If you missed the first half of this post, please click here.  If you’d prefer to start at day one, click here.

Happy Therapist Frank Clayton with SuperBetter Hero Jane McGonigal

To be perfectly honest, I was so excited about my exchange with Jane McGonigal, I had trouble focusing in the next workshop (which I was running late for since I had been stalking Jane).  Too bad too because the talk focused on self-efficacy.  This is not a measurement of how well you can do something, but a measurement of how well you THINK you will do something.  Obviously if you do not think you are capable of climbing from the hole of depression, then that will effect how hard you try (if you try at all).  The presenter was heralded as an expert with so many accolades, the person introducing him had to skip that or there would have been no time for the presentation itself.  He was well-polished with Powerpoint slides popping about every minute.  However, there was virtually no interaction with the audience – not even at the end.  The information itself was well-researched and thorough – TOO thorough.  I am a pretty smart guy but this stuff was even over my head.  I am grateful that I will have the opportunity to later go over the slides again and hopefully be able to better absorb it.  One thing is clear: our self-efficacy is a very important piece of motivation, especially when it comes to happiness.  One thing I did get out of the talk is that self-efficacy can be measured and improved upon. Continue reading Report from IPPA Conference, Day 3.5

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Okay, so maybe I am a bit bias. Maybe even a little more than a little bit bias, but I think you will agree with me by the end of this article: You should get a therapist now, rather than later. Therapy helps people to lead happier more productive lives. I think people wait WAY too long to go to therapy – especially couples. Think of therapy as preventative, rather than something to do once you are on fire. My suggestion would be that you think of going to a mental health therapist the way you think of going to the medical doctor – you go occasionally just to check in an ensure that everything is alright. Another good reason to get a therapist sooner than later is because if there comes a time when you REALLY need to talk to a therapist right away, then you have a therapist in place – someone with whom you are comfortable. Imagine how frustrating it would be to really need therapy and go to someone who is not a good fit for you or (as I have known many to do) spend weeks going through insurance to make sure your therapist is actually in your network. There is even more reason to seek a psychiatrist sooner than later. Right now in Salt Lake City, the wait to see a psychiatrist is THREE MONTHS. If you have even a suspicion that you might need someone to prescribe psychotropic medications, make an appointment now (for more info about psychiatrists, see Doctors vs Therapists) Back to therapy: if you have a job, your employer probably has and Employee Assistance Program (EAP) that allows for three to five FREE sessions of therapy per year. Contact your human resources department and tell them you want the phone number of your EAP. They do not need to know why you are calling. In fact, EAP usually also provides legal and financial counseling as well, so it remains confidential. These EAP companies report nothing to your employer. Of course a regular dose of Happiness 101 couldn’t hurt. There is no charge for the class – it is a gift I give every Monday at 7pm. Click here for the upcoming class schedule.

Frank Clayton
Licensed Professional Counselor

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