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Jul 19 18

Does Social Media Feed Your Feelings of Unworthiness?

by michelleskeen

 

 

By Kelly Skeen and Michelle Skeen, PsyD, authors of Just As You Are

How many times have you looked at your phone today? 10? 20? 30? 40? If you’re an average tween or teen you’ve looked at your phone 46 times. And, you’ve spent a third of your day using media—Instagram, Facebook, online videos, and music. Maybe you do it without thinking.

Have you ever thought about how all of these images are impacting your beliefs about yourself and others? It’s likely that, knowingly or unknowingly, you are comparing yourself to the images you see on your feeds every day. All of us struggle with some aspect of ourselves. This feeling is reinforced and likely made worse by social media and the constant and ever-changing messages you receive about what you need to do, to look like, and to act like in order to be accepted. It can leave you feeling like you need to hide parts of yourself that aren’t perfect and/or don’t fit within the norm. This by itself feels like a setup for failure.

As you might imagine, your beliefs about yourself are a mixed bag. You probably hold some beliefs about yourself that are positive. Maybe you make friends easily, you have great hair, you are close with your siblings, you excel academically, you’re good at sports, and so on. But you also likely have beliefs about yourself that are negative. In fact, this might mean that you are hiding parts of yourself because you fear being judged, not accepted, or both. You may feel that you are outside of the norm in some way. There might even be aspects of your identity that you have no control over or you don’t like—such as your ethnicity, religion, family, culture, height, eye color, body type…you get the point.

Of course, there is even more of your life that is out of your control, because you have parental figures who control parts of your life that you have little or no say about—where you live, what school you attend, activities you are or are not allowed to participate in, who you can be friends with, who you can date—the list goes on. There’s a good chance that you feel inadequate, flawed, or not good enough as a result of some of these factors.

Every teenager (even the ones that seem perfect!) struggles with feelings of inadequacy, defectiveness, and unworthiness. This impacts your feelings of self-worth, which might be holding you back or getting in the way of satisfying peer interactions and acceptance. Like most people, you care what other people think of you, and you probably spend at least some time comparing yourself to your peers. Social media feeds our natural tendency to compare how we measure up to others. This can result in feeling that you are flawed—not as perfect as other people might seem. When these feelings get repeatedly reinforced over time, it can lead to shame, depression, anxiety, and isolation.

We are all wired to connect with others, and when we do make healthy connections, we thrive. So it makes sense that we would want to be accepted by others, and we would fear being found not good enough and rejected. In fact, you may go to great lengths to avoid judgment or rejection from others. This might include seeking affirmation from others, being unable or unwilling to make decisions without approval from others, or having difficulty hearing even mild criticism.

You may find it difficult to accept and share parts of yourself that are out of your control, or you may feel like you need to be a certain way to be liked and accepted by others. Or you may focus more of your energy on others to distract them from the ways in which you feel insufficient. You may already be thinking about the parts of yourself that make you feel less than, or that you hide from others because you fear the response you might receive. And you might even be aware of the ways this holds you back from realizing your full potential or building the relationships that you long for.

The truth is that you don’t have to keep hiding from others or comparing yourself to others. You are beautiful and perfect just as you are.

Lifelong struggles with feelings of unworthiness and inferiority begin with beliefs formed when we’re teenagers. Just As You Are empowers teens to identify and eliminate these beliefs now, before they take root and cause problems like depression, addiction, and failed relationships in adulthood.

https://www.newharbinger.com/blog/does-social-media-feed-your-feelings-unworthiness

 

Jul 19 18

My radio show on Thursday July 19, 2018

by michelleskeen

This week on Relationships 2.0 my guest is Matthew Dick author of Storyworthy: Engage, Teach, Persuade, and Change Your Life through the Power of Storytelling

About the book:

Whether we realize it or not, we are always telling stories. On a first date or job interview, at a sales presentation or therapy appointment, with family or friends, we are constantly narrating events and interpreting emotions and actions. In this compelling book, storyteller extraordinaire Matthew Dicks presents wonderfully straightforward and engaging tips and techniques for constructing, telling, and polishing stories that will hold the attention of your audience (no matter how big or small). He shows that anyone can learn to be an appealing storyteller, that everyone has something “storyworthy” to express, and, perhaps most important, that the act of creating and telling a tale is a powerful way of understanding and enhancing your own life.

About the author:

Matthew Dicks is a bestselling novelist, thirty-six-time Moth StorySLAM champion, and five-time GrandSLAM champion. In addition to his widespread teaching, writing, and performing, he cofounded (with his wife) Speak Up, which produces sold-out storytelling performances throughout Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New York at least once a month. He lives in Newington, Connecticut.

Jul 12 18

My radio show on Thursday July 12, 2018

by michelleskeen

This week on Relationships 2.0 my guest is Karen Bluth, PhD author of The Self-Compassion Workbook for Teens: Mindfulness & Compassion Skills to Overcome Self-Criticism & Embrace Who You Are

About the book:

Your teen years are a time of change, growth, and—all too often—psychological struggle. To make matters worse, you are often your own worst critic. The Self-Compassion Workbook for Teens offers valuable tools based in mindfulness and self-compassion to help you overcome self-judgment and self-criticism, cultivate compassion toward yourself and others, and embrace who you really are.

As a teen, you’re going through major changes—both physically and mentally. These changes can have a dramatic effect on how you perceive, understand, and interpret the world around you, leaving you feeling stressed and anxious. Additionally, you may also find yourself comparing yourself to others—whether its friends, classmates, or celebrities and models. And all of this comparison can leave you feeling like you just aren’t enough. So, how can you move past feelings of stress and insecurity and start living the life you really want?

Written by psychologist Karen Bluth and based on practices adapted from Kristin Neff and Christopher Germer’s Mindful Self-Compassion program, this workbook offers fun and tactile exercises grounded in mindfulness and self-compassion to help you cope more effectively with the ongoing challenges of day-to-day life. You’ll learn how to be present with difficult emotions, and respond to these emotions with greater kindness and self-care. By practicing these activities and meditations, you’ll learn specific tools to help you navigate the emotional ups and downs of the teen years with greater ease.

Life is imperfect—and so are we. But if you’re ready to move past self-criticism and self-judgment and embrace your unique self, this compassionate guide will light the way.

About the author:

Karen Bluth, PhD, earned her doctoral degree in child and family studies at the University of Tennessee. She is currently research faculty in the Program on Integrative Medicine in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine. Her work focuses on the roles that mindfulness and self-compassion play in promoting well-being in teens. Bluth was awarded a Francisco J. Varela research award from the Mind and Life Institute in 2012, which allowed her to explore the effects of a mindfulness intervention on adolescents’ well-being through examining stress biomarkers. In spring 2015, she received internal University of North Carolina funding to explore relationships among mindfulness, self-compassion, and emotional well-being in teens in grades 7–12. With current NIH funding, she is part of a research team at the University of North Carolina that is studying the teen adaptation of Kristin Neff and Christopher Germer’s Mindful Self-Compassion program.

In addition to her research, Bluth regularly teaches mindfulness and mindful self-compassion courses to both adults and teens in the Chapel Hill, NC, area and regularly gives talks and leads workshops at schools and universities. In collaboration with Lorraine Hobbs, Bluth has adapted Kristin Neff and Christopher Germer’s Mindful Self-Compassion program for an adolescent population. A former educator with eighteen years classroom experience, Bluth is currently associate editor of the academic journal Mindfulness.

 

Jun 26 18

My radio show on Thursday June 28, 2018

by michelleskeen

This week on Relationships 2.0 my guest is Sarah Anne Shockley author of The Pain Companion: Everyday Wisdom for Living With and Moving Beyond Chronic Pain

About the book:

Where do you turn when medication and medical treatments do not relieve persistent, debilitating pain? What can you do when pain interferes with work, family, and social life and you no longer feel like the person you used to be? Relying on firsthand experience with severe nerve pain, author Sarah Anne Shockley accompanies you on your journey through pain and offers compassionate, practical advice to ease difficult emotions and address lifestyle challenges. Her approach helps reduce the toll that living in pain takes on relationships, self-image, and well-being while cultivating greater ease and resilience on a daily basis. Dozens of accessible, uplifting practices guide you every step of the way from a life overcome by pain to a life of greater comfort and peace. The Pain Companion also offers profound insights for medical practitioners and invaluable guidance for anyone who loves or cares for others in pain.

About the author:

Sarah Anne Shockley is an award-winning filmmaker and former university instructor who has lived with debilitating neuralgia from thoracic outlet syndrome for more than ten years. Because her condition was unresponsive to existing traditional or alternative therapies, she developed a unique method of pain management and pain reduction not reliant on pharmaceuticals or medical intervention. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Jun 16 18

My radio show on Thursday June 21, 2018

by michelleskeen

This week on Relationships 2.0 my guest is Mary DeMocker author of The Parents’ Guide to Climate Revolution: 100 Ways to Build a Fossil-Free Future, Raise Empowered Kids, and Still Get a Good Night’s Sleep

About the book:

“Relax,” writes author Mary DeMocker, “this isn’t another light bulb list. It’s not another overwhelming pile of parental ‘to dos’ designed to shrink your family’s carbon footprint through eco-superheroism.” Instead, DeMocker lays out a lively, empowering, and doable blueprint for engaging families in the urgent endeavor of climate revolution. In this book’s brief, action-packed chapters, you’ll learn hundreds of wide-ranging ideas for being part of the revolution — from embracing simplicity parenting, to freeing yourself from dead-end science debates, to teaching kids about the power of creative protest, to changing your lifestyle in ways that deepen family bonds, improve moods, and reduce your impact on the Earth. Engaging and creative, this vital resource is for everyone who wants to act effectively — and empower children to do the same.

About the author:

Mary has reveled in an artistic life, performing the harp, dressing sets for NYC films, and now using the arts to mobilize for climate justice. Mary is the co-founder of 350 Eugene, where she leads interactive art projects and rallies, including one featured in a PBS NewsHour broadcast about children suing the government for their right to a livable planet. In conjunction with Paris climate talks, Mary led the Climate March & Public Art Project featured in the London-based global art festival ArtCOP21 and included in the Avaaz video shown to world leaders entering UN talks. A National Endowment for the Arts grant recipient and winner of the 2008 Kay Snow Award for Nonfiction, Mary lives with her family in Oregon. She is available for workshops and lectures and can be reached through her website at www.marydemocker.com.