A Note from Arlene

Arlene Harder

Welcome to the Support4Change Blog!

I have had a continuous online presence for more than sixteen years with four websites, the last of which was Support4Change. Now I am in the process of bringing many of my previous articles here to my blog.

If you would like to learn more about me, please visit my bio page. If you would like to subscribe to my newsletter, you can do so here.

 

You Need Both Sides of Your Brain

This article originally appeared on the Support4Change website, and is reposted here.

Because both sides of our brains are used for different purposes, it is  important to recognize how to use them separately and together.

left-brain-right-brainOne summer day in the historic Chautauqua grounds in Upstate New York, I sat in the audience listening to a lecture on the brain. The speaker identified the corpus callosum as the longitudinal fissure connecting the left and right cerebral hemispheres. She said that the female has a 20% larger corpus callosum than males, allowing them to see relationships between ideas better than men. The women in the crowd laughed and applauded. We’ve always known our minds worked differently than men’s. Read More

Diversions, Number 20: State Mottos

Diversions for You and Your Friends is a feature of the blog, which appears every Monday. To find out more about Diversions, read the Introduction and Number 1, or you can visit the Diversions Archive.

20 - Seal_of_California.pngThis week’s Diversions for You and Your Friends is “State Mottos.” You can use this Diversion several ways:

  1. Online version. Read “State Mottos” or forward this PDF for a friend to read in his or her browser.
  2. Print version. Print the PDF and send it to a friend. I print my cards on both sides of an 8.5” x 11” paper. Then I fold that in half and put it into a 6” x 9” envelope. (You could also just print it out and cut it into four pages, which are numbered, staple them together, and fit them into in a business-sized envelope.)

Read More

Understanding The Parenting Game

This article originally appeared on the Support4Change website, and is reposted here.

Now the thing about having a baby — and I can’t be the first person to have noticed this — is that thereafter you have it.        — Jean Kerr, “Please Don’t Eat the Daisies,” 1957

Dice - 1-2-4-5-6.jpg
Guess what? You’ve been enrolled in the “Parenting Game.” In fact, everyone who chooses the immense responsibility of bringing a new life into this uncertain complex world, whether through birth or adoption, is automatically enrolled, even if you don’t know the rules.

It is your responsibility as coach of this amazing game to maneuver, with love and minimum error, a small but rapidly growing human through a series of increasingly complex mazes—a process that often continues into young adulthood. When the game is over, the child will, hopefully, be an emotionally secure, resourceful, resilient, compassionate human being, prepared to contribute to society in a positive way. Read More

Diversions, Number 19: Family and Friends Surround You with Love

Diversions for You and Your Friends is a feature of the blog, which appears every Monday. To find out more about Diversions, read the Introduction and Number 1, or you can visit the Diversions Archive.

19 - LilacsThis week’s Diversions for You and Your Friends is “Family and Friends Surround You with Love.” You can use this Diversion several ways:

  1. Online version. Read “Family and Friends Surround You with Love” or forward this PDF for a friend to read in his or her browser.
  2. Print version. Print the PDF and send it to a friend. I print my cards on both sides of an 8.5” x 11” paper. Then I fold that in half and put it into a 6” x 9” envelope. (You could also just print it out and cut it into four pages, which are numbered, staple them together, and fit them into in a business-sized envelope.)

Read More

My Special List of Friends

This article originally appeared on the Support4Change website, and is reposted here.

As we grow and change, we must retain some flexibility to help us deal with new situations.

Several years ago I got a Christmas card with a poem that was almost identical to the following and the next year we sent it with our greetings. I believe it expresses what each of is thinking when we send greetings to a list of people with whom we don’t communicate more than once every year.

I recently discovered that a variation of this was originally written by Helen Steiner Rice. No matter how it is said, the message is wonderfully true.

— ARLENE F. HARDER, MA, MFT, Editor-in-Chief Read More