Insights from Atlanta Counselor Bill Herring, LCSW, CSAT

Bill Herring photo

Over the years I've enjoyed writing little essays and observations about a variety of topics related to personal growth, emotional development, relationship enhancenment and other topics I find meaningful and interesting. I hope you enjoy them! 

You can read small snippets of each blog post below: click the title of any that interest you to read the entire post.  Each entry has also been loosely grouped into categories which can help guide your viewing.

Better Is Better Than Best

I've previously discussed the concept that "progress works backwards", meaning that growth toward a desired goal generally happens in incrementally improving stages. I find a lot of hope in the idea that what initially seems like "failure" is more productively viewed as useful feedback on the path to ultimate success. A related philosophy is the idea that "better is often better than best". This may initially seem to be a confusing and contradictory statement, but the idea is actually both simple and comforting.

What's Your Emotional Color?

We all at times feel sad, anxious, or angry. Although these are normal human emotions, they can cause difficulties for people who have a hard time regulating or managing them. (Regulating an emotion is the ability to modulate its intensity, much like adjusting a volume control, while managing an emotion is the ability to respond appropriately to its different intensities, much like a surfer who is able to ride many types of waves.)

The Most Important Play in Sports

What's the most important play in all of sports? The touchdown? The home run? The hole in one? Any sport or game has certain moves or plays that are crucial for a victory, but under all circumstances the most important play of all is......

Ham and Eggs

People who come to see me for help with personal problems soon learn that I am fond of metaphors and analogies.  It's both the way I think, and I've learned over the years that the human brain works best not just when using words but also when it has images that it can utilize to take a leap forward in understanding a concept.

This is why I've developed an extensive collection of what I call "therapeutic metaphors".  These are generally images, stories, parables or even jokes that highlight a point that can be useful in helping a person deal with some vexing problem.

A Useful Definition of Intimacy

It's common to think that intimacy means two people feeling emotionally close to one another, or sharing private time together, or being sexual with each other. But the truest possible act of intimacy is to invite another person to look into your heart and mind. The act of revealing your truest and deepest feelings -- the hopes, doubts, fears, joys, sorrows and all the other rich details of your inner life -- is what constitutes the basis of all real intimacy.

Stop Lying.

One of my Atlanta counseling and psychotherapy specialities is to help people who have a problem with chronic infidelity and sexual deception.  This kind of behavior happens for many different conscious and unconscious causes.  Even though there is no single reason for this kind of behavior, if I had only one piece of advice and 10 seconds to give it, it would be this:

Stop lying.  Forever.  About anything.    

Be Thankful for Painful Consequences

As much as they hurt, sometimes there is reason to be thankful for painful consequences.

Every action (and even inaction) has an effect. This seems pretty straight-forward, right? Yet all too often we want to avoid experiencing negative consequences for what we did or didn't do. The result of this avoidance is that we are much less likely to learn from our mistakes.

Are You Walking a Maze or a Labyrinth?

On the grounds of my Atlanta psychotherapy and counseling office is a secluded walking labyrinth. Many people find that walking a labyrinth before or after a counseling session can be a helpful way to reflect and meditate upon important insights and emerging emotions.

Filed under: 

How Do You Paint a Flower?

 

People who appreciate art know that the same image can be viewed in many ways. Van Gogh, Rembrandt or Picasso will depict the same flower very differently. Is any one of them "wrong"? Of course not. Each artist reveals some essential aspect of that flower's beauty. This simple statement holds some wisdom for relationships.

The 20-60-20 Rule for Maintaining a Positive Attitude

It's no big news to say that some days are better than others. There are times when nothing goes as planned as well as periods when everything seems to fall into place just the right way. It's my conviction that how we handle the challenging times in our life goes a long way in determining our overall happiness.

Filed under: 

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - blogs