I have been trying for the last several months to get better at using social media. I have to say that I have learned a great deal com-pared to what I knew before, but there is still so much to learn and I’m having a harder time than I wish I were, although the victories feel tremendous.
I have a social media instructor named Jennifer. She is only 30 and she does social media for a living and knows all of this. She is a very patient person and is very enthu-siastic when I master something. Not only do I have to master it, but remember it, and part of my difficulty lies in there being so many key strokes to each activity. I feel like the idea is to develop the intuitions enough to be able to do things not by remembering each stroke, but by having a close enough idea to use the menus.
The holidays are stressful for many, if not most people. It is my busiest time, and I’m sure a lot of therapists would say the same. When people have issues of shame and perfectionism, and the other issues that go with them, they have some extra stresses that can maybe be avoided. Perfectionists have good intentions, and this can inadvertently make them exhausted and feeling very badly when dealing with holidays.
A lot of well-meaning people often say to psychologists that we deal with “depressing things” and are always concerned with emotional pain. A lot of people think that talking or writing about painful topics is somehow “negative,” and I would like to address this issue, as well as the “upbeat” part of the psychotherapist’s work.
In all fairness, anyone concerned with healing is concerned with the disease process in the physical realm, and emotional pain in the psychological. (This article does not address the mind-body-spirit connection, which is also very important.) It is very hard to change or to facilitate the healing process without addressing the issues. As a professor of mine once said, “No one goes to a psychologist to say that life has been great, or because they just wanted to be nice to psychologists.” This is true. People come in because they are experiencing pretty extreme emotional unease. Those who have had therapy come in recognizing that they have done some of the work and want to do more.
Aleta Edwards, Psy.D.
I am a psychotherapist in private practice, with a strong interest in shame and perfectionism. I will periodically post my thoughts about these topics and other observations relating to emotional health.