Blog for Better Living

Finding R.E.S.T.

By: Jen McWaters, Psy.D. | October 16, 2020

I and others I know seem to long for rest more than anything else these days. Between the news on natural disasters, the political climate, and COVID-19, I find that many of us experience too much stimulation from too much information input resulting in too little space for rest. For some, working from home provides […]

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Anxiety, Mindfulness, Personal Improvement, Sleep/Relaxation

Letting Go of F.E.A.R.

By: Jen McWaters, Psy.D. | July 31, 2020

Let’s be real: Right now most of us endure some level of anxiety, fear, and uncertainty in this ever-changing pandemic reality. Now more than ever must we find ways to manage our stress and worry as we continue living our lives in these uncertain times. Coping can take extra creativity, given the limited or non-existent […]

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Anxiety, Mindfulness, Stress, Therapy

The Hidden Benefits of Owning Our Own Pain and Facing It Head On

By: Jen McWaters, Psy.D. | February 28, 2020

Coping with our own pain and suffering is something I talk about often in therapy. Coping skills help us own our own pain and suffering while offering powerful options for dealing with them head on. But that’s not all. Many skills exist for helping us cope with difficult emotions, such as accepting our experiences for […]

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Mindfulness, Personal Improvement, Trauma

Open the Gift of Gratitude this Holiday Season

By: Jen McWaters, Psy.D. | December 13, 2019

What do the holidays mean to you? For many, they symbolize a time for family, connection, and rest. And yet we easily let the holidays drive our culture of consumption, of giving and getting gifts, or try to achieve the perfect holiday experience. No wonder the holidays make for significant stress and conflict for so […]

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Holidays, Mindfulness, Stress

What Color Do You Feel Like Today?

By: Jen McWaters, Psy.D. | September 19, 2019

Our English language often uses the psychology of color to depict emotions. We “see red” when we are angry. We “feel blue” when we are feeling down. Yellow is often associated with happiness (think smiley face!), and we are “green with envy” when we feel jealous of someone. These associations are so embedded in our […]

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Anxiety, Depression

Music for Mental Health

By: Jen McWaters, Psy.D. | July 5, 2019

Music is an integral part of our culture, history, and daily lives. It provides the backdrop to our favorite movies, our significant life events, and our most vivid memories. Hearing a song can nostalgically bring you back to the first time you heard it and who you were with. It can also evoke painful emotions […]

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Anxiety, Depression, Mindfulness, Stress

The Psychological Benefits of Tidying Up

By: Jen McWaters, Psy.D. | April 12, 2019

Is joy lurking in your closet? Is satisfaction hiding under your stuff? While browsing Netflix I found a new show entitled “Tidying up with Marie Kondo.” Intrigued, I watched an episode of Marie Kondo’s world of tidying and organizing. Known as her KonMari Method, it includes, for example, new ways to fold clothes efficiently and […]

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Anxiety, Personal Improvement, Therapy

What it Means to be a Highly Sensitive Person

By: Jen McWaters, Psy.D. | January 29, 2019

You probably know what it means to be an introvert versus an extrovert. Such psychological terms are now mainstream. They help us understand and empathize with one another’s differences. Few people, however, know what it means to be a Highly Sensitive Person (HSP) versus a non-HSP. Psychologist, Dr. Elaine Aron, wanted to better understand herself […]

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Anxiety, Parenting, Relationships, Stress

Are You Coping with SAD?

By: Jen McWaters, Psy.D. | November 9, 2018

I always feel better when I’ve had some time outside in the sun. The sensation of sun on my skin makes me feel more relaxed and rejuvenated. What about you? People by the millions travel every year to sunny beaches for vacations so they can soak up some sunshine. Even in sunny places such as […]

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Depression, Personal Improvement, Sleep/Relaxation, Therapy