Will four beers get you drunk? – Video

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

Will for beers get you drunk? Will drinking light beer prevent intoxication? Does one kind of alcohol get you more intoxicated than another? This video discusses the connection between alcohol types and factors and intoxication.

How to recognize a pathological liar.

By David Joel Miller.

Truth or lie

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

Is someone in your life a pathological liar?

Having a pathological liar in your life can wreak havoc on your mental and emotional health. It can take a long time to identify the habitual liar. Learn to spot the people who are lying to you.

They lie even when the truth would work better.

Pathological liars will invent tales rather than tell you the truth. They will continue to insist that what they say is true even when their elaborations have become outlandish. They try to make their story more believable by adding lots of fictional details.

They often don’t realize they’re lying.

It’s common for compulsive liars to repeat their falsehoods so often that they begin to believe them themselves. They believe things should be true because they want them to be so. Since they believe their fictions, they will continue to insist they are telling the truth despite mountains of evidence to the contrary.

Their life sounds illogical.

When someone’s stories don’t make sense, with their entire life sounds illogical, there’s a good chance they believe many things that are not true. Pathological liars create elaborate life stories which are a complete fabrication.

They use lies to manipulate people.

If you feel someone repeatedly tries to manipulate you, look for the lies and false stories embedded in their narrative. When someone’s trying to get you to do something, ask yourself how honest do you believe they are.

Their failure, to tell the truth, hurts people.

Pathological liars are not concerned about what their untruths will harm others. They lie to get what they want. They do not feel that it’s wrong for them to lie. They will continue their dishonesty even when they know it is hurting those who are closest to them.

Pathological lying is a behavior pattern, not a specific mental illness.

There’s no specific diagnosis for pathological lying. It is currently considered a pattern of behavior. This condition overlaps several personality disorders, particularly antisocial personality disorder and narcissistic personality disorder.

Everything they say is meant to make them look good.

Narcissists in particular, repeatedly lie, to make themselves look better and more important. The recurrent liar tries to manage other people’s opinion of them by manipulating the facts even if some of their purported facts are complete fictions.

They blame others for everything that goes wrong. It is always someone else’s fault.

Chronic liars are never willing to take responsibility for what they’ve done. Anything that has gone wrong must be someone else fault.

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 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. A list of books I have read and can recommend is over at Recommended Books. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com.

Thoughts to make you happier.

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

Happiness

Thoughts to make you happier.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

Practice these thoughts to increase your happiness.

What you think repeatedly determines how you feel. Think lots of unhappy thoughts and

you can make yourself depressed. Tell yourself negative statements, and your brain will begin to believe them.

There is no virtue in being miserable.

If you would like a more positive life, here are some ways to change your thoughts to create a better life.

Making mistakes is okay.

All humans make mistakes. I’m beginning to think all computers and artificial intelligence make mistakes also. You don’t have to be perfect. However, you are, will be perfectly fine. Strive each day to become better but don’t focus on the mistakes. What you pay attention to, you get more of. Learn to recognize your achievements, compliment yourself for things well done, and accept compliments from others gracious.

Do more things to feel better about yourself.

If you want more positive things in your life, do more things. You can’t claim credit for things you didn’t do. Possessions won’t make you happy. Possessions you have should be visual reminders of what you have accomplished.

Determined to become happiness expert.

Don’t be one of those people whose brain is biased towards negative. Study happiness, learn to recognize joy when you see it. As you become a happiness expert, you will be able to find happiness everywhere you go.

It is always today.  Don’t procrastinate.

Nothing is ever done tomorrow. Everything is done today. Small actions each day accumulate into large results. Do the things that make you happy every day. Choose the things you do every day to make you happy.

What others think about you doesn’t matter.

Occupy your time being the best person can be. Don’t waste time worrying about what other people will think. There will always be jealous people. The more you accomplish, the more they will criticize you. Become someone who accomplishes something for others to be jealous of.

Self-talk and creative visualization are powerful.

Tell yourself you can and you will. Emphasize positive self-talk. Positive affirmations create positive feelings which creates spectacular results. What you tell yourself repeatedly is likely to come true. Highly successful people not only use positive self-talk but they also practice creative-visualization. If you can picture yourself having succeeded at something, your well along the path to reaching your goals.

You are OK the way you are.

Self-acceptance is the key to contented life. Accept yourself, as you are, while always striving for improvement. Unhappy people have a habit of believing they are never good enough. There’s a difference between what you do in life and who you are. You don’t have to do anything spectacular to be a worthwhile person.

You are capable of growth.

So long as you are alive, you have the potential for personal growth. Continue to learn new things, develop new skills and share the joys of your progress. Expect each day to learn something new and to become better at an existing skill.

It’s OK to say no.

You only have so many minutes of life, use them wisely. Don’t give yourself away. What you do for others, do it because it makes you feel happy to be of service. Don’t say yes because you’re afraid of disappointing someone.

Accept the world the way it is while working to make it better.

Don’t waste time complaining about the way things are. Work to change what you can. Learn to accept what is. The greatest unhappiness comes from blaming your problems on people or things that are outside your control.

Remember that You are the boss of your life.

You may not be able to control everything in your life. Regardless your options, you are the CEO of your life. Choose your attitude. When you’re presented with choices, make them. There is no benefit in blaming someone else for your miserable life.

Believe in your individual worth.

You have value, just because you are you. Believe deeply that you have worth. You do not need to do or change anything to be a worthwhile individual.

Let others be who they are.

Give up insisting that others change to suit you. Accept others for who they are. Learn to see them accurately, defects and all. Don’t put your effort into getting others to change to suit you, change yourself.

Pick good friends.

You will become like the people you associate with. Select positive friends. The old saying goes “show me your friends, and I will tell you who you are.” People will judge you by the company you keep. If you want to be a winner, hang out with the positive people. Don’t mistake acquaintances and fair-weather friends for true friends.

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 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. A list of books I have read and can recommend is over at Recommended Books. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com.

Signs others opinions matter too much.

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

Self-confidence

Self-Confidence
Believe in yourself.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

Are you paying too much attention to other people’s opinions?

Living your life based on other people’s opinions results in you living someone else’s

life. Do you find yourself asking other people for their opinions on what you should do? If you find it hard to make decisions about your life without consulting others, the problem may be that you are paying too much attention to what others think and not enough attention to your own feelings. Here are some signs that what others think is running your life more than you are.

You measure yourself by other people’s opinions.

You are the expert on your life. No one else knows your particular struggles and challenges. Constantly seeking others approval results in a needy person. The person whose opinion most matters is yours. If your primary yardstick for measuring your self-worth is other people’s opinions, you are using the wrong ruler.

You ask what they mean by that a lot.

Do you find yourself questioning what others mean? If you’re asking “why did you say that” and “what did you mean by that?” a lot, it is very likely that you have become overreliance on other people’s opinions.

You let their opinion stop you.

If you find yourself not doing things that you enjoy or that might benefit you because of other people’s opinions, you’re losing control of your life. Other people’s opinions may be fine for them, but if you over-rely on their opinions, you are living their life and forgoing your own.

You worry about saying the right thing.

Healthy communication includes being able to tell others what you think and how you feel. You find yourself censoring what you want to say and searching for just the right words to say it you’re probably overly concerned about what other people think.

You try to please everyone.

If you try to please everyone, you’re likely to end up pleasing no one. In your effort to please everyone you will end up sacrificing your own opinions. No matter what view you take of things, some people will disagree, and some will not like what you say.

You put others needs before yours.

You must take care of yourself for you to be able to help others. It is not selfish to take care of yourself. Neglecting your own need in the process of caring for others robs you of the life you should have.

It is hard to say no.

Not being able to tell others no devalues you and your needs. You have the right to say no.

Taking credit embarrasses you.

Good self-esteem comes from recognizing the things you do well. When somebody gives you a compliment, accepted it.

You are ashamed of things you like to do.

Everyone has the right to have interests in life. Don’t be ashamed of your hobbies and interests.

You continue to do things that don’t make you happy.

If you find that you’re doing things that don’t bring you joy, weed them out of your life. Filling up your life with things that do not contribute to your happiness is sacrificing the life you should be leading to live

You let others set your goals.

Are you living your life pursuing someone else’s goals? That’s clear evidence their opinions are outweighing your own. You will only get this one life. Get clear on your goals. If our not clear on what you want out of life, you may be paying too much attention to other people’s opinions and not enough attention to your own.

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 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. A list of books I have read and can recommend is over at Recommended Books. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com.

6 Top Reasons to Go for Counseling.

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

Counseling questions

Counseling questions.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

Reasons you may want to consult a counselor.

Many people avoid going to see a professional counselor until their life falls apart.

There’s been a growing acceptance of preventative medicine for physical health issues. Still, some people believe that going to see the doctor or the therapist is a sign of weakness.

An increasing number of companies provide E.A.P.’s (employee assistance programs) for their employees. There are plenty of good reasons to see a counselor before your problems become severe.

Avoiding counseling appears to me like walking around town with a broken leg. See the doctor, and that leg might heal, keep walking on that broken leg you may do permanent damage to it.

1. There are things you can’t talk to your family and friends about.

Your family and friends may be sympathetic but if you keep talking to them repeatedly about the same problems you can burn them out. People close to you may judge you for what you think or how you feel. A professional counselor can listen to you nonjudgmentally.

2. You don’t know what you don’t know.

Professional counselors can provide you with the information you may need. They talk to many people with similar problems. They may be able to fill in gaps in what you know and refer you to resources where you can find answers to your questions.

3. They can mentor you on life skills.

If you didn’t have a knowledgeable adult or older sibling in your life, a counselor could fill that need. Even when you have great role models, you may not have learned every lesson. Counselors can help you with skills to reduce or manage your anger. They can help you cope with your anxiety. If there are feelings you find it difficult to manage, a good therapist can help you learn the needed skills.

4. When you get counseling, they can tell you the truth.

The smartest people sometimes get extraordinarily dumb ideas. Top executives need to beware of yes-men and yes-women. The people close to you may not want to hurt you or offend you by telling you the truth. A professional counselor can help you do something called reality testing. They can help you sort out your thoughts and separate the good ideas from the fanciful ones.

5. Prevention is cheaper and faster than cure.

Dealing with emotional problems in the early stage can prevent them becoming huge problems.

6. Counselors can give you another perspective.

Successful athletes have coaches. You can’t see your own swing.  A good counselor can give you a fresh perspective on the challenges you face.

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 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. A list of books I have read and can recommend is over at Recommended Books. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com.

Get rid of fear.

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

Fear

Get rid of fear.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

Don’t let fears control your life.

Fear has a role in our lives. If you’re in a dangerous situation, fear can warn you to be

cautious. Fear is an early warning system. It becomes a problem when you have the volume on your fear system turned up too high. It becomes like that burglar alarm system which goes off constantly and stops being useful. Often the fears people experience turn out to be false alarms. Here are some of the exaggerated fears that may be taking over your life.

Types of unhelpful fears.

How many of these types of unhelpful fears do you experience? If you could, would you be willing to give up those fears?

Fear of what others think.

Being afraid of what others might think of you, can leave you paralyzed and unable to act. There may be a few people, your boss, or your partner, whose opinions matter. But most of the time, what other people think about you is none of your business. Don’t let your fear keep you from doing things that might be beneficial and enjoyable.

Fear of not getting what you want.

Being afraid that you won’t reach your goal can prevent you from enjoying the process of growing and living. Don’t let your fear of failure and disappointment prevent you from trying. When you stay in the fear of not getting what you want, you devalue what you have.

Fear of losing or being out of control.

The idea that we’re in control turns out to be an illusion. Humans don’t control very much in life, we adapt. You can’t stop the rain; you can carry an umbrella. Life becomes more enjoyable when you stop trying to control people and situations and learn to adapt to a changing world.

Fear of the unknown.

This fear is based on the belief that the things you can’t see or don’t know must be dangerous. Often the unknown turns out to be enjoyable experiences you just haven’t yet tried. Many children resist trying new foods. The things we enjoy as adults were new experiences the first time we tried them.

Fear of feelings, sadness, loneliness.

Fear tells us we shouldn’t feel. Some people spend their whole life cut off from feeling, numb. Feelings can provide us with valuable information. Loneliness encourages us to seek out relationships with other humans. When you lose someone in your life, it is appropriate to feel sad. By avoiding loneliness and sadness, you also avoid being able to feel happiness and connection.

Fear of losing what you have.

Don’t let the fear of losing something take away the pleasure of having it. People are often afraid that a relationship will end, and so they avoid ever enjoying the companionship of that other person. Don’t lose out on the pleasure of doing things because you are afraid that eventually what you’re doing may come to an end.

How do you cope with fears?

Try some of the simple fear reducing techniques.

Take action.

Many things you fear become less scary as you approach them. If you think about something, you want to do, act immediately. People who act in the first five seconds are engaged in action. Wait too long, and nothing happens.

Tell yourself positive things.

Tell yourself you can. Remind yourself that you can choose to do things. Avoid saying to yourself that you can’t or won’t. People who think negatively create unfavorable outcomes. People who believe that they can, accomplish many things others thought were impossible.

Make self-care, time for yourself, a priority.

Being constantly stressed out increases your fear. Not enough sleep makes you more anxious. Get plenty of rest, healthy food and allow yourself to make self-care a priority.

Do more things that scare you.

A great way to reduce fear is to stretch your comfort zone. Each day try to do something that makes you uncomfortable. Tackle things that scare you and notice how that fear loses its hold over you.

Learn more about the things that scare you.

The unknown is often scary. Make the unknown a known. As you have more information, what used to scare you begins to feel less dangerous.

Get better prepared, have the right tools and education.

You can reduce your fear by getting the education and learning the skills you will need to be able to accomplish whatever you set out to do. Having the right physical and mental tools can make the task less daunting.

Allow yourself to look and be silly.

Put yourself into situations where you can take a chance. Put on a costume, act, sing or dance. Take a chance and let others see you in a new light.

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 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. A list of books I have read and can recommend is over at Recommended Books. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com.

Could you start over after a trauma?

By David Joel Miller.

David Joel Miller Books

David Joel Miller Books

Ninety-nine cent Kindle book sale.

The Kindle Edition of my latest book, a novel about a man forced to recover from an incredible trauma, is on sale right now for just ninety-nine cents.

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

Photo of Casino Robbery book

Casino Robbery.

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.

The Kindle Edition can be ordered now for just 99 cents!

Casino Robbery is also available in paperback.

Bumps on the Road of Life

Don’t forget about my first book.

Bumps on the Road of Life is now available in Kindle format. It was released 11/13/17. The paperback version is also available. Look at the description below. Thank you, to those who have already ordered paperback copies or the Kindle Edition.

Bumps on the Road of Life

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

Bumps on the Road of Life.

Bumps on the Road of Life.
By David Joel Miller

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

Please visit my Amazon Author Page – David Joel Miller

if you purchased either of my books, reviews are appreciated.

I sincerely hope you all enjoy reading my book as much as I enjoyed writing them. If you do, I would greatly appreciate a short review on Amazon or your favorite book website. Reviews are crucial for any author, and even just a line or two can make a huge difference.

Thanks again for reading this blog, pardon the short digression, next time we will return to another post about mental health, substance use disorders, and having a happy successful life.

David Joel Miller.

Is your life a mess?

By David Joel Miller.

David Joel Miller Books

David Joel Miller Books

Have you ever felt like you just can’t get it together?

Life can be hard sometimes. Things are going along for you then out of the blue

Bumps on the Road of Life.

Bumps on the Road of Life.
By David Joel Miller

disaster strikes. Lots of things in life can get you off track, knock you down, make you feel like giving up.

Your problem might be a mental or emotional illness, anxiety, or depression were even PTSD. Or you might be struggling with alcoholism, addiction, or behavioral addiction like gambling or compulsive shopping.

For some people, the problem that has knocked them down is one of those challenges of living. You may have lost a job and can’t find another. You started a relationship with high hopes, and now that relationship is over. Maybe it’s a divorce or a breakup. Maybe you’ve lost someone close to you.

Those of you who have this blog in the past, know I believe in recovery. No matter what got you down, knocked in the ditch, it is possible to get back up, and start moving forward.

Some of these life problems happen at predictable points in your life. Others of these challenges in living come about unexpectedly. My goal in writing the counselorssoapbox.com blog is to talk about mental illness, substance use problems and the challenges of living. Learning to have a happy, productive life, requires both skills and knowledge.

In addition to this blog, I’ve been working on some books to provide a fuller picture of the things that can go wrong life and how to recover. The first of those books are available today.

Bumps on the Road of Life is now available in Kindle format. It was released today 11/13/17. The paperback version is also available. Look at the description below. Thank you, to those who have already ordered paperback copies and preordered the Kindle Edition.

Bumps on the Road of Life.

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

Please visit my Amazon Author Page – David Joel Miller

Coming soon

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

Photo of Casino Robbery book

Casino Robbery.

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 paperback. The Kindle Edition can be pre-ordered now and will be ready for distribution on 11/20/17.

Thanks.

David Joel Miller

Memorial Day – What are you remembering?

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

Veterans.

Memorial Day.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

Today here in America we are celebrating Memorial Day.

This day, officially called Memorial Day here in the United States of America, is reported to be the descendant of several past holidays where people remembered those who had gone before and had sacrificed to create the life we have.

Established on this the last Monday in May by the Uniform Monday Holiday Act, it occurs on this last Monday in May more as a concession to long weekends than any particular remembrance. It appears to be the most closely related to the former “Decoration Day.”

While we now tend to think of Memorial Day as strictly a remembrance of those who died in Military service in earlier times we are told it was a more general remembrance of people who had established our way of life.

Wikipedia reports that this time of year had long been celebrated as the beginning of the spring good weather and families would gather to hold family reunions often at family owned graveyards to celebrate those ancestors who created their lives.

Decoration Day came to be a time to remember those who died and were therefore decorated for their war service. It came to prominence after the American Civil War or The War Between the States as it is sometimes called, largely because that war beyond all other American wars touched everyone in the country. There was almost no family who had not had a member that served in that conflict.

Ancestors and those who gave their lives in the Wars of our country are not the only people who should be remembered on this Memorial Day.

The Memorial Day Massacre of 1937.

On May 30, 1937, police opened fire on a demonstration Of Union Members and their families. In the aftermath, 50 were wounded and ten died. Dorothy Day, an eye-witness, reported that 100 demonstrators were clubbed.

Today union strikes are less likely to be met with violence and death but in those days you risked your life as well as your livelihood to become a union member.

Today as we celebrate Memorial Day it is fitting to remember those who made sacrifices so that we could have the lives that we are able to enjoy.

Whether those you remember are Military members who gave their lives, family members who endured hardships to give their descendants a better life or union and political activists who sacrificed for those to come, we all should take time, in between the barbecues,  to remember that those blessings we enjoy were won by the sacrifices of those who went before.

Hope you are having a good Memorial Day.

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

Why counselorssoapbox by David Joel Miller

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

Counselorssoapbox.com

Who is this David Joel Miller and why is he writing a blog called counselorssoapbox?

Counselorssoapbox is a blog about recovery, wellness and having a happy life. Yes, you guessed it, I am David Joel Miller and I write this blog. It occurs to me though that I have not explained why I write this blog and why I called it counselorssoapbox.

Someone is snickering under their breath the words “for the money” If you were thinking that then you would be more delusional than I was when I started writing this blog. Not delusional in the psychiatric sense, but delusional in that I had no idea how much work writing a blog on a regular basis would be. As for this blog making money, I definitely will not be quitting my day job, or my night job for that matter, anytime soon.

My first exposure to all things psychological was, like many of you, a few classes in psychology. It was the sixties after all. I have since learned that psychology, the kind we study in high school or most colleges is only a distant relative of counseling and recovery. Clinical Psychology, that takes 6 years of college for a Ph.D. and then you can start looking for the answers to why life is the way it is.

My first exposure to counseling and therapy was as a client. I discovered school counselors could tell me what classes to take if I wanted to make the big bucks but none of them seemed to know how to be happy along the way. Eventually, I ended up seeing some therapists. I discovered that there were helpful therapists and unhelpful therapists.

Becoming a therapist was not in my original plan. I took the classes and became a Drug and alcohol counselor. Along the way, I learned a few things. One was that there was a lot of wisdom in those 12 step programs. The other was that my AOD (Alcohol and Other Drugs) clients all had families. If I wanted to be helpful to those families, especially the children and the significant others, then I needed more training.

Next stop was the classes in how to be a Marriage and Family Therapist. Originally here in California, this was called a Marriage, Family and Child Counselor. Marriage in this context means any two or more people who have a close, primary, usually sexual, relationship.

Over the years of trying to figure out who I was and what I wanted to be when I grow up, I discovered that having a job or at least a purpose in life was an immense part of being happy. The answer to the who and what question I am still working on, but at least now I know something about the how of being happy.

To help people with their job issues and substance use issues took me in the direction of Professional Clinician Counseling and today I have that license also. From there I drifted, more like jumped, into teaching and supervising other counselors and therapists. So now you know a little bit about me. More is on my “about me” page.

But I still haven’t told you “Why a blog named counselorssoapbox?”

Throughout my process of becoming a professional in this field I kept thinking about those times I had sat on the other side of the desk and what I had experienced. I decided I did not ever want to forget what it was like to be on the client side of the room.

In graduate school, they explained a lot of stuff to us but honestly, I did not feel like some of these professionals I had seen had explained things to me in the way they were supposed to be explained. I asked about confidentiality and never seemed to get a straight answer.

Therapists were often good listeners but if they knew the answers to the “how to have a happy life question” they wanted me to suffer through the process of finding them myself and they flat resisted giving me any answers to these questions.

Counselorssoapbox started off as a way for me to express my opinions about what worked and what didn’t in the therapy world. I wanted to demystify the therapy process and explain what I had learned. Those times I got a reader question and didn’t have the answer took me back to reading the research and looking for more ideas. Writing a blog meant I needed to keep reading, studying and living wellness and recovery. So I just took it one post at a time.

What quickly happened was you readers prodded me in a few directions. Counselorssoapbox received a lot of questions about the safety of counseling, confidentiality and what gets reported. I was surprised at the number of search terms that involved counselors having sex with clients. So I put up a link to the publication “Professional Counseling Never Includes Sex.”  That post and the link keep getting hits so there remains an interest in this topic.

There has also been some interest in particular diagnoses and their treatment. While I can’t do therapy by blog post I have tried to provide general information on mental health and illness. All sorts of how to have a happy, productive, successful life posts find their way onto the blog also. Whatever tips on having the best life possible I come across I try to share.

There you have it. The answers to the questions who is this David Joel Miller and why a blog called counselorssoapbox.

What’s next? I continue to work on some books, both fiction and nonfiction and I write more blog posts looking for all the things that seem worthy of sharing with you. So if there are questions or comments related to the fields of substance use disorders, mental health, and wellness or living a happy life, send them along. I will do my best to answer questions or send you to someone who can. Comments and information from you or others gets shared here also.

If you read this far an extra thanks. Talk with you again soon.

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

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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. A list of books I have read and can recommend is over at Recommended Books. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com.