Columns

 

The Psychology of being Sick

Posted by Michael Dale Kimmel in Columns

Does this sound familiar? You don’t feel well. Sure enough you’ve got a cold/the flu and your body feels like crap. You’re sick. Your mental state begins to suffer too. You grow increasingly pessimistic, wonder if you’ll ever get over this “thing”, start to watch…

Practical Spirituality

Posted by Michael Dale Kimmel in Columns

I don’t consider myself religious, but I do consider myself to be on a spiritual path. I want a kind of spirituality that is practical: something I can use every day to enjoy my life more. Spirituality can exist within the context of religion or…

The Best Gift of All

Posted by Michael Dale Kimmel in Columns

Fatigued from an overload of shopping, spending, and travel? You’re not alone. Most people describe this time of year – Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza, New Year’s Eve and other celebrated holidays – as stressful instead of enjoyable.  A 2016 telephone survey conducted by the American Psychological…

Psychological Santa to the Rescue!

Posted by Michael Dale Kimmel in Columns

For lots of people, December is the month from hell: this time of year often brings crazy-scary sets of expectations and dread. We are bombarded with media images encouraging us to buy stuff and to be happy…and if we don’t, we’re failures. This is a…

Panic Attacks, PTSD and Me

Posted by Michael Dale Kimmel in Columns

When clients ask me, “Why did you become a therapist?”, my usual response is: “If you knew my childhood history, you’d understand.” According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in five Americans has been sexually molested as a child; one in four…

Talking with the Enemy

Posted by Michael Dale Kimmel in Columns

I was hiking with a friend at Torrey Pines and we stopped to take in the view. A fellow hiker stopped near us and a pleasant conversation began. It was going smoothly until this person said how right Trump was to get rid of Obamacare….

Whose life are you living?

Posted by Michael Dale Kimmel in Columns

The longer I work as a psychotherapist, the more amazed I am at how we all – myself included – keep doing things that make us unhappy. Call it a pattern or a habit, whatever you call it, we keep repeating behaviors and thoughts that…

The Tao of Travel   

Posted by Michael Dale Kimmel in Columns

For seven years I read the book “365 Tao” and did the daily meditations. Taoism – an ancient Eastern philosophy – emphasizes compassion, spontaneity and harmony with nature. It says “go with the flow” and don’t be attached to things happening in a certain way….

The new PTSD: President Trump Stress Disorder

Posted by Michael Dale Kimmel in Columns

Traditionally, PTSD has stood for “post traumatic stress disorder”. It describes how we may have to tough it out to get through something traumatic (war, rape, bodily harm) and then, when it’s over, we typically “collapse” into a big, ole mess. In this after-the-trauma-is-over phase,…