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Category: Health & Fitness

Learn about mental health and anxiety through books and laughs! Every month, we interview an author and bring you that conversation!

September 1, 2021

Episode 24 - Peace From Anxiety

Is managing our anxiety all about meditating on a cushion? Exercising? Sleeping well? Having our needs met? Hanging out with loved ones? Being supported by our community? Living a life of purpose and meaning? According to this month's author, Hala Khouri, it involves bits and pieces of all those things. Listen here for a discussion about the many elements that can help us heal from anxiety and emotional disregulation, and about the mythology of trying to heal all on our own.

Resources mentioned in the show:

Hala's Website

Peace From Anxiety

Lost Connections

The upside of stress

The Book of Joy

August 10, 2021

Episode 23 - Say What You Mean

In Episode 23, we explore the practice of non violent communication -- a way of speaking that can help foster understanding, reduce confusion and help us get our needs met. Plus, mindfulness. Our guest, Oren Jay Sofer, is a veteran meditator and instructor, author and creator of mindfulness content for popular apps such as 10% Happier.




June 30, 2021

Episode 22 - Bringing Compassion to Our Anxiety

In this episode, I speak with Dr. Dennis Tirch, a compassion focused clinical therapist and all around mensch, who has managed to bring an enormous amount of kindness and caring attention to the world of anxiety treatment and exposure and response prevention. Through years of clinical practice, he manages to marry eastern and western psychology to treat patients in a way that focuses on helping them activate their in-born compassion systems. This episode is an absolute gem; please listen and share! 

Song at the end, "Mushroom Princess Dance Master", credit to Dr. Tirch.


Tirch Keynote on Compassion at IOCDF

Compassion for Voices Video

Tirch Home

The book! Compassionate Mind Guide

May 26, 2021

Episode 21 - Acronyms That Soothe Minds

Welcome to Episode 21! In this episode, we explore three different acronyms and practices, DARE, DEAF, and RAIN, which can really help upset minds during a difficult experience. Warning: this is a very practical episode!

April 24, 2021

Episode 20 - Who was William James?

In this episode, my guest Dr. John Shook helps us get acquainted with one of the leading figures in psychology and philosophy in the 20th century, William James. We talk about emotions, the brain and pragmatism. 

You can find Dr. Shook on Youtube by searching for "John Shook Humanism" or contact him via email at jshook@pragmatism.org. The book can be found on Amazon, here.

March 26, 2021

Episode 19 - Good Morning, I Love You


Apparently, compassion and self-compassion are important parts of a mindful way of living. It's not just your attention that counts, but the quality of that attention. Is your focus like a deadly sniper? Or a loving teddy bear? Some strange combination of both?


In this episode, Shauna Shapiro, PhD helps us understand how the two are connected, and how she was able to cultivate both in her own life. We discuss the effects of mindfulness on physical and emotional pain, what it means to be "intentional", and how to get started with mindfulness and self-compassion with a very simple, morning practice.


Find the book here, or more about Shauna at her website or Instragram.


February 21, 2021

Episode 18 - Needing To Know For Sure

Do you have a sticky mind? Like the floor of a movie theatre? Like your sourdough ball before it has time to rise? In this episode of the Anxiety Book Club, we have a conversation with Dr. Sally Winston, where we dive deeply into issues of reassurance seeking and compulsive checking, both difficult symptoms of an anxious or obsessive mind.

Specifically, we talk about the treatment of OCD -- specifically in those who seek reassurance in unproductive ways, and who suffer as a result of not being certain about life's challenges and opportunities.

Dr. Winston has been working with sticky minds for over 40 years, and REALLY knows what she is talking about. The book is great, and so was our conversation. Enjoy!





February 1, 2021

Episode 17 - Why Buddhism is True

Are our feelings true? Are they reliable? Does honoring them lead us to pleasure or pain? Or is it more complicated than that? In this episode of the Anxiety Book Club, I am joined by fan of the podcast and longtime friend Nigel Tu, to discuss Robert Wright's incredible Why Buddhism is True, a candid and scientifically compelling account of the psychological mechanisms and benefits of following the mindful path. I REALLY like this book, and I'm not sure the episode truly does it justice, so I encourage you to go out and read it yourself!

Check out the book here

December 16, 2020

Episode 16 - The Problem with Perfect

Are your standards “high beyond reach or reason”? Well, you may be suffering from perfectionism. In some areas of my life, I have paid an enormous cost because of my inability to see what is plainly good enough. I hope that in today’s conversation with Dr. Martin Antony about his book, When Perfect Isn’t Good Enough, you will find some entertainment and perhaps also something helpful if you struggle with this affliction.

Antony's newest book.

November 15, 2020

The Curse of the Self with Dr. Mark Leary

Ever wondered what makes us uniquely human, and why it sucks so much? Dr. Mark Leary, professor emeritus of psychology from Duke University, explains the evolutionary history of human being's ability to worry, regret and generally understand themselves in the third person.

The Book

Mark at Duke

Mark's Blog at Psychology Today

Character & Context Magazine