Penny for Your Thoughts Mental Wellness Resource

Sound advice for hard times


What is Somatic Experiencing?

Somatic Experiencing differs from talk therapy because it is experiential, but unlike other trauma therapies, it can help you to be present with difficult feelings in a way that isn’t overwhelming. Somatic Experiencing is a relatively new approach to working with trauma-related mental health concerns, such as relationship issues or anxiety, via addressing how trauma …


“Pathological Demand Avoidance” from the perspective of an Neurodivergent Person

  YanLin Tso, LCSW   Pathological Demand Avoidance (PDA) has been described either as a type of neurodivergence within itself or associated with other types of neurodivergence (abbreviated here as ND), such as autism and ADHD. What is PDA? It is defined in Wikipedia and elsewhere as a greater than usual refusal to comply with …


How to work with internalized racism to improve mental wellness

  How to work with internalized racism to improve mental wellness Tell me about a time when your beliefs about people of your own race limited what you believed to be your potential in this life?  So many of us stumble into the stereotypes we have been marinating in our entire lives.   Maybe you felt …


How to identify and reduce burnout to improve mental wellness

  Do you find yourself dreading your day to the point that you find it hard to get up in the morning?  Most people at some point in their lives will experience burnout.  In fact, given that we have all been in some form of lockdown due to the pandemic for over a year, we …


How to Navigate Therapy When You Fear Loss of Autonomy 

By YanLin Tso   As both a therapist and a neurodivergent person who has sought therapy, I recognize  an unusually strong desire for autonomy and a fear of losing my autonomy in therapeutic settings. I write this article as a continuation of my previous blog article on PDA. I  also want to affirm that having …


Ableism and Neurodivergence

  Ableism is the belief that some people’s bodies are more fit than others and are therefore superior. It is the foundation of racism, sexism, allism, homophobia, and transphobia. Ableism as it applies to neurodivergence is the belief that people must act according to some arbitrary social rules in order to have social value and …


On Privilege, Shame and the Harm of the Hero Complex Dynamic

  At the Intersection of Trauma and Marginalized Identities   People I encounter often avoid talking about privilege as if it is a bad thing. It is as if it is something you should be ashamed of. I think many people are confused about healthy shame versus unhealthy shame. Healthy shame is the shame that …