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Beyond Postpartum: The Surprising Benefits of Being a Mom

Writer and mother extraordinaire, Lynn Shattuck, recently wrote a great piece for her blog reflecting on her postpartum experience. It was hugely popular because it hit home for many women. It brought back some memories for me, too. It took me a few weeks to regroup emotionally from having a baby in the middle of a dark, cold winter. In the thick of it, I was more exhausted, anxious, and vulnerable than I had ever been. In my worst moments, I worried about everything from dropping the baby, to falling down the stairs, to forgetting her altogether. Who had entrusted the care of this helpless creature to me anyway? Didn’t they know that I occasionally tripped and misplaced things?! I was worn down like all new moms. In the hardest hours, sparks of worries kept me tired and wired in     . . . read more

Curiosity and Relationships

Note from Hannah: This is a guest post by Portland therapist, Bonnie Dunn, LCSW. It’s part of the New Perspectives series where writers give us their take on emotional wellness and the human experience. In honor of July 4th, Hannah did a post about Freedom.  Her last line was:  “Freedom is a stance of curiosity, experimentation and play”.   I’m pretty sure Hannah was referring to that healthy curiosity about life and people, and for the record, I think she’s right about how important it is.   But sometimes, showing curiosity about other people is seen as invasive, an intrusion into a person’s privacy. Don’t get me wrong – we’re a society that was built on a person’s right to personal freedom and privacy – our famous “right to remain silent” that protects us from the prying of others.  And that’s a     . . . read more

Assertiveness

  Assertiveness is… caring about a situation, cause, one’s self, or a relationship enough to speak or take action when needed. preserving one’s integrity, duty, connection, or worth. well-intentioned words or actions for the benefit of truth, justice, fairness, safety, well-being, or connectedness. exercising a human right to set and maintain boundaries, which are the basis of healthy, functional relationships. a respectful exchange of words, ideas, or actions that leads to a productive outcome. validating the feelings of all involved even when there is discord and disagreement. using skillful communication to motivate others to listen and respond appropriately. In short, assertiveness is a way of communicating that allows us to have authentic, connected relationships and a thoughtful, effective response to disagreement, discord, difficulty, and disregard.   Want to learn more about assertiveness? The Women’s Mini-Workshop on Assertiveness is this Thursday     . . . read more

Assertiveness for Women Mini-Workshop

Clear and Kind: Assertiveness for (Nice) Women Mini-Workshop at Hannah’s office 203 Anderson St. Portland, Maine Thursday, July 18th 2:30-4pm Learn to speak in ways that people will listen. Will use real-world examples. Cost is $30 and you can sign up by emailing at [email protected] ****I will run this if I can get 4 participants signed up by Monday the 15th**** I’m going to be trying to run some of these mini-workshops in the next few months on different topics so stay tuned. Let me know if you have any interest or requests for specific topics.

The Requirements of a Life in Transition

Every time my toddler learns something new, like amazingly-awesome new, she can’t sleep very well. She rolls around for an hour in her crib before falling asleep or gets up in the night and just looks around, sometimes for hours. It happened when she learned to crawl, walk, walk outside, say words, form sentences, talk in paragraphs, and use the potty. Small children provide clues into basic human nature. What my daughter is showing is that life transitions, these big changes, have an impact. They take work and energy to process. We need time and space to make the shift. Adults don’t have to make as many changes as kids. We also don’t seem to be as graceful at growing. Therefore, we may struggle even more under big life changes. It’s easy to forget that even positive changes are stressful.     . . . read more