"Life is measured by the rapidity of change, the succession of influences that modify the being.” -George Elliot
The last word. The final chapter. The end of an era. So it has come. After nearly seven and one-half years and 295 column articles, Dr. Green’s column is being retired. “Cycled out”, to quote a Senior Editor. Despite the fact that, according to Journal personnel, the column has provided solid information, it is necessary to discontinue this offering in order to keep the paper “fresh.” Ahh, “freshness.” When I was a child, anything that could fit was stored in our refrigerator. According ot my mother, it ensured freshness. Maybe I should have placed the articles in there after writing them! Nevertheless, this will be the final installment. And don’t look for me on late-night channel 11. There will be no reruns.
Seven and one-half years was a long time. And it was my great privilege to have been able to share insights with my readers in a variety of interesting ways. The articles covered a host of interesting topics that may conveniently be grouped by type: (a) Serious psychological limitations such as, stress and weight management, depression, love, guilt, alcohol and co-dependence, sexual problems, grieving death, pet loss, panic disorders, attention deficit disorder (ADD), parenting skills, communication in general, with children and with adult relatives; chronic fatigue syndrome (CFIDS) and seasonal affective disorder, to name a few. (b) Psychophysiological disorders such as, high blood pressure, Raynaud’s Disease, migraine headaches, and stress in relation to heart disease and cancer. (c) Strategies for improvement including, biofeedback, neurofeedback, and behavior modification applied to a variety of situations. (d) Holiday features in which holiday-related stressors and their impact were examined and suggestions made for improvement. (e) “Cameo” topics in which salient points were made through articles written from the lighter side. For example, “The truth about consequences,” “How to make love stay”, “The art of failing as a pessimist”, “Taking a licking” (when postage was increased) and “How to cultivate stress at 35,000 feet!”
Although this represents only a partial list of ideas and concerns that were the subject of this column, there were a few powerful suggestions running through most of the articles:

  • When something you are doing is not working, stop immediately! Then

do something else. Too often, people continually engage the same
useless strategy hoping for a different outcome.

  • Upon facing a limitation in some context of your life—education, parenting, socializing, find a positive, resourceful behavior from any other situation that can be transferred to the one containing the limitation. For example, if you are having difficulty interviewing successfully for a job, rather than seeking comfort in others with the same problem, consider aspects of your life in which you have been remarkably successful; or seek out others who have mastered the skill called, “interviewing.”
  • Develop choices in your behavior. Flexibility increases the likelihood of producing desired outcomes. Become proactive—take charge of your rsponses rather than “surrendering” to circumstances. Remember, in life there are no mistakes—only outcomes! The more choices of behavior available to you, the better your chances of selecting one that will produce a useful outcome.

Due to the decision to discontinue this column, there are several topics that, unfortunately, will not receive expression. but are nevertheless of paramount importance as timely issues. As the column will likely be offered elsewhere, you might wish to investigate newspapers in Putnam and Westchester counties. A last word about some of these timely issues is warranted.
There are several trends emerging in our society, presently. Preventive health care is one. How many of you knew what your cholesterol was ten years ago? What about now? People are looking to prevent the onset of serious disease both through diet and exercise. There is a wealth of information on how to get in front of this trend, as it concerns your health, finances and time freedom that I can provide by contacting my office or e-mailing me. An article was due to be released concerning mental health and “managed care”. Other titles included: “Hungry for health? Eating habits to strengthen your immune system”, “Keep your eye on the ball. Using ‘focus’ to achieve goals”, “The work-at-home mom”, “Mastering the emotional balancing act through the home-based business craze”, and “Making time…in less time.”
It has been my distinct pleasure to have been able to share with you, the readership of Dutchess County and beyond, thoughts and ideas that could improve your lives. I wish to express my sincere gratitude to the staff of the Poughkeepsie Journal for affording me the opportunity to do these past many years. And so now, I wish each and every one of you health, happiness and the last word: “Think positive…for a change!”