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Only Human with Joan Axelrod-Contrada: To journal or not to journal: Advice for when journaling feels like it’s holding you back
04-12-2024 8:43 AM

By JOAN AXELROD-CONTRADA

Anyone who’s ever kept a journal can relate to the song “Dear Diary” by the Moody Blues.The tune came out in 1969 at the height of my adolescent angst. I poured my misery into a pocket-sized pink diary with a lock to keep away prying eyes. Like the...

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Only Human with Joan Axelrod-Contrada: Laugh more, stress less: How humor can help us through our most painful times
07-11-2024 1:23 PM

By JOAN AXELROD-CONTRADA

Songs that combine a good metaphor with a bouncy beat rocket me into my word-nerd, ear-worm stratosphere. “Everyday I Write the Book” by Elvis Costello tops my list.How cool to think of our lives as books that we’re writing! Costello frames the song...


Only Human with Joan Axelrod-Contrada: Marching to a ‘Different Drum’: Is Living Apart Together the future of relationships?
06-20-2024 2:39 PM

By JOAN AXELROD-CONTRADA

Linda Ronstadt’s 1967 song “Different Drum” came out during a time of changing gender roles in our country.While the commitment-phobic Peter Pan had long garnered praise as a ladies’ man, the woman who bucked expectations of domesticity got saddled...


Only Human with Joan Axelrod-Contrada: Dating across the aisle: Can we see past politics in our relationships?
05-09-2024 12:57 PM

By JOAN AXELROD-CONTRADA

Every time I hear “One Tribe” by the Black Eyed Peas my idealistic and dance-happy sides unite in sonic bliss.I picture everyone coming together in some magic club beaming the feel-good vibes of the boundary-busting band, washing away all our...


Only Human with Joan Axelrod-Contrada: I want to ‘Paint it Black’: A rock ’n’ roll anthem provides validation through tough times
03-07-2024 1:07 PM

By JOAN AXELROD-CONTRADA

I heard the song “Paint It Black” by the Rolling Stones on the radio early in my late husband Fred’s illness.Never before had I listened to the lyrics carefully enough to know they were about grief. I’d always taken it as a song about generalized...


Only Human with Joan Axelrod-Contrada: ‘Money, it’s a gas’: Exploring both sides of the coin when costly bills surprise us
02-08-2024 1:34 PM

By JOAN AXELROD-CONTRADA

Every time I hear the classic song “Money” by Pink Floyd, I think about my complicated relationship with the almighty dollar.Who hasn’t felt pushed and pulled between the seductive power of our currency and its ability to crush us? Not surprisingly,...


Only Human with Joan Axelrod-Contrada: Welcome to the ‘Magical Land of We’
02-09-2023 3:49 PM

By JOAN AXELROD-CONTRADA

Relationships are like Venn diagrams.We all start with a circle of our own, which I call Myself. Then another sphere comes into our orbit as Yourself. Together, we create a special area of overlap: the Magical Land of We.Every relationship develops...

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