Dr. Atkins’ Thoughts

December 30, 2019

Tips for the Gift of Listening

Many of us think our role in a conversation is to talk. In fact, what most people seem to prefer is to have a conversation partner who is a good listener.  We may say too much, repeat ourselves to make a point (when the point is already made), talk about […]
December 30, 2019

The Importance of Hope

As the new year begins, I have been thinking about the importance of hope. For me, losing hope and then regaining hope is very tied to health. I know I am not alone when, for instance, hearing a challenging diagnosis can be the impetus for a momentary (or longer) loss […]
December 2, 2019

Tips for Travel During the Holidays

If we cannot avoid traveling during the holidays, we can try to keep ourselves as calm as possible as we embark on our journeys. Whether we travel by car, train, bus, or plane, it is likely we will encounter delays, crowds, rudeness, lost bags, fatigue, and other people’s distress. Travel […]
December 2, 2019

Sharing Confidential Information

We all agree that we expect confidentiality when we share information with healthcare, law, or professionals. There are rigorous ethical standards that guide these relationships and we all expect compliance.   Lately, I have been thinking about whether we have similar expectations in our non-professional relationships. When we share personal […]
November 4, 2019

Tips for Learning New Things No Matter How Old We Are

Learning new things is good for our emotional and physiological health.  Novel experiences stimulates the release of the chemical dopamine, and causes the brain to build connections among neurons. This is important as we age, for we can replace and activate some connections that we lose over time. The brain […]
November 4, 2019

Be and Ally and Speak Up for What is Right

Amanda and I wrote The Kindness Advantage, in part to help families positively address the increase in disrespectful and bullying behavior. Bullying can be physical or emotional and can occur at any stage of our life.   Too many of us choose to do nothing when they see or hear […]
October 2, 2019

Lessons Learned by Observing Olive Trees

Recently I visited Greece and was mesmerized by the amazing shapes and the knots formed over time in the olive trees. People have been cultivating olive trees for thousands of years BCE. As I walked through (and travelled beside) multiple groves I saw them as a metaphor for parenting and […]
September 24, 2019

Tips for Turning to Nature to Nurture Ourselves

Spending mindful time in nature is beneficial for our body and soul. We spend our time increasingly indoors, especially if we live in urban areas.  Yet, we are meant to be connected to the natural world, taking in nature through our senses. Seek opportunities to take time out, slow down, […]
August 28, 2019

Tips for Managing our Own Expectations with Others

I am hearing more and more from people who express disappointment with their family or friends. They wonder why their family and friends do not do the things they “should” do (what the person wants and expects). “He should have known how I was feeling”. “She should have called; she […]
August 28, 2019

The Benefits of Seeing our Similarities Through our Differences

When I was in college, I found it incredibly relaxing to sit at LaGuardia Airport and watch people coming and going. No kidding. Always the observer, it was a great delight for me. (This was before security prevented anyone who didn’t have a ticket from hanging out at an airport.)  […]