Don't Go to Bed Angry, A Penny Saved is a Penny Earned, Don't Judge - Debunking Modern Day Proverbs

Posted by tonyoverbay

Is it truly better to stay up until all hours of the morning while reaching the depths of sleep deprivation to "work things out" with your spouse, or should you just go to bed and talk in the morning? Is it always wise to save every penny? Tony looks at modern-day "proverbs" from both sides of the coin. Tony references the articles "100 Common Proverbs with Meaning and Examples" https://leverageedu.com/blog/common-proverbs/ Lack of sleep effects: why do we get more emotional when we’re tired? https://www.stylist.co.uk/health/sleep/sleep-deprivation-affects-emotional-health-sensitivity-stress-cycle/367278 and How Much Fruit is Too Much? https://www.webmd.com/diet/how-much-fruit-is-too-much

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-------------------------------------------------TRANSCRIPT-----------------------------------------[00:00:45] Come on in. Take a seat.

[00:00:52] Hey, Rudy, welcome to Episode 337 of the Virtual Couch. I am your host, Tony Overbay. I'm a licensed marriage and family therapist, certified, mindful habit coach, writer, speaker, [00:01:00] husband, father of four and host also of Waking Up the Narcissism, which is a podcast that is just growing by leaps and bounds. So if you haven't checked out an episode, I highly recommend you go look at the one I had my associate professional clinical counselor friend Nate Christensen on and we talked about self care. And self care is such a buzzword. So we go into literally what does that mean? And we're not just talking about getting your nails done, going to the gym, taking a bath, going on a run, petting a dog. We talk about all areas of what self care really looks like, even self care, the mind, and how even just the concept of starting to think about positive things can move the general landscape, internal landscape of what it feels like to be you. So go check that out. On waking up the narcissism. I highly recommend that. And while I have you here, I also would love to bring a little bit more awareness to The Path Back, which is an online pornography recovery program that I have. And you can go to Pathbackrecovery.com and learn more about that, but there is a lot of good happening there. [00:02:00] I specifically say online pornography recovery program because we're not talking about the heaviness or the weight of calling everything in addiction.

[00:02:08] I really believe it's an unhealthy coping mechanism. We have so many unhealthy coping mechanisms that we turn to when we don't feel connected and a few different areas of our lives. If we aren't feeling connected in our marriage or as a parent, or maybe in our faith or in our health and our career, that we tend to turn to unhealthy coping mechanisms. And then, of course, that's going to be the last time, the last time that someone ever looks at porn or eats junk food or wastes the day binging on Netflix or Hulu, because tomorrow it's going to be all different, right? Tomorrow is going to be different. So I have a lot of tools that can really help people be a better version themselves, as clichéd as that sounds, which then in turn allows you to not feel that siren song of temptation because you're feeling more connected with all these different areas of your life. And when you feel more connected in those areas of your life, then naturally you're not going to want to spend as much [00:03:00] time doing things that are unproductive because you're figuring out what really matters to you. So that's Pathbackrecovery.com I've got an amazing weekly group Zoom call that is phenomenal. What a support group that is. So go check that out and then go to Tony over Macomb Workshop. And I have a 90 minute workshop there where I just start literally from the womb and why we exit the womb and we're off to the races as and why we show up into relationships with various abandonment and attachment issues just because we're human beings, because I really believe that no one has the tools to have the best marriage that you could ever have just because of that concept of being a human.

[00:03:40] And we don't know what we don't know. And so many people will say to me, well, we're not getting a divorce. I don't think our marriage is horrible and that is wonderful. But what if it could be even better? And what if, instead of this kind of feeling of enmeshment, that it felt okay to have your very own opinions and thoughts and you can have this collaborative process [00:04:00] and you realize that it's not. We're two pieces of this whole that were two individuals. Of course we are with our own experiences that we bring into the relationship and then we learn how to really express them because we're going to start going through things in life and we have the tools to express that. We start to have different opinions and different thoughts and all kinds of things, and that that could actually make for a better marriage, a more connected relationship when we're able to explore each other's differences and look at things with curiosity and not this fear that that person is going to leave me if I all of a sudden express that I have a different opinion.

[00:04:32] So go check out Tony over Macomb Workshop and you can find out more about what we what we don't know that we don't know. So on today's episode, episode 337 of the virtual couch, I am going to talk about modern day proverbs. And this comes from my wife and I actually teaching a Sunday school class over the weekend with a group of 16 to 18 year old youth, male, female. And we were exploring what Proverbs even were, and I thought it was really fascinating. I looked up just [00:05:00] the definition and it says A proverb is a simple and insightful, traditional saying that expresses a perceived truth based on common sense or experience. And that might sound very simplistic because really it's advice. It's advice given by someone who feels like they have advice to give. And and what I thought was really interesting is we talked about these proverbs in this class, and so many of them just sound so solid. Of course, why wouldn't anyone adhere to these proverbs? But what I loved about this lesson that we were teaching and the concept of a proverb or advice in general, and the word there in that definition says that they are based on common sense or experience. And I want to go back this is what I wanted to talk about today, why I wanted to build the entire episode off of this concept of Proverbs.

[00:05:49] Is that word common sense? What what is common sense? What is common sense to you? And is that actually common sense to me as well? So Proverbs advice sometimes I talk about it's the psychology [00:06:00] of the peanut gallery. When you ask someone for their advice or their opinion, how often do they give you advice or an opinion that may not actually resonate with you? But now all of a sudden you feel like you have to take that advice or take that opinion, or if you don't, then something is wrong with you or you feel bad about that. And I gave a couple of really quick examples. One, a penny saved as a penny earned. And what was really funny is this group of 16 to 18 year olds hadn't necessarily even heard that phrase before, so we had to explain what that even meant. But a penny saved is a penny earned alludes to the fact that save your money. And that sounds amazing. And I know that as someone who me who has struggled with savings my entire life, that that sounds like solid advice. And I would agree that that is in principle, that's an amazing thing. But then I told the story about a client long, long ago that sat in front of me. And let's and we'll mix up some of the finer points to protect the anonymity, although this was so long ago that [00:07:00] I don't think that these people would even recognize if I'm telling a little bit of this story.

[00:07:04] But there was a couple sitting in front of me and when we really started talking about what was underneath, why they would just have these arguments, these petty arguments on frequent occasions, the wife said to me, I just feel like we we are living this life of a pauper and we have money. And so when I'm asked to pack the lunches and reuse the Ziploc bags and we're sharing a car, and so she has a lot of kids and he's at work and they have to manage how to get people to different places. And then she says, we have money. And the husband says, Well, it's because of the saving that I've done and I'm sitting there in front of them. And they finally the wife offers up and she says, Hey, how much do you feel is enough money? And I wasn't going to step into that one. And I said, Well, that's all relative, and it depends. And she just blurred it out. $1.2 she said, we have $1.2 million [00:08:00] in disposable income in savings, and that's not even including the retirement accounts that we have. And so she said 1.2 million and we are sharing a car. I have to reuse Ziploc bags and whenever we go on vacation, we have to plan out the peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and and large bags of chips and divvy them up.

[00:08:19] And we're going to use old water bottles and fill them up out of the tap. Now, you may be listening to this and thinking, oh, what what privilege that Tony must be alluding to, to say that that isn't the way to go. But I think you're maybe also seeing where I'm coming from with this. They weren't even allowed to have a conversation around the inconvenience that was for the wife and the scenario or even being able to have a conversation about finances. And so in that scenario, a penny saved as a penny earned a proverb. Good advice, sure sounds good. But can it be taken to an extreme? And the reason I mentioned that is not to give someone ammunition to then say, Hey, I don't like the way we do things in our home, although that might be the result of this. [00:09:00] But just understanding that there are two different people, there are two unique individuals that are showing up in a relationship. So as we start to dig deeper in this relationship, the husband had came from a place where they had no money. And so he was incredibly happy to have found a career that provided financial stability. But then at what point had he just dug in and now we're in this all or nothing, black or white mode and the proverbial talk about proverbs, you can't take it with you.

[00:09:28] And the lesson material. When my wife and I were listening to a couple of podcasts in preparation, I can't remember who said this, but they said, And I love this, but you never see a hearse pulling a U-Haul because you literally can't take it with you. So while it is absolutely wonderful and amazing to save those pennies, is it also to a point where then it is to excess and now people are living in this relationship where they just feel unheard and unseen and it is more stress than than it needs to be than is necessary. So that proverb I thought was fascinating. Another one [00:10:00] that I think is a modern day proverb is one that my wife and I heard when we were married and one that I adhered to for quite a long time. And that was the never go to bed angry. It sounds phenomenal. It does. If we could always if we had disagreements in our relationships and we could just resolve everything and with a tight bow and feel good when we go to bed, that would be ideal. But I was sharing with the class and I feel like there are probably people listening right now that maybe fall on both sides of this equation. But as a marriage therapist and one of the things I talked about in an episode back in February or March where I was just giving marriage advice, one of the first things I talked about was go to bed.

[00:10:38] And so many of the stories happen when it's late and people are tired when people are sleep deprived. And I run into this on a continual basis as a marriage therapist when I have couples in my office. And how often we get to this point where somebody said, okay, we didn't get a chance to talk until it was about nine or ten. And then we start this conversation. It doesn't go well. Before you know it, it's [00:11:00] it's midnight. It's one it's 2 a.m.. And one of them has to get up and go to work early or get the kids up for school. And so at some point, people, just one of the people, typically the more pathologically kind person, just says, okay, fine. No, you're right. I am. I am a huge piece of garbage. And you're right. And I never should have brought this up to where the sleep deprived partner at times says, okay, so are we good? No, we're not good, but we're going to we got to end this at some point because the brain is literally shutting down in that marriage. Tip advice. I found an article. This was off a stylized co.uk that talks about lack of sleep effects. And when we why do we get more emotional when we're tired and they have some pretty amazing data where they were talking about according to the research Bensons for beds 87% this was talking about British people say tiredness makes them intolerant with one in five saying the constant argument or they called it a row, which I love with their partner.

[00:11:54] It happens because they feel exhausted. And some 15% of people in this survey also said that [00:12:00] they feel their personality changes when they're tired. And more than a fifth confessed that they swear under their breath that everything when they're lacking on sleep. And why do we get so emotional when we're tired? And I love that they quote this, Dr. Bostock, who says, to make sense of this, it's worth thinking. Back 200,000 years ago when early humans were living out on the savannas, Dr. Bostock said In those days, what would have kept us awake? Predators, storms, hunger, threats to survival. So our brains have evolved to interpret sleep deprivation as a potentially dangerous situation. So we're talking about the amygdala, the part of our brain that regulates fight the fight or flight stress response, he said, therefore, gets more sensitive the more sleep deprived we get. So this means that we get much more emotional. And he said even small problems can feel more stressful. And because our amygdala gets more sensitive, then I think you can see where we're going when we're feeling tired and we're therefore more likely to have our stress response activated.

[00:12:51] The lack of sleep then also starts to have a physical impact on our body. And this is because when that fight or flight response is triggered, hormones flood through our body to [00:13:00] help us respond to a thing that we've identified as a threat. Dr. Bostock says the stress hormones, adrenalin and cortisol increase our heart rate, our blood pressure and our blood flow to the muscles. And over time, a lack of sleep is linked to an increased risk of high blood pressure, heart disease and even early mortality. So is an argument about who is going to take out the garbage on a regular basis or an argument about where do we want to go on our vacation? Is that worth the potential threat to our very mortality as we stay awake arguing? And is it a connection that we're seeking in our relationship or is it just to be right? I so often love to say the concept of you can have love or control in an adult relationship, so go to bed so early to bed, early to rise or never go to bed angry or a penny saved as a penny earned, you can see, are very good ideas, but in context. So I pulled up on its leverage. Ed EW.com, an article that shows 100 [00:14:00] common proverbs with meanings and examples. So I thought this was just interesting and I thought just for fun, I would go through a few more of these and just give different perspectives that I've seen as a marriage therapist.

[00:14:11] And some of these I think you might even be surprised about one. A simple one is an apple a day keeps the doctor away. Now I could go into the benefits of that. The benefits of eating fruit, of eating healthy. If somebody doesn't have a healthy diet, one apple is an amazing place to start. I love the concept that eating an apple will even replace, then maybe eating a little bit of garbage. And way back in the day, maybe five years ago, I had a woman on my podcast from the the podcast half size me and she had literally lost half of her weight, half of her size, and she was amazing. And when she was talking about her experience, she talked about if you are eating horribly seven days a week, three meals a day, that literally just starting one meal, replace one meal and start to eat better. And now that's improvement. And we even got to the point where she was talking about or just add one thing. So [00:15:00] eating an apple a day, an apple a day keeps the doctor away. Now, what is what could possibly be the negative side of that? Well, if you look on WebMD and talk about fruit, what happens when you have too much? Because I have had a couple of clients that have had OCD and OCD attacks, whatever is important to that person.

[00:15:18] I work with people that have scrupulously religious OCD, where religion is such an important part of their who they are as a person that OCD attacks that or people that obviously it attacks people that are concerned about their health. But if people are concerned primarily about the foods they eat. And let me take you on a fascinating deep dive here. Take a person with OCD who has had a history of Alzheimer's or dementia in their family, and they read an article early in their teen years that links diet to Alzheimer's and dementia. And they've literally watched as. Their grandfather and grandmother have withered away through Alzheimer's. Then what do they do now that OCD locks on to the nutrition or food? [00:16:00] And from that point on, they got to a point where they went from, I need to eat good. I need to eat clean. Fruit is the only thing I need to eat. That is all I can eat. I'm going to eat an overabundance of fruit. And according to WebMD, too much fruit. You can eat too much of anything. But they say the truth is it's hard to get too much fruit. In fact, most Americans don't get enough of it. Adults should eat at least one and a half cups of fruit every day.

[00:16:20] However, a fruit terrine diet in which you eat almost nothing but fruit can keep you from getting enough nutrients from other foods. So experts recommend that 25 to 30% of your diet is made up of fruit. What about the sugar and fruit then? Webmd. The sugar you should worry about, experts say, is the added type that you find in sodas, desserts and many other products. And since fruit contains fiber, your body reacts differently. Still, though, if you eat large portions, too much fruit sugar could contribute to health problems such as weight gain, diabetes, complications with pancreatic and kidney conditions, tooth decay, and then deficiencies in vitamin B, 12, calcium, vitamin D and Omega three fatty acids. And the client that I was working with in particular, I ran into some struggles with [00:17:00] those deficiencies in their vitamins, calcium, vitamin D. And so that was something that eventually had to be corrected through going to a doctor and working with a nutritionist. The proverbs, the good idea, the good thoughts. Again, wonderful, amazing things that we can take in and take a look at how those affect us. So is it wise to have an apple a day? Absolutely. Unless for some reason you're allergic to apples. But the concept of fruit is good. The concept of saving money, fantastic. It would be ideal if we could go to bed and be happy. But if we know that we are triggered, then why don't we just go to bed? Because tomorrow things are going to look a lot different.

[00:17:38] There's a few more that I thought and not to sound like. Then I can pick whole focus on anything. I love the one that says an idle brain is the devil's workshop, meaning evil. Thoughts come to us easily when we're idle. So example they say you should give your daughter something to do in the afternoon. After all, an idle brain is the devil's workshop. Now we could go into the concept. If you are religious, if you are not religious, is it? The Idol brain is the devil's [00:18:00] workshop. But I've also done a number of podcasts recently on the brain is they don't get killed device. And when you look at the brain as a don't get killed device when left to our own thoughts, typically the brain is going to start to process things in a worst case scenario. Now why? Because the brain does that don't get killed devices working under this premise that if the brain gets it, whatever it is wrong one time, just one time, that could be the time that leads to one's death. So you see the antelope out on the plane and you are the hunter gatherer, you're the hunter part. And you think, if I go get that antelope, my village will eat for a week and I will be the hero. But all of a sudden you spot a lion.

[00:18:41] That lion is just out of your it's in your peripheral vision and you think, okay, if I get this wrong, then I cease to exist. It's like, I'll do it tomorrow. And one of the first times I talked about that, I talked about, boy, look at what that's evolved to in the modern day that I need to make sure if I have this paper to write, I need to make sure that [00:19:00] I have all my ducks in a row. What are the proverbial lions of my day? I need to make sure that I've got all I've gotten back to everybody in text, that I've answered all my emails, that I've had a good meal maybe that I've done, I've exercised for the day. And so we can continually put ourselves in this position where things need to be. Just right before I tackle this big project, before I go hunt this antelope so that brain really is a don't get killed device. Going back to the book Buddha Brain by Rick Hansen, which I've done a couple of episodes talking about the mechanisms of memory or what it feels like to be you. I love that, he says. The negative bias of memory. So he said, Here's the problem with our brain. Your brain preferentially scans for registers, stores, recalls and reacts to unpleasant experiences, he says. It's like Velcro for negative experiences and Teflon for positive experiences.

[00:19:48] So consequently, even when positive experiences outnumber negative ones, the pile of negative implicit memories naturally grows faster. So then the background feeling of what it feels like to be you can become [00:20:00] undeservedly glum and pessimistic. So left to our own devices, is is the idle hands or idle time, the idle mind a devil's playground, or is it absolutely evolutionarily, biologically, your brain is a don't get killed device when it is left to its own devices and not engaged in something and absolutely even best case scenario, engaged in something of value, something that matters to you, then does the brain go to worst case scenario? So now all of a sudden your anxiety heightens and you become worried about things that most likely will never occur. And then we can get ourselves worked up, and then we can eventually kick the can down the road and say, I'll just work on things tomorrow. Today I don't have it in me because that is a survival instinct. It's a survival mechanism and I love that, he says. Rick Hanson says sure, negative experiences do have benefits. Loss opens the heart. Remorse provides a moral compass anxiety. Alerts you to threats and anger can spotlight wrongs that should be righted. But, he says, Do you really think you're not having enough negative experiences? Emotional pain with [00:21:00] no benefit to yourself or others is pointless suffering and pain today breeds more pain tomorrow.

[00:21:05] He says. For an instance, even a single episode of major depression can reshape circuitry in the brain to make future episodes more likely. That's from a study by Malik in 2007. But then he goes on to say, which I so appreciate, the remedy is not to suppress negative experiences when they happen because they happen. Rather, it's to foster positive experiences and in particular, take them in so they become a permanent part of you. Now, going back to these modern day proverbs, let me go through a few others. And again, I don't have to pick apart everything, but the grass is always greener on the other side. There's a proverb that is all right. We think that the grass will be greener on the other side. But the more that we're looking at trauma and the body's response. Bessel van der Cox, amazing work when the book The Body Keeps the score. And I've been just saying this the last few weeks and I don't have the exact data to back this up, so I will own that. But when someone says, You make me angry now, what do we often hear? [00:22:00] Well, no one can make you feel a certain way. You're choosing to feel a certain way. But I wonder if that is absolutely true or not. Because if we look at the visceral reaction, the gut reaction, and if you look at this concept of the emotions fire, some believe about two and a half times faster than the logical area part of your brain.

[00:22:19] Then when you walk into a room and you sense a threat because this has been a threat for a long period of time, then your visceral reaction is already in high gear. I'm looking at doing an episode soon on what's called the amygdala hijack. So that's the concept where your amygdala, your fight or flight response activates before you're even aware of what's going on. If you are with a partner who is abusive and every time they walk in the door, you all of a sudden straighten up and your heart rate starts to elevate a little bit, your palms get a little bit sweaty and you're starting to think, okay, what's the mood? Is he is he good? Is he bad? Is he happy as he said? What are we going to do [00:23:00] then? That is an absolute visceral reaction. So then that concept of the grass is always greener on the other side. What if then your brain is telling you repeatedly, Oh no, the grass will never be green here because there's trauma and abuse. So this visceral reaction is saying, I think it's time to go look at the other side because the grass may most likely be better over there. So I think that's such a fascinating concept. I was working with someone a while ago and they were in a job where they had a bit of a break, not like a bit of an emotional breakdown, so they had to take some time off from their job.

[00:23:39] Now, when they got back, they did some finding of themselves. They found me. We start working in therapy, then they return to their job. And I thought it was so interesting because they would try to get things done in their job, but they would find themselves just paralyzed at work. So we were using a lot of these principles of, well, acknowledge those feelings. You [00:24:00] can't push those feelings away. You're a human being. You're noticing that, you're feeling overwhelmed, you're noticing that you're feeling stuck. And now invite those feelings to come along with you while you do your job. But the person struggled and they still couldn't do their job and those feelings even intensified. So at one point we had to look at, okay, is your body trying to tell you this is not a good place for you? Get out. We already had one breakdown and the next one may not be good and it may not be far off. So do you need to listen to your body because it's trying to tell you the grass may indeed be greener over on the other side or is your body reacting? And it's something that you can bless your brain's squishy pink heart for warning you and then invite that brain to come along with you while you do things.

[00:24:44] And then eventually your amygdala calms down and you're able to to do those things in your job. Now, you ultimately end up being the only one that knows. Is that is your visceral reaction? Absolutely. Fight or flight. This isn't safe? Or is your brain and body warning you of things [00:25:00] that now after in this person's particular situation, after they were aware of it and they went and got help, then can they return back to that environment, use these new tools and learn how to stay present? Because ultimately they like their job or they need their job. So that grass is always greener on the other side. Maybe, maybe, maybe not. Better late than never, that proverb Better late than never that there are some people that are continually late and then they will beat themselves up about that. And am I saying that, boy, what can they do? They're always late. No, we can work on that. But the better late than never. Sometimes I've had clients that when they've had a continual pattern of showing up late to the point where then they're beating themselves up and they come in with this negative energy. So then the people that they're now interacting with feel that as well. And it just casts a dark shadow, almost like the pigpen from Charlie Brown. Days that follows them into the situation, then is it better showing up late than not at all.

[00:25:56] Or at some point do they need to realize, okay, I need to step back. [00:26:00] And this isn't I'm not respectful of the people that I'm now showing up late continually for whatever that activity is. And do I need to just let them know ahead of time I'm not going to be able to make it and then I need to go deal with Why am I late? What am I pretending not to know? I need to learn how to take accountability and ownership over something so that I can start to show up and be on time. Boy, blood is thicker than water. The meaning of that proverb is family relationships are always stronger than other relationships, and the example they give is, I had a party to attend, but I still chose to stay home because my grandmother was sick. As they say, blood is thicker than water. I love that example because I'm going to be there for grandma and I'm going to build those familial relationships. But as a therapist, working in this field for almost now two decades, I do continually work with unhealthy family dynamics. And so if you are in a family situation where going into that situation repeatedly, you are the scapegoat child, you are the one that everything ends up falling on. You are a trauma dumpster and everyone just relies [00:27:00] on you to take their their trauma, to take their garbage.

[00:27:04] And there's no reciprocity that then you never feel heard, you never feel understood. You are being taken advantage of that that that saying that proverb, blood is thicker than water. You just have to deal with it. I disagree because again, that visceral reaction, the body keeps the score. Why do we keep putting ourselves in a situation that is unsafe, that is at a cost of our of our mental health? In that scenario, because our body is telling us something, our body keeps the score. If we are continually feeling this anxiety when we're around, even family members and we're walking up to the porch ready to go into the house, and all of a sudden we are just on fight or flight and we're starting to shut down. And we go in there and we say, Man, I am going to be as present as I can. But then we just go flat as soon as we feel like we're attacked or not heard or not understood, then what does that doing to our mental health? Now, let me even go deeper. Let me say, if you have kids [00:28:00] and not to bring any guilt or shame into this, but how do kids develop a sense of self? So kids do not have a sense of self, so they develop that sense of self based off of external validation. It's just the way it works. There's an acceptance there.

[00:28:18] So when a kid feels like they are center of the universe because they're a kid and they don't have empathy or they don't really often understand the plight of what their parent is going through. The example I love to give is if they don't get the coolest thing for their birthday, they may not understand that their parent is financially strapped, may have lost their job, has had some something happen and there's a financial impact. And so they don't get the big gift that they've been alluding to or even asking for then to a kid, how do they not go to this place of man? My parents must not love me. And that's sad. But but we have to accept that that's the case. So if we bring our best selves into our role as a parent. So I love the nurtured heart parenting approach. I'm not going to react to the buttons that my [00:29:00] kids try to push, and I'm going to build that inner wealth. I'm not going to just rely on a slate of just saying, Good job, champ, but man, I love the way that you're tackling this problem because that shows me your problem solver. All right. I love the way that you're interacting with your siblings, because that shows me that you're someone that values relationships. So you're building that inner wealth. And what are you doing? Yeah, you're giving them external validation and you're starting them off with a sense of self.

[00:29:25] Now, eventually we hope that that will provide this secure attachment with you as a parent, with your kid. So they may go out into the world feeling like they have this value of connection with others. But then the more they put themselves out there now, they might feel like, well, I might have a different value and I know I can go back and talk about that with my parent because my parents are going to say, Tell me more about that. Not you should think something different. So if we are showing up in our family relationships and we are not our best selves and we come home and we have to just process why why did my mom and dad handle this the way they did? Why? [00:30:00] Why do I have to continually be abused by my uncle or grandmother, or whether it's emotional abuse, verbal abuse, physical abuse, heaven forbid, sexual abuse, financial abuse? And I continue to put myself in that position because as the proverb says, blood is thicker than water. Then I don't know if that's the wisest decision to make, because I may be bringing home an awful lot of negative baggage. So now when my kid says, Hey, can we play a board game? And I just say, No, not right now, then what kind of validation am I giving them? And they're not getting my best version of me.

[00:30:32] So I've worked with so many people to set healthy boundaries with family members, extended family members, so that they can show up better in their relationships, in their marriage, or as a parent. And so then they are their best selves. Now, when they are their best selves, they raise their emotional baseline that might put them in a better. Position to go and interact with family, because that really might be something that that matters to them. But in the meantime, do they need to take a step back in order to really [00:31:00] find who they are and what matters to them so they can be better in their marriage, so they can show up better in their workplace, so they can be a better parent. So again, is that just blood is thicker than water? Is it just a given? I don't think. Let me run through one more. Don't judge a book by its cover. The meaning. Don't form an opinion about someone just by their appearance. The example they give. She may look innocent, but don't judge a book by its cover. She's the greatest troublemaker I've ever seen. And now that you can see where we've gone in this episode, then I feel like by ending with this, don't judge a book by its cover. Maybe you can see that we do judge now. We try to not judge righteously or we try to be aware of our judgment.

[00:31:40] But I was speaking recently and it was in a religious context. So I was doing the concept where we say, don't judge. But I talked about being at the mall, getting some tater tots. Oh, my goodness. I love tater tots at this this little stand. And there was a person there that was audibly saying some pretty vulgar things, not even under their breath. Over [00:32:00] their breath. And I had this is when I had a young one of my kids was younger. I think I'm holding her. One of my daughters and I moved away from that person. So was I judging that person? Was I judging that book by its cover? Absolutely, I was. Now I want to bless their heart, give them the benefit of the doubt. I don't know what they've been through. I don't know what their mental health experience is like. But that doesn't mean that I don't make judgments for safety. We do this all the time, and I think it's part of the human experience that if I see a situation and my again, my visceral reaction comes up from a place of protection, then I want to listen to my body. I want to I would rather trust my gut and my instincts than to worry that I am going to offend someone because I am making a judgment now. Being aware that I'm making that judgment is going to put me in a better position to now bring that judgment along with me if I'm in a position to now interact with someone.

[00:32:51] And I hope that that makes sense. So I'm not saying that whenever I go into a room, I just judge everyone on righteously and I just wait until they prove themselves worthy. Absolutely not. [00:33:00] But I'm going to listen to my intuition. I'm going to trust my gut, and I'm going to invite that to come along with me, especially in context or in a situation. If I'm going to a speaking event and someone comes up to me and asked me a question, I'm not going to say I will talk to this person and I will not talk to this person because this person has combed their hair in this person. Their shirt is untucked. Absolutely not. Now we're talking about truly just judging a book by its cover. But if I see someone that is just deadeye staring me and they've got their keys and a knuckle and looking like they could punch me and something like that, I might not get to that person right away, and I might even just check in with somebody that's more familiar with area of the crowd and say, Do you know that guy? Because that one can you go over there with me on that one and I'm going to stand a little bit of a distance away. And then I may understand that, okay, this person, they just stare all the time and that's the way they hold their keys.

[00:33:49] Okay, good. I'm good. We'll just talk then, but I'm going to be on a little bit more of an alert. I want to trust my intuition, so we are going to judge a book by its cover. Ironically, I've got my book. This is not trying to do self promotion, [00:34:00] but if you're watching the video, he's a porn addict. Now, what an expert and a former addict. Answer your questions. We made the book look like a brown paper bag because you are ashamed of having a book that says he's a porn addict. Now what? And so you were probably going to keep it in a paper bag. I thought it was pretty brilliant. And the book has been a bestseller for a couple of years. But judging that book by its cover, I can completely understand. And as a matter of fact, we have done far better with the e-book, the Kindle version of that, because regardless of how clever the cover is, we're still talking about a sensitive subject. What's the lesson today that to modern day proverbs, they're everywhere. Proverbs are amazing things because they are they are based off of life experience. And it is someone saying, hey, this has worked for me. I gave it. I did give an example to the Sunday school class that my my dad has always been someone that says replace your tires as soon as you are aware that there is trouble or that they are going bald or any of those things because you don't want your tire to blow out or that sort of thing.

[00:34:57] So honest to goodness, that would be a modern day proverb. I [00:35:00] don't hesitate when changing tires, even when we've been in a financial position where that's a tough thing to do, because that's just it's good advice and I don't ever want to have some blowout because my tire becomes bare thread. And I've talked with a few other people over the years where that is absolutely not been the proverb that has been posited in their life. I can think of one person in particular where the husband who was more on this emotionally immature, maybe narcissistic side, even would replace his tires regularly, but then the family would drive them until literally they would eventually have a flat tire or it would blow, but they always did. Okay, so in his mind then that was all right. It worked. But what are the modern day proverbs that you have if you have anything that you would love to put in the comments below, if you're watching this on the YouTube channel or if you would if you want to get back to me, I would love to hear them at Contact@tonyoverbay.com or. Through my website because I would love to do a little follow up on this.

[00:35:53] And what are the proverbs? What are the modern day proverbs that you were in? What are the ones that you tell your kids or yourselves? What are your experiences [00:36:00] with things that have worked? And give me some examples of things that have not worked as well, because I think that the more that we talk about things like this, you start to realize you're okay, you're okay. If you are not someone that don't put all your eggs in one basket, maybe for somebody they have finally said, I have to put all my eggs in my bag in one basket to absolutely go for it. The early bird catches the worm. I've done a couple of episodes Night Owl versus Morning Lark. What if in your DNA and your epigenetics passed along because you are raised by a family of late night musicians, you just cannot get up. And so you'll pass on the worm and you'll take whatever comes in the afternoon. Every cloud has a silver lining. I do think we could go into detail and I do like that one. Honesty is the best policy. I thought about tackling that one in this episode, but that one can be a hot button topic because if you have a value of compassion over honesty, maybe you grew up in your family, was incredibly, brutally honest, and you saw it just ruined relationships. And maybe you're going to say, hey, you look great in those jeans, or, you know what? That meal was fantastic.

[00:36:57] So is honesty always the best policy? Haste makes waste [00:37:00] no use crying over spilled milk. That one's true. I've had a whole article on that one. Laughter is the best medicine I'm in. I can even give the data to back that up. But I also talked about primary and secondary emotions and knowing that I go to humor immediately whenever I feel uncomfortable. So sometimes that laughter may not be the best medicine. It is absolutely a cover up and an avoidance defense mechanism by me. So you can see that there's a whole lot more. The apple doesn't fall far from the tree. I don't know. I feel like that one's one where we sometimes want to become this, what they call a transformational figure. And and boy, just throw that apple as far away as you can from the base of that tree. So I think you get the point. I would love to hear what your thoughts are around modern day proverbs, which ones that you adhere to, maybe which ones you pass along, what your experience has been. Thanks for taking the time and I will see you next week on the virtual couch. Hopefully you'll check out waking up to narcissism and taking us out per usual, if you're listening to the audio podcast of this is The Wonderful, The Talented, the now on Tik Tok Aurora Florence with her song it's wonderful. Have a great day.

[00:38:04] Compressed [00:38:00] emotions flying past our heads and out the other end, the pressures of the daily grind. It's wonderful. And that's the question. Rob, a ghost. I'm floating past the midnight hour. They push aside the things that matter.

[00:38:25] Most to the world. Don't. Was.

[00:39:05] Setting [00:39:00] news a discount price, a million opportunities. The chance is yours to take or lose. It's worth. Always on the backburner until the opportune time. You're always pushed to go fight or shut up.

[00:39:38] And somehow. My fancy. Be.

[00:40:03] The [00:40:00] just because deal. Hey. Oh. What's this?

If you are interested in being coached in Tony's upcoming "Magnetic Marriage Podcast," please email him for more information. You will receive free marriage coaching and be kept entirely anonymous when the episode airs. 

Go to http://tonyoverbay.com/workshop to sign up for Tony's "Magnetize Your Marriage" virtual workshop. The cost is only $19, and you'll learn the top 3 things you can do NOW to create a Magnetic Marriage. 

You can learn more about Tony's pornography recovery program, The Path Back, by visiting http://pathbackrecovery.com And visit http://tonyoverbay.com and sign up to receive updates on upcoming programs and podcasts.

Tony mentioned a product that he used to take out all of the "uh's" and "um's" that, in his words, "must be created by wizards and magic!" because it's that good! To learn more about Descript, click here https://descript.com?lmref=bSWcEQ

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VC Bed angry-2022-09-08.mp3
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[00:00:45] Come on in. Take a seat. I will hurt you.

[00:00:52] Hey, Rudy, welcome to Episode 337 of the Virtual Couch. I am your host, Tony Overbay. I'm a licensed marriage and family therapist, certified, mindful habit coach, writer, speaker, [00:01:00] husband, father of four and host also of Waking Up the Narcissism, which is a podcast that is just growing by leaps and bounds. So if you haven't checked out an episode, I highly recommend you go look at the one I had my associate professional clinical counselor friend Nate Christensen on and we talked about self care. And self care is such a buzzword. So we go into literally what does that mean? And we're not just talking about getting your nails done, going to the gym, taking a bath, going on a run, petting a dog. We talk about all areas of what self care really looks like, even self care, the mind, and how even just the concept of starting to think about positive things can move the general landscape, internal landscape of what it feels like to be you. So go check that out. On waking up the narcissism. I highly recommend that. And while I have you here, I also would love to bring a little bit more awareness to The Path Back, which is an online pornography recovery program that I have. And you can go to Pathbackrecovery.com and learn more about that, but there is a lot of good happening there. [00:02:00] I specifically say online pornography recovery program because we're not talking about the heaviness or the weight of calling everything in addiction.

[00:02:08] I really believe it's an unhealthy coping mechanism. We have so many unhealthy coping mechanisms that we turn to when we don't feel connected and a few different areas of our lives. If we aren't feeling connected in our marriage or as a parent, or maybe in our faith or in our health and our career, that we tend to turn to unhealthy coping mechanisms. And then, of course, that's going to be the last time, the last time that someone ever looks at porn or eats junk food or wastes the day binging on Netflix or Hulu, because tomorrow it's going to be all different, right? Tomorrow is going to be different. So I have a lot of tools that can really help people be a better version themselves, as clichéd as that sounds, which then in turn allows you to not feel that siren song of temptation because you're feeling more connected with all these different areas of your life. And when you feel more connected in those areas of your life, then naturally you're not going to want to spend as much [00:03:00] time doing things that are unproductive because you're figuring out what really matters to you. So that's Pathbackrecovery.com I've got an amazing weekly group Zoom call that is phenomenal. What a support group that is. So go check that out and then go to Tony over Macomb Workshop. And I have a 90 minute workshop there where I just start literally from the womb and why we exit the womb and we're off to the races as and why we show up into relationships with various abandonment and attachment issues just because we're human beings, because I really believe that no one has the tools to have the best marriage that you could ever have just because of that concept of being a human.

[00:03:40] And we don't know what we don't know. And so many people will say to me, well, we're not getting a divorce. I don't think our marriage is horrible and that is wonderful. But what if it could be even better? And what if, instead of this kind of feeling of enmeshment, that it felt okay to have your very own opinions and thoughts and you can have this collaborative process [00:04:00] and you realize that it's not. We're two pieces of this whole that were two individuals. Of course we are with our own experiences that we bring into the relationship and then we learn how to really express them because we're going to start going through things in life and we have the tools to express that. We start to have different opinions and different thoughts and all kinds of things, and that that could actually make for a better marriage, a more connected relationship when we're able to explore each other's differences and look at things with curiosity and not this fear that that person is going to leave me if I all of a sudden express that I have a different opinion.

[00:04:32] So go check out Tony over Macomb Workshop and you can find out more about what we what we don't know that we don't know. So on today's episode, episode 337 of the virtual couch, I am going to talk about modern day proverbs. And this comes from my wife and I actually teaching a Sunday school class over the weekend with a group of 16 to 18 year old youth, male, female. And we were exploring what Proverbs even were, and I thought it was really fascinating. I looked up just [00:05:00] the definition and it says A proverb is a simple and insightful, traditional saying that expresses a perceived truth based on common sense or experience. And that might sound very simplistic because really it's advice. It's advice given by someone who feels like they have advice to give. And and what I thought was really interesting is we talked about these proverbs in this class, and so many of them just sound so solid. Of course, why wouldn't anyone adhere to these proverbs? But what I loved about this lesson that we were teaching and the concept of a proverb or advice in general, and the word there in that definition says that they are based on common sense or experience. And I want to go back this is what I wanted to talk about today, why I wanted to build the entire episode off of this concept of Proverbs.

[00:05:49] Is that word common sense? What what is common sense? What is common sense to you? And is that actually common sense to me as well? So Proverbs advice sometimes I talk about it's the psychology [00:06:00] of the peanut gallery. When you ask someone for their advice or their opinion, how often do they give you advice or an opinion that may not actually resonate with you? But now all of a sudden you feel like you have to take that advice or take that opinion, or if you don't, then something is wrong with you or you feel bad about that. And I gave a couple of really quick examples. One, a penny saved as a penny earned. And what was really funny is this group of 16 to 18 year olds hadn't necessarily even heard that phrase before, so we had to explain what that even meant. But a penny saved is a penny earned alludes to the fact that save your money. And that sounds amazing. And I know that as someone who me who has struggled with savings my entire life, that that sounds like solid advice. And I would agree that that is in principle, that's an amazing thing. But then I told the story about a client long, long ago that sat in front of me. And let's and we'll mix up some of the finer points to protect the anonymity, although this was so long ago that [00:07:00] I don't think that these people would even recognize if I'm telling a little bit of this story.

[00:07:04] But there was a couple sitting in front of me and when we really started talking about what was underneath, why they would just have these arguments, these petty arguments on frequent occasions, the wife said to me, I just feel like we we are living this life of a pauper and we have money. And so when I'm asked to pack the lunches and reuse the Ziploc bags and we're sharing a car, and so she has a lot of kids and he's at work and they have to manage how to get people to different places. And then she says, we have money. And the husband says, Well, it's because of the saving that I've done and I'm sitting there in front of them. And they finally the wife offers up and she says, Hey, how much do you feel is enough money? And I wasn't going to step into that one. And I said, Well, that's all relative, and it depends. And she just blurred it out. $1.2 she said, we have $1.2 million [00:08:00] in disposable income in savings, and that's not even including the retirement accounts that we have. And so she said 1.2 million and we are sharing a car. I have to reuse Ziploc bags and whenever we go on vacation, we have to plan out the peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and and large bags of chips and divvy them up.

[00:08:19] And we're going to use old water bottles and fill them up out of the tap. Now, you may be listening to this and thinking, oh, what what privilege that Tony must be alluding to, to say that that isn't the way to go. But I think you're maybe also seeing where I'm coming from with this. They weren't even allowed to have a conversation around the inconvenience that was for the wife and the scenario or even being able to have a conversation about finances. And so in that scenario, a penny saved as a penny earned a proverb. Good advice, sure sounds good. But can it be taken to an extreme? And the reason I mentioned that is not to give someone ammunition to then say, Hey, I don't like the way we do things in our home, although that might be the result of this. [00:09:00] But just understanding that there are two different people, there are two unique individuals that are showing up in a relationship. So as we start to dig deeper in this relationship, the husband had came from a place where they had no money. And so he was incredibly happy to have found a career that provided financial stability. But then at what point had he just dug in and now we're in this all or nothing, black or white mode and the proverbial talk about proverbs, you can't take it with you.

[00:09:28] And the lesson material. When my wife and I were listening to a couple of podcasts in preparation, I can't remember who said this, but they said, And I love this, but you never see a hearse pulling a U-Haul because you literally can't take it with you. So while it is absolutely wonderful and amazing to save those pennies, is it also to a point where then it is to excess and now people are living in this relationship where they just feel unheard and unseen and it is more stress than than it needs to be than is necessary. So that proverb I thought was fascinating. Another one [00:10:00] that I think is a modern day proverb is one that my wife and I heard when we were married and one that I adhered to for quite a long time. And that was the never go to bed angry. It sounds phenomenal. It does. If we could always if we had disagreements in our relationships and we could just resolve everything and with a tight bow and feel good when we go to bed, that would be ideal. But I was sharing with the class and I feel like there are probably people listening right now that maybe fall on both sides of this equation. But as a marriage therapist and one of the things I talked about in an episode back in February or March where I was just giving marriage advice, one of the first things I talked about was go to bed.

[00:10:38] And so many of the stories happen when it's late and people are tired when people are sleep deprived. And I run into this on a continual basis as a marriage therapist when I have couples in my office. And how often we get to this point where somebody said, okay, we didn't get a chance to talk until it was about nine or ten. And then we start this conversation. It doesn't go well. Before you know it, it's [00:11:00] it's midnight. It's one it's 2 a.m.. And one of them has to get up and go to work early or get the kids up for school. And so at some point, people, just one of the people, typically the more pathologically kind person, just says, okay, fine. No, you're right. I am. I am a huge piece of garbage. And you're right. And I never should have brought this up to where the sleep deprived partner at times says, okay, so are we good? No, we're not good, but we're going to we got to end this at some point because the brain is literally shutting down in that marriage. Tip advice. I found an article. This was off a stylized co.uk that talks about lack of sleep effects. And when we why do we get more emotional when we're tired and they have some pretty amazing data where they were talking about according to the research Bensons for beds 87% this was talking about British people say tiredness makes them intolerant with one in five saying the constant argument or they called it a row, which I love with their partner.

[00:11:54] It happens because they feel exhausted. And some 15% of people in this survey also said that [00:12:00] they feel their personality changes when they're tired. And more than a fifth confessed that they swear under their breath that everything when they're lacking on sleep. And why do we get so emotional when we're tired? And I love that they quote this, Dr. Bostock, who says, to make sense of this, it's worth thinking. Back 200,000 years ago when early humans were living out on the savannas, Dr. Bostock said In those days, what would have kept us awake? Predators, storms, hunger, threats to survival. So our brains have evolved to interpret sleep deprivation as a potentially dangerous situation. So we're talking about the amygdala, the part of our brain that regulates fight the fight or flight stress response, he said, therefore, gets more sensitive the more sleep deprived we get. So this means that we get much more emotional. And he said even small problems can feel more stressful. And because our amygdala gets more sensitive, then I think you can see where we're going when we're feeling tired and we're therefore more likely to have our stress response activated.

[00:12:51] The lack of sleep then also starts to have a physical impact on our body. And this is because when that fight or flight response is triggered, hormones flood through our body to [00:13:00] help us respond to a thing that we've identified as a threat. Dr. Bostock says the stress hormones, adrenalin and cortisol increase our heart rate, our blood pressure and our blood flow to the muscles. And over time, a lack of sleep is linked to an increased risk of high blood pressure, heart disease and even early mortality. So is an argument about who is going to take out the garbage on a regular basis or an argument about where do we want to go on our vacation? Is that worth the potential threat to our very mortality as we stay awake arguing? And is it a connection that we're seeking in our relationship or is it just to be right? I so often love to say the concept of you can have love or control in an adult relationship, so go to bed so early to bed, early to rise or never go to bed angry or a penny saved as a penny earned, you can see, are very good ideas, but in context. So I pulled up on its leverage. Ed EW.com, an article that shows 100 [00:14:00] common proverbs with meanings and examples. So I thought this was just interesting and I thought just for fun, I would go through a few more of these and just give different perspectives that I've seen as a marriage therapist.

[00:14:11] And some of these I think you might even be surprised about one. A simple one is an apple a day keeps the doctor away. Now I could go into the benefits of that. The benefits of eating fruit, of eating healthy. If somebody doesn't have a healthy diet, one apple is an amazing place to start. I love the concept that eating an apple will even replace, then maybe eating a little bit of garbage. And way back in the day, maybe five years ago, I had a woman on my podcast from the the podcast half size me and she had literally lost half of her weight, half of her size, and she was amazing. And when she was talking about her experience, she talked about if you are eating horribly seven days a week, three meals a day, that literally just starting one meal, replace one meal and start to eat better. And now that's improvement. And we even got to the point where she was talking about or just add one thing. So [00:15:00] eating an apple a day, an apple a day keeps the doctor away. Now, what is what could possibly be the negative side of that? Well, if you look on WebMD and talk about fruit, what happens when you have too much? Because I have had a couple of clients that have had OCD and OCD attacks, whatever is important to that person.

[00:15:18] I work with people that have scrupulously religious OCD, where religion is such an important part of their who they are as a person that OCD attacks that or people that obviously it attacks people that are concerned about their health. But if people are concerned primarily about the foods they eat. And let me take you on a fascinating deep dive here. Take a person with OCD who has had a history of Alzheimer's or dementia in their family, and they read an article early in their teen years that links diet to Alzheimer's and dementia. And they've literally watched as. Their grandfather and grandmother have withered away through Alzheimer's. Then what do they do now that OCD locks on to the nutrition or food? [00:16:00] And from that point on, they got to a point where they went from, I need to eat good. I need to eat clean. Fruit is the only thing I need to eat. That is all I can eat. I'm going to eat an overabundance of fruit. And according to WebMD, too much fruit. You can eat too much of anything. But they say the truth is it's hard to get too much fruit. In fact, most Americans don't get enough of it. Adults should eat at least one and a half cups of fruit every day.

[00:16:20] However, a fruit terrine diet in which you eat almost nothing but fruit can keep you from getting enough nutrients from other foods. So experts recommend that 25 to 30% of your diet is made up of fruit. What about the sugar and fruit then? Webmd. The sugar you should worry about, experts say, is the added type that you find in sodas, desserts and many other products. And since fruit contains fiber, your body reacts differently. Still, though, if you eat large portions, too much fruit sugar could contribute to health problems such as weight gain, diabetes, complications with pancreatic and kidney conditions, tooth decay, and then deficiencies in vitamin B, 12, calcium, vitamin D and Omega three fatty acids. And the client that I was working with in particular, I ran into some struggles with [00:17:00] those deficiencies in their vitamins, calcium, vitamin D. And so that was something that eventually had to be corrected through going to a doctor and working with a nutritionist. The proverbs, the good idea, the good thoughts. Again, wonderful, amazing things that we can take in and take a look at how those affect us. So is it wise to have an apple a day? Absolutely. Unless for some reason you're allergic to apples. But the concept of fruit is good. The concept of saving money, fantastic. It would be ideal if we could go to bed and be happy. But if we know that we are triggered, then why don't we just go to bed? Because tomorrow things are going to look a lot different.

[00:17:38] There's a few more that I thought and not to sound like. Then I can pick whole focus on anything. I love the one that says an idle brain is the devil's workshop, meaning evil. Thoughts come to us easily when we're idle. So example they say you should give your daughter something to do in the afternoon. After all, an idle brain is the devil's workshop. Now we could go into the concept. If you are religious, if you are not religious, is it? The Idol brain is the devil's [00:18:00] workshop. But I've also done a number of podcasts recently on the brain is they don't get killed device. And when you look at the brain as a don't get killed device when left to our own thoughts, typically the brain is going to start to process things in a worst case scenario. Now why? Because the brain does that don't get killed devices working under this premise that if the brain gets it, whatever it is wrong one time, just one time, that could be the time that leads to one's death. So you see the antelope out on the plane and you are the hunter gatherer, you're the hunter part. And you think, if I go get that antelope, my village will eat for a week and I will be the hero. But all of a sudden you spot a lion.

[00:18:41] That lion is just out of your it's in your peripheral vision and you think, okay, if I get this wrong, then I cease to exist. It's like, I'll do it tomorrow. And one of the first times I talked about that, I talked about, boy, look at what that's evolved to in the modern day that I need to make sure if I have this paper to write, I need to make sure that [00:19:00] I have all my ducks in a row. What are the proverbial lions of my day? I need to make sure that I've got all I've gotten back to everybody in text, that I've answered all my emails, that I've had a good meal maybe that I've done, I've exercised for the day. And so we can continually put ourselves in this position where things need to be. Just right before I tackle this big project, before I go hunt this antelope so that brain really is a don't get killed device. Going back to the book Buddha Brain by Rick Hansen, which I've done a couple of episodes talking about the mechanisms of memory or what it feels like to be you. I love that, he says. The negative bias of memory. So he said, Here's the problem with our brain. Your brain preferentially scans for registers, stores, recalls and reacts to unpleasant experiences, he says. It's like Velcro for negative experiences and Teflon for positive experiences.

[00:19:48] So consequently, even when positive experiences outnumber negative ones, the pile of negative implicit memories naturally grows faster. So then the background feeling of what it feels like to be you can become [00:20:00] undeservedly glum and pessimistic. So left to our own devices, is is the idle hands or idle time, the idle mind a devil's playground, or is it absolutely evolutionarily, biologically, your brain is a don't get killed device when it is left to its own devices and not engaged in something and absolutely even best case scenario, engaged in something of value, something that matters to you, then does the brain go to worst case scenario? So now all of a sudden your anxiety heightens and you become worried about things that most likely will never occur. And then we can get ourselves worked up, and then we can eventually kick the can down the road and say, I'll just work on things tomorrow. Today I don't have it in me because that is a survival instinct. It's a survival mechanism and I love that, he says. Rick Hanson says sure, negative experiences do have benefits. Loss opens the heart. Remorse provides a moral compass anxiety. Alerts you to threats and anger can spotlight wrongs that should be righted. But, he says, Do you really think you're not having enough negative experiences? Emotional pain with [00:21:00] no benefit to yourself or others is pointless suffering and pain today breeds more pain tomorrow.

[00:21:05] He says. For an instance, even a single episode of major depression can reshape circuitry in the brain to make future episodes more likely. That's from a study by Malik in 2007. But then he goes on to say, which I so appreciate, the remedy is not to suppress negative experiences when they happen because they happen. Rather, it's to foster positive experiences and in particular, take them in so they become a permanent part of you. Now, going back to these modern day proverbs, let me go through a few others. And again, I don't have to pick apart everything, but the grass is always greener on the other side. There's a proverb that is all right. We think that the grass will be greener on the other side. But the more that we're looking at trauma and the body's response. Bessel van der Cox, amazing work when the book The Body Keeps the score. And I've been just saying this the last few weeks and I don't have the exact data to back this up, so I will own that. But when someone says, You make me angry now, what do we often hear? [00:22:00] Well, no one can make you feel a certain way. You're choosing to feel a certain way. But I wonder if that is absolutely true or not. Because if we look at the visceral reaction, the gut reaction, and if you look at this concept of the emotions fire, some believe about two and a half times faster than the logical area part of your brain.

[00:22:19] Then when you walk into a room and you sense a threat because this has been a threat for a long period of time, then your visceral reaction is already in high gear. I'm looking at doing an episode soon on what's called the amygdala hijack. So that's the concept where your amygdala, your fight or flight response activates before you're even aware of what's going on. If you are with a partner who is abusive and every time they walk in the door, you all of a sudden straighten up and your heart rate starts to elevate a little bit, your palms get a little bit sweaty and you're starting to think, okay, what's the mood? Is he is he good? Is he bad? Is he happy as he said? What are we going to do [00:23:00] then? That is an absolute visceral reaction. So then that concept of the grass is always greener on the other side. What if then your brain is telling you repeatedly, Oh no, the grass will never be green here because there's trauma and abuse. So this visceral reaction is saying, I think it's time to go look at the other side because the grass may most likely be better over there. So I think that's such a fascinating concept. I was working with someone a while ago and they were in a job where they had a bit of a break, not like a bit of an emotional breakdown, so they had to take some time off from their job.

[00:23:39] Now, when they got back, they did some finding of themselves. They found me. We start working in therapy, then they return to their job. And I thought it was so interesting because they would try to get things done in their job, but they would find themselves just paralyzed at work. So we were using a lot of these principles of, well, acknowledge those feelings. You [00:24:00] can't push those feelings away. You're a human being. You're noticing that, you're feeling overwhelmed, you're noticing that you're feeling stuck. And now invite those feelings to come along with you while you do your job. But the person struggled and they still couldn't do their job and those feelings even intensified. So at one point we had to look at, okay, is your body trying to tell you this is not a good place for you? Get out. We already had one breakdown and the next one may not be good and it may not be far off. So do you need to listen to your body because it's trying to tell you the grass may indeed be greener over on the other side or is your body reacting? And it's something that you can bless your brain's squishy pink heart for warning you and then invite that brain to come along with you while you do things.

[00:24:44] And then eventually your amygdala calms down and you're able to to do those things in your job. Now, you ultimately end up being the only one that knows. Is that is your visceral reaction? Absolutely. Fight or flight. This isn't safe? Or is your brain and body warning you of things [00:25:00] that now after in this person's particular situation, after they were aware of it and they went and got help, then can they return back to that environment, use these new tools and learn how to stay present? Because ultimately they like their job or they need their job. So that grass is always greener on the other side. Maybe, maybe, maybe not. Better late than never, that proverb Better late than never that there are some people that are continually late and then they will beat themselves up about that. And am I saying that, boy, what can they do? They're always late. No, we can work on that. But the better late than never. Sometimes I've had clients that when they've had a continual pattern of showing up late to the point where then they're beating themselves up and they come in with this negative energy. So then the people that they're now interacting with feel that as well. And it just casts a dark shadow, almost like the pigpen from Charlie Brown. Days that follows them into the situation, then is it better showing up late than not at all.

[00:25:56] Or at some point do they need to realize, okay, I need to step back. [00:26:00] And this isn't I'm not respectful of the people that I'm now showing up late continually for whatever that activity is. And do I need to just let them know ahead of time I'm not going to be able to make it and then I need to go deal with Why am I late? What am I pretending not to know? I need to learn how to take accountability and ownership over something so that I can start to show up and be on time. Boy, blood is thicker than water. The meaning of that proverb is family relationships are always stronger than other relationships, and the example they give is, I had a party to attend, but I still chose to stay home because my grandmother was sick. As they say, blood is thicker than water. I love that example because I'm going to be there for grandma and I'm going to build those familial relationships. But as a therapist, working in this field for almost now two decades, I do continually work with unhealthy family dynamics. And so if you are in a family situation where going into that situation repeatedly, you are the scapegoat child, you are the one that everything ends up falling on. You are a trauma dumpster and everyone just relies [00:27:00] on you to take their their trauma, to take their garbage.

[00:27:04] And there's no reciprocity that then you never feel heard, you never feel understood. You are being taken advantage of that that that saying that proverb, blood is thicker than water. You just have to deal with it. I disagree because again, that visceral reaction, the body keeps the score. Why do we keep putting ourselves in a situation that is unsafe, that is at a cost of our of our mental health? In that scenario, because our body is telling us something, our body keeps the score. If we are continually feeling this anxiety when we're around, even family members and we're walking up to the porch ready to go into the house, and all of a sudden we are just on fight or flight and we're starting to shut down. And we go in there and we say, Man, I am going to be as present as I can. But then we just go flat as soon as we feel like we're attacked or not heard or not understood, then what does that doing to our mental health? Now, let me even go deeper. Let me say, if you have kids [00:28:00] and not to bring any guilt or shame into this, but how do kids develop a sense of self? So kids do not have a sense of self, so they develop that sense of self based off of external validation. It's just the way it works. There's an acceptance there.

[00:28:18] So when a kid feels like they are center of the universe because they're a kid and they don't have empathy or they don't really often understand the plight of what their parent is going through. The example I love to give is if they don't get the coolest thing for their birthday, they may not understand that their parent is financially strapped, may have lost their job, has had some something happen and there's a financial impact. And so they don't get the big gift that they've been alluding to or even asking for then to a kid, how do they not go to this place of man? My parents must not love me. And that's sad. But but we have to accept that that's the case. So if we bring our best selves into our role as a parent. So I love the nurtured heart parenting approach. I'm not going to react to the buttons that my [00:29:00] kids try to push, and I'm going to build that inner wealth. I'm not going to just rely on a slate of just saying, Good job, champ, but man, I love the way that you're tackling this problem because that shows me your problem solver. All right. I love the way that you're interacting with your siblings, because that shows me that you're someone that values relationships. So you're building that inner wealth. And what are you doing? Yeah, you're giving them external validation and you're starting them off with a sense of self.

[00:29:25] Now, eventually we hope that that will provide this secure attachment with you as a parent, with your kid. So they may go out into the world feeling like they have this value of connection with others. But then the more they put themselves out there now, they might feel like, well, I might have a different value and I know I can go back and talk about that with my parent because my parents are going to say, Tell me more about that. Not you should think something different. So if we are showing up in our family relationships and we are not our best selves and we come home and we have to just process why why did my mom and dad handle this the way they did? Why? [00:30:00] Why do I have to continually be abused by my uncle or grandmother, or whether it's emotional abuse, verbal abuse, physical abuse, heaven forbid, sexual abuse, financial abuse? And I continue to put myself in that position because as the proverb says, blood is thicker than water. Then I don't know if that's the wisest decision to make, because I may be bringing home an awful lot of negative baggage. So now when my kid says, Hey, can we play a board game? And I just say, No, not right now, then what kind of validation am I giving them? And they're not getting my best version of me.

[00:30:32] So I've worked with so many people to set healthy boundaries with family members, extended family members, so that they can show up better in their relationships, in their marriage, or as a parent. And so then they are their best selves. Now, when they are their best selves, they raise their emotional baseline that might put them in a better. Position to go and interact with family, because that really might be something that that matters to them. But in the meantime, do they need to take a step back in order to really [00:31:00] find who they are and what matters to them so they can be better in their marriage, so they can show up better in their workplace, so they can be a better parent. So again, is that just blood is thicker than water? Is it just a given? I don't think. Let me run through one more. Don't judge a book by its cover. The meaning. Don't form an opinion about someone just by their appearance. The example they give. She may look innocent, but don't judge a book by its cover. She's the greatest troublemaker I've ever seen. And now that you can see where we've gone in this episode, then I feel like by ending with this, don't judge a book by its cover. Maybe you can see that we do judge now. We try to not judge righteously or we try to be aware of our judgment.

[00:31:40] But I was speaking recently and it was in a religious context. So I was doing the concept where we say, don't judge. But I talked about being at the mall, getting some tater tots. Oh, my goodness. I love tater tots at this this little stand. And there was a person there that was audibly saying some pretty vulgar things, not even under their breath. Over [00:32:00] their breath. And I had this is when I had a young one of my kids was younger. I think I'm holding her. One of my daughters and I moved away from that person. So was I judging that person? Was I judging that book by its cover? Absolutely, I was. Now I want to bless their heart, give them the benefit of the doubt. I don't know what they've been through. I don't know what their mental health experience is like. But that doesn't mean that I don't make judgments for safety. We do this all the time, and I think it's part of the human experience that if I see a situation and my again, my visceral reaction comes up from a place of protection, then I want to listen to my body. I want to I would rather trust my gut and my instincts than to worry that I am going to offend someone because I am making a judgment now. Being aware that I'm making that judgment is going to put me in a better position to now bring that judgment along with me if I'm in a position to now interact with someone.

[00:32:51] And I hope that that makes sense. So I'm not saying that whenever I go into a room, I just judge everyone on righteously and I just wait until they prove themselves worthy. Absolutely not. [00:33:00] But I'm going to listen to my intuition. I'm going to trust my gut, and I'm going to invite that to come along with me, especially in context or in a situation. If I'm going to a speaking event and someone comes up to me and asked me a question, I'm not going to say I will talk to this person and I will not talk to this person because this person has combed their hair in this person. Their shirt is untucked. Absolutely not. Now we're talking about truly just judging a book by its cover. But if I see someone that is just deadeye staring me and they've got their keys and a knuckle and looking like they could punch me and something like that, I might not get to that person right away, and I might even just check in with somebody that's more familiar with area of the crowd and say, Do you know that guy? Because that one can you go over there with me on that one and I'm going to stand a little bit of a distance away. And then I may understand that, okay, this person, they just stare all the time and that's the way they hold their keys.

[00:33:49] Okay, good. I'm good. We'll just talk then, but I'm going to be on a little bit more of an alert. I want to trust my intuition, so we are going to judge a book by its cover. Ironically, I've got my book. This is not trying to do self promotion, [00:34:00] but if you're watching the video, he's a porn addict. Now, what an expert and a former addict. Answer your questions. We made the book look like a brown paper bag because you are ashamed of having a book that says he's a porn addict. Now what? And so you were probably going to keep it in a paper bag. I thought it was pretty brilliant. And the book has been a bestseller for a couple of years. But judging that book by its cover, I can completely understand. And as a matter of fact, we have done far better with the e-book, the Kindle version of that, because regardless of how clever the cover is, we're still talking about a sensitive subject. What's the lesson today that to modern day proverbs, they're everywhere. Proverbs are amazing things because they are they are based off of life experience. And it is someone saying, hey, this has worked for me. I gave it. I did give an example to the Sunday school class that my my dad has always been someone that says replace your tires as soon as you are aware that there is trouble or that they are going bald or any of those things because you don't want your tire to blow out or that sort of thing.

[00:34:57] So honest to goodness, that would be a modern day proverb. I [00:35:00] don't hesitate when changing tires, even when we've been in a financial position where that's a tough thing to do, because that's just it's good advice and I don't ever want to have some blowout because my tire becomes bare thread. And I've talked with a few other people over the years where that is absolutely not been the proverb that has been posited in their life. I can think of one person in particular where the husband who was more on this emotionally immature, maybe narcissistic side, even would replace his tires regularly, but then the family would drive them until literally they would eventually have a flat tire or it would blow, but they always did. Okay, so in his mind then that was all right. It worked. But what are the modern day proverbs that you have if you have anything that you would love to put in the comments below, if you're watching this on the YouTube channel or if you would if you want to get back to me, I would love to hear them at Contact@tonyoverbay.com or. Through my website because I would love to do a little follow up on this.

[00:35:53] And what are the proverbs? What are the modern day proverbs that you were in? What are the ones that you tell your kids or yourselves? What are your experiences [00:36:00] with things that have worked? And give me some examples of things that have not worked as well, because I think that the more that we talk about things like this, you start to realize you're okay, you're okay. If you are not someone that don't put all your eggs in one basket, maybe for somebody they have finally said, I have to put all my eggs in my bag in one basket to absolutely go for it. The early bird catches the worm. I've done a couple of episodes Night Owl versus Morning Lark. What if in your DNA and your epigenetics passed along because you are raised by a family of late night musicians, you just cannot get up. And so you'll pass on the worm and you'll take whatever comes in the afternoon. Every cloud has a silver lining. I do think we could go into detail and I do like that one. Honesty is the best policy. I thought about tackling that one in this episode, but that one can be a hot button topic because if you have a value of compassion over honesty, maybe you grew up in your family, was incredibly, brutally honest, and you saw it just ruined relationships. And maybe you're going to say, hey, you look great in those jeans, or, you know what? That meal was fantastic.

[00:36:57] So is honesty always the best policy? Haste makes waste [00:37:00] no use crying over spilled milk. That one's true. I've had a whole article on that one. Laughter is the best medicine I'm in. I can even give the data to back that up. But I also talked about primary and secondary emotions and knowing that I go to humor immediately whenever I feel uncomfortable. So sometimes that laughter may not be the best medicine. It is absolutely a cover up and an avoidance defense mechanism by me. So you can see that there's a whole lot more. The apple doesn't fall far from the tree. I don't know. I feel like that one's one where we sometimes want to become this, what they call a transformational figure. And and boy, just throw that apple as far away as you can from the base of that tree. So I think you get the point. I would love to hear what your thoughts are around modern day proverbs, which ones that you adhere to, maybe which ones you pass along, what your experience has been. Thanks for taking the time and I will see you next week on the virtual couch. Hopefully you'll check out waking up to narcissism and taking us out per usual, if you're listening to the audio podcast of this is The Wonderful, The Talented, the now on Tik Tok Aurora Florence with her song it's wonderful. Have a great day.

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