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3 Ways to Repair a Relationship Rut

Feeling a disconnect between you and your partner? Perhaps even seething with anger and frustration toward him/her? You’ve been hurt or misunderstood. Or perhaps you’ve done the hurting or been misunderstanding. Relationships are full of ruptures – moments or experiences of missing each other on an emotional level. Often we feel wounded by the fracture.  “It’s like he doesn’t even know me!”  “She has no idea how much thought I put into this, and all I get is criticism!”   Get the Right Perspective When a rift occurs, the instinct is to fight, dwell, vent and stew- sometimes to friends and sometimes to our partners directly. Often the more we dig in, the more we prolong and deepen the pain. When emotions run high, it can feel that there is no way out. We decide we can only budge if     . . . read more

Meet Kate!

Big news: New Approaches is growing again! We warmly welcome Kate Roberge, LCSW to the practice. With her incredible knowledge, kind spirit, and genuine compassion, we are thrilled to have her as part of our team. A message from Kate: “My work centers on helping clients in times of transition and loss. I provide compassionate counseling to those affected by changes large and small. Areas of focus include: chronic or terminal illness grief counseling caregiving for loved ones facing illness or aging depression anxiety perfectionism stress management women’s health/perinatal issues. After attending Bowdoin College and earning a Master’s Degree in Social Work at the University of New England, I have worked for several years as a hospice social worker. I am passionate about supporting individuals in managing their life’s challenges with resilience and capacity for positive growth, and am thrilled to have the     . . . read more

The Surprising Thing Authentic People Do (That You Probably Don’t)

Amongst people at dinner parties, networking events, and behind the closed door of my office, I hear, “I don’t want drama. I want honesty. I dislike fakey-fake.” Then invariably I hear this declaration from one of the people I just described, in response to some interpersonal issue they are having: “You know what the problem is? I’m just too nice!”  My response to this statement depends on the audience. If you have the misfortune of being my friend, I drop a (loving) truth bomb on you. Otherwise, I make my point a little more gently and in time. If you’re my blog reader, I’ll tell you like this: No, you are definitely not too nice. You can’t be too nice. What you are actually talking about is being dishonest, cowardly, and part of the problem you say you want to avoid.      . . . read more

The Overwhelm Cure: Using the Positive Power of No

I truly could not be more excited to be offering this workshop, The Overwhelm Cure: Using the Positive Power of “No”. It is designed to make a profound and immediate impact on managing stress and increasing joy by knowing how, when, and why to say “no” (while still being kind). Here are the details:  The Overwhelm Cure: Using the Positive Power of “No” Tuesday, May 24th from 5:30-8:30pm 203 Anderson Street, Portland Feeling overwhelmed by trying to do it all? Wishing there were more hours in your day? Checking all the boxes and still feeling unfulfilled? It’s time to find your confidence by saying “no” without apology.  Don’t wait another day to create time for things that truly matter.   This workshop is right for you if: You say “yes” to things that bog you down and end up feeling resentful.     . . . read more

Love, Process, and Letting Go: What I Learned as My Daughter Made Valentines

“It will take one hundred years!” I said a bit (okay, a lot) immaturely to my 5 year-old daughter mimicking her usual phrase. She wanted to trace, cut out, decorate, and write names on 19 homemade heart-shaped valentines for her nursery school classmates. Wanting to avoid the time, imagined tears of frustration (hers and mine!), and perceived stress, I proposed I at least cut them out. I pictured hearts made with nice smooth scissor edges. That proposal was shot down. I hung out cleaning the kitchen instead, until it was painfully obvious I was not needed at all. Sometime later that afternoon, I was proven totally wrong. Those 19 valentines were done. My heart felt so full seeing them on the table after watching her plug away undaunted by the task at hand. These pieces of paper, which I doubt     . . . read more

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