It matters that people have a way to use the latest findings in psychology beyond buying a pill for depression. It matters that people have a way of looking at their lives that lets them ask the big questions and determine how they want to live – and that this is supported by therapists and mental health professionals.

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Posts tagged with the category 21st century life

Edmund Leighton's 1919 "Sweet Solitude."
Isolation vs. Relation As I began to make conscious efforts to be more present with myself and how I live my life, my heightened sense of self-awareness also led to the increased awareness of my sense of aloneness—the life anxiety that Otto Rank (cited in Yalom, 2008) warned us about. In coming to the Bay Area, I experienced first-hand,...
One of the dictates of our day is to “do your best.” We encourage children, students, athletes, and employees to do their best. We console ourselves after a loss that we “did our best.” While “doing your best” can often be honorable and true, there are many times that doing our best is not enough, and as Winston...
I am willing to admit that I live in a “bubble”—a liberal bubble. I live in an East Coast city and agree with most progressive political and social positions. Most of the people I associate with share similar views and opinions. It takes concentrated effort, therefore, to understand views diametrically opposed to my own. One...
As I immerse myself in “the work” and struggle to seek a new way of experiencing and being, I was able to appreciate the meaning of the four important paradoxical concepts of our human existence Irvin Yalom described in his book Existential Psychology (1980) from a whole new perspective. Freedom vs. Responsibility I flew many miles...
All Saints' Day, Belgium. Photo by Wouter Hagens.
Part of my faith practice involves the celebration of All Saints Day on November 1. It is a day set aside to remember those people of faith who have died in the past year. This remembrance is a reminder of what the writer to the Hebrews called, “this great cloud of witnesses.” This great cloud of witnesses is all those people of faith...
Thomas Jefferson, by Charles Wilson Peale.
Our education system is currently in crisis. It is no secret that American children are at best average when compared to children from other countries (see, e.g., this Huffington Post article), and our adults fare very poorly on tests of math, science, history, and general knowledge. This has serious implications for our democracy. Thomas...
Jello Biafra. Photo by Catherine Andersen.
“Last call for alcohol; last call for free speech; drink up; happy hour is now enforced by law.” --"We’ve Got A Bigger Problem Now" On a drive home from a recent family reunion, my daughter and I popped in the Dead Kennedys' (1980) Fresh Fruit for Rotting Vegetables. It’s an album that for me marks an...
Photo by David Yu.
[Editor's Note: I am honored and delighted to be able to write this brief introduction to a series of blogs written by a courageous Malaysian student and her journey into her own existence. The person that I'd like to introduce to you is JoAnn Loo who I met during one of my workshops in Malaysia. Prior to our meeting, Joann had already...
Statue of Maitreya Buddha. Photo by Payal Vora.
Recently I returned from a trip to China where I was asked to speak at a conference entitled “Buddha from the Heart: Humanistic Psychology Maitreya Culture.” Maitreya Buddhism is a lesser-known school of Buddhist thought originating in China, particularly connected with Maitreya Buddha (i.e., future Buddha). The focus of the conference...
Berlinghieri's St. Francis of Assisi (1235).
“What was your experience of taking Ritalin like?” She shot back a look, somewhat surprised, almost shocked at my question. It seemed she found it incredulous that anyone would ask for HER account of her experience. And why not? Having been diagnosed multiple times by different people in different institutions, she was not unfamiliar...
Florida State Seminoles helmet and ball.
For nearly two decades of my professional life, I worked with junior and senior high school age youth. Of all the different duties related to this work, my favorite task was training peer counselors. The individuals chosen to be peer counselors were kids passionate about helping others. They took their training seriously and worked diligently to...
“The eyes are the window to your soul.” Variations of this quote have been attributed to Shakespeare, Cicero, and Matthew in the New Testament. But no matter who said it first, this quote has found its way into common parlance, and has almost become a cliché, at least as far as barroom pick-up lines are concerned. But we...