Ah, yes. Therapy. Please come sit on my sofa and tell me of your woos, but please deposit your $75 for the hour of my time that you are going to waste. The idea of sitting down with a complete stranger and spilling out my life story is just very awkward. Then it just gets weird when you pay them to listen to you. Eventually it just mildly irritates me because you know you will never ever get a definitive, non-bullshit answer from your therapist. Now ladies and gentleman, I am a psychology major and I would love to be a therapist. However, I do not sugar coat things. I’m going to tell you exactly what you need to hear, rather you want to hear it or not, and you are going to pay me to do it. Basically, I am your local paid socialite. Perfect job right? I thought so.

However, in light of the fact that there are people out there who, like me, do not feel comfortable explaining my life story to someone that I am paying to judge me, we have different ways of coping and wasting ours greens.

1. Retail therapy. This in my mind is one of the worst forms of therapy. It is a danger to your wallet and your home. I often feel like this form should be renamed “Go spend recklessly on useless goods and boost the economy”. The amount of damage that a woman (forgive me for stereotyping but I haven’t seen a lot of guys do this) can do is very impressive especially if she has an unlimited budget and there are top store around. It’s like the goal is to spend a load of money and get the least amount of items possible. My record is $700 for a dress, a pair of shoes, and a pair of sunglasses. I realize this is just marginal for some spenders but I felt the effects of this binge on my wallet for a long time. Conclusion: Retail therapy is not for everyone (i.e. Those who are in limited financial situations). If this is a reoccurring method of coping, please ask yourself if that $400 dress will still be worth the dent in your wallet six months from now. Probably not. Put down the item and back away slowly. Running away will only make it chase you.

2. Drug and alcohol therapy. Now I have not done drugs before so I cannot relate to the effects that are produced but the substance one is using. However, I can relate to the idea of eluding your reality and escaping to freedom. Although not the safest method of coping with you needs, it is definitely the quickest and easiest way to forget. The perfect escape and way to live your dream. Conclusion: Although I realize nothing is found at the bottom of an empty bottle or package but air, the small moment of euphoria that is reached can be enough to get you through your challenge. However, be smart. Protect your health. Protect your life. You only have one.

3. Exercise therapy. This is probably one of the best forms of therapy. Nothing is better than a natural release of stress and it’s healthy (as long as you aren’t an exercise nut). For me, running is my niche. Going out for that long 9 miler is pure bliss when you reach the point that you feel nothing but relaxed and happy (also known as the runner’s high). Typically this does solve some, if not all, of the issues that one has. You are able to clear your head and find the answers that you already had. Conclusion: One of the best forms of therapy. Cheap and healthy.

4. Cleaning therapy. This is, for the most part, very similar to exercise therapy. Relatively cheap, healthy, and great for your home. I also find this form of therapy amusing to a degree. It always cracks me up when I see my cousin spotlessly cleaned home. Now she is naturally a very clean person but when she is angry and cleans, oh man, her living quarters are white glove inspection ready. Quiet impressive. Conclusion: Not worth the need to get upset but well worth the results.

5. Food therapy. Yes. We’ve all been the cow who eats their feelings. Bring out my friends Ben and Jerry’s and we have a pity session party. They are always reliable and they will always get the last laugh. They are your friends, yet they are not. I mean what kind of friend would reasonably allow you to ingest half a gallon of icecream in a single sitting and then make you a tub tub? Not many. Food is not your friend. I repeat food is not your friend and it will repeat on you. Conclusion: Expensive and not worth the health risks and/or the hours spent working off the massive amount of sugar, fat, carbs, and calories you just inhaled. (But it’s still delicious.)

6. Religious therapy. Many people I know put all their trust and fears with issues into their religion. If you a believer of the faith, I see this as a relatively healthy means of coping. You are basically spilling your guts out to your religious figure head, but you don’t have to pay them, and they never verbally answer you (sometimes this is a great thing). You find your answer in their word and get make peace with the rest. Where I take resolve is with those who become frustrated with their religion because they are not getting answers. If you don’t believe, you don’t receive. That means fully 100% believe in all that there is. Failure to do so and use of this method will lead you no where. Conclusion: If you believe then this is probably your best choice. You’ll find your answers and become stronger in your faith.
7. Sexual therapy. We all know at least one person that does this. They go have sexual relations with people in order to attempt to fill a void. Key word: attempt. How many people do you really know that are successful in filling their needs and resolving their problems? Not many. Plus this method of coping can be very hazardous to ones health. Conclusion: Not for everyone. Definitely need to be shameless to cope with the after effects of your decisions. Never really resolves the issues that you had in the first place.

8. Tattoo/Piercing therapy. Now piercing is not for me so I cannot speak to the cleansing affects that its has for some people. However, I am an advocate for tattoo therapy. For me, the pain that I feel emotionally is translated to the pain that I feel physically from the tattoo. As the tattoo heals, so do I, and the end product is a reminder of a challenge in my life that I overcame. Conclusion: Definitely for the faint of heart. Expensive and permanent. Please do not make these decisions irrationally because they do stick with you.


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