Relationships


I just finished reading “Grace Intervention” by Bill Giovannetti.  I recommend it to anyone that is struggling with a relationship with God and believing His love for us is unconditional. He loved us so much that He went to “Calvary” to purchase us. Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. John 15:13 NIV. God’s grace is incredible and I still struggle believing it, but  ‘Grace Intervention ‘ made it more clear to me. I was raised in a legalistic environment, where I thought God had all these rules I had to follow and if I did not, he would reject me. I could never measure up and it sucked the life and joy out of me. My relationship with God was based on fear, not love. Now I know different.  I have been set free from the bondage of performance, because God is not interested in my performance.  He loves me because of who I am, not for what I do. I cannot earn God’s love.  It is not connected to my performance.  It is a gift of unconditional love. God desires a relationship with us. He wants us to know Him as He knows us. If you have read any of my previous blogs, you know I lost my brother from pancreatic cancer in July. He had a relationship with God and it was demonstrated by the way he died. He never questioned his suffering and dying.  He knew where he was going and that gave him peace. That is what believing and accepting God’s love and grace can do. I want to live this year with a better understanding of who God is and follow Him from gratitude for what He did for me and the price He paid on Calvary to purchase me. He desires to give me life in abundance if I will embrace his love and grace. I hope you will join me in this journey of knowing God more fully. Read “Grace Intervention” to get started. I look forward to hearing from you. Vickie Parker, LMFT vickiemft.com, Online...

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David Burns defines perfectionism as someone “whose standards are high beyond reach or reason” and “who strain compulsively and unremittingly toward impossible goals and who measure their own worth entirely in terms of productivity and accomplishment.” I listened to a seminar by Martin M. Anthony, PhD and he has treated perfectionism for years. I will share some of his knowledge with you in this blog. Perfectionism can manifest itself in these different areas: Social and performance anxiety Worry and generalized anxiety disorder Obsessive-compulsive disorder Obsessive-compulsive personality disorder Eating disorders Body image disorders Chronic fatigue Anger problems Depression Suicidal thoughts Hewitt and Flett’s define 3 different dimensions of perfectionism Self-oriented perfectionism is the unrealistic expectation we place on ourselves for performance Other-oriented perfectionism is expecting others to perform with unrealistic expectations Socially prescribed perfectionism is believing that others are expecting things from us and constantly trying to gain approval by trying to live up to what we think they want from us. Socially prescribed perfectionism is the most destructive and can lead to anxiety and depression. There is both positive and negative forms of perfectionism: Maladaptive evaluation is concern over mistakes, doubts about actions, parental expectations, parental criticism, and social prescribed perfectionism. Positive achievement strivings are personal standards, organization,, self-oriented perfectionism, other oriented perfectionism. Research suggests that maladaptive perfectionism could be caused from parents that were both perfectionistic and critical while adaptive perfectionists come from more balanced cohesive, adaptable, and nurturing families. Perfectionism stems from biased beliefs, assumptions, and predictions. Anything less than sticking to my diet perfectly is a failure.  If I eat one cookie, I may as well have eaten 10 cookies. I always need to look perfect in front of other people. If I don’t get an A+ in this course, I don’t deserve to be in this program. My reports are never good enough I seem to be the only person in this house who knows how to clean things properly. These are the thoughts manifested in perfectionistic thinking: All or nothing, or black and white thinking Shoulds and musts statements Selective attention by noticing the negative and discounting the positive Overgeneralization, like always or never statements Double standards by holding yourself to a higher standard than you do for others or visa versa Performance-Related Behaviors include: Avoiding situations that may test one’s performance, like a test Procrastination Goal achievement behaviors, like overpreparing Testing one’s performance by doing something over and over again Reassurance seeking Social comparisons If you struggle with perfectionism and it is keeping you from enjoying the life that you want, therapy may help.  We all have blind spots and we do not...

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