A SoCal based psychologist whose work feeds an insatiable wanderlust.


5 Steps to Selecting Your Career Speciality

I've seen a lot of career advice out there lately that includes something along the lines of "Figure out what you really loved to do as a child and then turn that into your job." You can't see me right now, but I'm making a total dead pan face as I write that. I'm pretty sure that as a child I enjoyed nothing that mirrored rehabilitating violent offenders back into the community. Conversely, I have not found a way to make money climbing trees and concocting weird potions out of my leftover lunch.  It's just not that easy sometimes.  

Now, I can think back to about high school and, at least at the time, I felt that a lot of my friends trusted me with their problems. Some who weren't even particularly close to me valued my listening skills and confidentiality. So it's easy to look back in hindsight admittedly say, I had some of those strengths that I use now in my career as a psychologist. But if you have read how I came to be a psychologist in one of my earlier posts, you know that it wasn't even on my radar until late in the game. Once you pick the field you in which you want to work, there are still so many decisions to be made about specific environments, specialties, and areas of expertise. Here's how to bring it into focus.  

1. Be negative! 

You probably have pretty strong feelings towards what you do not want to do and who you do not want to work with or what projects you definitely do not want to be a part of. Sort of like when seeking a relationship. We generally have things on our lists that are total deal breakers; people you would never choose to have as a long-term partner. In much the same way, if you figure out what you don't want to do for a living, the viable options (based on your interests) will rise to the top.

How I applied this step: I knew that I didn't want to work with children or with a particularly "boring," run-of-the-mill population. Sitting in an office listening to a desperate housewife sounded so boring to me. 

How to Eat Your Way Through Porto

I had no idea that we were going to eat so well in Porto, Portugal. We were in town for a few days because I was presenting at an international conference. I honestly had not done too much research on Porto because I had to put all my effort towards planning the accompanying getaway in Ibiza the week prior. 

We arrived in Porto after a quick flight from Madrid and it was still quite early in the evening, but we were starving! We stayed at a nondescript hotel in an area near the university where the conference was being held. Our stuff was dumped off in the room and we set out on foot to find a decent dinner. 

We wandered into a small empty and sterile restaurant, unsure if they were actually open for business. The server greeted us with a big grin and was happy to get us seated with menus right away. We did our best to decipher the 
Portuguese menus and eventually gave up and asked him what their specialty was. He eagerly replied, "The Francesinha! Haven't you heard of it? It's the most famous sandwich in the world!" No we had not, but we were intrigued and willing to leave our hunger in his hands. He looked at my husband and said, "Beef for you and chicken for her." We shrugged and had a good laugh after he ran back into the kitchen. 

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Seattle & Alaska

We have just returned from a trip that was a long time coming.

Long story (very) short, my brother and I were reunited five years ago and although he has visited us in Los Angeles many time since then, we had yet to spend time with him in Anchorage, Alaska. Raising babies, crazy schedules, and work-related trips got in the way of us making our way to the 49th state. However, this year we committed to seeing it in all it's glory and spending time with family in their natural habitat.

You will know from my previous posts that we are huge baseball fans, so we decided to take advantage of the route from LA to Anchorage and spend Fourth of July weekend in Seattle to catch a Mariners game at Safeco Field.  We checked into our club level room at the Seattle Sheraton downtown and headed out in search of eats, making the wise choice to grub on pizza at MOD.  Staying in the heart of Seattle rocked because it was walking distance to all of the attractions we wanted to hit during our short stay.

Seattle's Gum Wall

Welcome to Ibiza

The island. The myth. The legend. 

Ibiza was one of my long-shot bucket list destinations. You know, one of those places you'd love to get to, but realistically, it probably won't happen. I remember opening up an issue of Travel + Leisure that featured a picture of the most amazing emerald body of water and if you squinted really hard, you could see a tiny person floating in the center.  I think I even snapped a pic and posted it to Instagram with a caption like, "I can only hope to go here one day."  To my surprise, the article made Ibiza seem charming and slow-paced.  It inspired this thirty-something to make Ibiza a reality despite the party reputation of the island.  

Don't get me wrong.  We love us some EDM and our absolute favorite cult film, It's All Gone Pete Tong, is all about a DJ in Ibiza.  However, I wanted a well-rounded trip that incorporated history, club life and plenty of beach and sea time. When I lined up a couple of presentations at yet another international conference in Porto, Portugal, Spain was the natural destination to tack on to the business trip. But as it worked out, I wasn't going to have enough time to give the mainland of Spain the attention it deserved.  Visiting the island of Ibiza would be a great add-on and the picture perfect place for me and my husband to celebrate our ten year anniversary.  

Because, let's face it, we aren't getting any younger.