Tag Archives: intuitive counseling

An Adult’s Guide to Social Skills, for Those Who Were Never Taught

This is the most important thing a person an learn in their lifetime, and if you were never taught, you can learn it. Mastering this will make your life much better – in every possible way. If you struggle financially, or with loneliness, this could be part of it.

“It’s a shame so few of us are taught the basics of how to interact constructively with each other. If you never were, we’re here to help.

Learning social skills can be difficult if you weren’t exposed to traditional group dynamics as a child, if you struggle with a mental illness like anxiety or depression, or even if you just didn’t have a lot of positive role models when you were growing up. Young people tend to learn how to manage their own emotions, recognize those of other people and manage them both effectively by socializing. If these weren’t skills you developed growing up, don’t worry. You’re not alone.

Before we get to specific social situations, we should discuss the concept of emotional intelligence (or E.I.). Put very simply, E.I. is your ability to acknowledge your own emotions, recognize emotions in others and use that information to guide your behavior. This is a relatively new area of study in the field of psychology, and developing your own E.I. can help you understand and improve your social interactions.

There are several models of emotional intelligence, but for our purposes, we’ll look at the author Daniel Goleman. He outlines five general categories of E.I. that complement and support one another.

  • Self-awareness: This simply means being able to identify your own emotions and how they work. Are you anxious in loud environments? Do you get angry when people talk over you? If you know these things about yourself, then you’re practicing self-awareness. This can be more difficult than it sounds, but simply being aware of yourself is all it takes for this step.
  • Self-regulation: Taking it a step further, self-regulation deals with your ability not just to know your emotions, but manage them. Sometimes that might mean handling them as they come up. If you get angry, knowing how to calm yourself down is important. However, it can also deal with managing the emotions you will face. If you know that stalking your ex’s Facebook is just going to make you feel bad, self-regulation would help you go do something to better your own life instead.
  • Motivation: External factors like money, status, or pain are powerful motivators. But in Goleman’s model, internal motivation is a key component. This means that you know how to manage your own motivation and create or continue projects because you choose to, not because something outside yourself demands it.
  • Empathy: It’s just as important to be aware of the emotions of others. This might mean developing the skills to recognize how people are expressing themselves — can you tell the difference between someone who’s comfortable versus someone who’s anxious? — but it also means understanding how other people may respond to the circumstances they’re in.
  • Socialization: This area deals with your ability to steer your relationships and navigate social situations. It doesn’t mean controlling others, but understanding how to get where you want to be with other people. That might mean conveying your ideas to co-workers, managing a team, or dealing with a conflict in a relationship.

Every social situation is different and there isn’t always a “correct” way to handle any of them. However, when viewed through the lens of these core competencies, most social situations become a lot more manageable. We’ll go over some common scenarios even adults might struggle with, but keep in mind how these principles can apply in all situations.

Confronting someone when you have a problem with that person can be scary. If you’re the type to avoid conflict, you might rationalize it away by saying you want to keep the peace, or you don’t want to upset anyone. However, this can be a way of avoiding your own feelings. If there wasn’t something bothering you, there would be nothing to confront anyone about.

Dr. Ryan Howes, a clinical psychologist, explained to Psychology Today that it’s our own fears that keep us from confronting others. Our fear that we’ll lose something we have, that we’ll hurt someone we care about, or that it will hurt but accomplish nothing. One of the first steps to constructively confronting someone is to recognize that fear in yourself and identify the real issues that led to the conflict in the first place. If you’re annoyed that your partner forgot your birthday, for example, ignoring how you feel about it won’t resolve the conflict.

Once you’re ready, Gregg Walker, a professor at Oregon State University, recommends having the conversation when there’s time to discuss the issue, focusing on “I” statements like “I feel hurt that we didn’t do anything for my birthday,” and describing behavior and your reaction to it, rather than hurling accusations. Healthy confrontations require a fair amount of awareness of your own emotions, so this is a good time to practice that skill.

Whether it’s a meeting or a party, any time you get more than a couple of people together in a group, it can become difficult (if not impossible) to get a word in edgewise. While most tricks on how to combat this involve managing how you talk — pausing in the middle of a sentence rather than the end, or finishing your sentence even if someone tries to interrupt — an often overlooked issue is managing how you react to being talked over.

It would be great if everyone was polite and let you finish or paused to ask what you’re thinking. This doesn’t always happen. If someone interrupts you and you become annoyed, that can kill your motivation to speak up again. Or you might become visibly agitated and demand to be heard, which can be off putting and make people less likely to want to listen to what you have to say.

Instead, Chris Macleod, counselor and author of “The Social Skills Guidebook,” suggests accepting that group conversations are a “vortex of noise and chaos” and going with the flow. Don’t spend all your time trying to fit in that one thing you badly wanted to say. Instead, go with the flow of the conversation and look for new opportunities to jump in. When you do, speak loudly and with confidence. More practical tricks like keeping your stories short or framing a complaint as a story can smooth over the experience, but regulating your own frustration and annoyance is the foundation these tricks build on.

When you’re young, making friends can be relatively easy. School often means that there’s a group of people you’re required to hang out with who are your age. You may share some interests, and you’ll see one another almost every day. As an adult, it can be harder. Everyone’s busy, everyone’s tired, and time feels in short supply. Or so it seems. What really may be lacking is motivation.

As Vox explains, one of the most important keys to developing a new friendship is, well, showing up. You both say, “We should hang out sometime!” but for some reason you never do. Why? Sure, you have things going on, but you still managed to binge watch the latest “Stranger Things.” There’s nothing wrong with a little “me” time, but it’s also O.K. to spend some of it reaching out to someone new.

When making new friends, you have to start with some internal motivation. Decide for yourself that you’re going to make friends and then put yourself in situations where that can happen. Take a class, join a club, or just talk to people you know but aren’t friends with yet. More important, follow up. If you find someone you want to be friends with — and especially if there are indications that person wants to be friends with you, too — put it on the very top of your to-do list to follow up. You’ll be surprised how easy it is when you do it on purpose.

Talking to a stranger for the first time — whether it’s at a party, a work event, or just on the street — can be complicated. You never know less about someone than when you first meet them. That’s also something you can use to your advantage. People like to talk about themselves. So much so that, according to research from Harvard University, people will sometimes even give up money to be able to talk about themselves.

You might feel awkward or uncomfortable when you’re out on your own, but practicing a little empathy can reveal a powerful truth: So does everyone else. Research from the University of Chicago found that less than 47 percent of its participants believed a stranger would be willing to talk with them. In reality, every attempt was successful. Most of us are willing to have a conversation, we just don’t always want to be the one to make the first move.

However, not everyone is open to a conversation with strangers all the time. An easy way to check is to pay attention to what they’re doing at the time. Are they wearing headphones? Do they seem in a hurry? Are they at their job and only making conversation as part of their duties? If so, you might try again later (or with someone else). If they’re not busy, start by saying hello or opening with a compliment. From there you can keep the conversation going with the “insight and question” method. Simply offer an observation or insight, follow it up with a question, and let the conversation flow naturally.

These are far from the only social situations you might find yourself struggling with, but the principles that can be applied are nearly universal. Acknowledge your own emotional state and manage your needs and feelings in a constructive way. Take the initiative to pursue the social outcomes you want, and empathize with others who are dealing with the same struggles you are. With practice, the rest of the complex nuances of social interaction will flow a lot more naturally.

Loneliness during the Holidays

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Gertrude Abercrombie’s “The Stroll” (1943). Credit Credit Oil on fiberboard, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of the Gertrude Abercrombie Trust

Loneliness is a worthy foe, and with the rise of social media, most of us are suffering from it in some form – especially this time of year. It’s easy to feel isolated in tense family situations or even parties.

Striving for connection along with a healthy dose of self-care will get you through the season.”

So how do we cope? I’m glad I ran across this article today. It has some fantastic actions we can take to combat loneliness, especially this time of year. Along with the list from the article, I would add these things:

Encourage Friendships

Having a social life and human connection is important for us to thrive in our lives. A lot of people are shy about reaching out, or inviting people to do things. Do It!! Same sex friendships are particularly important in my opinion. If you have trouble meeting people then volunteer for something you care about…. and/or get a pet.

Having Pets

Animals are awesome. If you don’t, or can’t,  have one, volunteering at the local shelter is a great way to interact cats and dogs, and to be of service at the same time!

Go to a Gym

It took me awhile to build up to it, but now I go three times a week. Working out keeps my blood moving and my endorphins running. I think more clearly, and I’m able to make better decisions. And I have more energy. Exercise is the best thing for everyone.

Limit Alcohol

I’m personally sober since 2005, but if I wasn’t I would severely limit alcohol and stay away from drugs. In my experience these things end up making loneliness much worse.

Limit Sugar

This time of year is next-to-impossible to eat right, but I SO stay away from eating sugar. It keeps my blood sugar steady throughout that day so there’s less moodiness.

Good Night’s Sleep

I strive to get a good night’s sleep every night – which means eight solid hours in a dark, cool room.

Practice Gratitude

List ten things you’re grateful for when you feel low and it will completely change your thinking and mood.

Walk in Nature

I take a walk in nature everyday with my dog. Looking at trees, grass, and feeling the warmth of the sun brings me lots of joy.

Be Creative

It doesn’t matter if you’re good at it. You’ll probably improve as you go along anyway. I’ve taken multiple creative paths and it feels so good to create something. Write something or pick up and instrument… or a pen!

Be of Service

Get out and be of service to people. Being of service in some way is crucial.

Get a New Job

I know from experience, if you’re unhappy with your job, you HAVE to make a change. Life is too short and we spend too much time there. Anyone can do it. Make a plan, get some training or education, and DO WHAT YOU LOVE.

Proof of Psychic ability

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Here is a true story proving psychic ability exists and is a real quality that humans possess. Not all psychics are authentic or honorable, but the ABILITY is real 🙂 This has been proven to me over and over again in my practice. I’ve seen and heard things that have no other explanation.

“Psychologist Imants Barušs once tested a medium by asking her to contact the spirit of physicist Richard Feynman and provide answers to specialist questions beyond the medium’s knowledge. Once contact was established, Barušs asked the spirit for the “fine-structure constant,” which is approximately 1/137. The medium answered, “Zero. Eight.” Barušs cut her off, saying that was incorrect. The spirit protested and mentioned something about a capital M. Barušs responded, “There is no capital M.”

A week later, Barušs’ colleague, Julia Mossbridge (capital M), heard of the encounter and shared this quote from Feynman:

“There is a most profound and beautiful question associated with the observed coupling constant, e–the amplitude for a real electron to emit or absorb a real photon. It is a simple number that has been experimentally determined to be close to 0.08542455. (My physicist friends won’t recognize this number, because they like to remember it as the inverse of its square: about 137.03597..)”
Any other physicist might have said 1/137, or 0.00729; but Feynman would have given √0.00729 or .08542455. BOOM.

[Paraphrased from I. Barušs and J. Mossbridge (2017), “Transcendent Mind: Rethinking the Science of Consciousness” (Washington, DC: APA), 193-4.]

The importance of integrity

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Make an effort to be a person of character.  From my experience, I’ve found it’s the best thing you can do for yourself in your life.

Taking firm responsibility for yourself and your choices will set you apart from the crowd, and along with hard work, will bring you anything you want.

I was at a conference of female musicians once, and had the good fortune to hear Patti Smith reviewing her life and career. The most important thing in life, she said, is your credibility. If you lack credibility with people, or lose it, it’s hard to get it back. It’s the foundation of moving forward in life and finding true fulfillment and lasting friendships.

A friend posted this article today and I have to share it with you! These are traits I aspire to in my own life.

13 Traits of People With True Integrity

Integrity, for those who are not familiar, is quite important. It is the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles.
People who have a strong sense of integrity are sadly a rare breed. However, there are still some people left in this world with integrity, and usually, they share the following 13 traits.

1. They value other people’s time.
They value their own time so they also value the time of other people. They know you have plenty of other places you need to be and won’t hold you up. If you spend time with them, it is likely they will thank you for that as well.

2. They give credit where it is due.
They do not take credit for things they did not do. They will always credit those who deserve it. If you help this person with a project he or she will likely mention your name so you can take credit for your work.

3. They are authentic.
They are their truest forms. You won’t catch them in a lie or being fake.

4. They are always honest.
They are honest people that feel no need to lie as it is important for them to get to where they need to get in life honestly.

5. They never take advantage of others.
They are not the kind of people who will take advantage of someone else. They love to build people up and help them get where they need to be. Taking too much from someone else will never be an issue with someone who has a lot of integrity.

6. They do not argue over disagreements.
They will talk through things in a civil manner or not talk at all. You cannot and will not force this person into arguing over something completely ridiculous. I find this to be a very respectable trait.

7. They give most people the benefit of the doubt.
They try to see the good in everyone. I think this is because they feel like maybe there are more people in this world that also have integrity. That being said, if you take advantage of them too much they will get rid of you.

8. They know when something is bothering someone.
They have a great intuition that lets them know when something is going on. If someone is down in the dumps they will notice. Chances are they will actually do what they can to cheer you up.

9. They believe others.
They accept your word as truth until it is disproven. That being said, they do not take lying well. And once you lie to them, it is unlikely that they will ever take your word again.

10. They apologize first.
If they have done something wrong they will come to you and apologize. This is just how they are. They own up to their mistake and try to make things right.

11. They are humble.
They do not quite know their own worth. While they are very important and do so much good they don’t quite see it. You should remind them of it.

12. They do good when they can.
They are always helping other people. They love to know that they have improved someone’s life. It gives their lives meaning.

13. They are always kind to those who need it.
Giving kindness can go a long way. When someone looks like they need a little pick me up these people deliver. They can brighten up almost anyone’s day.

If you are someone who has true integrity, thank you for being who you are and thank you for all that you do. You really do actually make a difference in society, please keep up the good work. If you feel no one else is proud of you, know that I am.

stand in truth

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I learned that who doesn’t look for you, doesn’t miss you.
And who doesn’t miss you doesn’t care for you…
Destiny determines who enters your life but YOU decide who stays…
Therefore, value whoever values you, and don’t treat someone as a priority if they treat you as an option.

How to Receive a Better Psychic Reading

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Have you ever been curious about getting a psychic reading? When I had my first one 30 years ago (OMG!!!), I was absolutely fascinated. I couldn’t understand how they talked about  my inner thoughts so accurately.

After going to a few of them, I thought sure they were sharing notes on me. Each reading  was with different people, but had the same themes as the one before. How could they be seeing the same things just using intuition?? For myself I’ve always had a “sixth sense” about things:  from knowing who was about to call on the phone, to assessing the energy of people I was meeting for the first time.

I decided to go through the training at Psychic Horizons in SF and learn how to meditate and read energy. I learned how to have boundaries, and to respect a person’s space and never “read” them without their express permission. I practiced using my own intuition until it became strengthened and honed – and I realized that intuition is part of being human on this planet. Some people dismiss it and close off their own abilities, but I think most people have had their own strange coincidences and know it’s real.

Since then I’ve given thousands of people readings and healings through my own business. It’s stunning to think of where I started and where I’ve ended up. Supporting and guiding others has given me a full, happy life. I’ve met AMAZING people from every walk of life and every corner of the world. I’ve talked to mothers, wives and husbands; lawyers, soldiers, farmers, business women and men; artists, TV personalities, detectives and factory workers. I’ve encountered people from all income levels, faiths and passions – and from all over the world! It’s wonderful having “Facetime” and “Skype” nowadays because I can connect with anyone anywhere. The majority have positively impacted my own spiritual path.

There’s a handful of times though, I’ve encountered a readee who’s proves to be a challenge. Usually they are overwhelmed with emotion, blocked off, afraid of shifting, fearful of trusting me, in a lot of emotional pain or in denial. If I persist and sit with them, I can extract a gem of truth and healing that can assist the person, but it’s difficult and can take time.

I was happy to come across this post today by Matt Auryn, “How To Receive a Better Psychic Reading”. If you’ve ever thought about getting a reading, or haven’t found the right answers in readings, definitely read Matt’s perspective here!

For instance, be specific with your questions and be willing to accept you may not like what you hear. In fact, if you’re in too sensitive a space, you might want to wait to get a reading until you feel open to hearing an uncomfortable truth (in case one comes up). A good reader knows how to deliver difficult news in an inspiring way!

Here’s more of it:

“By being specific the reader can hone into that area of your life to give you more information, guidance, and specifics. Vague questions will often get vague responses. If you simply state “I want to look at my career.” A reader can look at what’s going on in your career and might be able to tell you what your career is. However, if you state, “I want to look at my career. Right now I’m a nurse and I’m not sure if where I’m working is the right place for me or if there’s a better option.” If you’re getting a reading that doesn’t interact directly with the reader, such as my private practice online where I read the person on my own and talk straight into a recorder, do not be afraid to provide information in the form. You will be glad you did.
Read more at http://www.patheos.com/blogs/matauryn/2017/11/05/receive-better-psychic-reading/#h1osVIHmr7Trrybq.99

If you’re interested in getting a reading with me, send me an email today!

#gettingapsychicreading #gettingahealing #crediblepsychics