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Encouraging women to evolve and create new opportunities at any age.

August Memories

 Kendra Brown

If I were making a calendar of the seasons of my life, the images of August would be from Tennessee.  
Its colors would be muted:  browning grass and leaves; dry stalks of plants that crackle in response to the wind; the lush full flowers of Summer gone, replaced by small Daisy-like flowers, fewer in number and smaller so that I always thought of them as brave survivors – determined to bloom in spite of the hot sun and little rain.  
We often compare the stages of our lives to seasons.  While I always enjoyed the exuberance, enrichment and newness of Spring, those brave August Daisies, determined to bloom in absence of many resources, brought me joy as well.  Surviving and thriving are important themes for all of us as we go through the seasons of our lives and I love the Pages’ discussion of this theme, as recorded in Eavesdropping’s chapter:  subtitled “Losses, Lessons and Liberation.”  It is also the theme of Dr. Daniel Gottlieb’s work, whose book I’m recommending.
 



Reaching for

Full Potential
 
By: Kendra Brown

 

I’ve been told I have “too many” books. Is that even possible? I admit I prefer fictional novels to self-help and psychology books after my long days at my private practice.  So, when I recommend a book about emotional health, you can be assured that it is: (1) on target, in my opinion and (2) easy to digest.
  
Someone gave me the book Learning from the Heart, written by psychologist and family therapist Daniel Gottlieb.  I can’t recall who gave it to me, and I regret that.  However, I want to proclaim it from the rooftops! His stories and vignettes are about gaining “deeper wisdom and understanding from the unexpected events in our lives.” (quoted from the book jacket). 
 
Gottlieb’s advice doesn’t come just from textbooks.  His life has provided lots of the material.  When he was 33, he was doing well personally and professionally. He was married with two daughters and serving as director of an outpatient program.  Then, he was involved in a traumatic automobile accident in which he almost died.  He woke up in the hospital to learn that he is a quadriplegic. 
 
The book is not sad however.  It’s about not giving up.  It is about persevering and stretching to one’s fullest potential, no matter the limitations.  He also encourages his readers to support those they love who are having difficulties, in healthy ways: not “enabling” them by taking on their responsibilities.  Thus, they are able to reach their full potential and enjoy the good feelings that result.
 
I think his vignettes are especially relevant for our  “continuing conversation” on the Eavesdropping website.  As we age, it’s only natural that it is harder to do some of the activities we enjoyed when we were younger. Sometimes, instead of adjusting to these difficulties and continuing, it is all too temping to give up. Dr. Gottlieb’s vignettes may be just the “medicine” we need to invigorate and strengthen our resolve to continue in spite of changes in our physical abilities and to make adjustments that accommodate our interests and empower our lives.
 
I bought ten copies of Learning from the Heart, planning to use the lessons as background material for group therapy. I’m so enthusiastic about the lessons Gottlieb tells so well and generously, that I have given away most of those copies.  I’ll be ordering more and giving some of those away too!  And I still plan to facilitate some groups around the material – probably in the fall of 2013.
 
 
Learning from the Heart was written by Daniel Gottlieb and published by Sterling Publishing Company, Inc. copyright 2008. 

Link to Dr. Daniel Gottlieb website: http://www.drdangottlieb.com/
Link to Amazon: Learning from the Heart
You know how some conversations between friends are to be kept secret?
 
Well, the conversations in our newsletter and on our website are not those!
 

Contributors and  eavesdroppers are welcome to join in!

If you like what you have read, please pass us on to others.

They don't have to purchase Eavesdropping book to join us in conversation.
 
We'd love to have their company.

Terry



What’s on Your Bookshelf?
         

Are you looking for a good book to read? 

Please send us titles and recommendations
from your bookshelves.  

This month's bookshelf recommendations from one of our readers, Kelly Turnbull:

I currently read memoirs and books about meditation - which, by the way, seems to be sticking with me because this has been the case for the last 6+ years.  If anyone is interested in recommendations for cooking, I also read many vegan and vegetarian cookbooks.

Meditation for the Love of It by Sally Kempton is a thought-provoking, experience rich book.  It is primarily geared to shake up the meditator's current practice and expand their horizons.  She has authored a beginner's book about meditation as well, for those who want to stick their toes into the waters of calming the fluctuations of the mind.  Kempton is an internationally recognized teacher.  She brings her unusual life experiences (life in an ashram and a monastery) to her novel. 

Memoirs- Ruth Reichl  Reichl, a former restaurant critic for the New York Times and Gourmet Magazine’s  last editor in chief, has authored many books, three of which are memoirs.  They are: Tender to the Bone,  Comfort Me with Apples, and Garlic and Sapphires.  The final memoir, For You, Mom, Finally is the paperback version of Garlic and Sapphires. Reichl's voice is energetic, approachable, and entertaining. 

Next up, maybe I'll try one of Barbara Kingsolver's non-fiction books recommended by Terry.  

Thanks for you contibution Kelly!

 

Continuing the conversation...
 
Preparing for the Storm…
A helpful hint from one of the Pages, Dr. Edie Donohue:
 
For Floridians or anyone who experiences power outages.  Buy a couple of solar powered outdoor lights.  When you bring one of those into the house it lights up the entire room. It does not look so bright outside, but in a room, it is amazing.  A hint from a Florida friend of mine: just leave those lights outside during the day to power them up and bring them in at dark.

Cheers, Edie

Quotes:
 
Edie also thought we might enjoy a quote from that wise and humorous man, Will Rogers: 
 
“If you find yourself in a hole, stop digging.” 

Sneak Peak at the
September Newsletter  
 
Many of you tell us you’re enjoying our newsletters.  Stay tuned!  I think you will find some real gems in the September issue. 
 
Following the inspiration of someone like Dr. Gottlieb can be frustrating.  How can one reach for full potential – metaphorically find your own “pot of gold” if the rainbow isn't in view, or if you seem to have suddenly gone color blind? 
 
In the September issue, you will find an exercise that may serve as a guide for you.  It’s titled “Remaining Relevant” and its theme emerged from an Eavesdropping chapter, Remaining Relevant and Solvent.

For now, check out this recent Wall Street Journal article by Brett Arends which addresses five issues we should take into account as we plan to remain solvent.  Link to WSJ article.

Events:
 
Dr. Kendra Brown will be continuing the conversation live with groups in Chicagoland and New Mexico this fall.   Look for more detail in the September Newsletter and check for updates on the website too!
Join the conversation….

Your thoughts and comments are welcomed- send your emails to: info@kendrabrownphd.com

Copyright © 2013 Kendra Brown, Ph.D, All rights reserved.


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