Blog — Expectations

Happy New Year! How to Make this a Great Year (Without the Pressure)

The way to make this a great year is to not expect it to be the best year ever.

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Making Expectations Work for You

You can’t always get what you want—The Rolling Stones

Why is it that this most basic of human truths, which we are exposed to from day one of our lives, is the hardest to grasp? Like trying to put a square peg in a round hole, it just doesn't seem to fit. If we can work some flexibility into our expectations, we may just find that the second most basic human truth, namely, that we usually get what we need, is always there for us at the ready. Let's see how.

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How to Prevent Disappointment: 6 Strategies for Getting What You Need

I want it! I need it! I have to have it! If I don't, I'm gonna... If you want to prevent disappointment, add some give and flexibility in your expectations. This piece that I wrote for Huffington Post tells you how.

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8 Strategies to Complain Your Way Into a Happier Relationship

Could a toilet seat lid start a revolution or a romance in a marriage? Both are possible. The choice is yours. Learning how to work together in a relationship will take you where you want to go. Sometimes you've got to complain that the lid is up, if you want it down, but there are "best practices" in complaining which will help the work, work. Here's a piece I wrote for Huffington Post that takes your relationship beyond toilet seat lids, toothpaste tube squeezing practices and beds (made or unmade)--  to the real deal: honoring and respecting  each other's preferences.

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Mastering Transitions: Trust That You'll Adjust to the Changes In Your Life

Change is the one constant in life, and yet, when we face it, we feel totally unprepared and want to run the other way. Why is that and what can we do about it (especially considering that changes-- even the ones that aren't so good-- tend to turn out pretty well in the end)? Here's a piece I wrote on Huffington Post about mastering transitions, the bottom line:: trust that you'll adjust, it will help the adjustment happen faster.

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Freeing Your Heart from Anxiety: How to Not Bring Worry on Your Next Date

eharmony-datingDating is like job interviewing for love. No it's not at all like that, but that's how anxiety might tell the story. So much anticipation, so many unknowns, so many what if's. It's not just this date that feels like it's on the line, it feels like our very ability to be loved is what's at stake. In this Q and A I did with eHarmony.com, you'll find many ideas for preventing anxiety on a date by leaving the worry at home.

Read the full interview and share with anyone who might benefit from reading it, too!

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How to Overcome Fear of Change at Work (Forbes)

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Are you afraid of change? Aren't we all? 1 in 5 Americans will be looking for a new job in 2013. If you are one of them, or you know someone who is, check out this article by Jacquelyn Smith on Forbes.com. I had the pleasure of speaking with her about how we can summon the courage to rise to the occasion when it's time to change jobs. Remember that today's change is tomorrow's old news. It's just a matter of time.

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Embracing the Power of Imperfection in Your Relationship

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Happy Valentine's Day. Yes, this is a day dedicated to love and connection, but if you're not exactly feeling it, don't worry! Maybe you and your partner got off on the wrong foot this morning and you're thinking-- "What's wrong with us, we're supposed to be happy, it's Valentine's Day!"  It's time for a re-think. If we don't fear the glitches and bumps in the road in our relationships, we may find that they are the very pathways to a deeper connection. Here's how.

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How to Overcome Anxiety About Changing Jobs

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Jobs can be stressful, and changing jobs can be even more so. A recent survey found that 1 in 5 adults will change jobs this year-- but none of us like change, even change that we may choose. I had the opportunity to speak recently with Lisa Davis on It's Your Health Network about what to do to maximize the benefits of change and minimize the pain.  You can listen to the interview by clicking here and scrolling down to Dr. Tamar Chansky: 

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How to Mange College Admissions Stress

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No one is immune from the stress of the college admissions process-- one that for some kids (and parents) feels like it really started somehow back in elementary school. Is your child's future dependent on what comes in the mail? Is there really life beyond the thin envelope? At the moment of impact, the answer is no. But after the brief flatline, when it feels like the horizon of your child's future has dropped out of sight for both you and your child, there is a resounding -- yes. In this article, parents and teachers can learn how to help kids to put this moment in perspective and see that no matter what happens come April 15th, they have their whole life ahead of them. Click here to read this article on Huffington Post.

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Surviving College Rejection Letters: What To Do When A School Says No

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Following up on my recent blog post on handling college admission stress, Here is a piece I wrote last year about college rejection letters. So many parents wrote in after I published it telling me how grateful they were to have some guidance on this topic, because they were really struggling too. It's a statistical fact of life: rejection letters will happen. But it's what happens after the rejection that matters most. Here are tips for parents and students to stay on track and not get derailed by misinterpreting the meaning when a college says no.

 


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Kids and Sports: 8 Strategies to Take Charge of Disappointment and Stay in the Game

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Is your child an anxious athlete? Did you sign your child up for a sports team thinking what a good experience it would be, only to find... it's not. If you have a child whose stomach is in knots before a practice or a game, or who is miserable and so hard on him or herself when things don't go perfectly-- don't give up and don't let your child give up either! Check out this article I wrote about how to teach your child to become a resilient athlete.  It's not about lowering the standards, it's about lowering the stakes. 

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April is Stress Awareness Month: Six Steps to Have Less Stress

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Are you feeling stressed? Do things feel out of your control? Know that you are in good company, and more importantly, you are in a very good position to make a difference in your life and sense of well-being. It's not the stress, it's what you do with it, and there's a lot you can do! Check out this piece I wrote for Stress Awareness Month.  

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Overcoming Retirement Anxiety

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Retirement. Many of us fear that we'll never get there, others of us who are getting close to the magic 65, well, we're worried too! Is retirement so different from everything else in life that we have no idea how to manage it? Or, can the coping skills that have gotten us this far help us with this transition too? Short answer: we are more prepared than we think. 


Click here to check out this guest blog post I wrote on Forbes.com about beating the retirement blues.

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How to Not Let Anxiety Fake or Freak You Out: Dr. Chansky's Talk at Drexel

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How many times have we "what if'd" ourselves out of taking risks, only to find after the fact that our worst fears weren't even in the ballpark of what actually happened? How many times have we sort of known that all along, but can't seem to turn off the anxiety alarm in our heads? In a recent talk I gave at Drexel University as part of their Mental Health Awareness Week, invited by the student-run group, Active Minds, I spoke about how to not let your amygdala (the emergency control center of the brain) ruin your day or your plans-- or your life!  Click here to read highlights of that talk from this excellent summary in the Drexel On-line Newspaper, The Triangle. 

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How to Apologize: Overcoming the Fear of Saying Your Sorry

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I've been thinking about apologies lately and it reminded me of a blog post I wrote about a year ago on that very topic. How is it that apologizing-- the very thing that repairs relationships—the closest thing to a relationship magic wand that we've got— is so hard for us to do? One key is to shift the mindset and remember that though an apology is something that we give to another person, it is also something that we give to ourselves. We unburden ourselves, and can ground ourselves in the understanding that we don't have to hide our mistakes or imperfections, that it is through our vulnerability that we connect and connect most strongly. Another key is to remember that you are apologizing for what you did, not for who you are. And then of course it's helpful to keep in mind that people are generally very grateful and appreciative when we do apologize. So basically, apologies are a relationship win-win. Check out the blog post and happy, healthy apologizing! Click here to read the post.

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A Solution for Bored Children: The Common Good List

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Too much time, too little to do-- this is the often the problem of summertime with kids. Can weeding, washing dishes or taking out the trash help your child do better at school and better in life? Yes. Here is a piece I wrote about getting kids and families to work together for the common good. 

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Holidays 2013: Finding Meaning In What We Already Have

Zen Christmas

Holiday stress is upon us. Wanting to create perfect holiday experiences and memories, we rush around making sure everything is just right. Maybe the real secret to meaningful holidays is right under our noses. Check out this story that a friend told me that made me say-- aha and thankfully rescued me from the holiday-frenzy.

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Teaching Children to Succeed in Sports by Managing Their Mindset

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As an anxiety therapist who works with kids with perfectionism, especially around sports, I always appreciate when the Olympics come around. By watching these unparalleled feats of human agility, grace, strength and beauty and also seeing that things don't always go as planned, children can learn that excellence isn't the same as perfection and that true mastery can often be measured (in gold!) by how quickly one bounces back from disappointment and mis-steps. You'll learn in this blog post strategies to teach kids how to increase their mental agility in sports-- just like the pros.

 

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How to Handle a Personal Crisis at Work

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Divorce, health problems, taking care of sick children, taking care of sick parents-- none of us are immune from these challenges which can impact every aspect of our day to day life. It's hard enough to handle the stress of a personal crisis itself, but how do we do so in the context of our jobs when people are depending on us? I had the pleasure of talking with Business Insider journalist, Jacquelyn Smith, about how to manage a crisis in the work context in a way that minimizes, as much as possible, our own stress as well as that of our colleagues.

 

 

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