In The Health Benefits of Friendship, I discuss the value of friendships in ways that we may not have recognized.
In Tips for Being of Service in Times of Crisis, I remind us how important it is to be of service as a way to help make sense out of a world that seems, at times, to have gone haywire.
I invite you to visit my new website,
for information and updates about my professional interests, thoughts, and engagements.
I am available to speak to your group or
organization. Please contact me directly at
the Speakers' Bureau at
I appreciate you sharing this newsletter with
your friends, loved ones, and colleagues by
clicking Send to a Friend button
Wishing you health, peace and balance.
The Health Benefits of Friendship
We know that the most meaningful friendships are often reciprocal relationships. You're there for them and they're there for you in times of need, loneliness, life milestones, celebrations, and defeats. It's important to rely on our friends - and have our friends rely on us - to help us tackle major challenges and changes and serve as our support systems. Without them, "getting through" would be so much more difficult.
We know close relationships are important in many ways but what most people do not realize is how good they are for our health. Friends increase our sense of belonging and purpose. They boost our happiness and can reduce the negative effects of stress. Good friends also improve our self-worth, helping us to feel good about ourselves; very often encouraging us to change or avoid unhealthy lifestyle habits, particularly, addictions.
For many of us, making friends and maintaining friendships can prove challenging. Other elements of our lives such as work and family take priority. A friend may move far away and the ease with which we connect diminishes. We may move to a new community and resist meeting new people. It is important to remember that developing and maintaining good relationships takes time and effort, but the investment is definitely worth it.
There are several ways to make new connections and the easiest and most effective is to consider what you like to do and be open to meeting people who are interested in doing similar things. Is it knitting? Traveling? Hiking? Reading? Pet rescue? Music or Dance? Whatever it is, when you participate in a group or club that focuses on your interest, you will meet people, some of whom have a high probability to becoming friends. Volunteer, and/or join a faith-based community. Enroll in a class at your local college or library. In addition, find ways to "reconnect" with old friends on the internet and browse some of the "meet up" sites with those who share your hobbies, interests, or sensibilities.
By taking the initiative to meet and connect with like-minded people, we increase our opportunities for forming and maintaining friendships that will sustain us with people who accept us for who we are. We will also feel gratified when our friends seek our counsel and we can be there for them as they face challenges. Look at the people with whom you spend your time and make an effort to focus on the relationships that have the most meaning to you and then figure out ways to maximize your time with those people.
A Good Daily Habit
Writing Down Our Goals
Sometimes our days get away from us. Interruptions, tasks that end up taking much longer than the time we allotted, distraction, and any number of things, can take us away from our goals. When we review and rewrite our goals we bring ourselves closer to realizing them throughout the day.
When we know what it is we are working toward, we will make wise choices that will help get us to where we hope to be. Writing (or rewriting) our goals helps to clarify what it is we want. When we know that we can figure out the best ways to accomplish it. When we see our goals on paper (or in a file on a mobile device) they becomes more real and we will likely feel motivated to take action and move toward reaching them. Having written goals can help us avoid distraction and stay focused. Pay attention to and write down the progress we are making as we approach our goals. We can use those as markers along our path as we notice and feel good about how far we have come.
You can appreciate the journey and see what you have learned along the way as you recognize how far you have come and how much closer you are to reaching your goal.
|Sanity SaversTM TIPS
Tips For Being of Service in Times of Crisis
Recently this nation has dealt with unthinkable events that force us to reflect on our own lives and what is meaningful to us. Although we may be beyond heartbroken, feeling hopeless and confused by the tragedies that befall innocent people, we must monitor ourselves and our families and friends when it comes to how we are reacting and how much news we watch in the media. Sometimes, we just must turn off the TV, or other news sources (even reliable ones that do not fill time with speculation and rumor), and turn our attention elsewhere.
It is natural and a healthy sign of our humanity that we feel connected to the victims and their families. We feel we honor and pay tribute to them (and their lost or wounded lives) as we listen to the reports by journalists and family members, asking why? How? Sometimes our faith and beliefs are tested.
For many of us, a major goal is to live lives of value and service and we feel driven to serve as a way to counter the ill and evil that occurred.
Monitor your feelings and those of those close to you. It's normal to feel sadness, anxiety, fear, anger or a mix of those emotions, in the aftermath of a tragedy. Trying to understand senseless acts like shootings and covering up sexual molestations while processing the pain they caused, can be overwhelming. Don't hold it in. Talk to a friend, family member, teacher, clergy, or a counselor. Transform the anger into some sort of positive action. Talking about how we feel, reaching out as a way to support victims, can be helpful to our emotional, mental and spiritual well-being; as is reminding ourselves how grateful we are to be safe.
If you are left with feelings of loss, sadness, and helplessness when disaster strikes, commit yourself to some kind of service for others. Contributing is good for you and helps you to heal.
Below I offer a few tips to guide your actions:
Where to Begin? - Tragedies can make us feel as if we cannot make a difference so why try? Begin by moving. Tragedies make it difficult for us to move. Seriously! Moving your body by walking in nature, working out at a gym, doing errands, meeting with friends, can help the initial stages of coping with the enormity of what has transpired.
Connect in the World. - Let the crisis be a catalyst for getting out and giving even if unrelated to the current event. Start small with something that sparks your interest, keep it simple, and let your charitable nature evolve.
Start Simple. - Write a letter to someone in a nursing home, help in a local library, get involved with a cause or political campaign, be a baby rocker in the hospital, play the piano at a rehabilitation center, rake leaves or weed for a home-bound elderly person, cook a meal for your local shelter, help teach children to read. Get the idea?
You'll Reap the Rewards. - Sow seeds of contributing to your community. Make a difference; be a role model for kids. As you become involved you will improve your outlook as well as your physical, mental, and emotional health. You are touching others' lives, and they are touching yours.
Unglue yourself from the news. Don't obsess over situations beyond your control. Maintain your balance and contribute to repairing the world.
TODAY Show (NBC).
Dr. Atkins is a frequent contributor.
Please check website, www.drdaleatkins.com, for latest updates, including changes of time.
Dr. Atkins comments on breaking news for CNN's HLN. Please check HLNtv.com for updates.
July 26 - July 29: Speaker, Inter-generational Family Issues;
Viceroy Hotel, Snowmass, CO.
Volta Voices Cover Story
Connect with Dr. Dale Atkins, written by Susan Boswell. January/February 2012 issue.
Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing.
TC Today Magazine
Dr. Atkins is the focus of Work - Life Balance, written by James Reisler in the December, 2011 issue. A PDF of the article is available on www.drdaleatkins.com.
Topics by Dr. Dale Atkins:
Tips for Getting Along with In-Laws: http://video.about.com/marriage/Tips-for-Getting-Along-With-In-Laws.htm;
Warning Signs of a Troubled Marriage: http://video.about.com/marriage/Warning-Signs-of-a-Troubled-Marriage.htm;
Issues to Deal with before Marriage: http://video.about.com/marriage/Types-of-Issues-to-Deal-With-Before-Getting-Married.htm;
Warning Signs of Cheating Spouse: http://video.about.com/marriage/Warning-Signs-of-Cheating-Spouses.htm;
Tips for Maintaining Interfaith Marriages: http://video.about.com/marriage/Tips-for-Maintaining-Interfaith-Marriages.htm;
Tips for Growing Old Together:
and, Most Important Questions to Ask Before Getting Married: http://video.about.com/marriage/Most-Important-Questions-to-Ask-Before-Getting-Married.htm.
Visit Marlo Thomas' site to access my relationship column and Mondays with Marlo video stream. http://marlothomas.aol.com/search/?q=dale+atkins
Read Dr. Atkins' chapter, "Therapeutic
Issues with Recipients of Cochlear Implants,"
in the new text, Psychotherapy With Deaf
Clients From Diverse Groups, Second Edition.
Edited by Irene Leigh, and published by
Gallaudet University Press.
Read Dr. Atkins' chapter, "Family
Involvement and Counseling in Serving
Children Who Possess Impaired Hearing,"
in the new text, Introduction
to Aural Rehabilitation.
Edited by Raymond H. Hull, and published by
I invite you to visit my website to access archives of articles and interviews on line.
My sincere thanks to website developer, Barry Brothers, who, along with Carina Ramirez Cahan, brought vision and positive, creative energy to the site. Do take a look at Barry's work here: http://www.thelimulusgroup.com/bb and consider him for your business, development, design and communication needs.
|Sanity Savers: Tips for Women to Live a Balanced Life
SANITY SAVERS: Tips for Women to
Balanced Life is filled
with suggestions to save
every day of the year.
A must for any woman
seeking to find her balance!
Once again thank you for continuing to read
and talk about Sanity Savers: Tips for
Women to Live a Balanced Life.
WE CAN ALL ADDRESS THE LITERACY
CRISIS IN THIS
COUNTRY. Jumpstart is a national early education nonprofit organization that pairs well-trained, caring adults with underserved preschoolers who live in poverty in year long mentoring relationships. I was honored to be Jumpstart's Read for the Record's National Spokesperson on NBC's Today Show this past Fall and to have moderated a panel of Jumpstart's founders on February 22nd at the Yale Club in NYC. Jumpstart's Scribbles to Novels www.jstart.org/scribblesnyc, event took place on May 8th at Cipriani Wall Street. We were joined by Wes Moore, Tina Fey (who was interviewed by Gayle King) and other acclaimed and entertaining authors who celebrate the written word and support Jumpstart's programming in the tri-state area and around the country.
Please help to spread the word about the mission of Jumpstart and the remarkable strides being made in low income neighborhoods every day. Please, if you can, contribute by clicking on www.jstart.org/donate
www.jstart.org/donate. There is something that every single one of us can do to help those less fortunate. Over one million children live below the poverty level in the U.S. This shameful situation must change. Each of us has a responsibility to repair our world. Let us eliminate the 2-year achievement gap that exists between children from low income and those from middle income neighborhoods when they begin kindergarten!
to learn more about Jumpstart
initiatives - such as Scribbles to
Novels; Playdate With A
Purpose; and Read for the Record.
"Great difficulties may be surmounted by patience and perseverance."
DALE V. ATKINS Ph.D. is a licensed psychologist,
lecturer and commentator in the media who
on the Today show.
She has more than twenty-
years of experience and focuses on living a
life, parenting, aging well, managing stress,
work transitions, family connections and healthy
Dr. Atkins is the author
and/or co-editor of several books including:
Their Private Thoughts about their Private
Families and their Hearing-Impaired
OK, You're My Parents
Let Go of Anger and Create a Relationship that
Wedding Sanity Savers
Handle the Stickiest Dilemmas, Scrapes and
Questions that Arise on the Road to Your Perfect
book . . .
Savers: Tips for Women to
Find out more....
As Seen on the TODAY SHOW!
Wedding Sanity Savers
How to Handle the Stickiest Dilemmas, Scrapes and Questions that Arise on the Road to Your Perfect Day
You're My Parents
How to Overcome Guilt, Let Go of Anger, and Create a Relationship That Works