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Emotions and Feelings

5 ways to build lasting self-esteem

Reading:

Everyone is in favor of high self-esteem — but cultivating it can be surprisingly tough. Psychologist Guy Winch explains why — and describes smart ways we can help build ourselves up.

Many of us recognize the value of improving our feelings of self-worth. When our self-esteem is higher, we not only feel better about ourselves, we are more resilient as well. Brain scan studies demonstrate that when our self-esteem is higher, we are likely to experience common emotional wounds such as rejection and failure as less painful, and bounce back from them more quickly. When our self-esteem is higher, we are also less vulnerable to anxiety; we release less cortisol into our bloodstream when under stress, and it is less likely to linger in our system.

Live-in Relationship VS Marriage

A man is opposite to a woman only on the physiological level. In no other way are they opposite. But we have made such a big issue of it. It is a simple difference nature has made for the perpetuation of the race but because this need is there within you, and because you have a few more sensibilities and stronger emotions compared to an animal, we institutionalized our sexuality. That is what marriage is. And because we have to nurture our children and bring them up, unless there is a committed atmosphere, it is not going to happen properly. So we created this institution of marriage so that your sexuality and caring for progeny is also handled, and children grow up in more stable atmospheres.

How to make separation (divorce) less painful?

Reading:

Seeing your parents divorce is hard for any child, young or old. After all, the family unit as they know it may be changing overnight. By giving them the right emotional and mental support you can help them emerge stronger from the experience. Here’s what you need to know. When you and your spouse separate, it has emotional and mental fallout for your kids too. Children experience a sense of loss, anxiety, fear of abandonment, anger, and even guilt that they may somehow be responsible. From stranger anxiety to irritability and anxiety in smaller kids to slipping grades and behavioral issues in teens, every age group handles divorce differently. It isn’t going to be easy, but, fortunately, there’s plenty you can do to make it less painful. Start with some simple but effective steps that’ll help you approach the situation better. 

The Recipe for a Happy Marriage

The English expression, “Falling in love,” is significant because you don’t rise in love, you don’t fly in love, you don’t walk in love, you don’t stand in love. You fall in love, because something of who you are has to go. It essentially means someone else has become far more important than yourself. Only if you don’t think too much of yourself, you can be in love. When what you consider as “me” falls, a deep experience of love can happen within you. If your marriage is just a bundle of expectations about how to extract happiness out of someone who should make heaven for you, you will be disappointed. They say marriages are made in heaven. They say that because most people created a hell out of their marriage! If your relationship is about extracting something out of someone, it does not matter how much you manage, there will be constant trouble. But if your relationship was an offering to the other person, then everything would be fantastic.

Is Empathy Overrated?

Reading: While it may result in tremendous good, empathy can also be narrow, biased and surprisingly insensitive, argues psychology professor Paul Bloom.

Does empathy make the world a better place? It certainly looks like it. After all, empathy drives people to treat others’ suffering as if it were their own, which then motivates action to make the suffering go away. I see the bullied teenager and might be tempted initially to join in with his tormentors, out of sadism or boredom or a desire to dominate or be popular, but then I empathize — I feel his pain, I feel what it’s like to be bullied — so I don’t add to his suffering. Maybe I even rise to his defense. Empathy is like a spotlight directing attention and aid to where it’s needed.

Positive Thinking: Is it something we all need to learn?

Why pessimists have a reason to be cheerful

Whatever explains Japan’s chart-topping life expectancy, it isn’t being really chipper all the time

For critics of positive thinking like me, as well as for plain old curmudgeons (also like me, to be fair), it’s an awkward truth that an optimistic outlook does seem to lead to a healthier life. Scientists, with their annoying fixation on facts, have published study after study suggesting that an upbeat attitude protects you from cancer, heart disease and stroke. In one big analysis of American women, the most optimistic were 29% less likely to die, during a six-year follow-up, than the least; in another, involving men too, people with positive views of ageing ended up living longer.

Do we need psychologists?

Bosses should be sent on mental health courses to stop employees becoming stressed and depressed, claims major study as expert reveals tips to make you happier at work

  • Employees reported 18% less sick days if their manager went on the course
  • Hectic workloads can often lead to poor mental health - resulting in sick days
  • The world-first University of New South Wales research is dubbed 'promising'

Jealousy, Prejudice and Discrimination

Reading: Jealousy, Prejudice, and Short People

Short people tend to be more prone to feelings of inferiority and jealousy, a recent study concluded. The researchers polled more than 500 Dutch and Spanish of both sexes in an effort to determine which characteristics made people uneasy with romantic competitors. They discovered a number of universalities, realizing that men and women viewed money, strength, looks, and charm as threatening. However, feelings of unease and nervousness diminished the taller a person's stature. Jealousy was exacerbated in short people.

Psychological Boundaries

Reading:

Boundaries define where we end and other people begin, both physically and emotionally. Psychologically, they define a space we see as our own, separate from other people. When we are in love or feel very close to another person through friendship, collaboration, or special circumstances, boundaries may get blurred, as we see ourselves not as separate from them. However, even then boundaries continue to be an important piece of our emotional health.

Is envy eating us alive?

Reading:

Is Envy Eating Us alive?

Have you ever been in the situation of seeing someone you perceive as an equal succeed beyond their – and your – wildest dreams? Have you ever struggled to understand how they did it, given that they are, according to you, no more talented or skilled than you? If the answer to these questions is yes, you have likely struggled with the painful feeling of envy.

Introverts and extraverts

  1. Are introversion and extraversion inherited qualities?
  2. In what age does the type of personality peep?
  3. Is it possible to be an extravert and introvert simultaneously? Can we get more introverted or extraverted if we want?
  4. What are the qualities that determine an introvert?
  5. What are the qualities that determine an extravert?
  6. What type of personality could you attribute yourself to and why?
  7. Can you determine personality type of any person by his behavior?

Mood, Feelings and Emotion

Questions for discussion:

  1. Do you express how you feel or do you keep it in?
  2. What makes you happy?
  3. What is one of your happiest memories?
  4. Can money buy you happiness?
  5. Do you like to watch comedies?

Pride

Questions for discussion:

  1. What is pride?
  2. Are you proud of your country?
  3. Do you feel more pride in yourself or in others?
  4. Are you proud of your heritage?
  5. Do you think you were always a source of great pride for your parents?

Body Language

Questions for discussion:

  1. Why do you think body language is important?
  2. How do you use body language in your daily life?
  3. How does body language help you to communicate?
  4. How does your native culture use body language?
  5. What kind of body language do you use at school, University and work place?

The red hot business of divorce celebration

The red hot business of divorce celebration

By Barbara Balfour

After finalising a painful divorce Wendy Lewis decided there was only one way to celebrate - by blasting her wedding dress with a machine gun. To get the job done the newly divorced American gathered her female friends - and the dress - and flew to Las Vegas, Nevada for a long weekend.

Generation Gap-Part II

1) Are people from the "older" generation always more wise and correct
in their ways of thinking and choices? Why or why not?
2) Do you ever disagree with your friends/parents/relatives/grandparents about topics such as music, style and values?
3) Is it possible for parents and children to be friends? Or for
people of different generations to be friends?
4) What influences the styles, values and interests of a generation?
How long is a generation?
5) What is an example of a time you and your

Generation Gap-Part I

1) What is a generation gap?
2) Have you ever felt a generation gap with your friends?
3) How do you over come the generation gap?
4) When do you feel the generation gap the most? Is it possible to
overcome a generation gap?
5) At what point in life does the generation gap seem to be the largest?
6) Do you think you can be a better parent than your own parents in future?
7) Do you think it is OK to date or marry someone of a different
generation to yourself, either older or younger?

Feelings that drive us crazy

Questions for discussion:

  1. Do you get annoyed when other people display bad manners? Could you give some examples?
  2. Do you get annoyed when someone cuts in front of you when you are waiting in line?
  3. Do you get angry when politicians make promises they can't keep?
  4. Do you get annoyed when you watch the news on TV and see all the terrible things happening in the world?
  5. Does it annoy you when shop assistants try to sell you things you don't need?

Сhildhood. Are we similar to our parents?

1. How are you similar to your parents? How are you different?

2. Were your parents super protective?At what age could you go
places by yourself? Did your parents always tell you what to do?

3. Did you play outside? What did you like to play? How long did you
play outside a day? Could you play outside all year long?

4. Did you play on the streets? Was it dangerous to play in the streets? What kind of things did you do in the streets? Did you ever have an accident while playing in the streets? What happened?

Mars and Venus Today

  1. Why do we say men are from Mars and women are from Venus?
  2. Why men and women are different when it comes to communicating with each other?
  3. Why relationships became so complicated in the modern world?
  4. How can women make mens life different and vice versa?
  5. Why women are more verbal than men?
  6. Did God make a mistake? Did he "mess up" the master design of sex by making a us so diverse? Does he sit up in heaven and laugh that we can't seem to please each other?

International Dating & Marriage

1.Would you marry someone of another nationality?
2.Are your parents of the same nationality?
3.What are some advantages of an international marriage?
4.What are some disadvantages?
5.Do you want your husband to know how you looked as a child? Why or why not?
6.Do you believe that having a permanent love between two people who are living in two different countries is possible?

Awkward situations

Hi, my name is Jose and I'm excited to meet you on Tuesday for our next conversation! Have you ever been in an awkward situation when you fell as if you're between a rock and a hard place? We'll be discussing awkward situations on Tuesday!

Questions for discussion:

  1. When was the last time you were in an awkward situation?
  2. What happened and how did you handle it?
  3. Have you ever been rejected by a crash (a person you REALLY like)?
  4. Have you turned someone down?
  5. Have you been denied a kiss?

Annoying Things

Questions for discussion:

  1. What annoys you about living where you live now?
  2. What annoys you about taking trains to work?
  3. What annoys you about driving a car?
  4. What annoys you most about living at home with your family?
  5. Does it annoy you when people kiss in public?
  6. Do you get annoyed when someone cuts in front of you when you are waiting in line?
  7. Does smoking bother you?
  8. Do you get annoyed when other people display bad manners? Could you give some examples?

Dreams

Questions for discussion:

  1. Do you usually remember your dreams? Why or why not? Could you describe some of them?
  2. What was your nicest dream that you can remember?
  3. Could you talk about the most recent dream you can remember that you have had in the past?
  4. Have you ever woken up from a dream "in a cold sweat"?

Encouragement

Questions for discussion:

  1. What do you do to encourage yourself when going through hard times? Does it work?
  2. Who do you talk to for encouragement and inspiration?
  3. What books offer encouragement and inspiration?
  4. Which of your family members encourage you most? How?
  5. How can discouragement help us to grow?
  6. What do you do when you feel depressed?
  7. What could someone do to encourage you when you feel depressed?
  8. What are some saying in your country that bring encouragement?

To Live and Survive in the Office

1. Do you believe that in the office there are sharks, donkeys, jackals and other animal-prototype employees? What kind of workers do you notice in your office? In which spheres you can find them in abundance?

2. What are the skills/traits of character that annoy you most in your colleagues? What do you like in your colleagues? What kind of colleagues do you ignore? What type are those colleagues?

3. How to survive in a company: common rules and general practices?

Dealing with stress

Questions for discussion:

  1. Let's find the defenitions of stress, a stressful situation, a stress-resistant person.
  2. What causes stress for you?
  3. How can you resist getting emotionally involved into a stressful situation?
  4. In which situations is it easy for you to avoid stress?
  5. What helps you pull together when you get into a stressful situation like when somebody is being shouted at in your presence?
  6. Do you know any techniques how to resist stress, when you are among the people who are stressed?

Happiness

1. How can you describe happiness? What is it related to or what does it depend on?
2. Do you think the same things can make people happy at different ages?
3. Is it true that only simple things make one happy? Can happiness be unconditioned? What makes happy you?
4. What's the opposite state of happiness? Is there a big gap between being happy and unhappy?
5. Can you be happy when somebody close to you is not?
6. Can happiness be long? How can you prolong it?
7. Why some people are happy all the time and others very rarely?

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