Everything You Need to Know About Boundaries - The Art of Living Consciously

  There’s a lot of talk about boundaries in the self-help and mindfulness spheres lately. Some of us don’t set boundaries at all, so a lot of the literature out there can be helpful. But I also see a lot of confusing advice about what boundaries actually are, how to set them, and how to…

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  I probably don’t have to tell you this, but romantic relationships are some of our most challenging relationships.  Why?   Partly because you choose your romantic partner. You don’t choose your parents or siblings or neighbors, but you choose your partner. And the way you choose your partner is not so straightforward as it might…

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How to Accept Criticism Gratefully (or at Least, Gracefully) Part 2

  In the previous article, we discussed the difference between consciously accepting feedback and unconsciously reacting to feedback. But what if you feel the feedback is truly harsh? What if you feel insulted? What if you feel it’s unfair?   Now that you’ve learned the basics of consciousness around feedback, let’s put that to the test…

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How to Accept Criticism Gratefully (or at Least, Gracefully) Part 1 - The Art of Living Consciously

  You were just given some negative feedback, and you’re feeling defensive.  Maybe your boss didn’t like a project you submitted, or your spouse criticized the way you’re dressed, or your mother disapprovingly commented on the way you’re raising your children.   What do conscious vs unconscious responses look like?  This reminds me of Goofus and…

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How to Give Loving Feedback - The Art of Living Consciously

  In my last post, we discussed how to determine whether feedback is warranted. This alone can make a huge difference in improving relationships! So, let’s say you’ve determined that giving feedback in a situation makes sense. How do you deliver it in a kind, loving way? Take ownership of what you’re saying Understand that…

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The Art of Conscious Feedback - The Art of Living Consciously

  “Don’t care what anyone thinks about you!”  Have you heard advice like that? I have, and I think it is an absurd notion. After all, we are social beings. We are wired to care what others think of us.  However, “Care only about what others think about you!” is an equally absurd notion.  So,…

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Why “Winning” an Argument is Impossible - The Art of Living Consciously

  When you get into an argument or conflict, do you try to win?   Do you think that you are right, and the other person is wrong, and if only you could convince them of that, all would be well?   I call this the win-lose mentality, where we want to win and the other person…

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Relationships 101: Why Relationships Are So Challenging - The Art of Living Consciously

  I’ve been a therapist for over 30 years, and there’s one topic I hear about far more than any other: Relationships!   It reminds me of that part in Eat, Pray, Love when Elizabeth Gilbert had a friend who worked in a refugee camp, and all that friend wanted to talk about was relationships. Not the horrors…

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Do you have a good relationship with YOU? - The Art of Living Consciously

  A lot of us don’t acknowledge that we have a relationship with self. I think of this as the invisible relationship, because who’s relating to who?   We tend to have the cruelest relationship with ourselves. We often say things to ourselves that we wouldn’t say to anyone else. “Why did I say that?!” “I’m…

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