Dr. Russ' Blog

Anxiety, CBT, and more!

Anxiety, Social Anxiety & the End-of-Year Review

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  Is it healthy for people who suffer from Anxiety and Social Anxiety to participate in the end-of-year reminiscing that is so popular in our society? Every holiday season, it seems, is filled with “Year-in-review” commentaries highlighting the previous twelve months. We have reviews of news items, politics, fashion, hairdos, movies, photos, games, TV shows, meals, and pretty much any... View Article

Research on Social Anxiety and the Effectiveness of CBT

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  Two questions that people often ask me relate to my use of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for social anxiety and the effectiveness of its use online. The research on social anxiety and CBT is pretty clear: dozens of gold-standard trials demonstrate that sufferers experience reduced anxiety and improved lives through the principles of CBT.  I have continued to use CBT for... View Article

Five Tips for Dealing with Social Anxiety During the Holidays

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  The holiday season can be both a blessing and a curse, especially the latter for those suffering from Social Anxiety Disorder. I am brought to tears by the stories my patients have shared with me, stories about being the only one missing at family gatherings, missed opportunities with a loved one before they passed, and the myriad consequences people experience by avoiding the holiday... View Article

What’s the worst that could happen?

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  One of the most common misconceptions needing clarification in CBT is the belief that challenging one’s thoughts –we call it “Thought Inspection” at Learn To Live—is the same as “Positive Thinking.” The two are very different.   Every day I work with people who have no interest in pretending that the world is perfect, that everything is great. They... View Article

On the Difference Between Introversion and Social Anxiety

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  If you’ve been reading past blog entries, you know that I have touched on the distinction between problematic social anxiety and introversion before. The difference between the two is subtle but important. Sometimes people assume that social anxiety is simply another word for shyness. But they are, in fact, two very different concepts and it’s important to understand that... View Article

Of Veggies and CBT

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  We psychologists, and our cousins in related disciplines, are notorious for creating terms that we enjoy but that others struggle to comprehend. One such term is locus of control. It refers to a source of power or influence or, rather, where we perceive the power or influence to be. On a regular bicycle, for example, the locus of control is within... View Article

A Little Backstory on Learn to Live CBT….

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  I am occasionally asked why I would attempt a new project in online CBT, Learn to Live, on top of my already busy professional practice. It’s a good question. The short answer is simple:  because I am deeply concerned about people struggling unnecessarily. The longer version has to do with wait lists, crowded schedules, proven methods, and an uptick... View Article

Of Resolutions and TeamMates

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  A friend of mine makes a resolution every year at about this time. He’s a bit countercultural and so prefers the new school year to the New Year. His newest determined action got me thinking about our resolve as people, in general. Do you remember your most recent resolution? Did you finish the last self-help book you started? Did... View Article

dealing with anxiety, a crowd at a concert

Even Crowd-Pleasers Get Scared

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  When I was a kid, my siblings and I watched a lot of TV, probably too much. Before video killed the radio star, we watched pop bands perform on a show called American Bandstand and others like it (Does Solid Gold ring a bell for anyone?). One of the bands we saw several times was a group of brothers... View Article