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Emotional Leakage

RO DBT posits that many folks are experts at inhibiting emotions, delaying gratification and generally keeping things looking quite perfect.  And this is really important for keeping the world ticking along. But as we say in RO DBT, sometimes you can have “too much of a good thing.”  And a consequence of superior inhibitory control […]

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Being Kind to Perfection

Usually I am a superb driver, but with my sister and my nieces in the car, my level of distraction and excitement is through the roof.  We headed to dinner Sunday night at our favorite burger place and were discussing a store that just closed on the opposite side of the street. I began to […]

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The Purple House: Learning to Forgive Yourself

My favourite colour has always been purple.  When I was in elementary school, living in a boring, grey stucco house, we had a neighbour who in my child’s eyes lived the charmed life.  Not only was her house raised via the slope of the road, it had a robust yard, wonderful views of our street […]

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The Importance of the Question

I love commercials that make an interesting philosophical point. One that aired recently in the United States highlights the value of asking questions instead of making statements. The commercial gives examples of how replacing a period with a question mark makes a difference in the way you think. For example, “Phones are only for making phone […]

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Working Toward Psychological Health: Prioritizing treatment goals based on a definition of psychological health

When working with individuals who have treatment resistant depression and have an over controlled personality style, it’s a challenge to intervene effectively in the multiple symptoms they present. What are the primary goals for successful treatment? Read the entire blog by Karyn Hall, Ph.D., on Psychology Today  

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Yikes, you want me to do what? I’d rather wait until later

Are you the kind of person who gets really excited when a person hands you a gift, you open it immediately, and then you throw your hands in the air with joy over what you got (like my daughter in this picture)?  Or are you are the type of person who sets the gift aside […]

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Overcontrolled is a term that I’ve come to discover describes me well

I was born with a temperament that generally makes me leery of risk taking, I tend to inhibit emotions and impulses and it takes a lot to get me excited about something. Different aspects of my childhood and familial experiences reinforced these tendencies. The result is that I have develop an overcontrolled coping style (something […]

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Learning About Friendship: Lessons from Radically Open Dialectical Behavior Therapy

Recently, my 14-year-old niece was visiting and overheard me talking about Radically Open-Dialectical Behavior Therapy (RO DBT) with my partner: My niece: “What’s RO DBT?” Me: “It’s a therapy I use to help people who suffer from conditions of overcontrol.” My partner, being undercontrolled, pipes up and says: “Your Auntie helps people who don’t know how to make friends.” […]

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Heat on/Heat off

Most people can recall a childhood memory that stands out as significant in terms of pleasure or pain.  For those of us who lean to overcontrolled, we might have superior capacity to remember times that were especially embarrassing or in RO DBT terms, “heat on.”  For me, what stands out is being a grade one […]

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Why Too Much Self-Control Can Be a Bad Thing

Self-control refers to our ability to restrain acting on momentary urges, impulses, and wants in favor of longer-term goals. Who doesn’t want more of that?  Read the entire blog on PsychCentral

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No One Saw It Coming: Out-of-character acts of violence

Have you ever read those newspaper stories about the shy, quiet, caring individual who has killed, sometimes many of their class/work mates, and wondered what makes these people tick?  You are not alone – indeed as a forensic psychologist employed to rehabilitate these individuals, they often have me scratching my head wondering ‘how the hell did they get […]

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How to do self-enquiry: Using a self-enquiry journal

Self-enquiry is a type of mindfulness practice from radically open dialectical behavior therapy (RO-DBT) used to help people learn about themselves and the ways they interact with the world and others around them. For example, you might practice self-enquiry when you find yourself closed – to new information or to someone else’s perspective or to […]

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