Our Latest Blogs

Living Well with an Eating Disorder

living well eating disorder

  Eating disorders are some of the most dangerous and deadly mental health conditions. These disorders can take a large toll on one’s physical and mental health. Thankfully, recovery from eating disorders is very much possible. Here are thirteen notable people who recovered from an eating disorder and have continued to live well. Paula Abdul […]

3 Apps to Calm You Down

3 apps to calm you down

Don’t you wish you could escape the pressures and stress of your daily life, even just for a few minutes? Well, you are in luck because I’ve discovered three amazing apps that can help you calm down when stress runs high. All three of these apps can help you de-stress and improve your mental health […]

Living Well with Borderline Personality Disorder

living well with borderline

Borderline personality disorder is a widely misunderstood disorder that is characterized by extreme mood swings, fear of abandonment, and destructive behaviors. While the symptoms of this disorder can affect a person’s life, it is possible to live well with this disorder. Here are ten examples of people who were able to achieve notable success while […]

6 Things that Everyone Thinks are Signs of Mental Illness but Aren’t

imsobipolar tweet

Can you easily tell the difference between average behavior and mental illness? Probably not. There is a lot of misinformation floating around in our society about mental illness, making it hard to tell whether certain behaviors might be quirks or might be a sign of something more. To show you the typical human behaviors most […]

8 Study Hacks to Beat Test Anxiety

8 Study Hacks to Beat Test Anxiety

  You showed up to class every day. You took lengthy notes and studied for hours. You go to take the test and suddenly, your body tenses, your mind goes blank, and you can’t bring yourself to answer a single question. If you can relate to this then you are probably struggling with test anxiety […]

Mental Health and Social Media: 5 Tips for Parents of Teenagers

teens on smartphones

  Social media is rapidly changing the way we communicate. From staying in touch with everyone you’ve ever met on Facebook to sharing your opinions on Twitter and photographs of your life on Instagram, how people connect to each other is much different from how it was even five years ago. With younger generations growing up […]

Cool Millennials and Stressed-Out Moms: Normalizing Excessive Drinking in Young Women

women and drinking

Both men and women enjoy drinking for a variety of reasons—to celebrate an event, to socialize with others, or calm down after a long day. Regardless of its benefits, alcohol can still cause dependence in both men and women. Yet, the stereotype of the alcoholic is usually pictured as a middle-aged man who would prefer […]

SuperBetter: The App that Turns Mental Health into a Winning Game

superbetter

Do you wish that taking care of your mental health and wellness was fun? Does it feel nearly impossible to break free from your negative thoughts and habits while taking steps to improve your overall happiness? Even with the guidance of a therapist, it still might feel daunting to work on your mental health every day. That’s […]

Living Well with Bipolar Disorder

living well with bipolar disorder

Bipolar disorder, formerly known as manic-depression, is a serious mental health condition that is characterized by manic highs and depressive lows. The following is a list of notable people who have been diagnosed with bipolar disorder and have achieved great success in their chosen fields. This list contains mostly those who are still living, but we […]

The Simple Secret to Staying Calm in Uncertain Times

newspaper

The 2016 election left many feeling depressed or anxious about what the future holds. Having a nation so divided and so heated on many of the important issues in politics is unsettling. A poll taken last fall found that 90% of the respondents were experiencing emotional distress due to the election regardless of their political […]

“The Mask You Live In”: Masculinity and Mental Health

mask you live in

The screen opens on an animated scene of a kid in a basement with his father looming over him. A booming voice yells, “be a man.” The animation fades to real life and shows NFL coach and former player, Joe Ehrmann, narrating the story of how his father taught him to “be a man.” Like […]

Four Questions to Ask Yourself Before Making a New Year’s Resolution

clock at midmight

It’s that time of year again when TV ads have shifted away from buying holiday presents to signing up for gym memberships. Even if you have no fitness goals in mind, if you’re like most Americans, you’ll make a New Year’s resolution…and give up on it by February. If you want to avoid this, there […]

Self-Care Isn’t Selfish and Other Self-Care Myths Busted

love your self, self-care

  Have you noticed that the term “self-care” has recently become a dividing topic? It seems people fall into two camps: those who champion all forms of self-care and those who think self-care is selfishness in disguise. This is made clear by a video released on the popular YouTube channel, College Humor. In the video […]

7 Things Not to Say to a Loved One in Therapy (and What to Say Instead)

7-things-not-to-say-to-your-loved-one-in-therapy

Do you have a friend or family member who is in therapy? Maybe you’re new to the concept of mental health and aren’t familiar with what your loved one in therapy is going through. You might not be sure what to say when the topic arises. Here are some basic phrases you should avoid when talking to […]

7 Signs Your Friend or Family Member is at Risk for an Eating Disorder

apple-in-fridge-eating-disorder

  The Holiday season is heading our way and that means two things: family gatherings and food. You might not have seen some of your friends or family members in a long time. Maybe you live far away or they recently went away to college. Regardless, you might have noticed some changes about them that raise […]

7 Ways to Stay Well in the Face of Seasonal Depression

seasonal-depression

  Have you noticed that the days are much shorter and darker this time of year? These changes in weather and light can affect our mood and energy levels. Over 10 million Americans are estimated to have seasonal affective disorder (SAD) or seasonal depression. The cold days, long nights, and isolation of winter can make […]

MacGyver Syndrome: Fixing vs. Helping

MacGyver

Remember secret agent, Angus MacGyver, who always knew how to fix any situation he got himself into with so much as a paperclip? Nowadays, the character is so well-known that we refer to the ability to fix anything as MacGyvering. While MacGyver made for great TV back in the 80’s, the idea of always being able to […]

Alcohol and Self-Starvation: The Dangerous New Trend

beer on table

  We all know that college can be a breeding ground for partying. Many parents may worry that their kids in college might drink too much and develop an addiction, yet many don’t know that young adults are also at risk for developing an eating disorder. Unfortunately the two can come together to form a variety […]

College Survival Tips: The Dorms

family helping daughter move in to dorms

  I’m sure you’re feeling a mixture of excitement and nervousness as the summer counts down and the first day of college gets closer and closer. College is a huge change and it isn’t something that should be taken lightly. One of the biggest adjustments you will face when you start college is living in […]

College Survival Tips: Academics

girl studying in college classroom

  College is a big transition and it comes with its own set of pressures and adjustments. One of the main areas of college life that give students the most stress is worrying about how they will do academically. Grades are no longer just a measure of how well you are doing in school; your […]

Introvert Wellness: Getting Out There

friends-laughing

  Many of the introvert struggles I hear and have experienced myself revolve around socializing: some people are too loud and pushy, some friends don’t respect boundaries, and networking requires too much small talk. The list could go on and on. I empathize with how uncomfortable the world can be for introverts especially since most […]

Sarah’s Scribbles Creator Talks with rtor.org: A Candid Interview with Comic Artist Sarah Andersen

adulthood-is-a-myth-cover

I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to meet and interview the lovely and hilarious Sarah Andersen, the creator of the widely popular Internet comic strip, “Sarah’s Scribbles.” The strip follows the main character, Sarah, as she finds herself in funny and all-too-real situations. Recently, Sarah has released a “Sarah’s Scribbles” book, Adulthood is a Myth. […]

Quarter Life Crisis: Wellness

girl-in-sunlight

  Are you a twenty-something and you’re completely and utterly lost in life? Did your original life plans change or fail and it now seems like there is no hope of ever finding the right path to take? You might be experiencing a quarter life crisis. I’m here to tell you that as confusing and terrible […]

The Dos and Don’ts of Helping a Family Member in Psychosis 

Man Helping a Family Member in Psychosis

  Have you noticed a family member beginning to act strangely? Does he seem to think that someone is trying to hurt him when there was no apparent danger? Or maybe he has started following a complex belief system that you can’t quite understand? It could be that your loved one is experiencing psychosis. Psychosis […]

The Bad-Habit-Breaking Wellness Card Game

Bad-Habit-Breaking-Wellness-Card-Game

  The internet is littered with people talking about goals. Whether it’s fitness goals, “squad” goals or business goals, it’s clear we, as humans, are always trying to better ourselves. Usually there is a bad habit or two keeping most people from achieving or sticking with their goals. Maybe your love of junk food is […]

Four Lessons to Learn from “The Center Cannot Hold”

elyn-mental-illnes-quote

  I recently read The Center Cannot Hold by Elyn R. Saks, an autobiography about the Yale-educated law professor’s life-long struggle with schizophrenia. It would be easy to write a book review, judging the work solely on its entertainment value and well-crafted prose. Yet, the core of the book contains serious messages about mental health, mental illness […]

What the British Royal Family is doing for Mental Health

Kate and Harry

The royal family of England is known around the world. While this ruling family only has a small fraction of the political power that they once had, their fame and influence seems to be at an all-time high. Even though the media frets over what Kate Middleton is wearing and who might Prince Harry marry, this family […]

Spiritual Wellness is for Everyone

Spiritual Wellness

  Writing this blog post has not been easy for me. The trouble I’ve had with this post isn’t because I find it too much for me or the topic uninteresting, it’s because I don’t identify myself as a spiritual person and struggle with the notion that one has to be spiritual to be well. […]

8 Eating Disorder Myths

eating disorder

To honor Eating Disorder Awareness Month this February, I am busting common eating disorder myths so everyone can get a clear picture of how serious these types of disorders are.   1. Eating disorders are rare It’s estimated that 11-24 million people in the United States and over 70 million people worldwide (North Dakota State University) […]

Top 5 Wellness Tips Based on DBT

wellness_tips_dbt

  Don’t you wish there was a way to magically feel better about yourself? Or that you could have less mood swings and less fights with your loved ones? There may not be any magic potions to fix everything in an instant but learning how to use Dialectical Behavior Therapy or DBT may be the […]

Just Right Wellness: The Wellness Blog for Real Life

  Go back to your childhood and remember the story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Goldilocks wandered into the Bears’ home and found one bed that was too firm, one bed that was too soft and one that was just right. When it comes to choosing the type of life to lead, most people are […]

Family Friendly Feel Good Holiday Movies

Charlie-brown

  The holidays are all about reconnecting with your loved ones and enjoying time together. To add to your holiday cheer, here are RtoR staff picks for our favorite family-friendly movies to watch over the holidays. These films can be either TV specials or feature-length movies that don’t necessarily need to reference Christmas or the Winter Holidays […]

Interview with Ginny Levy, Co-editor of “Parts Unbound”

ginny levy

  On a gloomy Connecticut morning in December, I sat down with Ginny Levy to discuss her most recent project, Parts Unbound: Narratives of Mental Illness and Health which is published by LimeHawk Books. The book contains 18 essays detailing different experiences of mental illness. The majority of the writers speak about their own experiences of […]

Green Wellness: How Spending Time in Nature Can Help You

girl-in-forest

  It seems like a no-brainer that spending time outside in the fresh air while doing physical activities is good for us. Thankfully, there are many research findings which indicate that spending time in nature, especially while exercising, has many mental health benefits. From a boost in self-esteem and attention span to decreased feelings of depression […]

Family Wellness Holiday Shopping Guide

  Your purchase of any items on this list from amazon.com help support the costs of running rtor.org, a free service of Laurel House, Inc., 501 (C)(3), non-profit organization. Another Holiday Season is fast approaching and many of us are struggling to come up with gifts to give our family members. This year, give the gift […]

Avoid Family Fights this Holiday Season by Using Myers-Briggs Personality Types

avoid family fights with myers briggs

  The holidays are supposed to be a time of relaxation, good food and family fun, right? Well that isn’t always the case. Google searches for “family fights” and related search terms always increase right around Thanksgiving and the Winter holidays. Expectations and stress can be high around the holidays and if you or a loved […]

A Review of “The Visit”: An Open Letter to M. Night Shyamalan

the visit movie

This article contains spoilers for The Visit, The Village, The Happening and The Sixth Sense. If you don’t want the details of these films ruined for you, watch them first and meet me back here.   Dear Mr. Shyamalan, I want to discuss your latest work, The Visit with you. I went to see this […]

The 3 Pillars of Social Wellness

Social Wellness

  The University of New Hampshire has identified three areas that are the most important for your social wellness. Having lots of friends and acquaintances isn’t the pinnacle of being socially well. You have to take into account how you communicate, how healthy each relationship is and how you can manage your stress. Check out […]

Family-Endorsed Provider, Attorney Patrick Poeschl to Speak at Free Seminar

  On Thursday October 15, Attorney Patrick Poeschl of the law firm Nemchek & Poeschl will speak on the topic of “Disability Estate Planning and Conservatorship.”  This informative talk is a part of Laurel House’s Family Seminar Series which is offered free of charge. Family trust and estate planning can help build a better future for your […]

4 Ways to Find Occupational Wellness

Occupational Wellness

  Wellness is a concept that affects all parts of our lives and certainly something that we should bring into the workplace. It’s estimated that the average American worker spends 9 hours a day doing work-related duties so it makes sense to incorporate elements of wellness in such a major area of our lives. Before […]

Panic Disorder Broke-Up My Favorite Band: Ending Anxiety Stigma

meg

  In late summer 2007, my teenager self got the devastating news that my favorite band, The White Stripes had cancelled their tour. I was not going to be able to attend their concert that was only a few weeks way in my local area. Like any teen with a music obsession, I was crushed. […]

Kevin Breel, 21 Year Old Mental Health Activist and TEDx Speaker Coming to Stamford, CT

boy meets depression

                            Rtor.org’s sponsor, Laurel House, is proud to announce they will be hosting a speaking event for mental health activist and comedian, Kevin Breel. At the ripe age of 19, Kevin bravely took the stage for a TEDx Talk to speak out about his personal […]

What is Anxiety? “The Ball of Nerves” Will Help You Understand

ball of nerves cover

  You are in a crowded room at a party you don’t really want to be attending. But you decide to try and make the best of it. A few minutes go by and you start to feel a knotting in your stomach then, a pain in your chest. A few more seconds pass and […]

3 Questions to Ask Yourself About Your Environmental Wellness

four friends

  Environmental wellness focuses on what is around you on a daily basis and how your surrounding can affect you both positively and negatively. It’s easy to get so used to who and what you see everyday that you become blind to what can be emotionally and physically harmful in your surroundings. Here are 3 questions to ask yourself […]

Psyberguide.org: Where Technology and Mental Health Meet

keyboard mouse and smartphone

  The world is becoming more and more tech-savvy so it makes sense that the field of mental health is starting to go digital. But with new mental health software and smartphone apps released almost everyday, people need a trusted source to review these products. That is where Psyberguide.org comes in. Psyberguide is a website that […]

RtoR Scavenger Hunt Quiz: Caring for a Family Member with Mental Illness

quiz

  This is the first of many RtoR Scavenger Hunt Quizzes where you can search our site and/or the Web for answers to each question. This quiz’s theme is about being a caregiver for a loved one with a mental illness or mental health disorder. Good Luck!     Thanks for playing! Tell us how […]

4 Ways to Cultivate Intellectual Wellness

Intellectual Wellness

“One of the secrets of life is to keep our intellectual curiosity acute”  – William Lyon Phelps   In our modern lives, there are so many things to keep track of: making healthy meals, being physically active, staying on top of things at work, making sure the kids are doing well in school and about a million other […]

4 Benefits of Practicing Financial Wellness

plant spouting from money

  When most people think of wellness they conjure up images of some bohemian looking woman telling you why you should start practicing yoga or eating kale. But wellness is actually about maintaining health and balance in each aspect of a person’s life. Much like emotional or physical health, financial well-being can have an enormous […]

Bipolar Disorder vs. Borderline Personality Disorder: Knowing the Difference

bipolar vs bpd

  Maybe you have noticed that the free and open style of the Internet has encouraged many bloggers and social media users to open up about their experience with bipolar disorder or borderline personality disorder. While many of these people may have a confirmed mental health disorder, some give the impression of being self-diagnosed or […]

Hellblade: Ending Mental Health Stigma One Gamer at a Time

kid playing video game

  As you can see from our last post on the topic, our Editor in Chief, Jay Boll has some strong opinions about the new video game Hellblade. In short, the game features the Celtic warrior, Senua who battles a variety of mental illnesses after a Viking attack on her village. I understand my coworker’s point of […]

5 Key Aspects of Physical Wellness

yoga physical wellness

“A wise man ought to realize that health is his most valuable possession” – Hippocrates It’s no mystery that taking care of your physical well-being is extremely important to your health and happiness. Yet, the average American leads a busy stressed-out life which puts health and wellness on the back burner. There is a lot of complicated information […]

What Are You Afraid Of? A Look at the ‘100 Days Without Fear’ Project

no fear

  Everyone knows Franklin Roosevelt’s famous quote “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself” but for much of Michelle Poler’s life, she had precisely 100 things to fear. From big dogs to roller coasters, from wearing patterned clothing to dancing in public, Michelle was afraid of mostly everything. Yet, when this 26 year old art […]

5 Tips for Managing Emotional Wellness

Emotional Wellness

  Keeping your emotional well-being balanced is no easy task. Feelings can be hard to figure out and they might appear to be out of your control. Being able to manage your emotions and have healthy relationships with others is vital to your emotional wellness. Keeping these five tips in mind can help you achieve emotional […]

Mental Health App Review: Pacifica

pacifica logo

  Pacifica is a free smartphone app that is designed to use the principles of Cognitive Behavior Therapy and Mindfulness to help with daily stress, anxiety and depression. With anxiety and depression being the most common mental health disorders, I’m glad that app developers are addressing this issue. There are six major aspects to Pacifica and each one has […]

Hellblade: The New Video Game that is Making Strides on the Subject of Mental Illness

ps4 controler

  Video gaming gets a bad rap. It’s either being blamed for causing violent behavior in children or being called out for perpetuating negative stereotypes of women.  Game developers at Ninja Theory plan to change all that by releasing Hellblade in 2016 for PS4 and Windows PC. The game focuses on the female warrior, Senua […]

The Great Debate: Smoking vs. Mental Illness

no smoking

  It’s common knowledge that smoking is harmful for your health yet it’s not as well-known that up to 70% of those who use tobacco products also have a mental health diagnosis. There is an on-going debate about whether or not hospitals should forbid those with mental illnesses from smoking. Some claim that limiting access to […]

Thinking Well Activity Series: Playing Oratory Jenga

word jenga

This Thinking Well activity is designed for program participants to practice communication skills in either social or professional settings. It is designed for use in a group setting with a clear leader for the activity:   Participants in the Thinking Well program who near completion of their cognitive training classes regularly express the desire to find employment. The computer-based exercises of cognitive […]

RtoR Mental Health Awareness Month: This Year’s Recipient of the “Power of One” Award, Chitra Ramcharandas

chitra volunteer

Volunteers make a great contribution to many people’s lives. Here in the mental health field, we understand the impact just one caring individual can make. Laurel House, the non-profit mental health organization that brings you Rtor.org, publicly honors one special volunteer each year with its “Power of One” award.  The past three award winners were […]

The “Cheaper Than Therapy” Fashion Trend: Not a Joke

  In the last few months, I’ve noticed that the women’s clothing departments in several mainstream clothing’s stores selling T-shirts with a slogan that decrees a certain activity is “cheaper than therapy”.  I’ve personally seen yoga, running, gardening and wine all being advertising as a therapy substitute. It’s not only in the stores; as I […]

Understanding Childhood Selective Mutism

scrabble letters quiet

  The sound of their child’s voice is something most parents love to hear. No doubt will the sudden cessation of that voice cause most parents to feel fear and confusion. Selective mutism is a form of anxiety which 7 out of every 1,000 children experience. There is no difference in the rate of prevalence by sex or […]

RtoR Mental Health Awareness Month: 5 Mindfulness Tips for Managing Toxic Perfectionism

perfect stamp

  The term “toxic perfectionism” is a bit of a misnomer because all perfectionism is toxic. “Why?” you might ask, “There is nothing wrong with wanting to be your best”. True, pursuing your best self is a noble task but perfectionism rarely helps people achieve their goals. The pursuit of perfection places the sole value […]

Thinking Well Activity Series: Affirmation Hearts, a Workshop on Positive Self-Talk

affirmation hearts

  This Thinking Well activity is designed to promote positive thinking in the daily lives of program participants. While the activity is designed for use in a group setting, individuals can also benefit: Many of us have heard the term neuroplasticity, which is the idea that the adult brain is adaptable at any age and […]

RtoR Mental Health Awareness Month: Think Mental Health has Nothing to do with your Bottom Line? Think again

man stressed at work

  Mental health is a topic no one in the workplace wants to talk about but no one can afford not to. Many companies lose revenue and productivity by not addressing mental health but the fear and shame surrounding the topic leads both employers and employees from speaking out about this very important issue. Mental […]