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Imperfect human just trying to make some sense of this world I MA in psychology

OPEN LETTERS

And no, none of them include wearing pants.

Dear Work,

I hope this email finds you well. During these unprecedented times, I wanted to take some time to address this alarming notion that we are simply going to “return” to the office.

You keep bringing this idea up in our team meetings and I am starting to worry that you actually want us to come back?

However, I think we need to have a little talk about this delusion you appear to be operating under.

I am not the same employee you once knew. I am much like a feral cat now and have no concept of social…


#1 Sometimes I write like a pretentious snob

I have a confession to make. Sometimes I write like a pretentious snob.

There — I said it. After years of grad school and working in academia, I may have learned how to write like an academic but that is not the same thing as becoming a good writer.

1. The Bigger the Word, the Better

Google any journal article and skim the introduction. I can almost bet there is at least one word that doesn’t sound like real English.

In fact, the bigger word, the better. It is almost like a competition of who has the biggest thesaurus.

Some of my personal favorite show-off words include:


Communications researcher by day, aspiring writer the rest of the time. Always striving to give my golden retriever a better life.

Like every clichéd dating bio you have ever read, ‘I don’t really know what to write on one of these things.’ Luckily though, my chronic singleness has educated me on all the cliché items you apparently need to put in any bio.

So, here goes:

  • ‘I love to travel’ — Recently, I have especially enjoyed traveling from my bedroom to my fridge, and then back to my bed during quarantine.
  • ‘Looking to meet new friends’ — I am genuinely…


#1 Turn on your camera

Another day, another Zoom meeting!

A year plus into this personal pan pizza we are in, and my beauty routine basically consists of me rolling out of bed right before my first meeting and figuring if someone can’t find me attractive like this, then they don’t deserve me at my best.

However, every now and then, I have a call with my crush and I wonder if I should attempt to look somewhat cute?

And while after some FBI-level stalking, I found out my crush has a girlfriend (I sure know how to pick 'em!), I decided to channel my…


You shouldn’t just commit to the first person you meet.

If a friend told you they started dating someone they didn’t really like, that would sound pretty odd. So why then do people take this very same approach when finding a therapist?

It makes a lot of sense that people stick with the first therapist they ever meet — the decision to go to therapy is a big step and can feel emotionally exhausting, especially if you are going through a tough time. To top it off, insurance often dictates who and how many sessions you can afford.

However, I think this mindset that you have to stick with the…


And what makes it so maladaptive?

Do you ever create made-up romantic scenarios in your head before falling asleep? You might not think much of these thoughts as you close your eyes. But what happens when these imagined scenarios become more habitual and complex?

Psychologists recently came up with a term for this — maladaptive daydreaming. But before you start to panic, daydreaming is actually quite common and can even be beneficial. It promotes creativity, problem-solving, and can improve learning by giving you short breaks.

However, when daydreams become more stressful than helpful, this might suggest maladaptive daydreaming is occurring.

How is Maladaptive Daydreaming Diagnosed?

Maladaptive daydreaming was first defined by…


Books to help you find self-acceptance and self-love

This past week has just been one of those weeks. Nothing has necessarily gone wrong per se but nothing has really gone right either — you know the type of week.

Life has felt slow and mundane, leaving me with more time to ruminate about my life and experience a couple of extra existential crises per day (typical Tuesday for me really).

So, I decided to try something new this week to help get me out of this funk — read poetry.

Now, I recognize that’s a pretty bold statement on a site with a lot of avid poetry readers…


How to stop letting comparison steal your joy.

A few weeks ago an unusual hashtag started to trend on Twitter: #HarshWritingAdvice.

At first, it appeared the hashtag was trending because writers were sharing legitimate writing advice, such as you should always back up your files and tweeting won’t actually finish your novel (And yes, might have been personally attacked by that one).

However, what most people don’t know is that this hashtag started because a rather grievous writer tweeted, “HARSH WRITING ADVICE: Your writer friends are also your competition. Sorry.”


The unspoken sibling relationship

A lot of people in my life don’t know that my older sister is intellectually disabled (previously referred to as “mental retardation”).

And it is not because I am hiding the fact, it just does not naturally come up in conversations. And when it does come up, people typically don’t know how to react.

The conversation typically goes something like this:

Them: “So where does your sister live?”

Me: “Well, she has an intellectual disability, so she actually still lives with my parents.”

Them: “Oh, does she have Down syndrome?”

Me: “No, there actually isn’t a specific name for what…


How broken norms gave way to insurrection.

When we were told an inauguration crowd was the “largest-ever” in history, we laughed it off and made memes. When Neo-Nazis were called “very fine people”, lawmakers remained silent and complicit. When accusations arose that foreign entities interfered in our elections, individuals in power looked the other way with indifference.

But when an iconoclast speech called “Stop the Steal” urged rioters to walk down Pennsylvania Avenue to the U.S. …

Kate Cohen

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