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It's Not Always Depression

Listen to the Body. Discover Core Emotions.

Connect to Your Authentic Self.

From Random House, on sale now. Order here!
2018 Best Book Award Winner 
Dear Reader,
Welcome! My goal is to educate people on the benefits of understanding what emotions really are and how they affect our mind, brain and body--which they do!
We live in a culture that values thoughts and logic over emotions. But science has proven it is not healthy to tune out our emotions and we do not have to choose between our thoughts and our emotions. We can become aware of both and understand how thoughts and emotions work together to help us feel better or feel worse depending on how we work with them.
Emotions are very unique in their potential to cause traumatic stress and everyday distress. But what most people do not know, because we were never taught this in school, is that emotions are the doorway to healing our anxieties, depression, low self-esteem, and other mental health symptoms. Working with our emotions in very specific ways, which is what the Change Triangle tool for emotional health is all about, helps us manage daily life with more ease and helps us meet the challenges of our relationships.
Please feel free to use this site as a resource. My articles, blog, a brief explanation of The Change Triangle tool for emotional health, videos, classes, curricula, Train the Trainer Workshop, and the book, It's Not Always Depression, are resources to help you and others learn what are emotions and how to work with them to feel better. In all my work, I try to use simple, jargon-free language with stories and little "experiments" to help bring the concepts to life. Thank you for visiting.


Upcoming Classes & Workshops

November 18, 2024 10 AM to 2 PM ET

Train the Trainer Workshop

(Tuition includes the Emotions Education 101 Turnkey Curriculum)

Want us to train your organization to run these classes? Visit the Train the Trainer webpage here to learn more. This workshop is led by Heather Sanford, CSW & Hilary Jacobs Hendel, LCSW. For questions, contact Heather Sanford at or Hilary Jacobs Hendel at

September 4th to October 23rd, 2024

Emotions Education 101 8-week Class

Early bird pricing through 7/1/24

Want to enhance your emotional literacy and wellbeing? Visit the EE 101 class webpage here to learn more and register. For questions, contact Heather Sanford at

November 2-3, 2024

Emotions Education 101 Weekend Class

Early bird pricing through 7/1/24

Want to enhance your emotional literacy and wellbeing? Visit the EE 101 class webpage here to learn more and register. This class is lead by AEDP therapist Heather Sanford, LCSW, co-developer of the EE 101 class and curriculum. For questions, contact Heather Sanford at

EE 101 Turnkey Curriculum

Want to purchase the Emotions Education 101 Turnkey Curriculum? Visit here to learn more. For questions, contact Heather Sanford at or Hilary Jacobs Hendel at

Join my email list or check back soon for more learning opportunities

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Click here to order: It's Not Always Depression.

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To read my new NPR opinion piece, Feeling Ragey? Don't Bury Your Anger, Process It. Here's How. Click here.

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To read my TIME opinion piece, Anxiety Feels Terrible, But it Has an Upside. Here's How to Make it Work in Your Favor click here.

To read my New York Times opinion piece, "It's Not Always Depression, Sometimes It's Shame," click here.

To read my New York Times opinion piece, "The Healing Power of Hugs" click here.

Watch a full presentation on the Change Triangle. Learn a tool to prevent, ease, and heal anxiety and depression. Connect with your authentic self with more regularity. 

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Please enjoy this interview where I demystify emotions so they can be used for health and wellbeing. I discuss core emotions such as sadness, anger, fear, disgust and how we can educate ourselves about emotions to improve quality of life. Learn what you need to know to help you thrive. Enjoy! Watch here.

It’s so hard to feel feelings—especially when you have all of them all at once, and it’s never a convenient time to process them. For the past year, we’ve all been stewing with anxiety, stress, anger, loneliness, grief, and fear. Ignoring our hard feelings might seem like the easiest way to cope and get relief—but it’s not the only option available to us. Psychoanalyst and therapist Hilary Jacobs Hendel, reminds us that when we disconnect from our harder emotions, we disconnect from the life-giving ones too, like joy—and don’t we all need more of that right now? Instead of shutting down, Hilary shows us how we can walk ourselves toward reconnection and healing, which gives us real resilience—not the kind that we *think* we have by stuffing down our feelings. Click here to listen.

"Mark Groves from Create the Love and the Mark Groves Podcast writes, “Every single human has surely suffered with feeling invalidated for their emotions. Many of us have never really learned the true anatomy of our emotions. Hilary walks us through the model she uses that allows people to experience — often for the first time in their lives — how to fully feel a feeling, and the freedom that this experience offers us.” Click here to listen.

Listen to Esther Perel and me discuss how a basic education in emotions helps our relationships thrive and grow deeper. Click here to watch.

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Listen to an interview that will help you understand and work with your emotions, and teach you a path to vitality, resilience and authentic living. From on the award-winning podcast, "The One You Feed,"  Click here.

To read my opinion piece, "Ignoring Your Emotions Is Bad for Your Health. Here's What to Do About It" click here.

To read my opinion piece, "What toxic stress does to a child’s brain — and how to heal it" click here.

To check out the Q & A on Learning to Identify—and Release—Your Core Emotions called, click here.

To read my piece on shame and perfectionism called, "How Rewiring My Brain Saved My Relationship" click here.

"There can be no positive change without first understanding each other to find common ground." To read my FOX news piece on using positive communication to find common ground, click here.

To read about my experience as Mental Health Consultant for Matt Weiner's Emmy Award winning series on AMC, Mad Men, click here.

I was at the iconic Strand Bookstore to kick off the launch of It's Not Always Depression, my new book sharing the goldmine of emotion education I learned in my trauma and emotion-centered psychotherapy training so it can help all people who want to feel better. Watch it here on YouTube. 

Karen Hunter and I discussed "wallowing in grief" on the Karen Hunter Show on SiriusXM Urban View, click here.

Who Am I? 


I am someone with a passion for helping people become their best selves. Permission to be your true self, flaws and all, and relate to others from a center of authenticity just feels better and leads to all sorts of good things: connection, compassion, calm, creativity, courage and confidence.


I help people understand how emotions work so they can develop the courage to get acquainted or re-acquainted with their feelings. Experiencing core emotions like anger, sadness, fear, joy and excitement is the key to recovering a more vital and engaged self.


I grew up in New York City in a culture of "mind over matter." I thought I had total control over what I felt. It turns out I was wrong and I learned first hand by becoming depressed when I ignored my stress for too long. Click here to read more...

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