Taming the irrational beast called anger

When strong negative emotions kidnap the thinking brain, we become scarcely more coherent than a wild animal

Taming the irrational beast called angerYou may have seen a video recently of a man punching a fellow pedestrian who he felt took his photo without authorization. Once the video was released, the man came forward and apologized for what he called his uncharacteristic behaviour. Whether it’s a result of stress, the state of the economy or a variety of…

How to deal with unreasonable people, and win

It's difficult to deal with idiots but once you recognize the types, you can build strategies to minimize their impact on your life

How to deal with unreasonable people, and winLife is a learning process: what works and what doesn’t; how to behave in public, with family and in the workplace; and especially what sort of people we want to be around and who we’d rather see sent to Mars. Even if it hurts to admit, we’re all guilty of behaving like idiots at times…

Starting the new school year off right

The best way to help your child is by connecting with their teachers and treating them with respect

Starting the new school year off rightNow that school is back in and life is settling into its normal fall routine, it may be a good idea to think about the essential relationship you and your child have with those people responsible for your child’s education: teachers. As a parent, you want nothing but the best for your child. When it…

The trouble with money

We crave, mythologize, demonize and fight wars over money. Why can’t we just treat it with respect and maintain harmony in the home?

The trouble with moneyMy husband and I recently got into a mild argument over finances. It started with calculating costs for a trip east with friends to see a football game. It ended with a tally of summer bills and how on earth they would ever get paid. This happens in countless households. Money – or lack of…

Politics is filled with conflicting opinions, and that’s healthy

Sure, conflict is uncomfortable. But if we’re not exposed to it occasionally, how will we ever get more comfortable being uncomfortable?

Politics is filled with conflicting opinions, and that’s healthySaskatchewan Premier Brad Wall recently announced he was retiring from politics. This news came as a crushing blow to my husband, although neither one of us has ever lived in that province. Why did he take the news so hard? In his opinion, Wall was the last political leader willing to stand up for national…

You choose whether to be happy or miserable

Imagining that someone else has all the luck and opportunity slowly eats away at our mental strength and resourcefulness

You choose whether to be happy or miserableMy daughter has a Facebook friend whose life seems perfect. She lives in a gorgeous house, has a really rewarding career, and she and her family go on all kinds of exciting adventures. No matter where they are or what activity they’re involved in, the whole family appears carefree and joyful! This friend is constantly…

Navigate change and treat it like an opportunity

If we don’t learn how to navigate change, we’re setting ourselves up for a lifetime of stress, anxiety, fear and doubt

Navigate change and treat it like an opportunityMy husband and I recently headed out on a camping trip with some of our new Rotary friends. The weather was hot, we were supporting a great charity and the river was perfect for floating along. I cherish such chances to do something a little different and just be in the moment. When a group…

Expectations shape life experience, so shape your expectations

It's amazing what people feel they can or should be able to control. Getting these assumptions wrong has major effects on our lives

Expectations shape life experience, so shape your expectationsWe can only be disappointed, shocked or delightedly surprised if we were expecting something else. When people disappoint themselves or are disappointed by others, we can ask: What exactly was the expectation? The answer tells us how the person feels their life ought to be or how they think things should go. My daughter is…

On the road to travel trauma? How to find a better route

When things aren’t going quite according to plan, breathe. No one likes travel stress, but sometimes we create our own problems and cause unnecessary delay

On the road to travel trauma? How to find a better routeJust when did we all become so sensitive and overreactive to situations beyond our control? Recently, my husband and I travelled to San Diego for a surprise birthday and anniversary party. The weekend was a ton of fun as we connected with family we haven’t seen for a long time. However, the travel was filled…

Managing boundaries without emotion or nasty payback

We’re often reluctant to establish a line when dealing with others because we don’t want to be seen as difficult. So instead we stew in our anger and resentment

Managing boundaries without emotion or nasty paybackHave you ever lived near or worked with someone who seemed to have a problem respecting personal space? About 15 years ago, a neighbour decided he wanted to build a garage. There was a tree on his property line that he didn’t want to take down, so he figured he would just appropriate needed space…