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Monthly Archives: February 2014

John_Peter_Russell,_Vincent_van_Gogh,_1886

Portrait of Vincent Van Gogh by John Peter Russell; 1886

How many times have you heard of someone being described as having an artistic personality or an artistic temperament? This is often spoken as a backhanded compliment, implying that although a person may be gifted, they are also somehow insane (or, at least, extremely difficult to work with). The artist that most personifies the artistic personality is Vincent Van Gogh (1853 – 1890.)

But what just is the artistic personality? Psychologists describe it as having certain elements of having a contrary nature often at war with itself. For example, they are both introverted and extroverted; intelligent and yet naïve about practical manners like handling money; is both humble and yet extremely proud – even boastful – about their art. Van Gogh had all of these qualities…

Read the rest of my article at Yahoo!  Thanks.

Hoarding is a treatable mental disorder.

Hoarding has been around for a long time.  Of course, it’s only been in recent years that it has been called hoarding.  Before that, it was called “being a fucking slob.”  Hoarding has now been recognized as a mental illness instead of a character flaw or a mark of laziness.  People suffering from hoarding disorder cannot figure out how to let go of any object — even if it’s rotten or broken.  What seems like obvious junk to the rest of us looks like gold to a hoarder.

Worried that you or someone you know may be a hoarder?  Then check out my article at Yahoo! to go through the most common warning signs.  Thank you.

I live with my Mom. She grew up in the 1940s.  She has a problem that is very common to people of her generation — she will not hang up on phone scammers, salespersons or telemarketers.  It’s been drilled into her that hanging up on someone is rude, especially if that someone is talking. I’ve been having a hard time to convince her that it’s okay to hang up on these annoyances. At the very most, she should say, “I’m not interested. Goodbye.”

Unfortunately, she learned the hard way that it’s okay to hang up on telemarketers. She got a call from a chimney sweeper company. I kept telling her that they were scam artists.  However, Mom owns the house and so I don’t apparently have the right to choose her contractors.  Also, I can’t supervise my Mom 24 hours a day (believe it or not!)  She made an appointment with the chimney sweepers behind my back.  Long story short, the scammers arrived and proceeded to kick holes in the roof — which cost nearly $3,500 to fix (done with a legitimate roofing contractor. Roof is doing great even after the horrible winter we’ve been having in the greater Philly area.)

Do not suffer any anxiety when you need to hang up the phone.  Just hang up and get on with your life.