Free Kindle books – no fooling.

Free Kindle books – no fooling.

By David Joel Miller, MS, Licensed Therapist & Licensed Counselor.

During these troubling times, I think everyone needs to find something to take their mind off what’s going on. For the next 5 days, April 1 through April 5, I am making the Kindle edition of all of my books free. You don’t have to read them all in those 5 days, but you do have to order and download them.

I hope those of you who read these books and enjoy them. I know I enjoyed writing them. If you do read one or more of the books and enjoy it, please leave a book review on Amazon. Book reviews do not need to be long, just a few short words to let people know you enjoyed the book or to tell them who you think might enjoy reading this book. Let me know if you download the books. The full list with links to Amazon is below.

Staying connected with David Joel Miller

Six David Joel Miller Books are available now!

Bumps on the Road of Life. Whether you struggle with anxiety, depression, low motivation, or addiction, you can recover. Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of how people get off track and how to get your life out of the ditch.

Dark Family Secrets: Some family secrets can be deadly.

What if your family secrets put you in danger?

Letters from the Dead The third in the Arthur Mitchell mystery series.

What would you do if you found a letter to a detective describing a crime and you knew the writer and detective were dead?

Casino Robbery is a novel about a man with PTSD who must cope with his symptoms to solve a mystery and create a new life.

Planned Accidents  The second Arthur Mitchell and Plutus mystery.

Sasquatch. Wandering through a hole in time, they encounter Sasquatch. Can they survive?

For these and my upcoming books; please visit my Author Page – David Joel Miller

Books are now available on Amazon.

Want the latest blog posts as they publish? Subscribe to this blog.

For videos see: Counselorssoapbox YouTube Video Channel

Want the latest on news from recoveryland, the field of counseling, my writing projects, speaking, and teaching? Please sign up for my newsletter at – 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 my Facebook author’s page, davidjoelmillerwriter.

Brain myths many people believe.

By David Joel Miller, MS, Licensed Therapist & Licensed Counselor.

PNG of brain.

Brain.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

Many things people believe about their brains are myths.

Knowledge in brain science, like other areas, has been growing at a phenomenal rate. The result of this new knowledge is that many of the things we used to think were true about the brain have turned out to be myths.

You lose brain cells as you age. – Not true.

The brain tends to shrink with age, so the nerve cells become closer together. The number of connections between cells influences thinking, and older people have just as many synaptic connections. The idea that you are destined to lose cells and therefore thinking ability as you age turns out to be false.

As an increasing number of people are living long enough to reach old age, we are seeing more people develop brain disorders. With a more significant portion of the population reaching the oldest-old category, brain disorders such as Alzheimer’s have become much more noticeable. But the idea that everyone loses considerable cognitive abilities as they age no longer appears to be true.

Glial cells don’t do much.

When I first studied the brain back in the 1960s, we learned that glial cells were basically “packing material” that kept the brain from collapsing or electrical circuits from shorting out. It turns out glial cells do a whole lot of essential things. Glial cells can influence information processing. They help create and eliminate synapses or connections between nerve cells, which are vital for memory and information processing. Glial cells also appear to be a part of the chemical manufacturing and recycling, which goes on in the brain.

Alcohol destroys nerve cells.

Alcohol destroys the insulation on nerve cells, so they don’t work as well. The brain can rebuild insulation to some extent. Alcohol does affect various parts of the brain in different ways. The frontal lobe, the decision-making part, is most affected by heavy drinking. Dehydration from alcohol contributes to the brain shrinking.

Most people only use a small percentage of their brains.

The idea that people use only a small fraction of their brain has been repeated a lot. The idea of saying this was to encourage people to do more with their brains. Think of this as moving from your old apartment into a 20-room house. With so much room, you can spread the furniture out. So, you put the dining table in one room, and each of the dining chairs in separate rooms. While every room in the house is in use, there’s room for a whole lot more. Human brains continue to grow new connections. That’s how we remember things. While you’re using your whole brain, you have a lot of extra space in every one of those parts of your brain to store more information.

There were four brain myths that over 40 percent of the participants in one study thought was definitely true: that the brain is very well designed; that after head injury, people can forget who they are and not recognize others, but be normal in every other way; that we have five senses; and that our brain cells are joined together forming a vast network of nerves.

For more on brain myths, see the book – Great Myths of the Brain.

Staying connected with David Joel Miller

Six David Joel Miller Books are available now!

Bumps on the Road of Life. Whether you struggle with anxiety, depression, low motivation, or addiction, you can recover. Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of how people get off track and how to get your life out of the ditch.

Dark Family Secrets: Some family secrets can be deadly.

What if your family secrets put you in danger?

Letters from the Dead The third in the Arthur Mitchell mystery series.

What would you do if you found a letter to a detective describing a crime and you knew the writer and detective were dead?

Casino Robbery is a novel about a man with PTSD who must cope with his symptoms to solve a mystery and create a new life.

Planned Accidents  The second Arthur Mitchell and Plutus mystery.

Sasquatch. Wandering through a hole in time, they encounter Sasquatch. Can they survive?

For these and my upcoming books; please visit my Author Page – David Joel Miller

Books are now available on Amazon.

Want the latest blog posts as they publish? Subscribe to this blog.

For videos see: Counselorssoapbox YouTube Video Channel

Want the latest on news from recoveryland, the field of counseling, my writing projects, speaking, and teaching? Please sign up for my newsletter at – 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 my Facebook author’s page, davidjoelmillerwriter.

Service.

Sunday Inspiration.     Post by David Joel Miller.

Service

Service.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

“At the end of life, we will not be judged by how many diplomas we have received, how much money we have made, how many great things we have done.

We will be judged by “I was hungry, and you gave me something to eat, I was naked, and you clothed me. I was homeless, and you took me in.”

― Mother Teresa

“Generally speaking, the most miserable people I know are those who are obsessed with themselves; the happiest people I know are those who lose themselves in the service of others…By and large, I have come to see that if we complain about life, it is because we are thinking only of ourselves.”

― Gordon B. Hinckley

“You are what you do, not what you say you’ll do.”

― Carl Gustav Jung

Wanted to share some inspirational quotes with you.  Today seemed like a good time to do this. There are an estimated 100,000 words in the English language that are feelings related. Some emotions are pleasant, and some are unpleasant, but all feelings can provide useful information. If any of these quotes strike a chord with you, please share them.

Look at these related posts for more on this topic and other feelings.

Emotions and Feelings.

Inspiration

Feelings fill you up.

By David Joel Miller, MS, Licensed Therapist & Licensed Counselor.

Angry child

What is he feeling?
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

Some feelings expand like blowing up a balloon.

Remember the old saying “nature abhors a vacuum?” This is especially true when it comes to feelings. Emotions and feelings are an essential part of human nature. Somewhere along the line, feelings got a bad rap. Some people think the way to deal with feelings is to stuff them down inside and pretend they don’t exist. Other people believe whatever they feel needs to be released before they explode. They justify dumping their feelings all over others by saying venting feelings is healthy.

It’s essential to learn to manage feelings.

Learning to manage feelings is a three-part process. First, you need to learn to recognize that you are feeling something. Next, you will need to determine what this feeling is. Lastly, you’ll need to decide what you want to do with it.

What you don’t want to do is dismiss positive feelings as unimportant and hold onto the negative feelings, the anger the fear and the resentment, as you watch them grow.

Have you ever noticed that whenever you feel intensifies when you hold onto that feeling? Going over that feeling repeatedly, a process called rumination, causes it to take root and grow.

Anger expands rapidly.

Have you ever tried to simply sit with your anger? You will notice the longer you sit holding that anger, the larger it becomes. Anger is a high-pressure emotion. It can quickly take over all the space in a human being. Hold onto a little irritation, long enough, and will become chronically filled with rage. Learning to de-escalate your anger is an important skill.

Negative emotions make you heavy and bloated.

Just like some food can upset your stomach, negative emotions, anger, fears, resentments, can leave you feeling tired and drained of energy. It is best to consume these feelings in minimal quantities. Better yet, for good health, avoid putting these feelings into your system in the first place. When you can’t avoid negative emotions, try taking some positive feelings to settle your stomach.

Gratitude is a satisfying feeling.

If you consume a little gratitude each day, you will find your life becomes more satisfying. Like a desert, there is always room for a bit of gratefulness. No matter how happy you feel, you will find there is still room for a little more gratitude.

Some feelings are like cut flowers.

Some feelings will never fill you up. Peak excitement feelings like alcohol, drugs, and sex, frequently are confused with happiness. All these feelings increase the amount of dopamine, the feel-good neurotransmitter chemical, in the brain – temporarily. The problem with trying to fill up on peak experience feelings is that they fade very quickly. You can’t create a beautiful garden by planting cut flowers. An occasional bouquet of flowers in the house can be lovely. But if you try to fill your life with only cut flowers, it quickly comes to look and smell like a funeral parlor. Once people feel these sharp feelings, the bloom fades very quickly. Requiring them to continually hunt for more peak experience feelings to fill their emptiness.

Some feelings are timid and need room to grow.

Some of the most satisfying feelings, contentment, serenity, and satisfaction, grow slowly and are quickly crowded out by the more aggressive, faster-growing feelings. If you spend time cultivating these shy, slow-growing feelings, they will eventually fill your life with joy.

What feelings are you cultivating?

Staying connected with David Joel Miller

Six David Joel Miller Books are available now!

Bumps on the Road of Life. Whether you struggle with anxiety, depression, low motivation, or addiction, you can recover. Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of how people get off track, and how to get your life out of the ditch.

Dark Family Secrets: Some family secrets can be deadly.

What if your family secrets put you in danger?

Letters from the Dead The third in the Arthur Mitchell mystery series.

What would you do if you found a letter to a detective describing a crime and you knew the writer and detective were dead?

Casino Robbery is a novel about a man with PTSD who must cope with his symptoms to solve a mystery and create a new life.

Planned Accidents  The second Arthur Mitchell and Plutus mystery.

Sasquatch. Wandering through a hole in time, they encounter Sasquatch. Can they survive?

For these and my upcoming books; please visit my Author Page – David Joel Miller

Books are now available on Amazon.

Want the latest blog posts as they publish? Subscribe to this blog.

For videos see: Counselorssoapbox YouTube Video Channel

Want the latest on news from recoveryland, the field of counseling, my writing projects, speaking, and teaching? Please sign up for my newsletter at – 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 my Facebook author’s page, davidjoelmillerwriter.

Sincerity

Sunday Inspiration.     Post by David Joel Miller.

Sincerity.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

“You can be sincere and still be stupid.”

― Fyodor Dostoevsky

“Any emotion, if it is sincere, is involuntary.”

― Mark Twain

“Hold faithfulness and sincerity as first principles.”

― Confucius, The Analects

Wanted to share some inspirational quotes with you.  Today seemed like a good time to do this. There are an estimated 100,000 words in the English language that are feelings related. Some emotions are pleasant, and some are unpleasant, but all feelings can provide useful information. If any of these quotes strike a chord with you, please share them.

Look at these related posts for more on this topic and other feelings.

Emotions and Feelings.

Inspiration

Is nicotine a stimulant or a depressant? Video

Is nicotine a stimulant or a depressant? Video

A counselorssoapbox.com video by David Joel Miller, LMFT, LPCC.

Some people describe smoking as stimulating, others report that a cigarette calms them down. Is the nicotine in tobacco a stimulant or a depressant? This video examines why people sometimes experience tobacco as a stimulant and at other times as a depressant.

Stop being overwhelmed and get something done.

By David Joel Miller, MS, Licensed Therapist & Licensed Counselor.

Overwhelmed.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

Do you feel overwhelmed and unproductive?

Has your life spun out of control? Are you hectic busy, but it feels like you never get anything done? With more options than ever before for things to do, everyone seems to be working harder and accomplishing less. Sometimes it looks like there isn’t enough time to stop and breathe. If you’re working harder but achieving less, here are some techniques to get your life under control and start accomplishing things.

To accomplish more focus on one task at a time.

The idea that people can multitask has turned out to be one of the dead-end streets on the road to productivity. It’s possible to learn to do two tasks simultaneously, but most people who try to multitask, spend so much of their day switching back-and-forth that they never really accomplish anything. Focus on one task you need to work on and allocate some time to doing it. When that time has been used on that task, close it up and put it to the side, take a break, and then move on to the next project. When you’re doing something, really do that activity. Be present with whatever it is you’re doing.

Allocate enough time for the things you are planning to do.

An overscheduled life leads to lots of things undone, half done, or never completed. People who overscheduled are frequently chronically late. Be realistic about how much time will actually be required for each task. If a job is too big to do in the available time, break that task into smaller segments, and work on them one at a time. This will give you the feeling of accomplishment in small doses and keep you moving toward your goal.

Improve focus by cutting off the distractions.

Whatever the task at hand, even if that task is having fun, give it your full attention. Life often intrudes on our plans, but the more you can do to insulate yourself from those distractions, the better. Try to have a place where people won’t interrupt you as you work on your task. Turn off the Internet apps, ignore the text messages, and entirely focus on the project you’re working on. A short period when you’re fully present can accomplish more than all day long when you’re distracted.

Win more by psyching yourself up.

Your ability to do something is significantly influenced by the attitude you take toward it. If you approach things as stressful, they will stress you out. People with an attitude called positive stress mindset approach new situations as opportunities. People with a negative stress mindset approach new situations as stressful.

Top performing athletes do not become stressed out because of the pressure of the big game; they see it as their opportunity to accomplish something. With every goal you’re working towards, look for the possibilities, not the stress.

Use positive self-talk to move forward.

People tell themselves they can’t, are telling the truth, and they rarely do. Tell yourself you can, and you’re a lot farther along the path. Our brains tend to believe the things we tell ourselves repeatedly. Avoid negative self-talk and handicapping. Don’t start making excuses for your failure before you’ve even started your project. You’ll get a lot more accomplished by being your own cheerleader then by letting your inner critic run the show.

Don’t tell yourself that this is impossible, or you can’t do it. Saying you can’t usually means you don’t want to. Get honest with yourself. Either you want to do it, or you don’t. If you do, then tell yourself you will get this done one way or another.

Just because you can doesn’t mean you should.

In this modern era, there are more movies to watch than there is lifetime to watch them. More new books are published every day than any one person could possibly read. Social media has become a maze that never ends. Trying frantically to stay current in any of these areas is overwhelming. Learn to limit yourself to consuming each of these diversions in moderation. Making more social media posts each day doesn’t make you more successful unless that’s your job, and they are paying you for posting. Avoid trying to do things only because all these distractions are there crying for your attention.

Learn to say no to make time for the yeses.

One of the largest sources of that overwhelmed feeling is taking on tasks that fill up your day, which you definitely don’t want to do. People who are overwhelmed often set their automatic response to requests as “yes, I’ll do that.” Frequently after they’ve said yes and had time to think about it, they wish they didn’t have to do what they just committed to. When approached to do things, learn to say no to the things you don’t want to do. When you’re unsure about where you’ll find the time to do something, tell people you’ll have to think about it and get back to them. A primary key to productivity is the things you cut out of your schedule in order to leave room for the important items.

Break the task into bite-size pieces.

Most great accomplishments aren’t something you can easily sit down and do it a few minutes. People who say they will write their book when they have the time seldom do. Books get written one page, one paragraph, at a time. For the big tasks, break them down into smaller components. Make sure you continue to allocate some dedicated time each day to work on that project.

Try adopting some of these methods and practicing them every day until they become habits and then enjoy your new, more productive life.

Staying connected with David Joel Miller

Six David Joel Miller Books are available now!

Bumps on the Road of Life. Whether you struggle with anxiety, depression, low motivation, or addiction, you can recover. Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of how people get off track and how to get your life out of the ditch.

Dark Family Secrets: Some family secrets can be deadly.

What if your family secrets put you in danger?

Letters from the Dead The third in the Arthur Mitchell mystery series.

What would you do if you found a letter to a detective describing a crime and you knew the writer and detective were dead?

Casino Robbery is a novel about a man with PTSD who must cope with his symptoms to solve a mystery and create a new life.

Planned Accidents  The second Arthur Mitchell and Plutus mystery.

Sasquatch. Wandering through a hole in time, they encounter Sasquatch. Can they survive?

For these and my upcoming books; please visit my Author Page – David Joel Miller

Books are now available on Amazon.

Want the latest blog posts as they publish? Subscribe to this blog.

For videos see: Counselorssoapbox YouTube Video Channel

Want the latest on news from recoveryland, the field of counseling, my writing projects, speaking, and teaching? Please sign up for my newsletter at – 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 my Facebook author’s page, davidjoelmillerwriter.