• Anxiety,  Buddhist Psychotherapy,  Coping Skills,  Mindfulness & Meditation,  Relationships,  Self-Love

    Social Anxiety: How Buddhism Can Help You Cope

    Social anxiety disorder, also known as “SAD”, is a common psychological diagnosis centered on a fear of negative evaluation by others. Social anxiety is not about shyness or introversion, or even a dislike of people of social situations; rather, social anxiety occurs when a person is afraid of being judged by others, because of embarrassing behaviors that person believes he/she will display. Viewed through a lens of Buddhism and Buddhist psychology, social anxiety isn’t a pathological state requiring a clinical diagnosis, but rather, a result of the mind or ego. In Buddhist terms, suffering stems from the mind: from distorted thinking and also from overidentifying with ego, or taking ourselves…

  • Buddhist Psychotherapy,  Coping Skills,  Depression,  Happiness & Well-Being,  Mindfulness & Meditation

    Depression 101: How the Mind Creates Suffering

    The Buddha said many things on our minds and thinking, including “rule your mind or it will rule you” and “nothing can harm you as much as your own thoughts unguarded.” He taught that all suffering stems from the mind and that through practices such as mindfulness, meditation and yoga, we can learn to relate differently to our thoughts (also known in Buddhism as “ego”) and in doing so, find freedom from suffering. Much of what I do in my practice centers around these concepts. Clients come to see me with a variety of mental health challenges – including depression and anxiety, stress and grief, even relationship issues or problems…

  • Buddhist Psychotherapy,  Coping Skills,  Happiness & Well-Being,  Self-Love

    What Is Holistic Psychotherapy?

      The dictionary defines holistic as “characterized by comprehension of the parts of something as intimately interconnected and explicable only by reference to the whole”. When referring to holistic medicine, the definition is as follows: “characterized by the treatment of the whole person, taking into account mental and social factors, rather than just the physical symptoms of a disease.” So a holistic perspective on psychology and psychotherapy perceives suffering and problems of the mind as intimately interconnected to your body. Meaning the state of your mind is influenced by the state of your physical body, and vice versa. Anyone who has eaten too much sugar or struggled with a sleepless…

  • Buddhist Psychotherapy,  Happiness & Well-Being,  Men's Mental Health,  Self-Love

    The Secrets I Know…

      As a therapist, I have the honor of becoming someone’s “secret holder”. I get to peek into other people’s minds and hearts and I am always so humbled by this offering. Each client gives me the gift of witnessing Truth – of seeing the human condition in its purest, most raw form. My clients are brave warriors who have the courage to be vulnerable, to get real with themselves and with me. And through my work, I have the privilege of knowing something so real and so true and so comforting: that we are all the same. I get to hear the same stories and struggles, the same fears…

  • Buddhist Psychotherapy,  Coping Skills,  Mindfulness & Meditation

    Coping Skills from a Buddhist Perspective

    I often talk with my clients about the fact that so few of us are taught coping skills as children. From the moment we are born, we begin to experience pain and distress but we aren’t taught how to cope with things that hurt – not at home, at school or in religious institutions. Rather, we’re told “It’s okay”, “You’ll be alright” and other well-intentioned but often invalidating platitudes when we’re hurting. It’s very hard for a parent to watch his or her child suffer, especially when he or she can’t fix the problem. So we all rush to make it okay – often because of our own inability to…

  • Buddhist Psychotherapy,  Mindfulness & Meditation

    What is Buddhist Psychotherapy?

    Humble Warrior Therapy is a form of holistic counseling rooted in Buddhist principles, techniques and teachings. Blending Western psychology with Buddhist philosophy, Buddhist psychotherapy is an approach in which suffering is understood to stem from the mind, or ego. Therapy based on Buddhist psychology includes practices such as mindfulness and meditation, and teaches us how to work with suffering.   The Buddha taught that our thoughts create our reality; in this sense, the stories we tell ourselves – our “inner monologue” – have the ability to hinder or promote well-being. Our minds take us away from the present moment, and can cause us great distress: through self-defeating beliefs and a…

  • Buddhist Psychotherapy,  Depression

    Depression in Buddhist Psychology

    Depression – in the form of Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) – remains the leading cause of disability among Americans aged 15 to 44 years old. In the recent past, depression was the most common mental health issue in the U.S. (now surpassed by anxiety), and it remains a major problem, affecting tens of millions of Americans annually. While medication can be a helpful and necessary form of treatment, Buddhist psychology takes a different approach when it comes to managing depression. A great deal of Buddhism focuses on the mind and our patterns of thought. When it comes to thinking, the Buddha said “the mind is everything: what you think, you…

  • Buddhist Psychotherapy,  Happiness & Well-Being,  Mindfulness & Meditation

    Staying Present

    A major aspect of Buddhist psychology and psychotherapy is the notion of being present. What does this mean exactly? And why is presence important to our mental health, happiness and overall well being? The truth is, the present is the only moment that exists. Let me repeat that simultaneously incredibly simple and complicated reality: your entire life is happening now. This moment. And it’s always just this moment. The future and the past are illusions created by our minds (or egos, in Buddhist terms). We remember the past through memory and we anticipate the future through imagination…and one of the major traps of the future and the past is the…

  • Buddhist Psychotherapy,  Happiness & Well-Being,  Mindfulness & Meditation

    Inner Peace: How to “Let It Be”

    As a therapist, I’m often asked about happiness, well-being and how to find a sense of inner peace (or if it’s even possible ;)). As a Buddhist psychotherapist, my answer is usually along the lines of “let it be”. But what does this really mean? To just “let go”, let it be, accept things as they are? People often believe that acceptance – or a general attitude of surrender – implies passivity and defeat…that if I accept the circumstances of my life (/depression/marital problems/insert “distress” here), then I am condoning that reality. The truth is actually the opposite. When we stop resisting reality, and cease fighting against whatever is present,…

  • Anxiety,  Buddhist Psychotherapy,  Coping Skills,  Mindfulness & Meditation

    How to Mindfully Relate to Anxiety

    From a perspective of Buddhist psychology, our feelings themselves are never the problem. Emotions such as anxiety have no inherent value to them and yet we often label painful emotions as “bad” or “wrong”. We seem to believe that emotions exist on a dichotomous spectrum, ranging from “good” = happy to “bad” = sad. Feelings, Buddhists say, are like visitors – they come and they go. The key is to learn how to relate to our feelings in a way that isn’t harmful or destructive, and in doing so, find freedom from suffering. Step 1: Use Mindfulness to Detach from the “Story”  In order to understand what we feel, we…