The closer you get to the finish line the harder it gets.

By David Joel Miller, MS, Writer.

Resistance takes its toll on writing.

Man writing.

Writing.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

Every project starts out with high hopes and expectations. It seems to be some perverse law of nature that the longer you work on something, the harder it gets. A lot of people start their project, begin their novel, plan their business venture, maybe they make a start on the project, but it just never gets finished.

It feels as if the burden you carry gets heavier the more work you’ve done on the project. Some of you know I been participating in the NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) contest again this year. This year is the fourth time I tried to write a novel of 50,000 words or more during November. As the month progresses I find it harder and harder to write. Some of you may have noticed that I missed last Wednesday’s blog post on my writing adventures. I’ll try to make that up to you regular readers during December and throughout the new year.

Since I began writing counselorssoapbox.com blog on a regular basis, I’ve completed almost 1500 blog posts. I have also written probably ten novels or more, but just couldn’t get them completed and published. The first time I tried to write a novel in November, I couldn’t finish the book.

My NaNoWriMo experience.

Finally, in late 2017 my first two books, Bumps on the Road of Life a nonfiction book about recovering from life’s setbacks and Casino Robbery my first novel in the Arthur Mitchell Mystery series was published. Casino Robbery was written for the 2016 NaNoWriMo contest.

My 2017 NaNoWriMo effort, a book titled Family Secrets is in the editing stage, and I hope to publish it shortly.

This year’s effort a book titled “Planned Accidents” is in its final pages. I put that working title quotations. When I first started the title was “Planning Accidents.” I’ve learned over the years of writing novels that the title which sounded perfect when I started doesn’t fit the book when I finish it. The book published under the title Casino Robbery started out with a working title “Thrift Store.”

Am I going to finish another novel this year?

One reason I’m telling you all about this is that with only a couple of days to go I’m finding it harder and harder to finish the book. At the beginning of November, I was having some 2000 to 4000-word days. In the start, even my slow days were 700 or 800 words. As we approach the final deadline, I’ve had three days of writing 300 words day or less.

One reason I’m throwing this out there to all of you at this point is that by confessing this publicly, it’s going to force me to finish this book before the end of November. If I don’t, I will have to spend the next year listening to people asked me why I didn’t finish my 2018 NaNoWriMo novel.

Resistance tries to prevent you from succeeding.

Resistance takes many forms. Life gets busy, and there are things I absolutely, positively must do. Or at least I tell myself I need to do them. Things I neglected doing all year, suddenly take on new necessity just as I’m getting close to finishing my novel.

Another way resistance manifests itself as the next shiny idea. While I’m writing the second Arthur Mitchell Mystery ideas for the third and fourth in the series have appeared. Not only is my Muse tempting me with two other Arthur Mitchell Mysteries that need writing, but she’s also yelling loudly in my ear that both of these ideas will make better books than the one I’m working on now.

I think Resistance and my Muse are in league. When the Muse first started telling me about the ideas for two more Arthur Mitchell Mysteries I hurriedly scribbled them down and went back to work on this year’s novel, “Planned Accidents.”

As if Resistance hadn’t come up with enough ways to stop the progress of “Planned Accidents” the Muse has begun to torment me the last few days with a fabulous idea for an entirely new series. I won’t tell you the new series idea now as I don’t want to get committed to having to write that series, at least not yet anyway. What I will say is that the Muse tells me I need to abandon my current project and immediately began researching the idea for my next fabulous series.

Despite Resistance’s efforts to prevent my completed this novel I continue to plod forward even though the pace has slowed, and the writing has become more difficult.

Stay tuned. Sometime between Friday, 3 November and next Wednesday, December 5, there will be another blog post, and I’ll let you know my final word count and whether the novel made it across the 50,000-word finish line and is now a candidate for revision and editing.

Whatever you’re working on for 2018, don’t let Resistance stop you from reaching your goal. Are there some projects you should finish in 2018 to clear the slate for your new adventures in 2019?

You’ll find more posts on this topic under – Writing.

Staying connected with David Joel Miller

Two 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.

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.

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

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

Want the latest 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. The newsletter started out to talk about mental health issues. I recently added some other categories. In addition to mental health, you can also sign up for newsletter updates about writing and my novels. You can sign up for any one of these lists or all 3.

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. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com.

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Separating truth from lies is hard work.

By David Joel Miller.

Types of lies and their relatives.

Have you ever noticed some people could twist the truth into the oddest shapes while

Truth or lie

Separating truth from lies is hard work.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

still insisting they’re not lying? People seem to have a lot of trouble agreeing on the difference between truth and lies. Some people go through life constantly accusing others of lying to them. Other people will mislead you any way they can while insisting, sometimes under oath, continuing to insist they would never tell a lie. Here are some ways in which people may be deceiving you without having to tell detectable lies.

Lies of omission.

Someone close to you starts describing their plans for the weekend, you two are going somewhere to see friends. What they leave out that one of your exes will be there. Maybe they forget to tell you that you will be expected to set up for the party. They have exactly lied to you, but by leaving out part of the story, your expectation of a relaxing weekend has turned into another day or two of strenuous work.

Lying by leaving facts out, comes up in couples sometimes. One partner spends a lot of money, maybe sneaking new clothes into their closet, or hiding other expenditures. This deception goes on until credit card bill arrives. Some compulsive spenders will open new credit card accounts and hide the statement from the partner. Leaving out part of the truth can end up being more deceptive than an outright lie.

White lies.

Birthdays and the holiday season especially encourages white lies. These are things told to someone to mislead them with the intention of benefiting them. You tell your partner you are working late, but in fact, you have gone shopping for their birthday present.

Evasion is often used to mislead.

Maybe someone in your life has unpleasant news, you’re about to be laid off, or someone close to you as a health problem. They don’t lie to you, not directly, they just don’t answer your questions. By telling only half the story, leaving out the part you would not like, they have misled you.

Salespeople can be good at this. You ask about a feature you want on the product; they immediately launch into a description of several other features. They’ve avoided you finding out their product doesn’t have one of the features you were looking for.

Disagreeing about the truth can look like lying.

Disagreeing about the truth often happened in the areas of religion and politics. One person says this is good for the country, while the other candidate tells everyone how awful this would be. Both are likely to accuse the other of lying to the voters.

In close relationships, people often disagree about a great many things. When the argument gets heated, rather than acknowledge they have differing opinions, they are both likely to accuse each other of lying.

Mistaken beliefs may seem like lies.

Sometimes people are certain about something they say. “The company I work for will be doing a certain project. The store I shop at caries brand X.” You go there expecting a result, only to be disappointed. Did the other person lie to you? Not exactly. They told you something they thought was true, but you were misled. You may think that was a lie because you believe them and it turned out to be untrue.

Are predictions the truth or lies?

When someone predicts the future, be careful not to take that as a fact. Forecasters, whether it’s economic forecasts or weather forecasts, make lots of predictions. Some turn out to be accurate. Other predictions turn out to be wrong. If you invested money and lost a lot of it, or planned an outdoor event and it rained, you’re likely to be upset. Depending on who made the prediction, you may even believe they lied to you.

Ambiguous, misleading statements, can conceal the truth.

One way to slide something by others is to keep the statements very ambiguous. The fuzzier the statement, the more likely some people will hear what they want to hear. Some people talk a lot but include so few details that everyone hears a different version of the facts.

Lies of commission.

This is your basic, garden-variety, lie. It’s not true, they know it’s not true, but they say it anyway. With these kinds of lies, the liar is hoping you will believe them, and they can get away with something, at least for a while.

Boldface lies sometimes are believed.

Boldface lies are so huge and outlandish very few people will believe it. Initially, these statements sound laughable. The boldface liars tell these big whoppers loudly and repeatedly. If you tell a big enough lie, often enough, some people may start believing it.

Staying connected with David Joel Miller

David Joel Miller MS is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) and a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC.)  Mr. Miller provides supervision for beginning counselors and therapists and teaches at the local college in the Substance Abuse Counseling program.

Two 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.

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.

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

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

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. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com.

Delusion or reality?

By David Joel Miller.

Sometimes delusions get people into trouble.

One problem area for mental health is distinguishing between delusions and reality. If

Delusions.

Delusions.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

something is highly unlikely and yet despite mounds of evidence that can’t be true, that someone still firmly believes in its truth, it’s likely to be a delusion. Unfortunately, one person’s belief may be another person’s delusion. Disagreements about the truth often result in violence. After there’s been a violent incident, the question often arises why hadn’t someone spotted that person who was likely to become violent?

Identifying when someone is delusional is the first step. Figuring out when that delusion will lead that person to violence is a much more difficult task.

Defining delusions.

The technical definition of delusions is fixed beliefs which people are unwilling to change even when presented with evidence to the contrary. The harder it is to tell what is truth and what is delusion the more likely it is to result in violence. Religion and politics are two areas particularly prone to disagreements that lead to violence.

Here’s a list of the recognized themes of delusions.

  1. Someone’s out to get me, technically called persecutory delusions.
  2. Grandiose delusions, the person believes they are special and have exceptional abilities.
  3. Love and sex delusions are technically called erotomanic delusions, during which the delusional person believes someone is in love with them or wants them sexually.
  4. Nihilistic delusions involve the fixed belief that a major disaster will occur.
  5. Delusions regarding health and body functioning are called somatic delusions.

Is that delusion bizarre?

When other people in your culture don’t believe, something could happen, it would not be a normal experience for them. Common examples of beliefs that would be considered bizarre delusions include the idea that someone is beaming thoughts into your head or removing your thoughts. Some people also believe that an outside force is controlling them.

The problem with diagnosing delusions.

Delusions can occur in the course of several mental illnesses. There is also one specific category titled Delusional Disorder (F-22) which is a catchall for several distinct kinds of delusions which occur outside the course of another mental illness.

One type of delusion which results in a lot of problematic behavior is the delusional form of jealousy. Jealousy is a complicated topic; not all jealousy is delusional. But delusional jealousy, sometimes described as morbid or pathological jealousy, can result in stalking and interpersonal violence.

In upcoming blog posts, we will look at delusional disorder and then some of the varieties of jealous behavior, when is jealousy good for relationships, as well as how and when jealousy become dangerous.

Staying connected with David Joel Miller

David Joel Miller MS is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) and a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC.)  Mr. Miller provides supervision for beginning counselors and therapists and teaches at the local college in the Substance Abuse Counseling program.

Two 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.

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.

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

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

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. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com.

Is job burnout inevitable?

By David Joel Miller.

Are you destined for job burnout?

Burnout.

Burnout.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

Job burnout is taking a huge toll. Despite not being a recognized mental illness, work-related burnout is a major reason people go out on disability. We tried various approaches to this problem. Sometimes we blame the employer, too much work, too much stress, not enough staff to meet the challenges. Other times we blame the employee. If you have worked anywhere with a significant number of employees, you know there are people who arrive at work already stressed out before the workday begins. Maybe they have relationship problems, sick children or financial stress, whatever the reason some people arrive at work already stressed out.

At some work sites, everyone is stressed out.

In some occupations, people are burning out faster than new employees can be hired. Some interesting research has been done recently in China. As they moved to modernize their economy burnout has been a significant issue. In the aftermath of the financial crisis of 2008, bank workers were under significant work stress. It’s not customary to think of bank employees as likely to burn out, but in 2008 the burnout rate among Chinese bank employees reach seventy percent.

Repeatedly studies of social workers have reported burnout rates of more than fifty percent. One of the consequences of employee burnout is that the social worker becomes emotionally exhausted and tries to protect themselves by withdrawing emotionally from their clients. As the number of burned out employees increase, client satisfaction declines. One consequence of so many burned out human service employees is poor recovery rates among the clients they serve.

Why burnout doesn’t always result in high employee turnover.

Many of the professions with high burnout rates are highly paid but require advanced education. Doctors go through an incredible ordeal and accumulate a large amount of student loan debt. Social workers, counselors, and therapists, often have master’s degrees are Ph.D.’s. The process of continuing in school for six or eight years past high school can result in large student loan debt.

Careers that require long training periods and a large financial investment can trap burned out employees who must work for years to pay off financial debt. They may also be unable to move to a new occupation without taking a huge pay, resulting in additional financial and family stress. Burned-out workers will feel trapped and unable to change their employment become less productive, less cooperative with other staff, and are more likely to become detached from, and cynical about, the clients they work with.

High burnout rates may result in everyone being inexperienced.

In some occupations burnout results in higher than normal turn over. One survey of drug and alcohol counselors revealed more than half of the counselors had been on the job for less than a year. Many public mental health facilities have a high number of recently graduated clinicians compared to the number of senior staff available to oversee their work.

Many clients experience multiple changes in the person providing their service. It’s hard to develop a good relationship between therapist and client when the therapist keeps changing.

Don’t let yourself become a victim of burnout.

High systemic rates of burnout suggest that there is not much an employer can do to prevent burnout among employees. Certainly, anything the employer can do to reduce employee burnout will benefit that employer. Employee assistance programs can be very helpful in letting employees resolve stressful issues. But keeping yourself from burning out is something everyone needs to make a priority for themselves. Don’t make the mistake of pushing so hard in the early stages of your career, that you burn out and don’t have a career.

In future posts let’s explore some ways you can prevent burnout from taking control of your life.

More posts about – Burnout.

Staying connected with David Joel Miller

David Joel Miller MS is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) and a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC.)  Mr. Miller provides supervision for beginning counselors and therapists and teaches at the local college in the Substance Abuse Counseling program.

Two 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.

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.

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

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

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. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com.

Free Kindle book last chance.

By David Joel Miller.

Casino Robbery, Kindle edition, will be free for the next five days.

Casino Robbery. David Joel Miller

Casino Robbery.
David Joel Miller

Today is the last day.

My first novel, Casino Robbery, Kindle edition, will be available for free for five days starting January twenty-fourth and ending January twenty-eighth. I decided to make this available for free for a brief time to celebrate some changes in my life. In the future, I plan to spend a lot more time writing. You can expect to see several more of my books published during 2018. Please tell anyone you know who might be interested in this book about this free promotion. If you downloaded casino robbery, read the book, and enjoy it, please leave a review on Amazon.

If you don’t have the Kindle, there is a free app that will let you read Kindle books on your computer or smartphone available on the Amazon website.

Casino Robbery.

The robbers wanted more than money; they planned to kill Arthur’s fiancé and her boss.

Arthur Mitchell was trying to start his life over with a fiancé and a new job. That all ends when the casino robbers shoot Arthur, kill his fiancée, and her boss. Arthur would like to forget that horrible day, but the traumatic nightmares and constant reminders won’t let him, and someone is still out to get him. When he tries to start over by running a rural thrift store, someone knocks him unconscious, vandalize the store, and finally tries to kill him. His only chance to find peace is to figure out what the killers want from him and why.

Casino Robbery is a novel that explores the world of a man with PTSD who has to cope with his symptoms to solve the mystery and create a new life. Casino Robbery is available now in both Kindle and paperback editions.

My nonfiction book bumps on the road of life is also available from Amazon. The Kindle edition is $4.99 in the US and similarly priced in other markets.

Bumps on the Road of Life.

Bumps on the Road of Life.

Bumps on the Road of Life.
David Joel Miller.

Your cruising along the road of life and then wham, something knocks you in the ditch.

Sometimes you get your life going again quickly. Other times you may stay off track and in the ditch for a considerable time. If you have gone through a divorce, break up or lost a job you may have found your life off track. Professionals call those problems caused by life-altering events “Adjustment Disorders.” Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of Adjustment Disorders, how they get people off track and how to get your life out of the ditch. Bumps on the Road of Life is now available in both Kindle and paperback format.

Other books are due out soon; please visit my Amazon Author Page – David Joel Miller

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

Free Kindle book day four.

By David Joel Miller.

Casino Robbery, Kindle edition, will be free for the next five days.

Casino Robbery. David Joel Miller

Casino Robbery.
David Joel Miller

My first novel, Casino Robbery, Kindle edition, will be available for free for five days starting January twenty-fourth and ending January twenty-eighth. I decided to make this available for free for a brief time to celebrate some changes in my life. In the future, I plan to spend a lot more time writing. You can expect to see several more of my books published during 2018. Please tell anyone you know who might be interested in this book about this free promotion. If you downloaded casino robbery, read the book, and enjoy it, please leave a review on Amazon.

If you don’t have the Kindle, there is a free app that will let you read Kindle books on your computer or smartphone available on the Amazon website.

 

 

Other books are due out soon; please visit my Amazon Author Page – David Joel Miller

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

Free Kindle book day three.

By David Joel Miller.

Casino Robbery, Kindle edition, will be free for the next five days.

Casino Robbery. David Joel Miller

Casino Robbery.
David Joel Miller

My first novel, Casino Robbery, Kindle edition, will be available for free for five days starting January twenty-fourth and ending January twenty-eighth. I decided to make this available for free for a brief time to celebrate some changes in my life. In the future, I plan to spend a lot more time writing. You can expect to see several more of my books published during 2018. Please tell anyone you know who might be interested in this book about this free promotion. If you downloaded casino robbery, read the book, and enjoy it, please leave a review on Amazon.

If you don’t have the Kindle, there is a free app that will let you read Kindle books on your computer or smartphone available on the Amazon website.

Casino Robbery.

The robbers wanted more than money; they planned to kill Arthur’s fiancé and her boss.

Arthur Mitchell was trying to start his life over with a fiancé and a new job. That all ends when the casino robbers shoot Arthur, kill his fiancée, and her boss. Arthur would like to forget that horrible day, but the traumatic nightmares and constant reminders won’t let him, and someone is still out to get him. When he tries to start over by running a rural thrift store, someone knocks him unconscious, vandalize the store, and finally tries to kill him. His only chance to find peace is to figure out what the killers want from him and why.

Casino Robbery is a novel that explores the world of a man with PTSD who has to cope with his symptoms to solve the mystery and create a new life. Casino Robbery is available now in both Kindle and paperback editions.

My nonfiction book bumps on the road of life is also available from Amazon. The Kindle edition is $4.99 in the US and similarly priced in other markets.

Bumps on the Road of Life.

Bumps on the Road of Life.

Bumps on the Road of Life.
David Joel Miller.

Your cruising along the road of life and then wham, something knocks you in the ditch.

Sometimes you get your life going again quickly. Other times you may stay off track and in the ditch for a considerable time. If you have gone through a divorce, break up or lost a job you may have found your life off track. Professionals call those problems caused by life-altering events “Adjustment Disorders.” Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of Adjustment Disorders, how they get people off track and how to get your life out of the ditch. Bumps on the Road of Life is now available in both Kindle and paperback format.

Other books are due out soon; please visit my Amazon Author Page – David Joel Miller

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