Thursday, June 21, 2012

The Fabrication of Reality Among People with Rejection Phobia

I recently wrote about rejection phobia and the impact it can have on people's lives. One of the more tragic aspects of rejection phobia is how self-sustaining the problem can be. In fact, people who are rejection phobic ultimately fabricate their own reality that perpetuates their phobia and can leave them socially isolated. Rejection phobia is always associated with a core belief about the self -- the more common ones being: "I am unlikeable" "I am defective in some fundamental way" "I am unacceptable the way I currently am" Here's the surprising thing about these beliefs -- the person with rejection phobia is often correct in their self-assessment. Put differently, the beliefs they have formed are the most appropriate conclusions to be drawn from their subjective experiences in social situations and relationships. Read the rest at Huffington Post here.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Unwanted Thoughts: Are They Really Dangerous?

Sometimes, while waiting for the subway, I imagine someone getting pushed in front of the train.
Does this sound like someone with good mental health? A patient in need of medication or a good therapist?
Nope. The above quote comes from me -- a clinical psychologist!
It is a line that I often use with a number of clients seeking therapy -- particularly clients suffering from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD).
There may be a few questions swirling around in your head at this point, such as "Why do you tell clients about your crazy thoughts?" or "Hey, should this guy have a license to work with the public?"
However, I bet there are readers who are thinking "Oh thank god, I am not the only one who experiences weird and random thoughts of violence."
Read the rest at Huffington Post here...

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Do You Have Rejection Phobia?

Psychologists often make a distinction between fears and phobias. A fear is an emotional response to a real or perceived threat. Fears are common in the population and are often normal -- or at least innocuous -- reactions to objects or events. For example, many people fear spiders -- they experience a mild to moderate anxiety reaction when they see one.
A phobia is similar to a fear with one key difference: the anxiety they experience is so strong that it interferes with their quality of life and/ or their ability to function. Whereas many people fear spiders, only a small subsection of the population will meet criteria for a spider phobia. People who have a spider phobia often spend considerable time worrying about spiders, spend an inordinate amount of time ensuring they do not come in contact with a spider, and will avoid places and activities in order to avoid spiders.

Read the rest at Huffington Post here.