Is storm Ophelia making you feel anxious ?

A lot of talk and exposure to a very unusual event in Ireland like #stormophelia can really create stress and anxiety for people. Because stress is accumulative, additional stress like this can tip you ‘off balance’. Sometimes it’s hard to understand why.

It is very normal to feel stress in such situations. It is the event that is unusual, not you.

Your stress or anxiety will be heightened if you are alone or if you are already dealing with some very difficult issues or if you have suffered with anxiety or depression in the past.

There are large elements of the unknown here and it is exactly that that is anxiety provoking. Not knowing what may happen and not being able to control what happens is a key aspect of anxiety and why you may feel rising levels of stress.

At this stage you have likely secured your home and heeded the warnings and advice. Stay home and only travel if absolutely necessary.

So what can you do to manage your anxiety.

Plan ahead, and have a contingency plan.

Stay busy, do jobs around the house

Reach out to friends and family if you are alone. Phone calls can be supportive too.

Stay informed but limit your exposure to TV and radio bulletins. Whats happening 2 people in Cork won’t change your situation in Dublin. Protect yourself from unnecessary personal accounts. They may upset you.

Focus on the positives- We have great emergency services who are fully prepared, skilled and kitted to help everyone.

Do not catastrophise or see the very worst in every situation.

 

If CHILDREN are scared and they can be

  • Be calm and supportive. Tell children that the storm won’t hurt them but may cause damage to buildings and trees so we prepare and protect ourselves.
  • Explain that storms are a normal part of nature.
  • Talk about it in a  matter of fact way.  Some kids may seem afraid of storms, but they’re  more often really interested in learning more about them, give them some facts.
  • They will look to you for cues on what’s ok, and how to respond, so if you can cope, they can cope.
  • Encourage children to face their fears by gradually helping them to learn they can handle a fear. here you are laying a good template for how to face other uncertainties of life on their own.
  • If the anxiety doesn’t diminish, or if it begins to create greater stress for the child or the parent, get the assistance of a mental health professional.

BREAKING UP IS HARD TO DO

http://www.newstalk.com/listen_back/81889/39637/11th_October_2017_-_The_Hard_Shoulder_Part_3/

BREAKING UP IS HARD TO DO

 

The song  ‘Breaking up is Hard to do  ‘written by Howard Greenfield / Neil Sedaka and so often sung by Carole King says it for everyone.

Don’t take your love away from me
Don’t you leave my heart in misery
‘Cause if you go, then I’ll be blue
Breakin’ up is hard to do

In reality all the big love songs are about, breaking up, losing love and trying to move on.

Adele – Someone like you … touched the hearts of a whole generation. Everyone can relate to the pain of breakups.

Breaking up is hard, difficult, painful and it leaves us blue. So a very big part of us never wants to experience it, but we must. Most people experience two or three breakups before they meet their long term partner.

JUST BECAUSE IT’S PAINFUL DOESN’T MEAN IT SHOULD BE AVOIDED.

Breaking up from a relationship that is not good for you, or that you feel deeply is no longer one in which you can grow and or be happy is a positive step.

Moving on to your next relationship is how you move closer to the relationship that is right for you.

If there is betrayal or something very obvious then maybe it’s clearer to you that you should break up but there are many more reasons why you may need to break up and those reasons can be nebulous and confusing but still important.

For example if the relationship just doesn’t feel right anymore. If you’re just not happy. If you just want different things- socially or in life in general

If you keep thinking about not being in the relationship and what life would be like or if you’re always fighting and arguing 

 Remember

LISTEN TO YOUR DEEP INSTINCT, TRUST IT, TAKE A DEEP BREATH AND DO IT.

  • BE AWARE OF THE ENDOWMENT EFFECTthe hypothesis that people ascribe more value to things merely because they own them. In the instance of relationships this can be expressed as over valuing what you have because you have it for a while as opposed to for any other reason.
  • SOFTENING THE BLOW DOESN’T REALLY HELP – BE STRAIGHT , BE HONEST, BE RESPECTFUL , THEN MAKE A CLEAN BREAK ( research Brigham Young University – bad news scenarios- shows that people like bad news given directly with no small talk build up)
  • YES YOU CAN BE SUPPORTIVE BUT ENCOURAGE THE PERSON TO USE THEIR OWN SUPPORTS
  • REMEMBER IT IS YOUR JOB TO MAKE GOOD DECISIONS FOR YOUR LIFE
  • THE ONE YOU BREAK WITH DESERVES TO BE WITH SOMEONE WHO FEELS THAT THEY ARE REALLY RIGHT FOR THEM – HANGING IN ON A BAD RELATIONSHIP PRECLUDES THEM FROM THAT
  • THE PERSON HAS DONE NOTHING WRONG- its not them , its not you, it’s the two of you, the combination, the dynamic
  • BE CLEAR – they did nothing wrong
  • DON’T GET INVOLVED IN THE BLAME GAME – the person will get angry at some point, that’s ok. but dont blame Nor accept blame .
  • DON’T TRY TO BE FRIENDS Its just confusing and prolongs the pain and delays recovery
  • Use ‘I’ statements, I find , I feel ….
  • CHOOSE THE RIGHT TIME – not when they are dealing with a crisis/ not in the middle of a row, not in front of other people, not by text, email or over the phone. ( some exceptions)
  • PREPARE THE PERSON – We need to talk

 

RECOVERING FROM THE BREAK AND MOVING ON 

 

  • AVOID TALKING TO YOUR EX. especially initially

 

  • EVEN IF YOU WERE THE INTIATOR OF THE BREAK YOU MAY STILL FEEL SAD AND UPSET- you may still feel the loss and kind of grief as the person is out of your daily life

 

  • TAKE SOME TIME OUT FOR YOURSELF –let your feelings unfold and de-complicate

 

  • BE WITH FRIENDS AND FAMILY –

 

  • CATCH UP- focus on catching up with people and projects and give yourself a little time to recover before entering another relationship.

 

  • SOCIALISE – but keep it light for a little while

 

COMPLICATIONS

 

THERE ARE HEALTHY AND UNHEALTHY RESPONSES TO A BREAK UP

REJECTION – some people are more sensitive to endings and may experience the break as a devastating rejection

BREAKUPS CAN ALSO TRIGGER DEEPER REACTIONS LIKE DEPRESSION –more likely if you have experienced depression before.

LOSS CAN FEEL AMPLIFIED BY OTHER PRESENT OR PREVIOUS LOSSES– the breakup may make you recall and re–experience other feelings of loss and or rejection.

YOU DEFINITELY SHOULD CONSIDER TALKING TO A PROFESSIONAL PSYCHOTHERAPIST OR YOUR GP IF YOU FEEL OVERWHELMING FEELINGS OF LOSS, SADNESS, EMPTINESS AND OR IF YOU CANNOT SLEEP FOR MORE THAN 3 NIGHTS

SUPPORT MAKES ALL THE DIFFERENCE. REACH OUT FOR IT.

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Age Differences in Relationships- Is it changing? Does it matter?

I enjoyed talking this week about age difference in relationships with Ivan Yates.

If you’d like a listen it’s here.http://www.newstalk.com/listen_back/81889/39469/04th_October_2017_-_The_Hard_Shoulder_Part_3/

 

THE AGE DIFFERENCE IN RELATIONSHIPS is always an important factor, but it’s changing.

The provider concept has changed utterly and financial independence and equality of the sexes brings some new phenomena into relationships with women sometimes being the older party.

WHAT IS CHANGING ? OR IS IT JUST A LOT OF TALK ABOUT NOTHING.

DOES AGE DIFFERENCE REALLY MATTER IN RELATIONSHIPS

WHY AND WHAT ARE THE ISSUES

 ATTRACTION FOR MARRIAGE USED TO BE BASED ON SECURITY , STATUS , POSITION AND WEALTH.

NOW – EQUALITY ALLOWS OTHER ATTRACTION FACTORS TO PLAY OUT FULLY .

———————————————————————————————-

SOME STATS

33% OF ALL COUPLES HAVE AN AGE DIFFERENCE OF LESS THAN 3 YEARS

& THE TREND TO MARRY YOUNGER MEN IS RISING.

IN 2013 UK AND WALES STUDY SHOWED THAT WOMEN MARRYING YOUNGER MEN ROSE FROM 15% IN 1963 TO 26% IN 1996

AND ONLY 6% WHERE  THE MALE IS THE YOUNGER PARTY

MEN PREFER WOMEN 2.7 YEARS YOUNGER THAN THEM ON AVERAGE

WOMEN PREFER ME WHO ARE SAME AGE AS THEM OR OLDER BY 3.4 YEARS

———————————————————————————————-

MACRON (39) AND BRIGGITTE (64)  DISPARITY OF 25 YEARS

 AND THE CHERYL COLE 33 & Liam Payne  23 – 10 year gap

Well the stats show that it is still a fairly small number with figures like

0.3 of couples  where the wife is 20 yrs older

1% “                where the husband is 20 yrs older.

4.8% WHERE THE HUSBAND IS 10-14 YRS OLDER

1 % WHERE THE WIFE IS 10- 14  YEARS OLDER

SO IT’S NOT COMMON BUT THE HIGH PROFILE NATURE OF THESE RELATIONSHIPS MAKES US THINK ABOUT THE DYNAMICS AND IF IT WILL WORK OUR WELL OR NOT AND IF NOT WHY NOT

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Although the “cougar” theme, in which older women date much younger men, is often portrayed in the media as a widespread and established facet of modern Western culture, the reality remains that it is a very rare occurrence

CROSS CULTURAL STUDY IN 2013 UK AND WALES SHOW IRREFUTABLY THAT 

men preferred younger, physically attractive women, while most women, of any age, preferred successful, established men their age or older.

The study found very few instances of older women pursuing much younger men and vice versa.

BREAK UPS AND AGE DIFFERENCE

New research shows that relationship with no gap are far less likely to break up  than those  with a wider age differential

5 years are 18% more likely to break that those with no gap ,

10 years the rel is 39% more likely to break when compared to no age gap.

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RELATIONSHIP ISSUES AND AGE DISPARITY

  • MATURITY – ESPECIALLY IMPORTANT  IF MAN IS YOUNGER, WOMEN MATURE EARLIER.
  • OPINION GAPS – DIFFICULTIES UNDERSTANDING EACH OTHERS PERSPECTIVES
  • NOT SEEING LIFE FROM THE SIMILAR LENS
  • PLAN DIFFERENTLY FOR LIFE , CHILDREN
  • SOCIAL GAPS – NOT ENJOYING THE SAME THINGS
  • PHYSICAL SLOW DOWN AND SEXUAL DIFFERENCE.

 

 

 

 

DISASTROUS RELATIONSHIPS DO YOU KNOW HOW TO AVOID THEM ?

ARE YOU LOOKING FOR LOVE BUT KEEP FINDING YOURSELF AT THE END OF ANOTHER DISASTROUS RELATIONSHIP? DISASTROUS RELATIONSHIPS DON’T JUST HAPPEN  -YOU PLAY A PART IN MAKING THEM HAPPEN

IT ALL STARTED LOVELY BUT THEN…IS THIS YOUR STORY?

DISASTROUS RELATIONSHIPS ARE DESTINED TO END

  • THOSE THAT ARE DESTINED NEVER TO MEET YOUR NEEDS
  • THOSE THAT WILL NEVER BE WHAT YOU HOPED FOR

I RAISE THIS ISSUE BECAUSE LOTS OF PEOPLE COME TO THERAPY BECAUSE THEY FEEL THEY ARE STUCK

CHOOSING THE WRONG PEOPLE, THE UNAVAILABLE, THE COMMITMENT AVERSE AND NOT KNOWING WHAT IS GOING WRONG

IS IT JUST BAD LUCK?

THEY DON’T JUST HAPPEN,

  • YOU PLAY A PART
  • YOU DO THE SELECTION
  • YOU ACCEPT THE CONDITIONS OF A RELATIONSHIP
  • YOU LET IT PROGRESS . WHEN MAYBE IT SHOULD BE OVER

YOU CAN AVOID THESE ERRORS -KNOW THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN

  • DATING FOR FUN
  • FOR SOCIAL AND SEXUAL
  • WITH A VIEW TO A RELATIONSHIP WITH THE POTENTIAL FOR LONG TERM LOVE AND HAPPINESS

UNDERSTAND THAT DATING IS A LEARNING CURVE,AN EVALUATION PROCESS

  • LEARNING WHAT YOU LIKE
  • WHAT FEELS GOOD AND POSITIVE
  • WHAT FEELS RIGHT FOR YOU
  • WHAT MAKES YOU HAPPY IN A RELATIONSHIP

YOU MUST

TUNE IN TO HOW YOU FEEL IN THE COMPANY OF THAT PERSON

  • YOU MUST NOT TRY TO SEE EVERYTHING IN THE POSITIVE , ROSY, ‘MAKE IT WORK’ AT ALL COST KIND OF WAY
  • MUST LISTEN TO EARLY SIGNS AND INDICATORS OF BEHAVIORS THAT MAKE YOU FEEL UNCOMFORTABLE AND STRESSED.
  • DON’T TRY TO PLEASE THE OTHER TRY TO PLEASE YOURSELF , DON’T TRY TO OVER ACCOMMODATE OR OVER COMPROMISE IT OBSCURES THE TRUTH

PSYCHOLOGY BITS

  • BEING YOU AND KNOWING WHO YOU ARE AND WHAT IS IMPORTANT TO YOU IS A CLEAR ADVANTAGE IN SELECTING WELL AT THE OUTSET.
  • KNOW THAT ATTRACTION IS DRIVEN SOMETIMES BY THE PHYSICAL
  • SOMETIMES ATTRACTION IS DRIVEN BY THE UNCONSCIOUS
  • ARE YOU ATTRACTED TO THE NEEDY ONE, THE SULLEN ONE , THE DRINKER, THE FLIRT, WHAT IS GOING ON.- REPETITION COMPULSION, YOU KEEP RETURNING TO WHAT IS FAMILIAR
  • DRIVE TO GIVE WHAT YOU DO NOT HAVE- THE UNCONSCIOUS DEAL
  • DRIVE TO SETTLE DOWN BECAUSE EVERYONE IS, AGE , HORMONES , SOCIETAL PRESSURES

 SOME FLASHING AMBER WARNING SIGNS 

THE OVERLY ATTENTIVE – FLATTERING AND SEDUCTIVE BUT MAY MASK INSECURITY, POSSESSIVENESS  OR JEALOUSY

  • DOESN’T LIKE YOUR FRIENDS OR FAMILY – CAREFUL OF ANYONE WHO IS TOO CRITICAL OF YOUR FAMILY AND FRIENDS , THEY ARE YOURS AND YOUR SUPPORT
  • CAREFUL OF THE PERSON WHO IS HARSH, CRITICAL AND JUDGEMENTAL OF OTHERS BECAUSE SOMEDAY THIS THINKING WILL TURN TOWARD YOU.
  • LISTEN TO FAMILY AND FRIENDS , THEY CAN SOMETIMES SEE WHAT YOU ARE BLIND TO, IF THEY ALL EXPRESS SIMILAR THINGS – THEY MAY BE RIGHT

NOTICE

IN COUPLE  THERAPY WHEN WE LAY BARE THE ISSUES AND IT IS CLEAR SOME OF THE ITEMS THAT ARE NOW REAL ISSUES , INEVITABLY THE PERSON SAYS I SAW THIS AT THE BEGINNING BUT I THOUGHT HE OR SHE WOULD CHANGE .  

THEY WONT CHANGE!

IF YOU WANT TO AVOID DISASTER,

 EXAMINE YOUR LAST RELATIONSHIP, 

LEARN WHAT EXACTLY WENT WRONG AND WHY AND WHAT PART YOU PLAYED,  WHAT WARNING SIGN DID YOU IGNORE

REMEMBER DATING IS AN EVALUATION PROCESS

 

 

 

 

http://http://www.newstalk.com/listen_back/81889/39301/27th_September_2017_-_The_Hard_Shoulder_Part_3/

Taking a break from a relationship that is in trouble can benefit the relationship. Discussed this with Ivan on Newstalk.

This idea arises from the core proposition in Marian Keyes  new book ‘ The Break’ . It’s not that I’m saying everyone should take a break, but I am saying that it can have some benefits if your relationship is heading for trouble.

It can help each party to reflect on what they have in the relationship, why this person is important to you and why you value them in your life. In a relationship or marriage we can forget those things, forget what is lovely and what you would miss.

Have a listen , go to 2nd quarter…

http://http://www.newstalk.com/listen_back/81889/39133/20th_September_2017_-_The_Hard_Shoulder_Part_3/

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