Doug and Meredith kick off this week’s episode talking about how living in LA during a pandemic feels like a zombie movie. They also touch on how lack of good sleep can affect us. In the session, Drew talks about the loss of his friend and questions how he can better cope with grief. Drew acknowledges feeling detached and afraid of confronting his own emotions. Doug helps Drew focus on the small wins in life rather than focusing on what’s lacking.
Bonnie is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in Los Angeles. She is an instructor for graduate students in the LGBT Specialization Psychology program at Antioch University. Although her specialty is working with the LGBTQ community and people in the entertainment industry, she also assists clients in managing and/or overcoming anxiety, depression, trauma, stress, painful relationship patterns, creative blocks, co-dependency, love and sex addiction, issues with intimacy and low self-esteem.
Bonnie received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Emerson College and a Masters in Clinical Psychology degree from Antioch University with a specialization in LGBT psychology.
Doug Friedman is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker that has spent nearly 20 years working with adults, adolescents and families with issues ranging from depression and anxiety to substance abuse, bipolar disorder and PTSD. He has supervised a program at a community mental health agency that serves severely emotionally disturbed youth and their families in Los Angeles. He continues to provide clinical supervision to therapists and associates in his private group practice, Clear Mind Full Heart in Los Angeles.
Doug received a Masters in Social Work from The Catholic University of America and a BA in Study of Religion from UCLA. Before becoming a psychotherapist, Doug worked for a music management company that oversaw bands like Nirvana, Foo Fighters, Beastie Boys, and Bonnie Raitt. Doug is also the artist and songwriter behind all the music heard on the podcast.
Meredith Levy is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in the state of California and holds a Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University. Over the last ten years she has worked with many different populations, and feels most at home working in addiction, personality disorders and mood disorders. Meredith specializes in Dialectical
Behavioral Therapy (DBT). Meredith worked with inner-city youth as a bi-lingual therapist for the Department of Mental Health in Los Angeles County. Not only has Meredith worked at a variety of different drug and alcohol treatment centers throughout California, she was also the co- founder of a large treatment facility in Northern California.
Meredith's extensive education and background as an attorney and an MBA gives her a unique perspective and a fresh approach to elevating personal growth. In addition, she is a certified yoga instructor and believes that the spiritual, physical and emotional aspects of the self are important components of the therapeutic process.
[1:10] Doug is still out in the snow, but not getting restful or good sleep!
[4:47] Meredith says a big “F-you” to people who sleep like a baby on planes! Must be nice.
[6:28] Doug misses LA, but is not in a hurry to get back. Meredith says it feels like a weird apocalyptic zombie movie during the pandemic.
[9:10] Meredith’s dad is so nice and one of those people that actually stops to listen after they ask how you are.
[12:07] Session begins.
[12:27] Drew had a longtime close friend that passed away recently. He opens up about his desire to view it as a heart attack rather than suicide. When he saw this friend’s dad at the service, he didn’t say anything to him because he didn’t want to confront his own painful emotions about it.
[16:54] This is the first close friend of Drew’s that has passed away and it’s bringing up old feelings that everyone he loves always leaves him.
[20:36] This was the first time in a while that Drew was back home for longer than a week. It made him both happy to be living in Los Angeles and feel the need to figure out his place and purpose in the world.
[22:14] When we are grieving, it is normal to have moments where we compartmentalize our pain and may even find ourselves laughing or talking like things are normal.
[23:08] Drew is finding himself avoiding people and feeling detached. He has started smoking more weed again and numbing out.
[29:28] Doug notes that it’s not our output or achievements that are the most impactful, it’s when we share our authentic self and vulnerabilities with people.
[34:33] Doug talks about localizing vs. globalizing. An example is: “I didn’t make my bed this morning.” vs. “I didn’t make my bed this morning and now I’m a loser that can’t do anything right.”
[43:46] Session ends.
[44:29] Doug and Meredith talk about loss of loved ones. As much as you can say you carry someone’s memory in your heart, it’s very different from them being physically around.
[45:54] Sometimes avoidance is really just our way of taking a moment for ourselves.
[53:40] Meredith noticed that Drew is not going out right now to please others, but rather he’s learning what is important to his mental and emotional health - even if it feels weird.
[55:42] Sometimes we don’t want to connect with anyone and we crave just being alone. Doug validates this for Drew and says he is in retreat mode. From that place we can heal and then move towards the type of connection (or disconnection) that we are really seeking.
[1:00:29 ] Meredith is literally taking little steps in coping with her broken toe by bringing yoga into her routine.
[1:05:50] We often tend to critically focus on the one thing that’s lacking, or what we haven’t done, instead of what we have actually accomplished. Meredith and Doug talk about how “perfect is the enemy of good,” and “it’s beautiful to be perfectly imperfect.”
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