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Our Mental Health Blogs

Honoring Ourselves By Honoring Our Feelings

Honoring Ourselves By Honoring Our Feelings

Few things bother me more than having my feelings invalidated or dismissed. Especially after I’ve done the work of opening up to talk about something that I previously thought too difficult to discuss. While I don’t expect the people in my life to necessarily agree with how I feel, I do expect that when I talk with them about my feelings, they honor them by listening and acknowledging that they at least exist.

When talking to others about how we feel (especially those of us who live with anxiety and/or other stress related issues), there may be well-meaning people reassuring us that our anxiety is “ridiculous” or “all in your head”. They may even encourage us to “snap out” of our depression or “calm down” when expressing our anger or frustration about something.

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Out at Work: LGBT Mental Health in the Workplace

Out at Work: LGBT Mental Health in the Workplace

Common wisdom and social research both tell us that accepting who we are and being open about our sexual identity brings mental health benefits, despite the negative consequences we may experience for doing so. Many of us who have come out LGBT know that coming out as a sexual minority is risky and the consequences are real, particularly in the workplace. We also know that coming out is not a one time thing. It is a never ending process of interacting with others while trying to remain as true to ourselves as possible. Whether it is correcting co-workers who assume the ring on my finger means I have a husband, or telling my boss the woman in the picture frame isn’t my sister, we are always making a moment by moment decision about disclosing who we are.

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Self-Acceptance is The Way to Grow

Self-Acceptance is The Way to Grow

This time of year, everyone but me seems to be in the “New Year, New Me” spirit. Sure, the phrase is catchy enough; but I like who I am just fine and I have no interest in continuously obsessing about my weaknesses, failures and limitations. For me, self-acceptance is the way to grow.

On the surface, I don’t see anything wrong with having the desire to grow and improve yourself. And I know that the desire to be a better you doesn’t necessarily mean that you don’t like who you are at the moment. But for those of us struggling with self-acceptance, “self-improvement” can become just another hammer to beat ourselves over the head with.

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