Anger Management 101


Anger is something that every one of us has to deal with in our daily lives. Sometimes, you leave your house without an umbrella and it happens to rain. Sometimes, your boss just won’t give you a break. And sometimes, even the most trivial things get on your nerves. The frustrations of everyday life plague even the best of us. Some people can brush it off and continue to be positive. Others, however, aren’t very good at controlling their anger. Usually, it is said that these people have anger issues.  


Dealing with Anger


Know how to calm yourself down.


There are many ways to do this. However, it ultimately depends on you. You have to find out what works and what doesn’t. Some find that counting to ten in their mind helps them calm down. Others say that slowing their breathing is effective. Still, many people prefer visualizing something calming to help them get through their anger. It varies from person to person. What’s important is that you know what works and you stick to it whenever your anger is getting out of hand. 


Think before you act.


According to Glenn Goldman, MA, LPC “Anger is not the enemy. It is how we respond to our own anger that can get us into trouble.” Ask yourself, “Why am I angry?” Putting these things into words can help you understand the situation and act accordingly. Once you understand the situation you’re in, consider what you can do and the consequences of each action. For example, if you’re angry because your laptop is malfunctioning, instead of damaging it physically, you could restart it. Perhaps, you could also take it to a person who’s more knowledgeable on how laptops work to get it fixed. Finally, once you’ve laid down your choices, pick the one you feel is the best. By thinking things through, you can avoid making bad choices that you may regret later.


Talk to someone about how you’re feeling.


 Do you have a friend whom you trust enough to talk about the anger you’re feeling? If yes, then you could opt to talk to them when you feel like the anger is getting out of hand. Getting all of your frustrations out and knowing that someone is listening to you can be very refreshing. This works even better when your friend knows how to make you feel less angry. 


Consider getting anger management counseling.


“Mindfulness for Anger Management puts mindfulness into action with transformative skills and real strategies for overcoming anger and taking control of powerful emotions.” Stephen Dansiger PsyD MFT expresses. If you feel like your anger is getting a bit out of hand, perhaps it would be best to seek the help of a professional. This is nothing to be ashamed of. Recognizing that you have an anger problem and seeking help is a step towards the right direction. The counselors can help you identify the triggers or catalysts that cause your anger and teach you how to respond to them in a non-aggressive way—effectively showing you how to manage them.

Why Controlling Anger is Important?


“Anger is typically an attempt to control the actions or behaviors of others to get our needs and wants met by others. Anger is the result of frustration when you do not get what you need, want, or expect from life or others. Anger is essentially a control tactic” Ben Martin, Psy.D. said. The potential for anger doesn’t really go away. Since we can’t get rid of anger always, it’s important that we’re able to control it. If your anger gets out of hand, you could end up hurting yourself or others. Uncontrollable anger can also be detrimental to your mental health. It can cloud your judgment and make it very difficult for you to focus. It can also be bad for your work environment and the relationships you have. Your clients, co-workers, friends, and all the other people you interact with may grow distant or lose respect for you. This, in turn, will make it difficult for you to move forward in your career or build long and lasting friendships. 

Sharing A Home With Your In-Laws


Avoiding Anxiety and Stress while Co-Existing


Adult life is often challenging and stressors are everywhere, be it financially, in parenting or even sharing the same house as your in-laws. At first thought it can be difficult, but it is possible that such situationcan be surpassed. Here are some of the things that might help you survive the experience of living together and the valuable lessons it can teach you and your spouse. 

PROS of living together with the in-laws


Living with the in-laws can also prove to be beneficial for you. Such benefits include:


Close family ties


Living together means being acquainted well with your in-laws. It also means that your family will have the chance of meeting them more frequently. Your children will also get acquainted with their grandparents and it will help create deep and lasting memories with them. Maintaining this close family tie can develop the family closeness. When challenges of life will come in the future, everyone in the home will stick together through good and bad times.


Help is around


Having your in-laws within the house may also mean another set of grown-ups to guide you and your spouse in decision-making. This also means that there are more hands to accomplish house chores which is a real advantage. Help is within reach, literally.


Monetary benefits


Having another set of working grown-ups inside the house also means more support. This is financial support and a welcome help when things get a little hard. Some couples can save up some hard-earned cash when living together with in-laws since expenses are shared or can be free.

CONS of living together with the in-laws


There will always be a negative side to this. Some of the things that make living with the in-laws truly difficult include:


Blurred boundaries


Since the in-laws are just around the house, you must be ready to sacrifice your privacy. Watch out for those chances where they butt in, but be careful not to hurt their feelings. Remember that they are older and most of the time, more experienced than you. They may know a thing or two. Nikki Martinez, Psy.D. LCPC once said, “We only have control of ourselves and our own desire for growth and change. Part of that growth and change is deciding the type of person we allow in our lives, and the positive impact they can have on us.”


Stressed relationships


There is enough stress between a husband and wife without the parents’ interference. Some stressful situations can get more intense with the presence of in-laws within the house. 


Living Together Peacefully – Avoiding Anxiety and Stress


Setting boundaries


Living with your in-laws can be possible when you set aside a time to meet them with your spouse and have all the things considered laid out on the table. Everyone can meet halfway before moving in together. Such matters worthy of consideration include the arrangements of private spaces like room to sleep and what to do about cooking the food, keeping the house clean and financial contributions. “If they push and don’t respect your boundary, then that’s a red flag. If they express disappointment, but understanding, then these are likely the people that like you for ‘you’ and not what you can do for them,” says Erika Martinez, PsyD


Another important thing to consider is setting the expectations in raising your children and where they can come in to support your parenting. Parents have a natural tendency to take over and impose their own style of raising children. You have to make sure that they understand your desire of doing things the way you and your spouse have agreed upon. 


Try to hear their side and have their support in important matters, as well. Having this balance of beliefs and the chance to talk freely and openly with each other provides a comfortable environment where everyone can live peacefully and happily.


Schedule a “ME” and “WE” time


No matter how much preparation you employ in your marriage, there will always be hardships along the way. Keeping your relationship healthy during difficulties is still very much possible. Find time to celebrate love and happiness amidst everything. Go out on dates as often as you can and arrange “ME” and “WE” times. Let your in-laws know about it. Always find a way to make sure that your spouse knows that you love him or her.


Stay out of family arguments   


Having the in-laws within the house may result in adapting to the old routine that your spouse grew up in. This may bring issues as you are unfamiliar with those routines and it may be different to what has been agreed upon. While arguments may arise, always remember that it can be avoided through proper communication. If possible, do not to engage in such quarrels. It is one thing to prove your point and another thing to just allow things to pass. You must always be ready to adjust and allow yourself to be taught by the experience.


Have frequent “Family Meetings”


Proper communication resolves all family issues. Keeping the line of communication open while living inside a house with your in-laws can prevent small problems from getting bigger by solving it immediately. Find time to gather as a family whether be at dinner or while watching the television. These meetings will help you talk over important family concerns and settle things together. Through this, everyone will have the opportunity of enjoying a happy and peaceful home. But also, “Learn how to stand up for yourself with compassion for others, deal with stress better, improve your mood, and learn to like yourself.” April Lau, LMHC suggests.


Lastly, the key ingredient in living peacefully with your in-laws and getting away with the stress is the desire to work together. Cooperation and setting aside personal hang-ups can help everyone experience harmony within the home. One way to be close with your in-laws is by undergoing Family Therapy. How much does therapy cost, you ask? If you go to BetterHelp, you will get a great deal on those online counseling sessions – that’s for sure. 


Sexual Disorders

Transvestic Disorder, Sexual Masochism & Sadism Disorder, Female & Male Orgasmic Disorder and Fetishistic Disorder


Knowledge is definitely powerful. In order to battle sexual disorders that can be scary when you know nothing at all, researching about them is the weapon you can wield. 

Transvestic Disorder


Transvestic Disorder is when a person needs to dress in the clothes of the opposite gender in order to be sexually aroused. It can cause severe distress for at least 6 months and influence the person’s social and professional functions. It produces:


  • Behaviors Involving Cross-dressing
  • Intense Sexual Urges
  • Powerful Sexually-arousing Fantasies
  • Transvestic Disorder can also occur together with the following disorders:
    • Fetishism (sexually-aroused by fabrics, garments, or materials)
    • Autogynephilia (sexually-aroused by images of oneself as a female)


Once a person with Transvestic Disorder reaches 5 years without misery, he or she can be considered in remission. “Clients in my practice gain new awareness regarding their difficulties, increase autonomy and authentic ways of being, experience deeper meaning in their lives, and develop healthier and more effective ways of engaging life challenges.” Shawn, Rubin, PsyD also explains.

Sexual Masochism and Sadism Disorder


Sexual Masochism Disorder


Sexual Masochism Disorder refers to being sexually aroused and having strong sexual urges towards acts that include being beaten, bound, or humiliated, and even other acts that could cause suffering to a person. This disorder provides impairment and travail in a person’s professional and social functions. 


One form of the specific disorder that can be under this is Asphyxiophilia, which is the feeling of sexual arousal when being restricted in breathing. 


Sexual Sadism Disorder


Sexual Sadism Disorder refers to the feeling of intense sexual arousal when involved with fantasies and acts that causes physical or psychological suffering or humiliation to another person. It can also cause clinical distress to the person’s social and occupational functions and are applied even to those who acknowledge the said interests – the same with Sexual Masochism Disorder. 

“Some clinicians assume that sexual addictions are driven by an overly active libido that simply has an abnormal level of craving for sexual images and acts. The bulk of those who present with sexual addiction really have more of an intimacy disorder than a sex disorder.”Todd Frye, a clinical sexual addiction specialist

Female and Male Orgasmic Disorder


Female Orgasmic Disorder


Female Orgasmic Disorder refers to the persistent absence or delays in orgasm even when after a normal sexual excitement phase. It can cause interpersonal difficulty and anguish. Also, this disorder would be dependent on the following factors:


  • Adequacy of Sexual Stimulation Received
  • Sexual Experience and History
  • Age


This disorder may be caused, but not exclusively, by substance physiological effects, including drug abuse or medication. 


Male Orgasmic Disorder


Male Orgasmic Disorder or Delayed Ejaculation is the persistent absence or delay of orgasm for men even after a normal sexual excitement phase. Some factors that could influence the delay are:


  • Duration
  • Intensity
  • Age
  • Adequacy in Focus


It can also cause interpersonal struggle and distress and can be caused by direct physiological effects of substance abuse.


Fetishistic Disorder


The Fetishistic Disorder, also known as fetishism, is the feeling of intense arousal when involved with body parts or of non-living objects. Some of the usual non-living objects usually eroticize for fetishes are the following:


  • Stockings
  • Woman’s Underpants
  • Shoes
  • Bras
  • Boots


For people eroticizing body parts, they go for non-genital parts like the hair or feet. And sometimes, both the body part and the non-living object can be used as fetish like feet with dirty socks.


Fetishistic disorder is a multisensory experience like:


  • Holding
  • Tasting
  • Rubbing
  • Inserting
  • Smelling Fetish Object while Masturbating
  • Use Fetish Object during Sexual Encounters




“Like all addictions, the pursuit of sexual gratification can progress rapidly over a period of months or years until the behavior is unstoppable.”  Stanley H. Ducharme, PhD, a clinical psychologist emphasizes. There is now a standard treatment for all of these sexual disorders. What can only be done though is to consult a specialist and journey together towards a structured and customized treatment for the patient. Some also resort to online counselors and search for a therapist near me on their browser. This is also a helpful site in dealing with sexual disorders and other mental health concerns. 


Promising Therapies For Personality Disorders




A personality disorder is a mental health condition that is characterized by deep-rooted patterns of behavior that manifests during adolescence and persists through adulthood. The different behavioral patterns of individuals with PD are believed to be due to a family history of PD and traumatic events that have occurred during childhood, particularly physical and emotional abuse from others and from parents themselves. They have instilled complicated personality disturbances that are difficult to treat. 


“A personality disorder is a deeply ingrained and maladaptive pattern of behavior of a specified kind causing long-term difficulties in personal relationships or in functioning in society” – Nicole Martinez, Psy.D.


Among the several types of personality disorders, the most problematic are those in Cluster B, namely: borderline, antisocial, narcissistic, and histrionic. However, therapies utilized for these personality disorders have been continually polished and improved and have shown promising outcomes on controlling their symptoms. There are other types that are more treatable than others, but here we will discuss the most common and effective therapies that have been utilized for Cluster B personality disorders. 


Therapies That Have Shown Favorable Outcomes



  1. Psychodynamic or Reflective Psychotherapy. This technique entails the individual to think about the negative events that happened to him in the past as he attempts to understand why they happened and how these events have affected their present life. Therapy takes usually longer than the others, and costs more. Guidance from a therapist should help the individual get over his negative adult patterns that have grown in him since childhood. Psychodynamic therapy is individualized. 



“Psychodynamic therapy is insight oriented. In other words, this approach focuses on helping you gain insight into how your early life experiences” – Hannah Goodman, LMHC



2. Dialectic Behavioral Therapy. A type of cognitive behavioral method, DBT aims to help the individual pacify extreme actions and emotions. This begins with one on one sessions and then overlapped with group treatments, where individuals are taught to control their emotions by calming strategies such as mindfulness. DBT is the treatment of choice for people with borderline personality disorders. It is more affordable and takes lesser time than Psychodynamic therapy. 



3. Schema Therapy. The long for this technique is Schema Focused Cognitive Therapy. It utilizes four methods – interpersonal, cognitive, psychoanalytic, and experiential. Dr. Jeff Young, the brains of schema therapy, discovered that individuals with personality disorders have deeply rooted maladaptive behaviors or themes or ‘schemas’, which have existed within them for a long time. These schemas are negative thoughts or emotions about themselves, such as ‘I’m not good enough,’ ‘I’m not important,’ No one will love me,’ or ‘I am useless.’ This method involves first identifying the negative thought patterns that the individual has, followed by teaching the individual how to spot which schemas are currently manifesting. Finally, the individual attempts to change or replace those negative thoughts into positive and healthy patterns. 


4. Mentalization-based treatment. The process of mentalizing or making sense of others or ourselves in terms of physical, emotional and mental states. Individuals with personality disorders, more particularly borderline personality disorder, have difficulty mentalizing, as their mental condition hinders them from being able to appropriately interpret what they think and what others think. The therapist guides the individual into imagining how others feel about his behavior. Sessions take longer than usual as they are more individualized.




5. Social Skills Training. Individuals with personality disorders, specifically paranoid PD, have lost their ability to interpret and comprehend other people’s feelings and they often react inappropriately. Social skills training encourages individuals interact with others and teach them to be more aware of their behaviors and how to respond to them. Treatment is done in groups. 




“Therapy is a lot like other things in life, in that you’ll get out of it what you put in. You’ll need to put in effort to get results.” Sarah Rumpf, MA, LPCC


Experts hope that with these promising therapies, people with personality disorders who are hesitant to come out and receive treatment will be encouraged to have themselves assessed and evaluated. This gamut of mental conditions is believed to be untreatable for life, but overwhelming outcomes from continuing research make us look forward to proving this belief otherwise. 

Low Self Esteem Can Lead To Depression


Self Esteem Defined 


Simply put, self-esteem is a how a person ‘esteems’ himself, or how he regards himself. It is something that each one of us should place importance on because little do we know that when we put ourselves down or think of ourselves as ‘not good enough,’ it has a tremendous impact on how we live and we are going to achieve our dreams in life – or if we are going to ever achieve them. 


High and Low Self-Esteem


Our self-esteem is rooted on the experiences and events that we go through while growing up. It is affected by a lot of things, which are crucial in the way we look at ourselves. When we are praised for being a bright student or a great writer, it bring us pride deep within which clearly resonates outward. When we are chosen to lead a large group of people because they believe in our abilities, we are encouraged to do our best and be at our best because people are depending on us. 


However, when all your friends made it to the Dean’s list and you were left behind or when you think your parents love your older sister more than you because she’s talented and bright, this brings you down and dampens your whole being and you begin to doubt your capabilities, leading to low self-esteem. 


“People with a healthy self-esteem tend to view failure as an event. People with low self-esteem often view failure as fatal. This thought process pummels one’s self-esteem and overtime being a failure becomes their identity.” counselor Monte Drenner


Children who have been physically, sexually or emotionally abused usually have a poor self-esteem, along with those who were bullied or criticized. 


Self-Esteem and Depression


How is poor self-esteem related to depression? 


A specific study was done last 2014 by the researchers from the University of California and University of Zurich. They evaluated the self-esteem of a group of teens between the age of 12 and 16, and then re-assessed them when they were at the age of 35 – two decades after. Most of them were insecure of their physical appearance and their educational background. The results mirrored another study done earlier in 2008, which were alarming. Those teens, which had poor self-esteem, presented with depressive symptoms when they were 35 years old. 


The study proved that self-esteem and depression were essentially linked, and further showed how important it is for parents to nurture their teens and instill in them the value of having high self-esteem. 


Another study done by researcher Julia Friederike Sowislo at the University of Basel in Switzerland revealed how strongly poor self-esteem can lead to depression, although there was weaker evidence that depression reduces self-esteem. According to Sowislo, this only shows that having a low self-esteem should not be taken for granted and one should find ways to build his confidence so that it would not have to lead to a more debilitating condition such as depression. 


“Certain psychological factors put people at risk for depression. People with low self-esteem, who consistently view themselves and the world with pessimism, or who are readily overwhelmed by stress, may be prone to depression.” – Ben Martin, Psy.D. 


Improving Self-Esteem


It is indeed essential for all of us – young and old – to pay attention to the way we see ourselves. Building confidence not only allows us to feel good about who we are but it ultimately improves the way we are mentally, physically and emotionally. It is only appropriate that children should be taught while they are young to value themselves and believe that they unique and have different attributes that make them special. 


“A good way to keep from destroying your self-esteem is by keeping negative self-talk in check. Catch yourself before you go spiraling down the hole of negative thought.” You’ll notice a big difference,” – Cindy T. Graham, PhD.


Adults, on the other hand, should do their part in nurturing the young and taking care of themselves at the same time. Confidence is one of the most important factors in avoiding depression and achieving happiness and success. 

Degree to Depression: What is Post-Graduation Depression?

Have you ever felt so happy yet so empty after that moment you received your degree? Or maybe, you have doubted yourself seeing your fellow graduates finally have their first job or enter in a graduate school? Well, guess what. You are not alone.


You are not the only person feeling that way and what you are going through is real. Post-graduation depression as it is now known. Never heard of it? Don’t worry, a lot haven’t. But, it doesn’t make it unreal as it is. Let me tell you what you need to know about post-grad depression.


What is post-graduation depression?

I still remember that overwhelming feeling of pride and joy when I got up on the stage to receive my diploma while reminiscing my life as a university student. After that day, reality struck. I realized, I just finished. Now, I have nothing for myself. I am no longer a part of anything. This beautiful race of the university life has already ended. There are no more laps to run or rules to follow. No more races to prepare for. Worse, no more finish lines to be excited about because I just passed through one.


“Depression is an illness, an illness that you have little control over, just like any other illness. Nobody tells people with broken bones to get over their pain.” –Charmaine J. Simmons, LPC


All my classmates were either applying for jobs, having their well-deserved vacation or even starting their post-graduate studies. I spent days doing nothing on the internet until I saw someone post something about “post-graduation depression”. Right there, I knew what I was going through and that I may not be as alone as I thought I am.


The Chicago Tribune described “Post-graduation depression” as an unofficial term used to refer to a diagnosis of depression usually caused by instances related to leaving college. It is not an uncommon topic given the number of young adults who go through the experience, but rather, an understudied and under researched topic. 


Why is nobody talking about post-graduation depression?

The reason why people do not talk about post-graduation depression is because we have created a social construct that presents graduation as a celebration. It is a time to be happy because that is how society looks at it. The problem with that is it masks the other side of graduation — adulthood.

What causes post-graduation depression?

Mental Health Daily suggests that what causes post-graduation depression is the change or transition from the life in the university to life as an adult. For so many years, they were supported by friends whom they found in the university. A system serves as a guide of the things that should be accomplished and the things that should come next.


What graduates have to realize is that change overwhelms everyone. Handling change and transition is not easy. There is an ever-present pressure from everyone who looks at graduation as a door to instant success. 


“Mental health disorders are real, significant, and common. We need to do a much better job of looking out for people with depression, educating the public to take them seriously and to understand how important it is to get connected with a licensed mental health professional for help. Because great help exists, if people are willing to seek it out.”Simon Rego, PsyD.


What to do if you are experiencing post-graduation depression?

The difficulty of being a graduate who experiences post-graduation depression is just the same as the difficulty of experiencing other mental health problems. We have to acknowledge these problems the way it makes us feel.  This way, we can keep our minds healthy as we open ourselves up to solutions.

Also, if you have gone through the same experiences, feel free to talk about it. Share awareness so everyone would know the positive and negative sides of graduation. For all we know, we could be adding to the pressure that graduates feel. Post-graduation depression is real and it can be experienced by anyone. 


“Why talk about your problems including mental health challenges? Just talking about your situation to someone can reduce your stress and help you feel better.” -Dr. Aaron Kaplan, PsyD, Clinical Psychologist

Volunteering as a Complementary Therapy


A complementary therapy is usually an alternative therapy or treatment that is in addition to traditional medicine.  How then, does volunteering fall under complementary therapy? If you are feeling unappreciated and maybe sad or depressed because of it, volunteering may be the best therapy/treatment for you.




There are thousands of organizations, groups, communities, etc that are in desperate need of volunteers.  Some of these groups cannot function without their volunteers. You will feel a level of appreciation that you had never known before once you find a volunteering opportunity that you connect with.  You will soon realize that they need you just as much as you need them. Finding the right fit may take a little work, but once you find your match, it will become a great life experience. Understand that “Having few or no supportive relationships can increase the risk of depression in both men and women.” Ben Martin, Psy.D. once said. Therefore, better make take essential effort.




WWW.VOLUNTEERMATCH.ORG:  This is a great website to visit and very user friendly.   You can enter something that you care about and would like to volunteer for and it will come back with a list of organizations in your area that have volunteer opportunities in that specific area of interest.  It also has a great feature where companies can register with the site to get an increase in volunteerism within their company. If it sounds like something you think your company could benefit from, let someone in PR or human resources about it. 


UNITED WAY WORLDWIDE:  This is another great organization where you can look for volunteer opportunities.  You can enter your zip code and it will list volunteer opportunities in your area. Opportunities may include being a Girl Scout or Boy Scout Leaders, hospice volunteers, working with blind individuals, local zoo interpreters, various opportunities to work with children and the list goes on.


AMERICAN RED CROSS:  Everyone knows about the Red Cross and the services they provide in emergency situations.  “Volunteers carry out 90% of the humanitarian work of the Red Cross” (  The Red Cross, obviously, cannot function without volunteers and this is an organization that will make you feel extremely appreciated.


LOCAL CHURCHES:  Some local churches may operate food pantries or provide meals for free.  If they do not offer these services directly, they will surely know of places that need volunteers within their or a nearby community.  If this is a place where you feel a deep connection, there may be other volunteer opportunities within the church itself. “By building a list of people that you trust, with whom you can talk to in times of need, you allow yourself a strong sense of not being alone.” David Klow, a licensed therapist expressed

WWW.VOLUNTEERFOREVER.COM:  If going abroad has always been a dream of yours, this site was voted the 2017 Best Volunteer Abroad Programs, Organizations, and Projects.  Taking a trip of a lifetime AND being able to volunteer can be a very soul-fulfilling, heartfelt trip of a lifetime where you are appreciated.




“The right match can help you to reduce stress, find friends, reach out to the community, learn new skills and even advance your career” (  Wow…did you even consider any of those benefits?  Not to mention, volunteering and helping others just makes you feel good.  Just like the saying “It is better to give than to receive”, volunteering is giving to others.  When you think about it, you actually do receive from volunteering. You receive appreciation, a feeling of accomplishment and maybe a hug or two.   Research has even shown that the more you volunteer, the happier you feel. That is science telling us it good for us! “We only have control of ourselves and our own desire for growth and change. Part of that growth and change is deciding the type of person we allow in our lives, and the positive impact they can have on us.” Nikki Martinez, Psy.D. LCPC said.


You may have gotten into volunteering because you weren’t feeling appreciated, but once you find an organization and a connection, your level of feeling appreciated will multiply infinitely.  Knowing that you are making a difference in someone’s life is one of the greatest feelings you ever have.