Posts by Mike Ferraro

Practice Deep Listening

One of the most important relationship skills is deep listening. I’m using the word “deep” to point to the necessity of putting your full attention on it, consistently. It can’t be done casually, occasionally, or just by one person. It must become the norm for what you both do. As with any skill, it takes…

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Decode Your Anxiety

The results of a 2023 poll conducted by the American Psychiatric Association show that 70% of U.S. adults said they feel anxious or extremely anxious about keeping themselves or their families safe. Overall, 37% of adults said they feel more anxious than they were this time last year. About one-third (30%) of adults said the…

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Abraham Lincoln Was Depressed

“I am now the most miserable man living,” wrote Abraham Lincoln to his law partner in 1865, three weeks before his 33rd birthday. “If what I feel were equally distributed to the whole human family, there would not be one cheerful face on the earth.” Abraham Lincoln struggled with depression throughout his life. In his…

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Your Childhood Trauma May Be Affecting You

I heard someone say that no one escapes childhood unscathed. I first thought that can’t be true. There are people with good childhoods and I’ve worked with many of them. But something about this statement intrigued me, so I pondered it. What I came to believe was the idea that every child has needs that…

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Honor The Dead

Death sometimes feels like a taboo subject. We don’t like to talk about it. We certainly don’t like to face it. But it has affected most of us, and eventually, it will affect all of us. And grief is complicated. There are a multitude of feelings, some of which are in conflict. Many of us…

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Do you have an addictive personality?

On occasion, I’ve heard someone say they have an addictive personality. I’m not quite sure what was meant by that. I assume that person feels like they can’t control their behavior. Historically, what you were addicted to was seen as the cause of the addiction. For example, the cause of an addiction to opioids was…

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Take This Marriage Assessment

Before you start marriage counseling with me, you will be asked to take this assessment. I’ve created it myself based on my experience with marriage’s challenges, opportunities, and needs. I keep the answers confidential to encourage honesty. It obviously can’t cover everything, but it gives me a good snapshot of the state of your marriage.…

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Are You Dependent on Drugs or Alcohol?

A great deal of time, energy and money have been devoted to drug and alcohol addiction. An addict is relatively easy to spot. They must have their fix, will do anything to get it and keep using despite major life problems. A more common problem is a category below addiction. Dependence is more widespread, yet…

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Your Family Is A System

What is a family system? The definition of family starts with your immediate or nuclear family, meaning parents and children. And it also includes anyone who has frequent, direct contact with the immediate family. This can be grandparents, aunts and uncles, or family friends. In blended families, the system includes former spouses, stepparents, half-siblings, and…

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What is intimacy?

Intimacy is a requirement in a healthy relationship. Without it, a couple cannot grow and is in danger of disconnecting. But what is it exactly? A number of words come to mind such as: Openness Acceptance Vulnerability Trust Connection There may be a temptation to think “it depends.” It depends on what kind of relationship…

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