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Same Argument Over and Over? Could Automatic Responses be Causing It?

Why do you suppose Groundhog Day remains a popular movie, some 23 years after its release? I’d suggest it has to do with the recognition of how repetitive patterns and automatic responses can give any of us that sense of deja vu. Didn’t we have this argument already? Where have I heard that response before? Was it yesterday or last week that we said all of this, word for word? […]

By | July 6th, 2016|Relationships|0 Comments

Pet-C: Fall in Love Using Your Heart, Stay Together Using Your Brain

In popular culture, we’re raised on romantic comedies, love ballads, and the perpetual search for a soulmate. With our hearts on our sleeves, we rush forward into the kind of love we’ve come to feel we deserve. Yet, while 90 percent of those living in Western countries will eventually get married, many of them will not stay together. For example, the divorce rate in the U.S. ranges from 40 to 50 percent and spikes much higher for subsequent marriages.These statistics are not indicative of a some kind of love shortage. Love is abundant and often enduring. Compatibility, on the other hand, is and remains fluid.Unfortunately, there aren’t many movies or songs that delve into this crucial reality. When John Lennon sang, “love is the answer,” it’s a shame he didn’t include footnotes! If he were around today, the “smart Beatle” just might be crooning about Pragmatic Experiential Therapy (Pet-C). […]

By | May 6th, 2016|Neuroscience, Relationships|0 Comments

Boundary Basics

Most of us are familiar with the term “boundaries”. We may speak about people having “boundary issues” or “bad boundaries”, but what are they exactly? Boundaries refer to the degree of closeness and limits we have with other people, especially in families or intimate relationships. The term “boundary” is a metaphor to describe how and when we let people into our personal space, whether physically or psychologically. It refers to our ability to say “no” to unwanted requests, and to ask for the things we need or want. It also describes the quality of connection we have with others, and how intertwined our emotional and psychological well being is with theirs. We learn our boundary style from our family of origin and unconsciously continue the same pattern into our adult relationships, recreating the same amount of limits, connection, or distance with other people. Sometimes we overreact to our early boundary experiences and do the opposite of how we were raised! […]

By | January 28th, 2016|Relationships|0 Comments

Love People, Not Pleasure

This NY times article articulates much of what I've come recognize about the counterintuitive problem of pursuing pleasure as a way to avoid unhappiness. What do you think? [...]

By | February 25th, 2015|Relationships|0 Comments