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Tom Moon, M.F.T. Year: 2009

Year: 2009

Surviving Unrequited Love

Q: I frequently meet a man in a gay social organization to which we both belong, and this man, as they say, pushes all my buttons. He is friendly to me, which makes him all the more alluring, but it is clear that he has an active social world in which there is no place…

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The Power of Mindfulness

Mindfulness practice is the latest thing in psychology. A few years ago it was the preoccupation of a few fringe types, but today increasing numbers of mental health professionals are using it in their work with patients. That’s because a flood of recent and ongoing research is showing that this simple practice can produce measurable…

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When is Anger Abuse?

Q: I come from a family of loud, working-class Italians who say what we feel when we feel it. My boyfriend’s family are upper middle class New Englanders who never raise their voices, say anything “inappropriate” or express anger directly. I shout and yell when I’m mad, and then I’m done with it. I never…

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Three Bad Ideas

Most of us believe that the pain in our lives is caused by the painful events in our lives –our failures, losses, betrayals, and disappointments. But a fundamental insight of cognitive therapy is that, to a surprising degree, our suffering is the result, not of events themselves, but of our ideas about the events. More…

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Am I Normal?

It’s a given that queer people are the rule breakers, the ones who stand outside what is conventional and challenge social norms. That’s why I’ve been surprised to discover, in my conversations with gay men over the years, that sexual guilt and self-doubt are alive and well in our community, even among many who feel…

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Are We Hardwired for Unhappiness? – 2. Taking in the Good

Last time I talked about the brain’s “negative bias” – its tendency to register negative experiences in emotional memory more quickly and deeply than positive ones. In the words of neuropsychologist Rick Hanson (www.rickhanson.net) : “The brain is like Velcro for negative experiences and Teflon for positive ones.” The result is “a growing – and…

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