This podcast is about using Reason to pursue the Good Life in this complicated world. We all want to be happy and don’t wish to suffer. However, this is often a formidable challenge! In recent decades, America, as well as many other parts of the world, have become increasingly polarized. Each side comes to view the “other” as an enemy to be vanquished. Yet, on some level, we all know that this is not the way. As a wise man once said, “A house divided against itself cannot stand.” The level of polarization makes it difficult to tackle other societal problems effectively, including COVID-19, climate change, poverty, racism, and pollution. The good news is that we human beings are adaptive and resilient. We can leverage these qualities and the powers of reason to learn, grow, and improve as individuals. As we are all members of society, as we make such individual improvements, we improve society as well. We all want a better world that is conducive to greater happiness and life satisfaction, yet the change must start with us. I hope you join me on this journey in the pursuit of greater understanding, growth, and life satisfaction.
How Can We Reduce Gun Violence in America?
After the tragic mass shooting deaths of 19 elementary school kids and two teachers in Uvalde, Texas on May 24, 2022, America is, once again, doing some soul searching. We have had over 200 mass shootings thus far in 2022, and there's no end in sight. America is too great of a country to do nothing about gun violence. While there are no simple answers, we can do more than thoughts and prayers. The key to growth, change, and improvement rests in our ability to be flexible, reasonable, and skillful as we approach this complicated problem with open minds.
Zen Buddhism, Psychotherapy, and Living Skillfully
In this episode of The Reasonably Good Life, I interview licensed psychologist and ordained Zen Buddhist priest Dr. David Zuniga. Dr. Zuniga's a good friend of mine, and we've have many wonderful conversations in the past, so I thought it would be fun to interview him for the podcast. We cover Buddhism's influence on modern psychotherapy, human nature and interconnectedness, why we suffer, the myth of the self, and mindfulness and its connection to psychotherapy and well-being.
Navigating the Challenges of Psychotherapy (interview by Karly Fritsch)
In this episode, I am interviewed by Karly Fritsch, who is in a master's program at St. Bonaventure University in New York - on her way to becoming a licensed professional counselor. We discuss a range of topics such as some of the challenges of being a therapist, treatment efficacy of different therapy models, ethical problems that therapists face, serving clients who have diverse needs and backgrounds, and getting feedback from clients on treatment progress. It was a lively and enjoyable discussion, and I hope you listeners enjoy it!
Life as a Psychologist (interview by Emma Lian)
In this episode, I was interviewed by Emma Lian, who is a junior at Westlake High School in Austin, Texas. She is a smart and studious young woman who reached out to me on her own accord to ask me some questions about the practice of psychology because she interested in career options in this field. We both thought it would be fun and interesting to record the conversation for The Reasonably Good Life podcast, so we did so! We had a great time discussing a range of topics including the differences between psychiatry and psychology, what it's like to be a psychologist/therapist, the increase in mental health issues among young people, mental health problems on a societal level, what helps people achieve greater life satisfaction, medication vs. psychotherapy to treat mental health issues, and general advice for young people to help increase happiness and well-being.
Are Screens Bad for Young People? (Part 2)
Are screens as bad for young people as we fear? This is the second part of my interview with Dr. Christopher J. Ferguson, a psychology professor at Stetson University, and one of the world's leading researchers on the effects that screens are having on young people. While there are definitely some legitimate concerns about screens and some reasonable limits are in order, we also need to keep in mind that the best research available does not support the scary headlines that screens are causing the vast majority of kids to spiral into depression, anxiety, screen addiction, aggression, and self-harm.
Are Screens Bad for Young People?
Are screens as bad for young people as we fear? We cover all of the important topics in this episode of The Reasonably Good Life (so much so that I had to break this into two episodes). In this episode, I interview Dr. Christopher J. Ferguson. Chris is a psychology professor at Stetson University, and one of the world's leading researchers on the effects that screens are having on young people. Chris has been researching and publishing papers on this topic for about two decades. Chris and I have been cyber colleagues/friends for several years now, but this is our first meeting in cyberspace! We had a fun, lively, and in-depth conversation, and we don't leave a stone unturned on this important and timely topic. Part 2 of this interview will be posted next week - enjoy!