Hello darkness, my old friend...

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This morning I did a search on my bible app for the word “despair.” The first verse that popped up was from Psalm 88. I slowly read through the verses… yes, wow, that’s most definitely despair. Thank you, Heman (the psalm’s author) for laying it out so… um, darkly. Not only is the psalm incredibly sad and depressing, but it also has NO HAPPY ENDING. 

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Shame & Narrative Therapy

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Humans are the only creatures who tell stories about our lives. We are made in God’s image, and a significant component of God’s character is acting, and then judging those actions.  When God created each part of our world, He acted (created) and then judged his actions “it was good” (see Genesis 1). He told a story about His life works.

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Shame- the Enemy of Our Souls

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Shame is best described as “an internal state of inadequacy, unworthiness, dishonor, regret, or disconnection” (read more about shame at Psychology.com). Shame is global self-judgement- or as a child might state it- “I am bad.” 

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I Am Unusually Fond of You

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After a delightful spring break, I am now amping up for my third term of teaching Psychology at our local community college. I have noticed something about many of my students. They are incredibly hard on themselves. And I am unusually fond of them.

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The Amatorium: Magical Grace Refueling Station

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This February, I have been absorbing messages of “law” like there’s no tomorrow. By law, I mean- anything that defines and measures good. I am one of those super sensitive persons that finds the law everywhere. The law is my natural habitat. If I was a homing pigeon, I could find my way back to the law with both eyes closed in an Oregon snow storm.

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Merry Grace-mas

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The birth of Jesus was the beginning of the end  for religion. The story starts with a helpless infant born in humble circumstances to a pair of nobodies. And it ended with a spirit/man ascending to heaven, His final words echoing throughout all of Creation "... you will receive power..." 

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Our Smudged Johari Window

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Everybody has a blind spot. In psychology, this is called a section of the Johari window (named after its inventors Joseph and Harrington). It's the stuff others know about you that you don't know about yourself. I cringe in horror at the thought of what people see through my Johari window... people with social anxiety spend so much time *hiding*. It's a worthless pursuit, because we are generally seen anyway. I have a hazy idea of what my blind spot might include... overprotectiveness as a mother, selfishness, being judgmental, etc.  But obviously I don't see the ramifications of my blindness clearly, because- yeah, it's a blind spot.

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A photo of me as a sensitive baby, five beautiful generations of anxious women

Parenting Socially Anxious Children

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So here's the thing about parenting: nobody says it, but deep down I think we get it. WE DON’T KNOW WHAT WE ARE DOING.  I mean, think about it. Virtually every step of parenting comes with absolutely no previous experience. 

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Five Tips for Coping with Criticism

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This recently happened to me. A good bit of criticism. I actually paid people to do it, but still. :) I entered my book in the Published Nonfiction category in the 2017 Oregon Christian Writer's awards contest. "Humble brag" alert: It is now one of three finalists!  Good news, amazing, how does that happen?

Of course, that's not what I'm choosing to focus on. I'd rather dwell on the critique sheets I received from the judges. You know... criticism.  I specifically signed up to be judged, spending the money to send copies of my book to judges for that very reason. Yet, how dare they! :)  The following five tips aided my criticism recovery time tremendously. I hope they help you too.

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