Author name: shadedboughcounseling_5vttyc

A woman pointing confidently at the viewer, demonstrating body language that's assertive without being rude.

How to Be Assertive Without Being Rude

Do you struggle to say “No” to people? Do you worry about being selfish or entitled when asking for what you want? You’re not alone. If you’re used to going along with what others say, it can be hard to tell the difference between acting assertive and acting like a jerk. So let’s examine how you can be assertive – without being rude.

A woman seeing a female therapist for her first therapy session.

What to Expect From Your First Therapy Session

Have you been considering therapy, but aren’t sure about taking the plunge? Are you worried about what to do, or whether you’d screw it up? Here’s a play-by-play of what a first therapy session looks like, so you can decide what you’re ready for, and what kind of therapist is right for you.

Man at seashore, ready to make a New Year's resolution.

How to Make A New Year’s Resolution Stick

A new year is a great time to assess where your life is, and where you want it to go. Committing to a firm goal can motivate you and help you feel progress in your life instead of being stuck or in a rut. But resolutions are also notoriously hard to stick to, so how do you make a New Year’s resolution that works for you?

Man holding trophy and smiling, symbolizing a narcissist.

Are You a Narcissist?

Narcissism has become a “trendy” word in pop culture lately. I’ve seen people use it to mean “selfish,” “egotistical,” “uncaring about others,” and more. But this has led many people to worry about whether they might be narcissists themselves. Let’s cut through the stereotypes and see what that actually means – and what it could mean for you.

Couple working on how to control their anger after an argument.

How to Control Your Anger: 4 Practical Skills

Last week I wrote about how to tell if your anger is becoming a problem. This time, we’re exploring how to make anger work for you instead of against you. “Cooling down” is easier said than done. Fortunately, you can learn how to control your anger with specific, concrete skills.

A couple with anger issues working through an argument.

How to Know If You Have Anger Issues

If you’ve been feeling angrier these last few years, you aren’t alone. From the spats on social media to the highest political offices, everyone has something that ticks them off, and it’s often for a good reason. But anger that burns too hot or too often can wear you out and rip up your relationships, so how do you know when it’s a problem? Read on to figure out if you have anger issues – and what you can do about them.

Two people making small talk on a bench.

The 5 Skills That Taught Me How to Make Small Talk

For many people, the hardest part of making new friends is getting through “small talk.” It can feel boring, awkward, frustrating, or even exhausting. Lack of confidence in small talk can perpetuate anxiety and loneliness by discouraging you from connecting with people. So, as an introvert who struggled with this myself, here are my best tricks for how to make small talk work for you!

Woman with low self-confidence crying.

How to Treat a Lack of Self-Confidence

If you struggle to stand up for yourself, try new things or make decisions on your own, you might lack self-confidence. Low self-confidence can hinder you from living a full life and connecting with other people. It can exacerbate anxiety, depression and other mental health issues. But people improve their self-confidence every year, and you can, too.

Man playing guitar with increased self-esteem.

5 Ways to Improve Self-Esteem

Self-esteem seems simple, but millions of people struggle with it. Low self-esteem increases your risk of anxiety, depression, eating disorders, and other mental illnesses. It also makes you more vulnerable to toxic relationships. But there are ways you can improve your self-esteem, and strengthen both your relationships and mental health.

A couple on a couch discussing how long it takes therapy to work.

How Long Does Therapy Take To Work?

If you’re thinking of starting psychotherapy, it can be an intimidating commitment. How do you know whether you’ll get results? How do you know if you’ve found the right therapist? And how much time should you give it before trying something else? There’s no one-size-fits-all answer, but here are a few pointers to help you figure out how long therapy may take to work for you.