Somewhere along the line people got the idea that to have feelings was a bad thing.  If you do not acknowledge what you feel when you feel it, then it becomes very difficult to recognize the feelings of love when you have it.

Sometimes in life bad things happen and we need to be sad.  Just because you feel badly does not mean that something terrible will happen.  Accept that feelings change.  Learn to surf those feelings and wait for the next round of happy, loving feelings.

Plan a better future.

Don’t get stuck in the belief that the way things are, or the way they have been in the past, is the way they must always be.  Envisioned a better future for yourself and begin to work on creating it.  Design plans for where you want to go in life and begin to do the work to get there. Set goals. As you make progress towards those goals give yourself credit for the successes you have created.  Creating, planning and working toward a better future are ways to love yourself and to feel more loved.

Invest in yourself.

It’s hard to understand someone who loves a partner but is unwilling to ever give them a gift or spend time with them.  To increase that feeling of love make it a priority to invest in yourself.  Invest by spending time with yourself.  Also invest in things that make you feel good or meet your needs.

Make developing skills and continuing education a part of your ongoing investment in yourself.  Developing interests and hobbies is not a waste of time, but an investment in creating a better quality of life.

Allow yourself to enjoy life.

All work and no play not only makes Jack a dull boy, it makes him a very unhappy and unloved person.  Doing things to make yourself happy is not being selfish.  Life is not all pleasure sometimes there’s work to do.  But if all you ever do is work and can never enjoy yourself, life loses its meaning.  Look for ways within your budget that you can make your life a more enjoyable experience.

Recharge your batteries. Rest and food.

Being over tired, hungry or thirsty creates feelings that will interfere with feeling good about yourself and with your self-love.  You wouldn’t think someone loved you if they were unwilling to ever let you rest or to allow you time to eat and drink.  Treat yourself the way you would like others to treat you.

Look for the good parts in every challenge.

If you approach everything in life as a terrible chore, all the pleasure goes out of your existence.  Look for the good parts in every challenge.  What strengths is this difficulty producing?  What lessons do you need to learn from this? Practice spotting hidden happiness.

Talk nicely to yourself – Self talk.

People in love talk nicely to their beloved.  To feel more love by yourself and by others practicing saying the kinds of loving things to yourself that you wish others would say to you.  Negative, critical self-talk decreases your self-esteem.  Positive, loving self-talk increases your self-esteem.  What you tell yourself becomes the way you feel. Feed your mind healthy thoughts.

Develop positive habits.

Get into the habit of doing positive things for yourself.  Take the view that you deserve the best in life.  Treat yourself in the best possible way to increase your feelings of self-esteem and make you feel loved.

Budget some time for fun.

Fun is not a waste of time.  Sometimes even hard work can be fun.  Make sure that you are including in your schedule things that are enjoyable or will recharge your batteries and make you feel good about yourself. It is important to include some time for having fun in each day’s activities.

Let yourself feel good by doing for others.

One secret that people who are happy and loving have discovered is that doing for others is not an inconvenience. It is a great way to make you feel good about your life.  Don’t cheat yourself out of the opportunity to do little things for those you love.  Practice loving yourself by doing random acts of kindness for others, even those you don’t know. Filling your life with loving gestures for yourself and others increases that loving feeling.

Do what you love – love what you do.

It’s been said and repeated often, but it’s still true, if you do something you love it’s not work.  Make it a point to do things that bring you joy.

Think about these ways that you might increase your ability to love yourself and how that might make you feel more love by others.  Which of these loving expressions will you practice?

Want to sign up for my mailing list?

Get the latest updates on my books, due out later this year by signing up for my newsletter. Newsletter subscribers will also be notified about live training opportunities and free or discounted books. Sign up here – Newsletter. I promise not to share your email or to send you spam and you can unsubscribe at any time.

For more about David Joel Miller and my work in the areas of mental health, substance abuse and Co-occurring disorders see the about the author page. For information about my other writing work beyond this blog check out my Google+ page or the Facebook author’s page, up under David Joel Miller. Posts to the “books, trainings and classes” category will tell you about those activities. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com. A list of books I have read and can recommend is over at Recommended Books

Serenity.

Sunday Inspiration.          Post by David Joel Miller.

Serenity.

Serenity

Serenity.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

“Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.”

― Lao Tzu

Wanted to share some inspirational quotes with you.  Today seemed like a good time to do this. If any of these quotes strike a chord with you, please share them.

Ways you are preventing success.

By David Joel Miller.

Are you getting in your own way?

Putting Obstacles in Your Own Way

Putting Obstacles in Your Own Way.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

Creating the life you want takes work. Whatever your goals, and those goals should reflect your values, it can be difficult getting things done. A successful life does not need to be all about money, though having the funds available will allow you to accomplish more.  With all the hard work you put in it is important to not do things that undermine your own success

Regardless of whether your life plan includes helping others, being a great artist or athlete, having good children, a financial goal or some other accomplishment, reaching those aims takes effort.  Make sure you’re not putting road blocks in your own success path.

With all that needs to be done to create the life you want, you do not want to be doing things that undermine your progress. Many people are unconsciously engaging in thoughts and behaviors that make reaching their desired outcomes that much harder.  Take a look at the list below and see if any of these items apply to you. How many of these goal interfering things are you doing?

Saying it can’t be done.

If you say you can’t do something, if you say it can’t be done, you have prevented that outcome from ever happening.  Positive self-talk can help motivate you to reach your goals.  Negative self-talk is your own mind getting in the way of you accomplishing things.  Make it a habit to approach your tasks with a positive frame of mind.  Positive affirmations set you up for success.  Negative affirmations tell your mind you don’t really believe in yourself.

Waiting till the right time.

There is no right time hiding off in the future for following your dreams. Every day is today and today is the only possible time to begin to work on yourself.  Accomplishing great things requires putting in the work.  Successful people are skilled at what they do.  Developing that success requires a great deal of practice and patience.

Looking for someone to blame.

Focusing on others, what they should do and shouldn’t do, does not get you moving. You are the one who controls this instance. You may have limited choices over some things, but blaming others avoids focusing on the things you do have control over. People who fail have lots of people to blame.  People who succeeded in reaching their goals take personal responsibility for their progress.

Saying you don’t have the time.

We all have the same amount of time each week as every other inhabitant of planet earth. You get 168 hours this week. Use this time wisely because once this week is gone it will never come again. Do not put off taking the actions today that will create your tomorrows.  Every day life happens.  Don’t expect suddenly to have an open period in your life when you have nothing to do other than work on your success.

Your background is preventing you.

People from any possible background have accomplished great things. Then there are those who appear to have had all the possible advantages and still their life went nowhere.  Other people struggle with great adversity and still reach their goals.  No matter where you started or what should have been, many things are possible.

Don’t spend your time focusing on the things that can’t be done.  Look for those things that are possible, that move you forward in a positive direction. Take the life you have had so far and use that to push you forward to create the best possible future life.

Want to sign up for my mailing list?

Get the latest updates on my books, due out later this year by signing up for my newsletter. Newsletter subscribers will also be notified about live training opportunities and free or discounted books. Sign up here – Newsletter. I promise not to share your email or to send you spam and you can unsubscribe at any time.

For more about David Joel Miller and my work in the areas of mental health, substance abuse and Co-occurring disorders see the about the author page. For information about my other writing work beyond this blog check out my Google+ page or the Facebook author’s page, up under David Joel Miller. Posts to the “books, trainings and classes” category will tell you about those activities. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com. A list of books I have read and can recommend is over at Recommended Books

Growth.

Sunday Inspiration.          Post by David Joel Miller.

Growth.

Growth

Growth.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

“Conformity is the jailer of freedom and the enemy of growth.”

― John F. Kennedy

“We do not grow absolutely, chronologically. We grow sometimes in one dimension, and not in another; unevenly. We grow partially. We are relative. We are mature in one realm, childish in another. The past, present, and future mingle and pull us backward, forward, or fix us in the present. We are made up of layers, cells, constellations.”

― Anaïs Nin

“Everyone wants to live on top of the mountain, but all the happiness and growth occurs while you’re climbing it.”

― Andy Rooney

Wanted to share some inspirational quotes with you.  Today seemed like a good time to do this. If any of these quotes strike a chord with you, please share them.