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Intuitive Eating – another fad? Or something more…

Intuitive Eating – another fad? Or something more…

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You may have recently heard the words “Intuitive Eating” or “Mindful Eating” in the news, on social media, or in a post on your favourite blog. The Globe and Mail even wrote a lengthy article in early January stating that intuitive eating is the new “non-diet” of the year. But what exactly is intuitive eating, and can it really help you improve your relationship with food and your body?

Intuitive eating is an approach to eating that shifts away from rules, rigidity around eating, and dieting. It encourages listening to your internal cues for hunger and responding by eating food that you enjoy and that makes you feel good both physically and emotionally. We have now seen that intuitive eating has been shown to improve both our physical and psychological health over the long-term (Bacon, 2010; Van Dyke & Drinkwater, 2014). If intuitive eating doesn’t sound all that fancy, it’s because it isn’t. Intuitive eating is essentially a much-needed back to basics approach, where we are encouraged to focus on our individual needs and preferences as a guide to developing a balanced relationship with food. You won’t find any “good” or “bad” foods in this approach, nor will you be encouraged to cut certain items out of your routine. The idea here is to stop looking outwards for a diet guide on how to take care of your body, and to begin looking inwards to better figure out what YOU need to feel good.

A good parallel here is when you think of an infant’s relationship with food. Infants cry when they’re hungry, and typically slow down their feeding when they’re full. Then they cry again when they’re hungry, and the cycle continues. Infants don’t ask themselves “how many calories are in my milk?” or “I can’t be hungry yet, I just ate!” or even “the other babies aren’t eating this much, why am I?!” – they simply listen to their bodies, feed when they’re hungry, and stop when they’re full. Pretty cool, right? Unfortunately, between infancy and adulthood, we’re inundated with messages about what we should or should not eat, how we should or should not look, and how anything less than the “thin ideal” or a “clean diet” is ground for shaming ourselves and others. As a result, we’ve naturally lost our inner compass, our inner guide that helps tell us what we need and want to feel satisfied.

Essentially, you and only you can tell yourself what your body needs, and it’s time to start listening.

So, how do we go about transitioning from focusing on external cues for eating to focusing on our internal needs? The following is a brief guide that will help you begin your intuitive eating journey, alongside some helpful reading recommendations to dig deeper into this subject.

Step 1: Learn to accept our bodies as they are, let go of diet culture

  • This is a really difficult step, and yet it’s essential. Letting go of thin ideals and shaming our bodies allows us to not only feel more connected and comfortable in our skin, it also lets us stop trying to control our eating behaviours with the goal of shrinking our bodies. If we can accept our bodies as they are, food can become about meeting our needs and experiencing pleasure, as opposed to an attempt to control and punish our bodies under the guise of ‘health’. When we try to use food to control our body size, i.e. when we try to diet, we have to retain that level of restriction in order to keep pushing down our weight. There is no freedom to ask ourselves what do we like, what are we in the mood for, how much would we like to enjoy? Instead, we are focused on “what am I allowed to eat?” in order to maintain this control. This approach ultimately backfires for most people as well, resulting in binge eating in an attempt for our bodies to finally feel that their needs are met. For these reasons and more, letting go of diet culture and accepting our bodies is crucial.

Step 2: Start getting curious about your personal hunger cues

  • We spend so much of our time assuming we should or should not eat because of the time of the day, because of what others are doing, or because of what we have eaten previously. None of this is focusing on what our body is asking for, so start by simply being mindful of your bodily cues for hunger. Do you feel a growl in your stomach? Do you suddenly have fantasies about different meal options? Does your concentration decrease slightly?

Step 3: Ask yourself what it is you’d like to eat.

  • What are you in the mood for? What do you have available? There is no right or wrong answer here, only you know what you’d like to eat!

Step 4: Eating mindfully.

  • Try to slow down, taste the flavour, the texture, and the temperature of your food. Notice how your pleasure for certain flavours changes throughout the course of your meal. Check in with your fullness cues. Are you feeling full half way through your meal? Are you still hungry at the end of your meal? Use these cues to guide yourself in either slowing down and finishing your meal or adding an extra snack to ensure that you’re satisfied.

Step 5: Be compassionate, non-judgemental, and flexible with yourself

  • Each meal is a learning opportunity. Sometimes we don’t feel full during a meal but then feel stuffed 30 minutes later. This helps us learn for the next time that we might need a little bit less of this specific recipe, or that we want to eat more slowly in the future. There is no “bad” or “good” way of doing this, it is simply a curious and open learning experience each time.

  • There are often reasons that we eat that are independent of our fullness cues, such as when a meal is really delicious and we’re willing to feel extra full in order to keep enjoying it, or when we know we’re only going to have a small window to have a meal during our workday. All of these situations are part of the fabric of intuitive eating. The idea is not to do this “perfectly” – in fact, that’s the exact opposite of the idea. The goal is simply to start becoming more curious about what your body needs and why it’s asking for what it needs in any given moment.

  • Become curious about other reasons that we might be eating, such as to hold onto pleasure, push back boredom, or cope with difficult emotions. These different motivations for eating are not problematic, they’re simply worth noticing. If we’re eating for reasons that are unrelated to our hunger and energy needs, then we might wish to expand on other ways to have those needs equally met, so that we have options in the future.

Ultimately, intuitive eating is about finally allowing yourself to accept and celebrate your body, and beginning to re-acquaint yourself with your inner guide for how to strengthen your relationship with food.


Tobey Mandel is a clinical psychologist in Westmount, Montreal, Quebec, at Connecte Montreal Psychology Group. The team at Connecte loves writing about ways to boost our mental health and bring psychology into our everyday lives. For more helpful tips, check out Connecte’s blogspodcast, follow @connectepsychology on Instagram or like us on Facebook.


References

Van Dyke, N., & Drinkwater, E. J. (2014). Relationships between intuitive eating and health indicators: Literature review. Public Health Nutrition, 17, 1757-1766.

Gagnon-Girouard, M. P., Bégin, C., Provencher, V., Tremblay, A., Mongeau, L., Boivin, S. Lemieux, S. (2010). Psychological Impact of a "Health-at-Every-Size" Intervention on Weight-Preoccupied Overweight/Obese Women. Journal of Obesity, pii: 928097. doi: 10.1155/2010/928097

Tribole, E., & Resch, E. (2012). Intuitive eating: A revolutionary program that works. Third Edition. St. Martin’s Press.

Bacon, L. (2010). Health at every size: The surprising truth about your weight. Dallax, Texas: BenBella Books, Inc.

Romantic Relationships: What’s self-esteem got to do with it?

Romantic Relationships: What’s self-esteem got to do with it?

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When seeking a romantic relationship, we are often encouraged to focus on what we’re looking for in a partner. Do they need to be funny? Kind? Tall? Smart? Are we hoping they’re going to be older, younger, of similar or different backgrounds? Do they have similar life aspirations? Of course, it is helpful to use our values to guide whether we may connect well with a potential partner; however, this mindset often shines the light on the partner’s qualities or values, and shines the light away from what we bring into a relationship. We each not only bring our own special quirks, we also bring in more significant characteristics like our core beliefs (see Maeve’s blog), attachment styles (see Simcha’s blog), and self-esteem. All of these can relate to how we perceive and experience our relationships, and thus it is crucial that we better understand how these impact our view of our partner and relationship in order to make choices that best serve our well-being.

Self-esteem has been shown to relate to relationship satisfaction in both the short- and long-term (Sciangula & Morry, 2009; Orth et al., 2012; Enrol & Orth, 2013). Essentially, what this means is that how we feel about ourselves impacts how we feel about our partners and our relationships. This dynamic can play out in a number of ways, so let’s consider a few examples:

Example 1:

Max, who has high self-esteem, begins dating another individual. Max soon begins to feel that his new partner does not prioritize his needs or make efforts to connect with him, so he may choose to not continue in the relationship because he recognizes his own self-worth and understand that this new partner is not valuing him appropriately.

Example 2:

Olivia, who has lower self-esteem, begins dating someone who does not make time for her or consider her thoughts and feelings. Olivia, however, assumes that she is the problem, that she is not ‘good enough’ and that it makes sense that her new partner is not valuing her as a result. Olivia then chooses to stay in the relationship even though her partner is not behaving in a way that indicates a healthy long term relationship.

Example 3:

Olivia, who has lower self-esteem, begins a relationship with someone who treats her well. At first, she finds this experience positive and enjoyable. However, as time goes on, she begins to grow concerned that there must be something wrong with her partner if they are interested in her. She doubts that she would interest someone who is kind and respectful. So, she begins to look for flaws in her partner and their relationship in order to make sense of the situation. This tendency puts strain on the relationship, creating distance and disconnection in an otherwise healthy and respectful relationship. 

Example 4: Max, with high self-esteem, finds himself in a positive and caring relationship. He trusts that this makes sense and is in line with what he deserves, and thus he is able to allow himself to enjoy the relationship and be vulnerable with his new partner.

As you can see, our self-esteem can serve as the lens through which we view our partner. When we struggle with low self-esteem, we may be more likely to seek relationships that do not promote mutual respect and care. We may also be likely to reject relationships that are in fact healthy (Murray et al., 2001)! So, what can we do about this dynamic?

Step 1: Notice the lens!

In order to make a change, we must first notice that we are projecting our own self-worth onto how we see the relationship. Once we do that, we can then begin to figure out what we can do differently to take care of our needs rather than settle in or change the relationship.

Step 2: Work to improve self-esteem.

Aim to increase self-esteem in order to address the underlying cause. Self-esteem can be modified in a number of ways, including:

  • Recognizing the ‘inner critic’ (see Lisa’s blog) and learning to notice and challenge or let go of these unhelpful thoughts
  • Treat yourself as you would a good friend, imagine speaking to yourself gently and with respect and care (see Andrea’s blog on self-compassion)
  • Work toward personal goals that align with your values
    • By taking actions to help us move towards the things that we care about, we can begin to feel good about the choices we’re making and the impact it’s having 
  • Challenge your beliefs about your self-worth (see Maeve’s blog)
  • Explore a book (Schiraldi, 2016) that provides step by step exercises to work directly on self-esteem
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Tobey Mandel is a clinical psychologist in Westmount, Montreal, Quebec, at Connecte Montreal Psychology Group. The team at Connecte loves writing about ways to boost our mental health and bring psychology into our everyday lives. For more helpful tips, check out Connecte’s blogspodcast, follow @connectepsychology on Instagram or like us on Facebook.


References

Sciangula, A. & Morry, M. M. (2009). Self-esteem and perceived regard: How I see myself affects my relationship satisfaction. The Journal of Social Psychology, 149, 143-159.

Erol, Y. & Orth, U. (2013). Actor and partner effects of self-esteem on relationship satisfaction and the mediating role of secure attachment between the partners. Journal of Research in Personality, 47, 26-35.

Orth, U., Robins, R. W., & Widaman, K. F. (2012). Life-span development of selfesteem and its effects on important life outcomes. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 102, 1271–1288.

Murray, S. L, Holmes, J. G., Griffin, D. W., …, Rose, P. (2001). The mismeasure of love: How self-doubt contaminates relationship beliefs. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 27, 423-436.

Schiraldi, G. R. (2016). The Self-Esteem Workbook: 2nd Edition. New Harbinger Publications.

Feeling overcommitted? How to avoid feeling drained and better set your priorities

Feeling overcommitted? How to avoid feeling drained and better set your priorities

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Over the weekend, I took a quick look at my schedule for the upcoming week. My immediate thought was “What was I thinking?!”. Ideally, I have a mix of work, some social activities, and some personal time each week. But more and more often, I’ve been noticing that my upcoming weeks seem to be triggering more feelings of overwhelm in me as opposed to excitement! This realization has been especially bizarre because even if I’m busy at work, I really enjoy the work that I do. Similarly, even if I have several social outings, I love spending time with friends and family! So shouldn’t that be enough of a protective factor to avoid feeling stressed by a hectic schedule? Sadly, it seems that’s not the case (at least not for me). So, the issue with overcommittment isn’t that you’re doing things you necessarily dislike (although that can certainly be part of the issue), but it also happens when we forget that we are not, in fact, the Energizer Bunny. Worse still, overcommittment has been shown to contribute to higher levels of stress and physical tension (Preckel et al., 2005).  So, how can we better manage ourselves to more regularly take a peak at our upcoming week and notice a feeling of interest, excitement, or perhaps even calm?

Start to Prioritize

Each of us have a different combination of interests and responsibilities. Consider this when you begin to figure out how to avoid feeling depleted by overcommitting yourself. What matters to you? Family, school, work, art class? Team sports? Reading? Do you have family that you’d like to see regularly or is it only over the holidays that you’d like to spend time together? Do you have a friend circle that you can see altogether or do you prefer to see friends individually? Consider these, and many other possible combinations, when looking at what you’d like to fit into your schedule.

Make a schedule – that INCLUDES down time and track how it makes you feel

This step doesn’t have to happen each week, but begin by creating a schedule each week that considers your main interests and goals (see step 1) and plan it out so that those priorities are included, but so is time to just do your thing. Essentially, include several hours of non-scheduled, unstructured time into your week. This step has several benefits: 1) It helps you really reflect on how much time each activity you’re committing to takes, so that you’re more realistic in your goals, and 2) it helps to lessen the impression that “doing nothing” is bad! Free time is essential for our mind and bodies to rest, re-energize, and get in better touch with our creative and spontaneous side. With too much structure, we aren’t able to slow down enough to touch base with our passions, and our needs in the moment. In addition, creating a schedule gives you an opportunity to practice different levels of “busyness” – some weeks may be slower than others, or some may be focused on more social than work activities, or vice versa. By keeping track of these schedules and tracking how you feel at the start and end of each of these weeks, you’ll have some helpful data that lets you know what combinations work best for YOU!

Examine what lies beneath our need to overcommit

This part might be a little tougher. Often, if we find ourselves saying yes to everything requested or offered to us, there is an underlying reason that we may not be aware of. For some, it may be the belief that if we say no to a request, or don’t go out of our way to help someone else, we’re failing at being a good friend/partner/employee/etc. For others, overcommittment may stem from a fear of missing out on possible adventure, opportunities, financial gain, or connections. Whatever the reason, it may be helpful to ask yourself what need does overcommittment provide for you, or what does being overcommitted prevent you from feeling? Once you’re able to answer this, you’ll be better prepared to address those needs or fears in a more adaptive and sustainable way.

Get comfortable saying “No (thanks)”

As many of us know, it can be difficult to say no to an invite or a potential work commitment. We may feel guilty, or that we’ll be judged for not putting others first. Even though it can be hard, saying no is really the best way to ensure that we stick to our schedule that helps us meet our needs and goals without feeling overwhelmed. Plus, once you try it a few times, you’ll notice that people tend to respect when people set limits for themselves. The more we all do this, the more we normalize setting limits with our time and the more comfortable it becomes for everyone.

So, next time you notice your schedule giving you mild heart palpitations, take a step back, run through these suggestions, and see how you feel. Hopefully you’ll be well on your way to a more balanced and enjoyable week! 


Tobey Mandel is a clinical psychologist in Westmount, Montreal, Quebec, at Connecte Montreal Psychology Group. The team at Connecte loves writing about ways to boost our mental health and bring psychology into our everyday lives. For more helpful tips, check out Connecte’s blogspodcast, follow @connectepsychology on Instagram or like us on Facebook.


References

Preckel, D., von Kanel, R., Kudielka, B. M., & Fischer, J. E. (2005). Overcommitment to work is associated with vital exhaustion. Int Arch Occup Environ Health, 78, 117–122.

Allan, I., Campbell, B., Carter, T., Doyle, M., Goodchild, S., Henderson, R., ….,  & Postans, L. (2006). Balance: Real life strategies for work/life balance. New South Wales, Australia. Sea Change Publishing.

Breitman, P., & Hatch, C. (2000). How to say no without feeling guilty. New York, NY: Broadway Books. 

Why mindfulness in our romantic relationships matters

Why mindfulness in our romantic relationships matters

Picture this. You’ve just spent the last week or so away from the stress of work, early mornings, and pressured schedules. You and your spouse finally have a chance to breathe, and you are feeling more connected than usual. Now, fast forward to today, when you’re back at work, not quite fully refreshed, and realize that you’re somewhat more irritable. Do you notice your tolerance for your partner’s odd habits beginning to wane? Do you catch yourself becoming somewhat pickier, more impatient, or less compassionate? If so, you might also be falling into the trap of assuming that your partner is to blame, and if only they would do “such and such” differently, all would be well.

Interestingly, in all likelihood, your partner hasn’t changed one bit! In fact, the only thing that has changed are your stress levels, and thus, the lens through which you are viewing your partner. It can be difficult in the moment to notice the role that we each play in our perception of our partner. For instance, a recent study found that people more automatically notice aspects that are negative in a potential mate than those that are positive. Moreover, individuals tend to be more negatively influenced by negative aspects than they are positively influenced by positive aspects in a partner. This makes sense evolutionarily speaking, as our minds are set up to look for potential danger and to focus on it as a protective mechanism. The issue is, however, that our current environmental threats are quite different than they were once upon a time! As a result, when we’re experiencing a heightened level of stress ourselves, we tend to focus more intensely on potential “threats”, or negative qualities in our partner, even when this does not typically serve us in the long run.

So, what to do in these situations you ask? Well, the first (empowering!) thing to realize is that you can look inwards in order to modify your own perception by practicing mindfulness in your relationship. This means slowing down, and noticing when your partner is being kind, appreciative, helpful, funny, or a host of other qualities that can seemingly go unnoticed when we’re feeling stressed. Move towards your partner when they’re trying to connect with you, even if you’re feeling disconnected in the moment. This also means being mindful of your own behaviours and attitudes toward your partner, and making an effort to be kind, compassionate, and accepting of their strengths as well as their weaknesses. This can be accomplished by not only noticing your partner’s efforts, but also expressing gratitude for the role that they play in your life. Research has demonstrated that both mindfulness and the expression of gratitude predicts higher relationship satisfaction and connection. Most importantly, by focusing on what you can bring to your relationship, you’re alleviating a significant amount of stress that would be otherwise focused on working to change your partner.

So, the next time you notice yourself becoming irritable with your partner, looks inwards! Practice being mindful and present in the moment, and sharing your appreciation and gratitude for all that your partner does. Over time, these behaviors will occur more effortlessly, and will likely contribute to greater individual and relationship satisfaction.


Tobey Mandel is a clinical psychologist in Westmount, Montreal, Quebec, at Connecte Montreal Psychology Group. The team at Connecte loves writing about ways to boost our mental health and bring psychology into our everyday lives. For more helpful tips, check out Connecte’s blogspodcast, follow @connectepsychology on Instagram or @ConnecteMTL on Twitter, or like us on Facebook.


References

Algoe, S. B., Gable, S. L., & Maisel, N. C. (2010). It’s the little things: Everyday gratitude as a booster shot for romantic relationships. Personal Relationships, 17, 217-233.

Jonason, P. K., Garcia, J. R., Webster, G. D., Li, N. P., Fisher, H. E. (2015). Relationship dealbreakers: Traits people avoid in potential mates. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 41, 1697-1711.

Barnes, S., Brown, K. W., Krusemark, E., Campbell, W. K., & Rogge, R. D. (2007). Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, 33, 482-500.

Brown, J. (2015). Growing yourself up: How to bring your best to all of life’s relationships. Australia: Exisle Publishing. 

Navigating the world of romantic relationships: How to minimize conflict and move towards feeling more connected

Navigating the world of romantic relationships: How to minimize conflict and move towards feeling more connected

Close relationships, especially those that involve a romantic partner, have been shown time and again to be key in a person’s long-term happiness. A recent Harvard study that spanned a period of 75 years actually demonstrated that relationships, more than anything else (such as career success or financial security) predicted the greatest degree of happiness over time!

So, why does it seem so difficult at times to feel connected and satisfied in our romantic relationships? One important factor that plays a role in our ability to connect and understand our partner stems from our attachment style. Attachment style stems from childhood and refers to the way in which we perceive our ability to be connected, trust, and depend on others. Securely attached individuals are thought to acknowledge and accept distress, and reach out to others for social support. Insecurely attached individuals, however, demonstrate more difficulty when encountering distress. Two types of insecure attachment exist, namely anxiously attachment and avoidant attachment. Individuals who exhibit anxious attachment styles are thought to respond to distress by overly focusing on it and seeking an unnecessarily high degree of support from their partner, whereas individuals with avoidant attachment styles respond to distress by attempting to downplay its importance, leading them to avoid seeking social support when needed. As you can imagine, these types of relating in insecurely attached individuals can create conflict in a couple. Dr. Sue Johnson, a clinical psychologist who specializes in understanding couple conflict and promoting healthy relationships, has shown that insecurely attached individuals relate to each other in predictable ways, meaning that we can both predict and adjust the way we relate to our partner.  

Dr. Johnson refers to the idea that love is a dance, and couples who are struggling to feel connected often end up in a predictable dance where neither feels heard or appreciated by their partner. To help clarify things, here’s an example of a conflict with a couple where each person exhibits some form of insecure attachment:

  • Wife (anxiously attached): I’m upset that we didn’t spend time together this weekend, and I don’t feel like it bothered you in the least.
  • Husband (avoidantly attached): You’re being too sensitive, it’s not a big deal that we didn’t spend time together, we see each other every day.
  • Wife: How can you say that? We barely have a chance to talk before going to bed!
  • Husband: I can’t listen to this again. It’s always the same conversation.
  • Wife (escalating conflict, yelling): You never want to listen, you’re always running off, you never care about how I feel, you never help out around the house, I’m so upset with you!
  • Husband: (Silence, turns away). 
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The above example depicts a wife, who is experiencing a sense of disconnection from her partner, and in order to elicit that connection and reduce her feelings of anxiety, is becoming critical of her husband’s role in the relationship. At the same time, the example shows a husband who is avoidantly attached, and who is feeling overwhelmed by his wife’s criticism, and therefore is resorting to shutting down and avoiding the situation in order for it not to escalate further. This type of “dance” is referred to as the demand-withdraw dance, where one person is trying to calm their anxiety by approaching the other and their partner is feeling flooded and overwhelmed with criticism, which leads them to flee the situation emotionally or physically (or both).  

For a long period of time, couples would come to therapy describing this type of argument, and therapists would get caught up in the details of the argument (in this case, spending time together). However, research has now shown that the details surrounding the argument are not especially important, but rather the way in which each partner is relating to one another is what matters most. The demand-withdraw dance is really a demonstration that each person in the couple is screaming out for connection, but is simultaneously terrified of being either abandoned or criticized. Neither partner wants to take the first step to let their guard down, for fear that they will be left alone or attacked.

So where does that leave us? Now that we have a better understanding of why and how couples feel disconnected and afraid, we can work towards developing healthier and more pleasurable patterns of relating to one another.

Step 1: Recognize the dance

By noticing that both partners play a crucial role in the escalation of conflict, couples can begin to minimize the amount of blame they place on each other and come to view the “dance” as the shared enemy. By noticing when the dance begins, they can slow down their way of relating and take time to be more mindful of the way in which they communicate their needs.

Step 2: Step back and realize that you are each yearning for connection, but are afraid to risk being hurt

By acknowledging that you and your partner’s fear is what is preventing you from feeling connected, you can begin to view your shared vulnerability as an opportunity for connection. Both partners care about one another and want to connect, and beginning to view the arguments as a call for connection and not an attack helps to lower defenses and leads couples to communicate about the underlying vulnerability that they share.

Step 3: Replace criticism with kindness

This is a difficult transition, as couples often become use to being critical or defensive. However, shifting your perspective from blaming your partner to giving your partner the benefit of the doubt, makes it easier to respond to one another with kindness and compassion. Ultimately, this is the person with whom you share your life, so it makes sense to treat them more than anyone with kindness, compassion and respect. Once you begin relating in a kinder way, you begin to step outside of the negative dance and into a more meaningful, positive way of relating.

Knowing that much of the way we relate to our partners is due to our attachments that were formed in childhood can help us to better understand the dynamic and also recognize that we do in fact have control over the way we relate to one another. By sharing your fear and vulnerability and not attacking each other, couples can begin to feel more connected over time, which relates to a more engaging and rewarding relationship over the long term! 


Tobey Mandel is a clinical psychologist in Westmount, Montreal, Quebec, at Connecte Montreal Psychology Group. The team at Connecte loves writing about ways to boost our mental health and bring psychology into our everyday lives. For more helpful tips, check out Connecte’s blogspodcast, follow @connectepsychology on Instagram or @ConnecteMTL on Twitter, or like us on Facebook.


REFERENCES

Brown, B. (2012). Daring greatly: How the courage to be vulnerable transforms the way we live, love, parent, and lead. Gotham Books: New York.

Cooper, M. L., Shaver, P. R., & Collins, N. L. Attachment styles, emotion regulation, and adjustment in adolescence. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 74, 1380-97.

Johnson, S. M. (2008). Hold me tight: Seven conversations for a lifetime of love. Little, Brown, and Company: New York.

Johnson, S. M., Makinen, J. A., & Millikin, J. W. (2001). Attachment injuries in couple relationships: A new perspective on impasses in couples therapy. Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, 27, 145-155

Kobak, R. R., & Sceery, M. (1988). Attachment in late adolescence: Working models, affect regulation, and representations of self and others. Child Development, 59, 135-146.