• Dr. Nelly De Ridder

Have you found yourself asking "why me?...oh no, not again?...I can't take it!

Some common reasons for questioning can be: loss of a loved one, loss of a job, illness, an automobile accident, a house fire or an unexpected bill.

When painful things happen, it can seem

insurmountable and we just want to escape.

Our desire to avoid pain and suffering can lead to the use of alcohol, drugs, over or under eating, withdrawal, acting out or any unhealthy behavior.

Although the last thing that we would think of is to accept the situation. Acceptance does not mean that you don't feel your emotions, that you like the situation, or that you do not want things to change. Acceptance means making the hard choice to spend or not spend time/energy on a situation; you have a choice. When you accept a situation you give yourself permission to really "look" at the situation. It allows you to let go of judgments and criticisms.

Change occurs when we recognize and see things as they are, without attempting to control, protest or resist. Real change is letting go of your attachment to your desired outcome. It is about accepting the situation and exploring your options in response to the situation. Sometimes the option is to simply accept the situation. Sometimes the best option is about flexibility. Without acceptance, we cannot move forward or heal.

If you find yourself using "shoulds" in your self talk then acceptance may be compromised.

A good resource, based on Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, (Marsha Linehan, Phd, ABPP; developed DBT) , is DBTselfhelp.com.

  • Dr. Nelly De Ridder

COVID-19: The Importance of Structure

Not Just for Kids

●Setting up a daily routine has many benefits, including-

Well being, decreasing anxiety and depression, having control over your day (because your focusing on

yourself, your wants and accomplishing goals), safety, and security.

●Items to include- today

Physical, emotional, spiritual, need for human contact, having a set bedtime and wake time, keeping

alcohol, recreational drugs, and smoking to a minimum and appreciating what is good in your life.

●Consider when you are most productive in the day to get things done; AM, Noon or PM. Do the most

important things first.

Consider speaking to your therapist on how this can work for you. If you are not a client, do consider setting up a tele-health meeting today.

  • Dr. Nelly De Ridder

Applying Your Best Efforts, Not Perfection:

Perfection is an illusive concept that is unattainable. Yet, we have all found ourselves striving for it. Some more than others. The quest for perfection is an exhausting, exercise in frustration and disappointment.

Consider Donald Winnicott, MD, a British Pediatrician. He coined the term, "good enough Mother". The meaning being: parents and guardians, in raising children, realize that children benefit when mistakes are made by child or parent/guardian. (excluding child abuse/neglect)

The process of parenting is being attentive to a child's needs, creating security and safety. However, sine this cannot occur all of the time, a child learns to live in an imperfect world. Imperfection and mistakes allow a child to learn to tolerate frustration, disappointment and develop resiliency.

Some causes of perfectionism are: being raised with unrealistic expectation (often fueled by the false belief that the higher the expectation, the more success a child will have), being falsely blamed for events outside of ones control, and excessive criticism.

Not accepting mistakes as normal learning opportunities or finding humor causes:

1) self criticism

2) shutting down/ like boarding yourself up from the outside world

3) Over thinking (should have, would have, could have)

4) Personalization: "It's all my fault.", "I don't measure up.", "No one else makes these mistakes."

5) It literally freezes personal growth and creates overwhelming barriers.

Remember: What we focus on grows more and more into our reality!!

Take Away:

1) Be reasonably consistent with your goals. Realize that goals are moving targets; adjustable to adapt to new information.

2) Accept that we all make mistakes.

3) Mistakes are for learning, mistakes teach growth.

4) Perfection is humanly imperfect.

5) The greatest life lessons, inventions and solutions resulted from mistakes.

Be brave enough to try and strong enough to learn from mistakes. Do not chase the illusive unicorn called perfection.

Sometimes good enough is good enough!

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