Your Questions About Emotional Balance

Charles asks…

Is there hope for me or should I be a hermit?

I am 26 years old and I am very unhappy. I feel like I don’t know up from down. I don’t have the life that I want and all I really want is to be more confident and live without pain.

My body aches and I am forever tired. I am moody and impatient. My sinuses make my head and face feel like painful lead weights that are about to explode and that’s every single day of my life. My back aches from god knows what because I never lift a thing and when I did work with my back it was the same. I am hard of hearing. I have almost no confidence in social settings and I am lonely. When I go out, I am speechless. Those that try to engage me are met with a smile and blank eyes for I have no idea what they are talking about even when my deaf ears manage to hear them, but I try to convey that I have no malice against them with a smile. As one can guess it doesn’t make for an enlightening conversation.

The only time when I am not awkward and anxious is when I’m so high on pills and alcohol that I can’t even remember what happened. I know that there is a great person within. I know it intuitively, but there is evidence as well. When I wake from the nights of partying that I can’t remember I have knew friends. Mostly women who want to go out with me but it’s always the same result. They think that I’m not having a good time if we go out or they think I’m immature along with what ever else I don’t know because I’m not a mind reader. I can only guess that the key to my social success lies buried beneath immense layers of inhibition.

Why am I this way? I could blame it on my parents but all that’s in the past. The present is in my hands and I have to deal with the scars alone.

I carry a lot of guilt. I have unwillingly committed many offenses to my friends, family and most painfully against my first love. I hardly remember what I’ve done or why because of my poor memory and a scattered brain, but I do remember what I did to my first love. I was cold to her. I never talked to her about us without anger. When she was upset and needed me the most I would abandon her to herself. One time in particular plays over and over in my head every day. She was emotional again and I was leaving again. We lived together. This time she begged me not to go. She really, really needed me and I left anyway. The vision of her tear-filled face is burned in my memory as I closed the door on her and in the end, us. I pushed her away and when she left I just wanted to die.

Just so the reader doesn’t think that I only want a pity party, I’ll balance it out with some positive things. Since I’ve had my heart broken I’ve been forced to get to know myself. Were I previously had almost no contact with self, I now am set on the daily growth of mind and body and getting to know who I am. I have taken great leaps in career, self-esteem and relationships. Even though I am not yet happy I feel that my dedication and tenacity will pay off in the future.

I frequently offend people. I hurt my girlfriends. My father is ashamed of me. I am lazy, drink too much, have no self-esteem and I can’t dance. Should I do society a favor and go live alone in the mountains?

Sally Smith answers:

There is hope for everyone. There is a time in all people’s lives when they feel they are at their lowest. However, those who chose to try and get back on top always come back stronger.

My advice to you would be to stop drinking and taking pills! Not only are they a mere temporary solution to a long term problem, but they are doing more harm than good to your confused brain.

Firstly, I would go and see a counselor to get help with this and to get your emotions in order. This is very important for your mental well being.
Also, I would consult a doctor for your pain, as there will be somthing that can safely help alleviate it.

You say you are hard of hearing. I suggest you join a sign language class! Not only will this give you a new way to communicate,but it will help you make new friends and meet new people. Once you have conquered your fears in the sign language class, join a dance class! Even if you feel a fool, you will have a laugh, and also get excercise.

You say you hurt people, so I suggest allow them to come to you, in these classes and in daily life. Make friends gradually, and once you learn how to keep them, then maybe you could search for an understanding girlfriend, however, I would suggest that untill you have all the above sorted out, I would steer clear of girlfriends for the time being.

Don’t worry about what your family think of you too much, because now that you are older, you can choose your own family, and learn to value and respect them.

Remember, society is made up of many people just like you, and is not some sort of outside club,  judging you and not letting you in. Stay strong, and stay clean!

Lisa asks…

I cry at the drop of a pin? Why?

For the past few months right before my period I have become so emotional. I ended up crying this morning for no reason at all! Its so intense and frustrating. I feel so out of whack. I know PMS is normal but would going on the pill help balance out my emotional craziness?

Sally Smith answers:

I had the same ‘issue’ and nothing worked for me but deep breathing exercises when the urge comes on.
However, every woman is different, so a pill may help to balance you out.
Best to ask your doc…

John asks…

Should I keep up writing/drawing?

Poems Ive written in the past week:
I’ll cry my eyes out and dance in the rain,
Just to make myself numb from the pain,
Caused by your cry, echoing so loud and broken,
Passing slowly, skin growing cold, leaving me alone,
Wishing nothing but to have you in my arms to hold,
Your young soul already torn, battered and sold,
How can I even begin to make up for my horrid sins,
All I wish to do is have your loving forgiveness,
i’ve waited so patiently for a day I could say,
‘Good morning baby, have a nice day,’

Gomen’nasai (I’m sorry):
I can see you leaning, needing to fall,
How could you trust me, I hurt you after all,
I’ve lied, and cheated, leaving you broken and beat,
But your love for me, is something I couldn’t see,
I’ll beg for your forgiveness, its something I need,
Your smile’s so breath taking, kisses so sweet,
Silence amazed me, it said everything by saying nothing,
The world was so unbelievable, through your innocent eyes,
Its been nine months full of trouble and my own lies,
Dropping to my knees, holding you in my arms for the very first time,
All the doctors tried so hard to save you, so patient and kind,
Your life was cut so short, my actions causing it to be so,
A road I chose for you, I caused you to have to go,
I’ll spend each year from now to the end,
Grieving the loss of you, my dear friend,
My little bundle of joy,
A bouncing baby boy.

Merry Christmas:
Now I lay me down to sleep,
I pray tonight to rest in peace,
A bloodied eve of christmas,
The house a totaled mess,
Now you lie there,
Tangled bloody hair,
Rose peddles coated our bed,
What was going on in your head?
You promised me a day to remember,
A day to stick with forever and ever,
Now she lays with you on our floor,
Did you really love her so much more,
Were you truly that much of a man,
That you had to go crush my heart in your hand,
Jolly Old Saint Nicholas sent you his misses,
So you could have your holly jolly christmas,
Over the river, to our comfy cabin,
You said it was her seductive grin,
As I walked down the stairs shaking in anger,
‘I… I loved you! How could you! Traitor… Traitor!’
My voice echoed through the house one last time,
A gun shot followed, ending in a bloodied silent night.

She’s been lied to, and abused,
Sold out, and sexually used,
hurt and in too much pain,
her heads held up just the same,
She smiles and laughs,
inside she wants to crash,
Her emotional balance astray,
But her heads held up just the same,
Her bodies broken,
Her mind giving in,
Optimism, beauty; live eat pray,
Her heads held up just the same,
I’m seeing a change,
She’s breaking her cage,
She’s smiling the usual way,
And her heads held up the same,
She’s been hurt one too many times,
Deciding people need to pay for they’re crimes,
She couldn’t hope for better days,
Because her heads held up the right way.

How can i do this?
My mind says yes; my heart says no,
Our very first kiss,
My Heart wants to stay; my mind to go.
Broken hearts cant take it,
Young minds giving in,
Anxious bodies a nervous fit,
Souls so full of sin.
A common bond,
Our lives bound,
By pain so fond,
Bodies not found.
Overdosing together,
Our bodies still,
Forever and ever,
Under the ole mill.
How’d we do this?
Bodies falling ill,
No one knows what it is,
Resessitation failed.
Good news; were together,
You with your bullet; me with my pill,
Promise; forever and ever,
All because we both fell ill

Drawings from the last month:

Btw. I’m fourteen and have never taken an art class ^^

Sally Smith answers:

Yes , you can keep writing and drawing, for writing, you can explore all types of methods in poems, as well as stories.
If you have thoughts you want to express, then the page is your stage to do so.
For artwork, you may want to start using sketch pads, and eventually other pencils, 2B, 4B, for shades etc.

The time for you to draw or write is up to you, whenever you have an idea, jot down notes, and draw or write them later when able, have fun!

Your Questions About Effective Communication

Joseph asks…

Effective Communication?

Poor communications can lead to bad decisions, but effective communication can lead to good ones. From your experience, tell of an occasion of poor communication leading to a bad decision. If you had to do it all over again, what specifically would you have done differently?

Sally Smith answers:

I wont bring any of my personal experiences to the table here, but one incident such as this that is still with the people of the United States is the weapons of mass distruction in Iraq.

CIA said they were there, but other said differently. Fed agencies didn’t communicate well, now there is egg in peoples face.

In life, like in business, communicationa is paramount. But good and accurate communications is a requirement.

Richard asks…

effective communication?

although areistorttle shakes the foundation for effective communication is vauge incomplete and offer notting new in the contempory business environment. to what extent do u agree with this statement?

Sally Smith answers:

Errrrrr.. Did you post this to get your spelling corrected? Ok:
Although Aristotle shakes the foundation for effective communication, he is vague, incomplete and offers nothing new in the contemporary business environment. To what extent do u agree with this statement?
If you are looking for an answer: I have no idea, as I don’t know what Aristotle’s theory about effective communication is. You most probably should know more about it, as this looks like your homework…

Donna asks…

Why is effective communication important? How do we solve problems as a group? How do we solve problems as a?

Why is effective communication important? How do we solve problems as a group? How do we solve problems as an individual?

Sally Smith answers:

I think effective communication is important to derive the desired result. We can solve such problems through mutual cordial understanding, mental adjustment and cooperation while we are working in a group. We can thus “amicably” solve problems, as and when they arise.

Daniel asks…

What is the importance of having effective communication and negotiation in the workplace?

What is the importance of having effective communication and negotiation in the workplace? What happens when they are not effective or break down? How do things like culture and gender affect communication?

Sally Smith answers:

Sounds like sombody needs help with a pointless homework question.

Well obviously its important because if you couldnt communicate effectively, people wouldnt understand you or they can misinterpret you and do a poor job.

Effective negotiation in the workplace would be, well, getting what you want, most times to get what you want requires that people like you to some degree, so when they like you and you look out for their interests they will in turn look out for yours as well. If you are a self serving or self indulgent you have very little negotiating power, nobody wants to help you if nothing is in it for them. Give and invest now so you can reap the rewards tomorrow, thats how you negotiate. Also make your limits known as to what youll accept and what you wont accept, in a calmly assertive manner, so people know they cant mess with you, then you will avoid uneeded negotiations for people getting what they want from you, let them know right off the bat – this is off limits.

Ken asks…

Is body language the most effective communication to the opposite sex?

Body language pisses me off. Though I’ve heard it’s the best form of communication when it comes to the opposite sex. Is this true? Facial expressions, certain looks from the eye, glances, intense stares, gestures, physical or facial. Does all this really matter? Is all this really more effective than using words at first? Can women pick up on this better than men can? Do women expect men to read body language as well as they do? As if all women are experts on reading body language! Will a man be more effective with women if he masters body language? But how would he?

Sally Smith answers:

No. I would say body language is more of a way men communicate. Verbal communication is the best way to communicate with women. Their frontal lobe starts developing very young which enables them to start communicating more at a younger age. Verbal communication is the best way to communicate with women. In fact one of the major complaints from women is that their boyfriends don’t talk to them enough. Women rely on verbal communication and men rely more on body language.

Your Questions About Self-confidence Exercises

William asks…

Self confidence exercises for driving?

I just started driving lesson and I would do so much better if I were more confident, more into it, less emotional. I can’t say that I’m afraid, but I’m certainly not confident and “out there”.
Are there any self confidence exercises I can do? Psychologically accurate, of course.
I think it’s more than obvious I’m practicing since I am taking lessons. Please don’t answer just for the sake of it.

Sally Smith answers:

Hey. Four years ago, I had the same problem. Here’s what helped my mindset.

1. Enjoy driving! Although it is a skill you must practice, it can also be a hobby and a privilege. Not everyone has a car to drive in this world, so first be thankful. Second, now that you realize how great it is even to have a car, make the most of it. YOU DO ANYTHING BETTER WHEN YOU ENJOY IT.

2. Learn, learn, learn. Ask questions about everything – not just the rules, but on driving technique itself. How do you properly take a turn? Where are your hands supposed to be positioned on the wheel? What should you do with yellow lights? These are all great questions, many of which you probably don’t know the answers to, which is perfect. The more you consider yourself a student and not a liability, the better and safer you will be as a all-around driver.

3. Practice. There’s nothing more effective. How did you get good at writing? Typing? Shoot, even walking? You practiced and your confidence rose as you practiced more. So get out and drive more.

David asks…

Do you know any self confidence and positive thinking exercises?

I really need help and advice. Something that is free btw. I can’t buy any CDs or stuff.

Sally Smith answers:

Hi, go to the library and borrow the book called “Getting to Yes”.
This book has won awards for improving disputes between people & for its matter of fact way of explaining how to do so.

Probably under self improvement OR alternative dispute resolution umbrella topics.

Its full of helpful exercises that help you make your life more positive and through that gives you confidence to keep going!

Laura asks…

How to build self confidence and self esteem?

I know of a few writting exercises for example: piece of paper.Draw a life down the middle. One side you write the things you say yourself that are negative. Like, I have a crooked chin for example. Then on the other side of the paper, you write something positive. In the end, the column with positive self talk will always be greater. Any other exercises you know or can share to boost self confidence and self esteem??

Sally Smith answers:

Educate your self and become an expert in an area you find interesting. Learn something new. Do stuff for other people…volunteer for the elderly, sick homeless. Helping others is a huge self esteem booster.

Sharon asks…

How to boost self-confidence?

I want some exercises for boosting self-confidence. Any idea?

Please avoid answers like “just do it”. I want some concrete exercises.

Sally Smith answers:

Everyone needs a boost of self-confidence every now and then. First thing when you get up in the morning… Look in the bathroom mirror at yourself and say…. “I am beautiful” or “handsome” and then say… “I am important” and then say… “I am somebody”. Just telling yourself that you matter is important. Because you ARE important and you ARE somebody and you ARE beautiful or handsome!!!!

James asks…

How can a 15 year old such as myself gain more self confidence?

Like, for drama, i cant act in front of a class, i just laugh and feel very embarrased.. but one main thing, i cant have a conversation with somebody that isnt close to me, without sweating and staying quiet.. how can i be more socialable? how do i speak to people normally, what do i say? and if this helps, im a quiet guy in school..

what exercises can i undergo to boost my self confidence?


Sally Smith answers:

If you know you are about to have to speak to someone or about to do something which makes you nervous like that, my advice is kind of weird but simple but it works.
If possible, go somewhere a bit out of the way like a bathroom or something and take as big a breath as you possibly can filling up your stomach (diaphragm) with air, then push it out with a big WHOOSH. Do it three times. Do not do it any more than that or you might get dizzy.
Its like a natural high and all your blood becomes oxygenated, including your brain, allowing you to think clearer and feel calmer.
Also, remember that what you have to say is worth saying and anyone worth talking to will want to hear what you say!

Your Questions About Self-esteem Activities


Betty asks…

What are some good self-esteem building activities you can do alone?

Like guys can work out and build muscles on their own and gain self esteem, what are some idea for what a girl could do to build up self esteem?

Sally Smith answers:

Write impowering things about yourself, make the person you are seem important to yourself…learn new crafts and abilities…make sure you care for yourself…

Sandy asks…

Activities to improve self esteem or confidence?

Im going to have a lecture meeting with my officemates regarding this matter and i was planning to have an activity. Do you know any activities or exercise which will help improve their self esteem or confidence??

Sally Smith answers:

It is old but works. Have everyone write down one good or positive thing of everyone else in the group.

Give them slips of paper with everyone’s names and have them write on it. Make a pile or basket for each person, then when all the slips are in have them read their basket’s slips out loud.

Chris asks…

can anyone suggest activities to build self-esteem, confidence?

i have really low self esteem, and feel very awkward and uncomfortable meeting and talking to people. any suggestions?

Sally Smith answers:

Think about it like exercise, try to talk to 1 random person each day for a week, then try to talk to 2 each day the next week, and so on. Also try talking with a person you know but aren’t close to like a co worker and practice being more comfortable and engaging with them.

John asks…

Self esteem activity idea needed?

We want to do a chain activity for 5th graders. We want it to revolve around self esteem and for it to be inspiring.

Sally Smith answers:

A classic self esteem activity is to take turns saying something nice about another person. So if you do it in a chain or circle, person #1 says something nice about person #2, #2 speaks to #3 and so on.

They may need help in coming up with things to say, and they may need to write things down (so you can double check what they are planning on saying).

Your Questions About Obesity

Sandra asks…


I would like to know where I can find an entire list of every single complication that can be caused by obesity. If no such list exists, please tell me how many medical complications can be caused by obesity.

Sally Smith answers:

I don’t know where there is a list, but here are a few I know:

1. Diabetes
2. Hyperlipidemia
3. Blood circulation diseases like arteriosclerosis, high blood pressure, heart disease, and palsy
4. Skin disease
5. Joint problems, back, knee, and ankle pain
6. Liver disease
7. Cholelithiasis
8. Menstrual abnormalities
9. Female infertility
10. Breast cancer – autodiagnosis
11. Endometrium cancer
12. Decline in libido
13. Mental stress
14. Kidney disease
15. Osteoarthritis
16. Obstructive sleep apnea
17. Stroke

Maria asks…


what do you think of obesity?

Sally Smith answers:

Uhm ~ I think it’s a problem nowadays. But I do think it’s sad how so many companies are also promoting all those icky junk foods, convenience things, and portion sizes that caused all the weight gain.

But I also think it’s great that a lot of my friends who are overweight are really trying to lose weight. I have a lot of respect for people who choose to lose weight.

Betty asks…


ok…i have this book report due tomoorow on obesity and i left my book at home….so heres the quetion what is two other things besides heart dieasese that obesity can cause?????plz help fast!=}

Sally Smith answers:

Coronary heart disease
Type 2 diabetes
Cancers (endometrial, breast, and colon)
Hypertension (high blood pressure)
Dyslipidemia (for example, high total cholesterol or high levels of triglycerides)
Liver and Gallbladder disease
Sleep apnea and respiratory problems
Osteoarthritis (a degeneration of cartilage and its underlying bone within a joint)
Gynecological problems (abnormal menses, infertility)

Ruth asks…

How is Childhood Obesity a present and future threat to america?

I am doing a research paper on chilhood obesity for my english class. I already have the causes, effects,prevention, and statistics of childhood obesity. All i need to write now is how childhood obesity is a present and future threat to america. Any ideas or links to articles will be greatly appreciated.

Sally Smith answers:

Whether or not one supports the currents wars that America is in, we do need a military and the obesity of children will threaten our ability to protect ourselves in the future. The military has released reports stating a lot of recruits have been turned away due to their physical condition.

Also, being overweight increases the health problems in kids which could lead to more days missed at school. Our education system is already struggling to educate kids so the more school a kid misses do to illnesses, the least likely he/she is going to grow up to be a doctor, engineer, scientist, inventor, etc. Then there’s payment of the illnesses, cost of insurance will go up for everyone over time.

So not only will be not be able to protect ourselves as well from outside forces, we won’t be able to support or care for ourselves, and that is never a good thing.

William asks…

Why is obesity important? Why do you think Americans are eating themselves to death?

Im doing a speech about obesity and i need a few ideas. :) Can some give me some ideas please?

Sally Smith answers:

America seems to be the depression capital of the world, which can lead to ‘emotional eating’.
America has a lot of people on anti-depressants, which is sad in itself, but maybe its because America is mystery Babylon, caught in materialism, greed, celebrity culture, etc. Not the truth or the indigenous meaning and value of life.

Michael asks…

When did people start to realized that obesity is spreading throughout the world?

I am doing a research paper on worldwide obesity. And one question that I have to answer in my paper is when did this issue come up? I know when it became a public problem in the United States but does anyone know when obesity came into the public attention worldwide in general? Thank you.

Sally Smith answers:

Obesity around the world seems to follow directly from the spreading of the American culture.

Follow the McDonalds…and you will have your answer, :)

Your Questions About Overcoming Shyness

Sandra asks…

Overcoming Shyness?

Any Ideas or suggestions on overcoming shyness

Sally Smith answers:

I think it mostly just comes with life the older you get the less it bothers you to speak out. I used to be really really quiet, now i’m not so much.

Charles asks…

overcoming shyness?

I have been shy for as long as i can remember. and thats weird because my parent and siblings are social butterflies..i really wanna overcome my shyness badly, can anyone give me any tips to overcome. thnx

Sally Smith answers:

I had the same problem. Try talking and socializing more with people your age. Loosen up and be fun! Hang out with a larger group of people and try new things. Dont be afraid to speak up or raise your voice. Try feeling comfortable with talking more and act positive. Your new friends will introduce you to more and more people so soon you’ll be more well known and less shy around people. Have fun and don’t worry what others say… Act silly as long as you have a good time! Hope I helped =)

Helen asks…

Overcoming shyness???

My whole life I have been the person that sits back and watches people. I am a extremely shy person. Its mostly due to my lack of confidence and self esteem. I have absolutely none. Well Im 26, and I cant handle it anymore. I hate being shy, it drives me crazy. I get extremely nervous when I talk to anyone, I clam up and am afraid to say anything. Its very extreme.I have gotten somewhat better. Before I would absolutely avoid everyone, from fear of talking.I try to talk to people now, but I just cant.I never know what to say to people. Please help me!!! Give me some pointers on overcoming shyness, and to help me be more outgoing. When it comes to very close relatives and my husband, Im not shy at all. But, with my job, I have to talk to people all day, and I dont have any friends anymore, Im too shy to have them. HELP!!! PLEASE!!! I hate being shy, and I want to overcome it.
Its so extreme that I get panic attacks when around alot of people, or when talking to people. I try to avoid the public as much as possible. Its to the point to where I will not go to the store because of it, I dont want to go anywhere, I panic, HELP

Sally Smith answers:

Everyone feels shy from time to time. Here are some guidelines to overcome your shyness:

1) Take the pressure off yourself. Keep in mind that you don’t need to impress or even to entertain during a conversation. You just need to show your genuine interest in others. When you focus your attention on someone else, you are making that person feel important and accepted, and that can go a long way in making everyone feel more relaxed and comfortable.

2) Make the other person feel important. When you don’t know what to say, shift your focus away from yourself. Try to think less about what you are nervous about, and focus on what you could say to your conversational partner that would bring a little light into their day. Good friends are thoughtful, caring, and supportive. What could you say to show your thoughtfulness and support for the other person?

3) Smile. Sometimes, we make conversation harder than it needs to be. All you need to do to get started is offer a sincere smile and a willingness to listen.

4) Actively listen. So many times we are paralyzed with the idea that we need to have something pithy or clever to say when the other person would be more than happy to keep right on talking. Just knowing that can take a lot of pressure off the listener.

5) Ask questions. A conversation is a balance between speaking and listening, but you can take a bit of time to warm into each conversation if you need to. Once you have gotten to know the other person a bit better, you might find that you feel more comfortable sharing ideas and stories of your own. If you aren’t ready to contribute to the conversation yet, prompt the other person to continue talking. If you’ve been actively listening (and not using all of their speaking time to try to think of something to say) you’ll have a few points that you can ask open-ended questions about or comment on yourself.

6) Comment on the surroundings. Talk about the food. Not just “Yummy dip!” but something more open-ended, such as: “There is such a unique flavor or spice in this that I can’t quite put my finger on. What do you think it is?” You can also start conversations based on decorative items in the room.

7) Be prepared for awkward pauses. We’ve all had conversations that started with a bang and then quickly hit a lull, where no one was sure what to say next. At this point, you can either excuse yourself or start a conversation on a new topic. The trick is to be prepared for conversational lulls such as these so you can avoid feeling nervous and awkward. Be prepared with a couple of observations about the room, followed by a question. Or you might say something like “Where are you from originally?” or go back to another part of the conversation. For example, “Earlier, you said…” or “I’m curious to know more about…”

8) It’s okay to admit you’re feeling shy. One icebreaker is to say something like: “When I’m in situations like this, I sometimes feel a little shy at first.” If people know that you are feeling this way they will appreciate your candor and they will understand that, if you are quiet or unsure of what to say, you’re not uninterested in what they have to say, you are simply feeling shy.

9) Realize that it’s okay to not get along with everyone. As you continue in your conversations, you will, of course, find people whom you don’t enjoy speaking with and people who you feel don’t especially like speaking with you. This is not a personal reflection on you. It’s just a fact of life. We all prefer some personality types over others, and it certainly doesn’t mean you’re not likable. Be open to talking with everyone, and gravitate toward those who make you feel comfortable and who facilitate your communication. And definitely don’t take rejection personally if some in the room don’t talk a lot. Who knows, they might be shy, too.

10) The biggest key is to relax more. When you feel comfortable, so will those with whom you are speaking. Keep in mind that conversational skills get better with practice, so anytime you can step out of your comfort zone and converse with new and interesting people, you’ve developed your conversational muscles, and that means that conversations at the next event you attend will be even easier.

Betty asks…

Can anyone recommend a good book about overcoming shyness?

Also, if you happen to be knowledgable in this area, how does one overcome shyness?

Sally Smith answers:

From my own personal experience, a very helpful book is: “The Shyness and Social Anxiety Workbook,” by Martin Anthony & Richard Swinton.
You can also find information about dozens of other books on overcoming shyness on

Mary asks…

Does anyone have any wisdom about overcoming shyness?

I’m really shy. I’ve read a couple of self-help books, which did have a little bit of good advice. They basically seemed to say to try to become more outgoing in little steps. I also learned that shyness is more of a learned trait than something that is genetic. That helped me, because I don’t feel like it is a hopeless character trait that i was born with and can’t change.
But I am still trying to overcome this. Does anyone have any helpful tips or advice? Thank you very much!

Sally Smith answers:

Paradoxical Intentions-

What this means is that in a social situation do what your gut is telling you not to (wthin reason) If you are afraid to talk to a certain person…go and do it.

This method not only gives you confidence…it actually physically alters your brain neuro-pathways. It creats new connections between brain neurons, making the next time you do it much easier..and easier and easier and easier over time.

Your Questions About Sleep Paralysis

Robert asks…

sleep paralysis?

I think its called sleep paralysis when you wake up but your eyes won’t open and you can’t move except breathe through your nose until you wake up. I’ve gotten that 3 nights in a row is it bad and it only lasted about a minute every time I got it.
Now it seems easier to control it so its weird also.

Sally Smith answers:

Sleep paralysis is most often associated with narcolepsy, a neurological condition in which the person has uncontrollable naps. However, there are many people who experience sleep paralysis without having signs of narcolepsy. Sometimes it runs in families. There is no known explanation why some people experience this paralysis. It is not harmful, although most people report feeling very afraid because they do not know what is happening, and within minutes they gradually or abruptly are able to move again; the episode is often terminated by a sound or a touch on the body.

In some cases, when hypnogogic hallucinations are present, people feel that someone is in the room with them, some experience the feeling that someone or something is sitting on their chest and they feel impending death and suffocation. That has been called the “Hag Phenomena” and has been happening to people over the centuries. These things cause people much anxiety and terror, but there is no physical harm.

Your Questions About Eating Healthy

Sandra asks…

Eating healthy?

I don’t know why this is so easy for others, but so tough for me. I work full-time, and hate cooking. I usually eat a lot of carbs (bagels, breads, sandwiches, etc) because it is the quickest and easiest thing for me to eat everyday. I also have a hard time thinking of how to eat my daily fruits and veggies. The only way I can think of cooking veggies is steaming them, and that gets so boring after a while. Does anyone have any good ideas/suggestions for eating healthy on a regular/daily basis, getting my fruits and veggies in and eating a balanced diet, without spending hours in the kitchen everyday?

Sally Smith answers:

If you are eating a lot of wheat products, make sure you are eating the most whole-grain product you can find, e.g. Breads with oats and other non-wheat grains added, whole wheat bread, bagels, spaghetti, etc.

Also, see if you can fit beans and brown rice into your schedule. Invest in a crock pot to cook dry beans; some beans like lentils don’t even need long term cooking. A crock pot is also good for stews and such.

As for fruits and veggies, you don’t need to cook them – they are actually better for you raw. If you don’t like raw veggies? I think you’re better off with veggies with salad dressing than no veggies at all, but you could also try salsa or hummus or low fat cottage cheese as a veggie dip. You can find a lot of pre-cut and washed veggies in the supermarket which takes a lot of the time out of cooking.

Also, get some herbal/spice mixes and use them liberally in cooking.

Nancy asks…

Eating Healthy?


Ive decided that I want to cut back on the junk food, so does anyone have any tasty (and healthy!) recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner and for snacks?

And any tips on how to STOP eating junk food?

Sally Smith answers:

Munch on fruits and veggies for snacks

I like making smoothies with one banana, 1 cup of favorite frozen fruits, orange juice, blend and it can also be used as a meal substitute. Use some seasonings like tabasco sauce to add some zing to your food.

Robert asks…

eating healthy?

I want to start eating healthy but my whenever I try to my stomach or taste buds reject it. Is there a way to change this?

Sally Smith answers:

Eating healthy will not occur over night. First start by cutting out sodas and sugary drinks. You should mostly consume water and 100% fruit juice (diluted). If you’re big on soda, then try cutting down slowly.. Cut your normal intake in half. Then, slowly start getting rid of junk food such as candy, chips, etc. Replace those foods that you are snacking on between meals with fresh fruits and veggies, although every once in a while these foods are fine as long as they’re in moderation! Don’t eat the whole bag of chips, eat 1 serving instead. Eventually, i’m sure you will start to find that healthy food too can be satisfying. Good luck!

Charles asks…

EATING healthy!!!?

what are some healthy foods to eat for lunch,dinner, and just sncaks ??

maybe? could you

make me a scheduale of when i should eat what and what i should eat?


Sally Smith answers:

Healthy foods generally consist of what you could hunt, pick, or gather; i.e. Fresh fruits, vegetables, and lean meats. Try to stay away from processed foods and foods with a lot of refined sugar.

When to eat? Eat when you are hungry. Generally speaking that is about every 3-4 hours.

Jenny asks…


I need some ideas on easy healthy dishes! Thank you!!

Sally Smith answers:

Make some eggs with just egg whites along with some fresh turkey plus toasted whole wheat bread. Stick with water for your drink.

It might not be the most delicous meal you will have, but it will be real heathy.

Donna asks…

How can I start eating healthy if my mom works and cant cook?

I am 16 years old and I want to start eating healthy. I am not eating bad now, I would say average but it is impossible for me to eat at a good time because my mom works in the afternoon.

I do cook myself but if I don’t feel inspired or motivated it is really difficult so it is definitely not an everyday thing.

Does anyone have any ideas of how to fix this?

Sally Smith answers:

Well… Good news is, you’ll always get what you want!!!
So I’d say go to the store and get a bunch of tasty but healthy foods (fruits, veggies, meats, milk?) and wait for Racheal Rays “30 minute meals” to come on! Its fun and surprizing! And just make what she makes! Haha. If you dont have all the ingredients then record the show, and if you can’t record it, note down what she did and what she used, then make it the next night! She always stays on the healthy and hearty side ;-)


Your Questions About Better Relationship With Parents

David asks…

Does having parents in a good relationship the foundation to success a child later in life?

I’m from a very disfunctional family. I have a great life now as an adult, due to having a great partner, but as a person I’m quite weak and feel like I can’t do anything properly, especially with jobs, socially etc… I’ve got no strenghs mentally and physically too. Does strenghts built up from having goods parents in a child’s life?

Sally Smith answers:

I believe strength has little to do with our parents. Our environment does have some effect on how we grow, but not necessarily in a direct way. Our environment provides challenge and the more challenges that we overcome the stronger we are as individuals. So i would venture to say that having parents in a good relationship may actually make you weaker and less successful! Just my thoughts, take them or leave them…

James asks…

Do men or women have a better relationship with their parents?

I am looking for a study that might have theories if gender hinders or assists the relationship people have with their parents. While I don’t think it plays a major role (very minor if anything), I am curious to know if there arre studies that explore the possibility of either men or women having a better relationship with their parents.

Sally Smith answers:

I would think that women have a better relationship with their parents on average. At least, it’s usually the women who end up taking care of their parents once they become elders!

Helen asks…

How do I gain a better relationship with my parents?

Me and my parents don’t talk about ANYTHING, and I really want to start becoming more close to them so that when I get a boyfriend, I don’t have to hide it from them. I am willing to do anything it will take to do so.

Any ideas? Were you distant from your parents then became very close and now tell each other everything?

Sally Smith answers:

Well I am impressed! Not many kids even want to try to get close to their parents, you must be a very smart girl!
PLEASE tell them how you feel…tell them you’d like to talk to them and be closer. They may not know you do.
I am very close to my two kids, (19 and 22) they call me regularly, and it’s wonderful! They love it too. Try hard ok, it’s worth it, and be proud of yourself for wanting it that way!

Betty asks…

How could I form a better relationship with my parents?

I dont want to regret this later in life… Im 20 and I want to open up to my parents more.. Im quiet and just stay in my room with the door closed.. Making my parents think im blocking them out of my life is the last thing i want them to think.. Any suggestions would help.. :)

Sally Smith answers:

Try to hang out with them, be more open. Eventually if you are honest with each other, you will form more of a sense of trust and respect.

Donna asks…

Get a better relationship with my parents?

me and my parents used to get along so well now i don’t really talk to them at all. I used to be able to talk to them about stuff but now growing up its different. I know its bad but i tend to ignore them. Like at my house ill just spend time in my room or on the computer. They tend to get on my nerves sometimes. They are always on my case about going out and what im doing. I know they love me. What can i do to change this?

Sally Smith answers:

It’s quite normal that you are growing away from your parents and perhaps focusing more on friends – this is part of growing up and away. However your behaviour is probably causing your parents some hurt and worry, as they have been close to you and raised you for so long, and perhaps they are very confused about this, unless they have had other children who have gone the same way and they know why this is happening.

Perhaps you need to make a bigger effort to talk to them and to have some quality time with them, whilst having your own independence. Could you not offer to help them with something around the house or do something with your father that both of you are interested in, eg cars or learning to drive or similar. Otherwise do something with your mother eg shopping together or helping her in some way. Just put this time aside for them to show that you care about them. It is normal for parents to be ‘on your case’ about stuff like going out – just accept that it is the same for millions of people your age and is just an expression of love. Don’t be too demanding and expect your parents to suddenly change overnight from loving, supportive parents into people who mind their own business overnight – it just won’t happen. Parents can’t turn off their feelings like a tap. They continue worrying about their ‘children’ until their children are in their 40s!

Donald asks…

how can i have a better relationship with my parents?

well im 18 and i dont really have a good relationship with my parents. school is almost over and im leaving for college. well my occasion is that the relationship between me and my dad has not bin really good lately, somedays i dont see him at all and theres times that we dont talk for weeks. he comes from work sometimes he says hi and sometimes he dont. i want my relationship with him to be as it used to be before. what can i do?

Sally Smith answers:

It is very simple, just talk to him about things that he is interested in.

It sounds like you are also responsible for not talking to him, You say that “sometimes he says hi and sometimes he dont”. Talking is a two way street, when he does not say hi, do you say anything?

Your Questions About Weight Loss

Maria asks…

weight loss?

okay, so I know almost everything there is to know about losing weight effectively. I love to give advice to people on how to lose weight. Am I in good shape? Hellz no! I am 50 lbs overweight and 21 years old in college. I know all this stuff about losing weight, yet I cannot apply to myself. Why am I not strong enough to do this? I can barely resist eating. I love food so much. Taco bell, pizza, quesadillas, hot pockets, cola, the list goes on. I am addicted to food, I eat when I’m not hungry because I crave the taste of it. I have asked for the strength to resist these temptations but to no avail. It seems hopeless that I will ever be average weight. I dont’ need weight loss advice per se…I need ways to become strong enough to resist my strongest temptations…any suggestions?
I should mention that I do get up off my butt and try to stay active, I’m not that lazy, it’s just that the amount of calories I am able to consumer is far more I can burn off at my activity level, in the shape I am in, I can’t do extremely heavy workouts, in fact running hurts my legs, any kind of weight training will deal a lot of pain, right now, I basically try to walk a lot, because it’s basicall what I can do right now without noticing bad side effects.

Sally Smith answers:

You could go to therapy to find out what the underlying cause of your compulsive may be. It has to be more than a simple craving…maybe a hormone imbalance or something medically or mentally-emotionally out of whack. As you know, you need to keep exercising and eat fresh fruits/vegies, berries and fiber when you want to eat the junk food. Occupy your time with reading, walking, hanging out with friends, etc. Pray. Having God on your side always helps.

Ken asks…

Weight Loss?

I have a few medical conditions that prevent me from exercising as much as I would like and I take medication that makes me put on weight.

I have put on a little bit of weight lately and just wanting to get rid of it but have tried cutting down on fatty foods etc and exercising more but nothing is helping!!

Wanting some tips on weight loss – Stuff that actually works!!

Sally Smith answers:

Here is a place that reviews a bunch of weight loss programs, dieting aides, supplements and so on. The site even has categories like diabetes, low fat and hypnosis. Pretty cool site.


Many of the programs listed have consumer reviews, so you can read what others think of the different products and programs before you decide on one for yourself.

Hope this helps!

Richard asks…

Weight loss?

I want to lose 20 – 30 pound by the beginning of November. I need to know what foods to eat. I will be going and walking/running everyday after work as well.

I’m 5’9 i have a large body frame. I weigh somewhere around 190.
The healthy weight range for my height is 150 – 170.

Any tips on how to maximize my weight loss in that amount of time. Thanks.

Sally Smith answers:

You need to do 200 minutes of cardio a week. Remember fat does not turn into muscle, so you need to lose your fat while putting on muscle. Do 5-10 minutes of cardio to warm up, then do your weight training. Do 30 to 60 minutes more of cardio, then go home.

The best time to eat is just after your workout within an hour when your metabolism is raging. For your muscles, incorporate some isolated soy protein or whey protein. Whey is more potent but the soy tastes better!

Don’t look at your scale as the be all and end all, but get a measuring tape to check your progress, and that will show more tangible results.

Good luck and stick at it.

Sharon asks…

WEIGHT loss?

well i have hypothyroidism and its hard to lose weight-and i recently got the depo provera shot and since then i have gained twenty pounds-i cant really workout alot cause i had knee surgery and i havent regained full capability of my knee-so i cant run an di cant do much-i am on levothyroxin for my thyroid, occassional combivent-and i am a college student and i work like one day a week for five hours-what weight loss pills or supplemens would you suggest?

Sally Smith answers:

Get off Depo. I think it is dangerous, it completely messed my hormone levels up. I was having menopausal symptoms at only 23!

When I switched to a different birth control the weight started coming off on its own…

Betty asks…


I am going to be going to a cool party in 7 weeks its a pool party and I want to drop some weight and look awsome in a nice designer back less and side less bathing suit or a cute piece but I need help I need to do what ever I can do I have a gym membership so i can work out. I just need to know what pills food and work outs can i do to have rapid weight loss plus i want to be the hot girel all guys at boot camp want

Sally Smith answers:

Diet wise, you know, no junk. No processed food.

* Instead of having 3 large meals in a day, have 5-6 small meals. Make sure to keep a gap of 2-3 hours between two consecutive meals. It will help speed up your metabolism and result in burning of more calories.                                                                                        * Drink at least 8 glasses of water in a day. The more you increase your water consumption, the better it is.
* Never ever skip meals in order to lose weight. It will only make your metabolism slower, resulting in an even slower burning of calories.
*check out this site to determine how many calories you need daily to sustain you weight – then eat less.


Check with the gym trainers on food supplements like whey protein.

Now I know you want a quick fix, too, and a pill that helps burn fat. You could try Hydroxycut, but it’s not cheap & can wreak havoc with your system.

That said, there’s a cardio training regimen called High-intensity interval training (HIIT). You sprint & walk. Can take only 15/20 minutes a day, 3/4 times a week. It is the current best way to raise your metabolism & burn fat. Here’s a site that describes it in detail.


Also, to help tone that tummy try core exercises. A coupla sites:’s%20folder/…


Sandra asks…


Weight Loss?
I Had a child on June 28th. I am 5’2 and the day i had him i weighed 195 lbs ( i gained ALOT OF WEIGHT, i started out 130 lbs!) i now weigh 150 lbs. I go to the gym 4x per week i do 30 mins of cardio per day. I only drink water and i eat healthy. Any ideas or supplements people have tried with results. I have 20 more pouds to lose!

i forgot to put that i have a personal trainer. I dont just do cardio i have a reg. workout routine too. Hiowever Ive been stuck in a rut i havent lost any more weight in a month

Sally Smith answers:

You seem to be doing good!

The basics to losing weight is really so simple.

Burn up more than you take in.

So, eat healthy; like you’re doing, and drinking a lot of water.

Exercise as often as you can. Weights are ok, but you could do more cardio.

Don’t eat fried foods. Don’t use butter/margerine…that kind of stuff. Stay away from dressings and the ‘fatty’ stuff.

Your stomach will shrink and you won’t feel as hungry. You have to train it the way you do anything with your body. I think you’re doing great. Keep your food portions small, eat a little more frequently maybe, but keep the overall intake low.

Good luck I think you’re well on your way, and I applaud you for your diligence!