Posts tagged boundaries
Boundary-Setting Mantra :: Sanity During The Holiday Season

The holiday season is one time of year that leaves many of us feeling vulnerable to stress and feelings of overwhelm. The season brings windows dressed with cheer and reminders of other people who appear carefree and happy, while many face the reality of family dysfunction, unrealistic expectations, loneliness, dark days and seasonal affective disorder, poor eating and drinking habits and loved ones who are no longer with us. Perhaps the seemingly happy folks are drunk, it's hard to know for sure. That said, social media now contributes a new platform for us to compare our own lives with the experiences of others, leading to even more isolation and despair. It is also a time when we may do less self-care than usual--at a time when we actually need a little more TLC.

This leads quite natural to the topic of boundaries. Who wants to be the bad guy and say no, right? Sometimes "no" is best for all. The holiday season is a perfect time to learn and practice self-protection. Boundary-setting is very much a learned skill that takes practice and often requires giving yourself permission to put yourself first. Do you know what you need? it's important to know your needs and to identify your own physical and emotional limits. Overload cues present to us in different forms. For some, it's a feeling or nudge

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Kimberly Seelbrede, LCSW is a New York City Psychotherapist + Consultant who splits her time between Manhattan and Santa Fe, providing online therapy to individuals and couples. With extensive training and experience, she provides psychological consultation, psychotherapy, EMDR therapy and executive coaching to a range of clients including VIP's + high-profile clients. As a women's emotional health + relationship expert, her specialties include: anxiety, depression, trauma resolution, addictions, relationship, intimacy and sexual concerns, health + autoimmune issues, loss + grief and women's mentoring. She enjoys writing, photography, yoga, meditation, travel and really good key lime pie. She lives with her husband, psychologist, scholar and mindfulness expert John Chambers Christopher. For more, subscribe to her newsletter or connect with her on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Psychology Today, EMDRIA and her personal websites KimSeelbrede.com, Santa Fe Integrative Psychotherapy or Well+Being Blog.

Setting Boundaries: The Ultimate Gift Of Self-Care

How are your boundaries, and do you know how, when and where to draw the line? I will tolerate this, but I will not tolerate that. The inability to set boundaries is a problem that many of my psychotherapy and coaching clients struggle with in their lives. Like any newly-learned skill, the practice of setting clear and loving boundaries with others takes practice. Giving away precious energy, time and power is a common issue that many of my clients experience, which then leads them to feeling confused, depleted and resentful. Women in particular are more likely to be unclear about their own boundaries, and send messages to others that their boundaries are porous, leaving them vulnerable to boundary intrusion. If your boundaries are too porous, you are vulnerable to others and unable to lead an authentic life. On the other end of the spectrum, if your boundaries are too rigid, your life can be inflexible, constricted and overly-controlled. This creates problems for yourself, and others! 

Many people ask "how can I develop a stronger sense of self?" Learning to set boundaries is a great place to begin, and you can learn a lot about yourself along the way. We know how important healthy relationships are to our well being, and having boundaries and setting limits is an important aspect of human relations -- in both our professional and personal lives. 

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Kimberly Seelbrede, LCSW is a New York City Psychotherapist + Consultant who splits her time between Manhattan and Santa Fe, providing online therapy to individuals and couples. With extensive training and experience, she provides psychological consultation, psychotherapy, EMDR therapy and executive coaching to a range of clients including VIP's + high-profile clients. As a women's emotional health + relationship expert, her specialties include: anxiety, depression, trauma resolution, addictions, relationship, intimacy and sexual concerns, health + autoimmune issues, loss + grief and women's mentoring. She enjoys writing, photography, yoga, meditation, travel and really good key lime pie. She lives with her husband, psychologist, scholar and mindfulness expert John Chambers Christopher. For more, subscribe to her newsletter or connect with her on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Psychology Today, EMDRIA and her personal websites KimSeelbrede.com, Santa Fe Integrative Psychotherapy or Well+Being Blog.

Is Being Too Nice Sabotaging Your Life?

My coaching and therapy clients often express the desire to lead an honest and authentic life. Many are successful, busy and dynamic go-getters. They are also exhausted, frustrated and suffer regular bouts of self-loathing, conflict and anger. Many are people pleasers and believe that they are truly engaging in honest and real relationships. But they are not. They are engaging in acts of self-deception where their "true self," the part of them that holds their real wishes and desires is held hostage by the part of them that wants to please, or in simple language, be NICE.

This pattern is problematic, and you need to know why.  Because it makes you unhappy, and stressed! Your precious time and energy is spent wishing you could undo something, say what you mean, get what you need, say no, speak your mind -- you get the picture. Is that all too familiar "disease to please" and "nice-itis" sabotaging your life?

Your relationships may be suffering because you aren't being honest. You've created an identity that you imagine people want, when in reality, they want the real you. When you say YES, when you really want to say NO, or you don't share your real feelings or disappointment about something, you deprive yourself and them of an honest interaction.

What's behind this behavior? Fear and identity are big drivers. You may fear hurting someone's feelings. But if you withhold honesty, you deprive them of an opportunity to grow and learn, or have a different experience. You've saved yourself some temporary, in-the-moment discomfort, but now you hate yourself. You're tired of your "nice" identity because it creates stress, it makes you cranky and creates more conflicts in your relationships when you have to spend energy trying to "fix" things. But mostly, it just doesn't get you what you want! The takeaway message is that you're not avoiding conflict and tension, you're creating it.

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Kimberly Seelbrede, LCSW is a New York City Psychotherapist + Consultant who splits her time between Manhattan and Santa Fe, providing online therapy to individuals and couples. With extensive training and experience, she provides psychological consultation, psychotherapy, EMDR therapy and executive coaching to a range of clients including VIP's + high-profile clients. As a women's emotional health + relationship expert, her specialties include: anxiety, depression, trauma resolution, addictions, relationship, intimacy and sexual concerns, health + autoimmune issues, loss + grief and women's mentoring. She enjoys writing, photography, yoga, meditation, travel and really good key lime pie. She lives with her husband, psychologist, scholar and mindfulness expert John Chambers Christopher. For more, subscribe to her newsletter or connect with her on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Psychology Today, EMDRIA and her personal websites KimSeelbrede.com, Santa Fe Integrative Psychotherapy or Well+Being Blog.

Holiday Depression: Tips To Manage Your Mood

It's THAT Time of year, and it's not joyous for everyone. In fact, for many, it can be loaded with messy feelings and powerful memories. Are you dealing with depression that seems to get worse during the holidays? It's that time of year, and with it brings that demand energy to be happy. Family, friends, fellow employees and unrealistic media images makes it hard for someone managing depression to cope. Whether it's a history of clinical depression, the longer days of winter, past events, or memories of loved-ones lost that contribute to your seasonal sadness, getting through the holidays is a struggle. What are some typical problems that people with depression face during the holiday season?

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Kimberly Seelbrede, LCSW is a New York City Psychotherapist + Consultant who splits her time between Manhattan and Santa Fe, providing online therapy to individuals and couples. With extensive training and experience, she provides psychological consultation, psychotherapy, EMDR therapy and executive coaching to a range of clients including VIP's + high-profile clients. As a women's emotional health + relationship expert, her specialties include: anxiety, depression, trauma resolution, addictions, relationship, intimacy and sexual concerns, health + autoimmune issues, loss + grief and women's mentoring. She enjoys writing, photography, yoga, meditation, travel and really good key lime pie. She lives with her husband, psychologist, scholar and mindfulness expert John Chambers Christopher. For more, subscribe to her newsletter or connect with her on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Psychology Today, EMDRIA and her personal websites KimSeelbrede.com, Santa Fe Integrative Psychotherapy or Well+Being Blog.

Breaking Down Your Wall - Go Slow

Sensitive souls tend to wrap themselves up in layers, either symbolic or concrete, to avoid having their "true self" exposed. They fear being seen, criticized or somehow judged as wrong -- the secret self has it's own life that operates just beneath the surface. Some individuals have a greater awareness of these "self parts" than others. The need to protect may come and go or be more heightened in certain circumstances, and not others. Many of my psychotherapy and counseling patients who have suffered childhood abuse or trauma may now, in their current lives, wear protective layers of clothing, or even gain weight in an effort to create a layer of protective armor. Some had

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Kimberly Seelbrede, LCSW is a New York City Psychotherapist + Consultant who splits her time between Manhattan and Santa Fe, providing online therapy to individuals and couples. With extensive training and experience, she provides psychological consultation, psychotherapy, EMDR therapy and executive coaching to a range of clients including VIP's + high-profile clients. As a women's emotional health + relationship expert, her specialties include: anxiety, depression, trauma resolution, addictions, relationship, intimacy and sexual concerns, health + autoimmune issues, loss + grief and women's mentoring. She enjoys writing, photography, yoga, meditation, travel and really good key lime pie. She lives with her husband, psychologist, scholar and mindfulness expert John Chambers Christopher. For more, subscribe to her newsletter or connect with her on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Psychology Today, EMDRIA and her personal websites KimSeelbrede.com, Santa Fe Integrative Psychotherapy or Well+Being Blog.

Smart Couples Do

Couples who create successful and satisfying relationships often have a formula for success. These dynamic couples have important skills and make thoughtful, conscious choices that lead to more closeness and connection. They do and also avoid doing certain things that contribute to creating a robust relationship. John and Julie Gottman of the Gottman Institute, known for their extensive relationship research, would call these smart couples "masters" of relationships. If you desire a dynamic and loving relationship, you may want to consider some important relationship tips that you may or may not have learned along the way. If you adore your partner and value your partnership then noticing the elements that follow may be just what you need for enhanced communication, a deeper connection and more romance.

Let's begin with what NOT to do:

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Kimberly Seelbrede, LCSW is a New York City Psychotherapist + Consultant who splits her time between Manhattan and Santa Fe, providing online therapy to individuals and couples. With extensive training and experience, she provides psychological consultation, psychotherapy, EMDR therapy and executive coaching to a range of clients including VIP's + high-profile clients. As a women's emotional health + relationship expert, her specialties include: anxiety, depression, trauma resolution, addictions, relationship, intimacy and sexual concerns, health + autoimmune issues, loss + grief and women's mentoring. She enjoys writing, photography, yoga, meditation, travel and really good key lime pie. She lives with her husband, psychologist, scholar and mindfulness expert John Chambers Christopher. For more, subscribe to her newsletter or connect with her on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Psychology Today, EMDRIA and her personal websites KimSeelbrede.com, Santa Fe Integrative Psychotherapy or Well+Being Blog.

Rejection, Failure And Success :: What keeps you up at night?

Do you feel trapped by your anxiety and chronic worry. Most of us do from time to time. The subject of fear comes up often in psychotherapy sessions and manifests in a range of behaviors, from complete paralysis to counter-phobic reactions. Fear and a certain amount of anxiety can be your friend especially when the fear of a particular outcome becomes a motivating factor. For example, the thought of failing is enough to help many work to their potential.

This also comes at a cost when we use guilt, shame and fear as a way to launch ourselves towards a goal. Don't be quick to use fear as a motivating factor. Fear is heavy, dense energy. It's best to stay focused on the positive outcome, specifically, what you actually want for yourself and your life. That said, don't sweep it under the rug. It's likely to come out in some other less-than-tidy way. Learning to identify your fears can be incredibly liberating. The act of naming something takes away its power. Then visualize and hold in your awareness different positive outcomes. Mental rehearsing—what you would like to have happen, and how you would like to feel?

So what exactly do we fear most?

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Kimberly Seelbrede, LCSW is a New York City Psychotherapist + Consultant who splits her time between Manhattan and Santa Fe, providing online therapy to individuals and couples. With extensive training and experience, she provides psychological consultation, psychotherapy, EMDR therapy and executive coaching to a range of clients including VIP's + high-profile clients. As a women's emotional health + relationship expert, her specialties include: anxiety, depression, trauma resolution, addictions, relationship, intimacy and sexual concerns, health + autoimmune issues, loss + grief and women's mentoring. She enjoys writing, photography, yoga, meditation, travel and really good key lime pie. She lives with her husband, psychologist, scholar and mindfulness expert John Chambers Christopher. For more, subscribe to her newsletter or connect with her on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Psychology Today, EMDRIA and her personal websites KimSeelbrede.com, Santa Fe Integrative Psychotherapy or Well+Being Blog.