It has become commonplace to display much of our lives in a very publicly accessible fashion. Amateur videos go viral every day, making instant celebrities out of the least likely candidates. We can portray ourselves as the wealthy, beautiful, successful people we always wished to be, and we can make sure that everyone who ever doubted us gets a full screening of our talents and accomplishments. We can be up-to-the-minute with not only friends and family and workmates, but with actors, musicians, politicians, and sports figures. Just as we can individually select the music, news, television, and other entertainment we wish to enjoy, we can also broadly send our own images, actions, beliefs, feelings, and thoughts out into the world.
It seems that everyone knows that person who has thousands of cyberspace “friends”. Their Facebook is legend, they have so many followers and tweeters and likers it is dizzying. It appears as if their lives are filled with glamorous and fun events that inspire envy in all who read their self-created media kits.
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In society today, one’s sexuality can have far-reaching consequences. Sexuality may influence our choices in the work we do, where we live, how we worship, and other intimate areas of life. Sexuality is often associated with one’s identity and what it means to be an individual. With all of the meaning that is carried with sexuality, there is the potential for an individual to question their own feelings. It is far from the case that all people simply know their sexuality or can identify with a particular group. Although many people do not express any confusion or concern regarding their sexuality, this is not the case for a great number of individuals who find that their questions regarding their sexuality are not so easily answered.
Sexuality is not defined by one behaviour or one feeling, or even by one experience. It is a highly complex human response that can be influenced by a variety of factors in its expression. What does seem to be clear that sexual preference is not a choice. One cannot control or determine who they are attracted to – whatever their sexuality. While many people have clear preferences, it is largely outside their ability to change that attraction, or lack thereof. Read More »
It seems that not a week goes by without a news story about anger, confrontation, abuse, or actual violence in the workplace. While the media attention usually goes to figures in the public eye – politicians are notorious in this regard – power struggles in the workplace are, unfortunately, an all-too-frequent occurrence for thousands of working women and men.
With people vying for what can appear to be a very limited pool of prestige and tangible financial benefits, it is no wonder that the workplace is often fraught with difficulties. In addition, because our jobs are often a source of income as well as areas from which we draw pride and security, it is easy to feel threatened by any challenge to that sense of self and stability.
Power struggles in the workplace do not always originate from the top down. Very often, power struggles exist between colleagues. Recognising and understanding typical incidents of poor office politics can go a long way in handling a difficult situation.
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When we hear the words “substance abuse”, too often it brings to mind the image of a stereotypical addict or “junkie”. While this is sometimes a reflection of reality, it is also possible for substance abusers to show very few, if any, outward signs of a problem. For this reason, and others, it can be difficult to identify substance abuse in those around us. Untreated substance abuse takes an enormous toll on individual lives, as well as on society at large.
Although illicit drug use is a major category of substance abuse, it is not the only one. Alcohol, inhalants, adhesives, nicotine, prescription medicines, and solvents are also subject to abuse. Recent news reports about teenagers using liquid hand soap to “get high” demonstrate the lengths to which people will go to satisfy an unquenchable desire for the abused substance.
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Sexual abuse is one of the most difficult experiences an individual may ever face. It is also incredibly common. While damage inflicted on the body may heal, sexual abuse leaves emotional scars that can be just as troubling as physical ones, and in some cases they can be even worse. Although the immediate pain and trauma subside, the truth is that there can be long-term consequences for the victims of sexual abuse. That being said, the process of healing might be centered on the body, not in the mind.
Victims of abuse often respond with a physical reaction known as the “fight or flight” response. The body learns to release adrenaline in situations that recreate the feelings of terror and pain, and as a result, this can become a pattern that the victim experiences again and again. Read More »
I just found out my daughter is lesbian: Help!
If the above sentence applies to you, the following passages may be of some help in coming to terms with the new situation. Firstly, it must be said that everyone’s situation will be different, although some similarities will be prevalent in all. The first similarity will be the feeling of being stunned, followed by rising panic or bewilderment when you first find out. Even if you may already have had an inkling as to the sexuality of your daughter, to have it confirmed will still be a significant moment in your life.
Don’t worry! This is perfectly normal when any news of an unexpected nature is received. It is also worthwhile keeping in mind that your daughter may have been thinking of telling you for many weeks or months that she is a lesbian, and so has had quite some time to be prepared. You, on the other hand, have had to react to the news instantly.Read More »
Studies have shown that constant connectivity on social networking sites and a constant exposure to media are strongly linked with people feeling inadequate, insecure and anxious. Having to compare yourself to others and being bombarded with public broadcasts of other peoples’ ‘ideal’ lives can cause feelings of inadequacy, insecurity and low self confidence; and for people who are prone to anxiety, this can sometimes even lead to severe low self esteem, depression, and other mental issues to a point where it becomes necessary to seek help from a therapist. Read More »
Breaking up with someone can be a hard thing to do, and even if it seems right, there is always an element of doubt and uncertainty involved. Am I making a mistake? Should I just see if things will get better? How will I cope by myself? These are just some of the questions that go around and around in the mind when confronted with the situation.
It is not intended of me to give direct advise on what to do or not. The following blog is a collection of useful tips that have helped people in the past to deal with difficult break ups. Please be aware that counselling is not about giving advise or telling people what to do. Most counsellors will not give such a direct advise during counselling sessions.
Dealing with difficult circumstances
Of course, breaking up with someone is made all the more complicated when houses, marriages and children are involved in the equation. Despite the complexity, though, you should still ask yourself the fundamental question of – Should I be in a relationship with this person? If the answer is no, then you need to consider what to do next. Whilst it is only natural that close members of the family and friends might be asked for their opinions and thoughts on the matter, it might also be helpful to see a counsellor as well.
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