“Off To Sleep!” with you!

Ladies and Gentlemen! It’s time to go to sleep! Wait. Not till you read this. PsychU, a patient education website, has invited me to present on sleep. These are their questions and how I hope to respond. Do you have any recommendations, other interests, directives? Please help me! Smile. 1.       Dr. Johnson-Quijada, in what ways is […]

Stigma from Religion

I’m just leaning on God. Which was her reasoning for stopping her Lexapro. Nora’s family lashed out angrily at her. “Why are you so horrible!” Her husband had left her for another woman from their church, a “friend” of Nora’s who used to come to their house for movie nights. He said, “You’re like poison, […]

In the mean-time, Waiting for Treatment Response

A crowd of Neuro-receptors fill our brain like a high school mosh pit. It’s noisy and possibly dangerous up there. It’s hard to focus. The negative thoughts are drumming. Medical treatment for depression is the Arthur Murray instructor to our brain-dance. And it takes time.   When we take medication, the neurotransmitters targeted in our brain […]

Emotions come from the brain.

Margarit was a lovely twenty-something, with blue-black bouncing hair above a slim pixy framed physique. She smiled easily and chattered like she was on telephone call that was about to lose reception. Her hands moved, conducting her thoughts between us. She was dressed like one of the cool girls on campus, out of my echelon, […]

Besmirching God with My Crazy

I’m sitting here in a volunteer medical clinic for a 60K attendee camporee. It’s humid and hot and we are seeing a lot of dehydration, amongst other things.  As a psychiatrist, I’m humming the Hallelujah chorus as I discover how much general medicine I still remember, from gout, viral rashes, respiratory and ear infections, cuts […]

Handout – How to Talk to a Psychiatric Patient.

Finished the CME talk I did last week and thought, you might find some use for it. I’ve received bad press many times for not being, in so many words, legit or academic enough. Check out the comments on my ECT book on Amazon.com for examples :). Maybe this one leaning into that bosom of greatness […]

Stigma and Me: Me-on-Me Crime

Me-on-Me Crime! I was doing my speed walking thing on the Balboa Beach cottage lined shore. Gorgeous, it was. Fluffy thoughts were everywhere. I was purposely passing under the low hanging docks to upscale some lower body muscles. Some string bean teens with their fishing poles moved into the water’s leisurely lipping edge ahead of me. […]

Exercise and the Brain – and Dancing to Enrique Iglesias

Greg went to arrange his annual colonoscopy.  Because he was having a chronic cough, his gastroenterologist (GI specialist) was wise enough to schedule him the “double dip” colonoscopy and endoscopy.  Greg was not pleased.  He was less pleased when Dr. GI found gastritis (inflammation) in his colon, an ulcer (inflammation) in his stomach, and esophogitis […]

Where Do Emotions and Behaviors Come From?

Last night at our self-care workshop, we asked the question, Where do emotions and behaviors come from? The answers, were nice and varied; none the same.  It’s such a great question though, don’t you think?  It would be great to hear from you as well. Where do emotions and behaviors come from? Then, would you […]

Old and Dying – Why We Are Still Alive

Sweaty, well-worn, in bike-ware, she was eating comfortably with her friend.  I kept trying not to stare and just had to fight it!  I wanted to imprint her shiny wrinkled yet blooming geriatric status and break down what I saw into categories of self-care moves to grow old by.  She looked really good. I managed […]

Just Left of Center, We Celebrate You

Dear One, (You know who you are) Congratulations on this life-milestone.  Congratulations on what you have come through and what toward.  Congratulations on being connected.  Although you walk, you do not walk away from your life journey. There are other crossings when we all step away from our life and look on at a safer […]

Getting Yourself Healthy Protects The Freedoms of Others

Some of our most difficult cases are when we, the medical care-givers, think we know better how to take care of someone than we do take care of ourselves. When a person maintains decision making capacity, but whose brain health disables them, if we care, we care. Monty was one of these.  He was ill! […]

Where Do You Think Behavior and Emotion Come From?

Self-Care Tip #229 – See yourself as a friend by including biology in your self-perception. In clinic, out of the clinic, here, there, if I were to pick one barrier to treatment anywhere, I’d pick the misunderstanding that behaviors and emotions come from somewhere other than the brain, and then from there, the outcropping of […]

Seeing Your Brain As The Place Emotions and Behaviors Come from is Terrifying

Where do emotions and behaviors come from? Now think about it and answer your true beliefs. I was speaking with a wonderful physician the other day to whom I asked this question, (let’s call her Doctora.) I respect Doctora for her character, personality, standard of medical practice and interpersonal beauty. She is a bulldog in […]

Why Not Skip Medication and Go Naturallllllll?!

The train was tarnished from soot.  The engineer, Jack, grimaced over the craft, while he hauled wood into the fiery oven hidden in her belly.  She was a steam engine and her whistle sounded through the air like a shiver breaking ice. Indians watched from a bouldered distant peak.  They saw the smoke and marked […]

Deliberately Setting Myself Up To Improve

Self-care is about improving life, not harm.  Even though it includes doing things we don’t enjoy and sometimes hurt, it doesn’t harm us. That’s a useful meter-stick when we wonder about something in our life.  Is this harming us?  Including people.  Do I feel better about myself when I’m with them?  Do they help me […]