The Upside of Anxiety

squeezing stress ball

It is easy to write off anxiety, stress, and other mental health symptoms as universally “bad” or unwanted. Too much anxiety can have serious consequences on your health and contribute to everything from heart and breathing problems to depression, headaches, fatigue, panic attacks, and more. However, it has been found that some measure of anxiety can actually be good for you. Learning to harness its strength and use it to your advantage could end up putting you ahead of the game, instead of behind in many of life’s circumstances.

When Not Helping Is Hurting

suicide support

Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Association (SAMHSA). Learning how to spot the warning signs of suicide and being willing to broach the subject with a loved one can be critical to their well-being. As much as we want to deny that someone’s suicidal thoughts or actions are serious, our best defense against suicide is to lean in, listen, and request the supportive help of others.

How Do I Know If I Have Bipolar Disorder?

bipolar disorder

Bipolar disorder may be one of the most misunderstood mental health disorders today. We’ve all heard of it, and if we’re being honest, we’ve all formed our own perceptions after seeing it portrayed in movies and on TV as individuals struggling with manic highs and dangerously dark lows. But the reality is more complex than that.

The Complex Trauma Survivor Faces a Lifetime Worth of Bullying

bullying trauma

Complex trauma survivors face a dilemma that very few can fathom: they are forced to confront present-day stressors while attempting to resolve triggers from the past. These layers upon layers of trauma take courage, support, and time to unravel. The healing journey of a complex trauma survivor who has several sources of toxic stress is multifaceted. Their day to day reality is filled with tiny terrors embedded within larger cracks in the psychological war zone that is their psyche.

Does ‘Euphoria’ Get Addiction Right?

teens partying

What I remember most from growing up in the D.A.R.E. (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) generation was that those frightening school assembly testimonials were more than enough to motivate me to “say no” to drugs. As well-intentioned as the D.A.R.E. program was, it turns out their scare tactics, wealth of statistics, and refusal strategy for when someone is offered their first beer or joint didn’t work. Scientific American reported “no significant long-term improvement in teen substance abuse” in 30 subsequent evaluations after the first national study of D.A.R.E. was made public in 1994. Now, in stark contrast to the “just say no” mentality, the binge-watching contingent has been learning about the harrowing realities of addiction by watching Euphoria, a buzzy HBO show starring Gen Z icon Zendaya as Rue Bennett.

Diversity: Doing the Work

Diversity

The noble concepts of diversity and inclusion have been in play since the mid-1960s, as cultural, social, and educational constructs — and systemic racism inherent in them — were confronted during the Civil Rights movement. Decades later, movements like #MeToo and #BlackLivesMatter brought nationwide attention to social injustices too reprehensible and rampant to ignore. As the digital age revolutionized global communication, social media gave victims and advocates a worldwide stage for demonstration.

The Role of Family in Addiction Recovery

Family support

Addiction recovery can seem like a lonely process. Especially if you attend a residential program where you take time away from your life, it can easily feel like you’re alone on this difficult journey to get well. In reality, you probably have many family members and friends who are eager to support you in your recovery process.

Navigating COVID Burnout From Every Angle

COVID Burnout

Tired of hearing, talking, and thinking about COVID, mask-wearing, social distancing, virus testing, work-life balance, and lockdowns? Burned out on hearing about COVID burnout? Emotionally exhausted by the mention of emotional exhaustion? You’re not alone. As we round the corner on two years of the coronavirus, many of us feel ground down by the cumulative effect of all of the changes the pandemic and our response to it have wrought. And even the mentally healthy among us have struggled with the constant stream of bad news, followed by hopeful news, followed by still more bad news.

The New Workaholism

Workaholic

The nature of work has changed in recent years, but workaholism is still as prevalent as ever. Why is this the case? Advances in technology promised us the ability to work less; but now that we can work from anywhere — and more people are working from home — our devices have made it more difficult to “turn off” work. In fact, in the digital age, it may be easier to be a workaholic without even knowing it. This new era of work has its advantages as well as its challenges. That’s why it’s important to be aware of the symptoms of workaholism as we adjust to a world where the lines between home life and work life have blurred considerably.

You Can’t Buy Happiness, So Why Do We Keep Trying?

Swiping card

We’ve all heard it said that money can’t buy happiness, but are you sure? Our society, culture, and economy together push the idea of buying things to bolster our mood and self-esteem, a message we’re often bombarded with. You could argue that several industries actually owe their existence to this pursuit (luxury goods, anyone?). But beyond the immediate charge of the purchase, it appears that, no, buying more stuff doesn’t equal more happiness. So, why do we keep trying?