The tendency to make our world into “black or white,” “right or wrong,” “worthwhile or worthless” is rampant and is linked to high rates of anxiety and depression. So why do people do it, then? Well:
We’re hard-wired for fear.
We do not get taught tools to effectively name, accept, and manage fear.
When I work with participants (remember, I don’t say patients) of any age, I talk about the acceptance of living in the gray – and it’s all gray. I challenge people to accept that all reality is gray, and instead of clinging to a manufactured concept of “certainty,” perhaps it would be more effective to learn how to manage the anxiety that naturally comes from the “I don’t know.” That we’re all just bumbling around in life, making our best educated guess about everything...and that’s ok. Yeah, that takes time and a lot of hard work and listening to each other. And while we’re doing this existential-level work, we also need to accurately identify how we currently self-medicate our emotions until we have those tools to manage them head-on.
- J.J. Kelly, Holy Sh*t, My Kid is Cutting!
Click on the link below and visit her "Record a Question" page to receive free therapeutic feedback, and a copy of "Holy Sh*t, My Kid is Cutting!"