Dr. Deniz Ahmadinia

Category: Relationships

Make America Kind Again: A Loving-Kindness Meditation Practice

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One mindfulness practice, called “Loving-Kindness”, helps us take a different approach by cultivating an attitude of open, unconditional friendliness. This practice entails sending kind, compassionate, or loving intentions to several different categories of individuals: (1) one- self, (2) a cherished person or “mentor,” (3) a friend, (4) a neutral person or stranger, (5) an “enemy” or difficult person, and (6) all living beings (Salzberg, 2006). (For briefer introductory practices, see Audio.) The beauty of this practice is that you can adapt the phrases so that they resonate with you. “It counteracts the loneliness and sense of separation that comes from not feeing connected to other people. It is a powerful practice that can change how we respond to difficult situations over time. We can learn to turn down the volume on the internal, snide monologue of self-judgment and be kinder to ourselves” (Wolf & Serpa, 2015, p. 137).

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Enhancing Wellbeing in the Face of Traumatic Media Exposure

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Sadly, the news of the last few months has been riddled with devastating stories of terrorist attacks, police brutality, murder, rape, racism, and injustice, leaving many of us struggling with difficult emotions. With technological advances, we are receiving  unrelenting minute to minute graphic coverage…

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Early Shame: When Ruptures Aren’t Repaired


For better or for worse, children remember. A child’s early interactions with their caregiver are one of the most influential factors in determining a child’s well-being and future functioning as an adult…As children are continuing to develop, the way our parents react to us and see us is the way we learn see ourselves. So, when a parent yells, ignores, or calls the child names rather than opening lines of communication and teaching the child, this sends them the message that “I am bad, “I am inadequate,” and “I am unlovable.” This can be particularly harmful if these interactions are repeated without repair, leading these beliefs to become internalized as truths for the child.

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Whole Hearted Living: The Power of Vulnerability

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As humans, we are neurobiologically hardwired to seek connection from day 1, for survival, brain development and emotional growth. However, in the days of social networking, 40-hour weeks, texting, and instagram we appear to be more disconnected than ever. You might be thinking, well how is that possible? All these innovations create more connection. While on some level that may be true, we are more often than not connecting on a superficial level. We’re connecting on the basis of what we want people to see; a persona that we believe is the version of ourselves that people will like, literally “Like.”

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Curiosity Cures

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However, holding an attitude of kind curiosity can lead to a sense of openness, deeper understanding, appreciation and diminished boredom. The sheer prospect of discovering something new about oneself or one’s partner can light a spark in us or in our relationships.

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The Mindful Response to Relationship Conflict

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More often than not, we react from a surface emotion without understanding it, knowing where it is coming from and without taking a moment to pause. That surface emotion typically is anger. However, if we look at the anger iceberg, we see that anger is a secondary emotion, with primary emotions, such as hurt, embarrassment, rejection, fear, etc lying below the surface.

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Digital Intimacy: What Are We Reaching For?

With the rapid development of new social media sites, smartphone apps and other technological gadgets, we are hearing a lot about how today’s generation is addicted to technology. While many are panicked and outraged over this new obsession, I would…

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In Relationship with a Highly Sensitive Person

A topic I often come across in couple’s therapy is one partner being more “sensitive” than the other. This relationship dynamic can be a great source of conflict for couple’s who struggle to accept and understand the other person or…

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I Love You, Now Change

The usual break-up tagline, “it’s not you, it’s me” oddly enough seems to be reversed during relationships, “it’s not me, it’s you.” Something I often hear individual clients and couples say is “if it weren’t for him/ her doing x…

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Relationships in 2013: Fear of Commitment or Committed to Fear?

In a previous post, “Emotional Infidelity: Fact or Fiction” I covered the definition of emotional infidelity, ways to fall into it and ways to prevent it. Not surprisingly, this has been my most viewed post. I began to wonder about…

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