September 2020

Stump the Shrink and how long to ban readmission for a discharged patient; indoor plants make me happy and healthy

In SAVVY, SKILLS and STUMP THE SHRINK, follow my thinking process as I ponder how to respond to a nurse practitioner’s question about how long should a program make a discharged client wait before readmitting them – 30 days, a year or what?

In SOUL, I discovered that plants and nature are good for us in almost every way you can think about. My indoor plants are not only fun to see grow and develop, but they are good for my health.

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August 2020

The ASAM Criteria – Tips on assessment and treatment; 18 months since I lost my wife and Ricky Gervais’ “After Life”

In SAVVY and SKILLS, assessment and treatment tips for the six assessment dimensions of the ASAM (American Society of Addiction Medicine) Criteria.

In SOUL, it is 18 months since I lost my wife. Ricky Gervais’ Netflix series “After Life” got me thinking about grief and a host of other related human interests (and it entertained).

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July 2020

What to do about COVID-19 uncertainty, anxiety and “caution fatigue”; Roman poet, Ovid’s advice

Welcome to the July edition of Tips and Topics.

In SAVVY, Gretchen Rubin, author of “The Happiness Project: Happier at Home and Better than Before” gives tips on what to do about all the uncertainty we are experiencing with COVID-19.

In SKILLS, Jamie Ducharme, Staff Writer at Time Magazine, summarizes tips for fighting “caution fatigue” from Jacqueline Gollan, an associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine.

In SOUL, Gretchen Rubin gives one last piece of advice on how to handle the uncertainty and anxiety over COVID-19 and quotes Ovid: “Perfer et obdura, dolor hic tibi proderit olim. (Be patient and tough; someday this pain will be useful to you.)”

June 2020

“Blue Eyes, Brown Eyes” experiment; Iowa Dept. of Corrections training; if you aren’t black..; being present; James Taylor’s song

Welcome to the June edition of Tips and Topics. This edition is focused on an important, game-changing time in USA history.

In SAVVY, I share an experiment from 1970 that changed the attitudes of 3rd graders. The Iowa Dept. of Corrections had a training that was equally illuminating. It’s worth taking 53 minutes of your time to watch. I also highlight three areas of life that black people experience that I have never thought of; and I bet you haven’t either if you are a white person.

In SKILLS, three of my colleagues and friends share their thoughts on what to do and where to start as we rethink race relations; re-imagine policing practices; and search our own attitudes and actions.

In SOUL, I share where I am beginning to commit to change.  Also listen to a classic song from the 1949 musical, South Pacific, refreshed and re-recorded by James Taylor.

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May 2020

“Quarantine fatigue”; fear and Law of Attraction; use it or lose it.

Welcome to the May edition of Tips and Topics. We’re not ready to move on from COVID-19 yet, as much as it would be wonderful to get back to “business as usual”.

In SAVVY, the focus is on “quarantine fatigue”. The HIV epidemic has lessons that can help shape where we go with COVID-19.

In SKILLS, fear attracts more fear.  Daily stress and worry plagues a majority of Americans (60%). Shifting our focus away from what pulls us down, can help us get through COVID-19.  But don’t forget to wash your hands.

In SOUL, the blinds in my lakeview room reminded me to use it or lose it.

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April 2020

Bill Gates on pandemics; smiles and songs; how I read the news now

In SAVVY, Bill Gates’s 8 minutes TED talk could have saved thousands of lives and trillions of dollars if we had listened to him. As we think of opening the USA up again, will we listen now? 

In SKILLS, SMILES, SONGS I share some of my favorite coronavirus related humor and music. 

In SOUL AND SHARING SOLUTIONS, I pass by news items that leave me angry and less empathetic. Is there anyone out there wanting to come together to find solutions to our shared common challenges?

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March 2020

March Problem Gambling Awareness Month; Language of Recovery; No need to panic

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January 2020

Frustrations, frustrations – what kind are they and what to do; visioning a new year and decade

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December 2019

Thinking beyond medication; “Just give me medication”; consumerism and loving yourself

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November 2019

Lessons learned from my journey to India and Japan; travel tips; Laughter Meditation; Sharing Solutions

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October 2019

Two STUMP THE SHRINK questions on passive compliance and substance use while in treatment; customer-focused and friendly

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