I love reading, and I’ve found some of the books below not only help in demystifying therapy and the field as a whole, but also offer insight regarding the human condition.
- Man’s Search for Meaning – Viktor E. Frankl: This is my all-time favorite book related to psychology/existentialism. It tells the story of a man thrown into a concentration camp, his grappling with suffering, and ultimately, reflections on freedom found in the midst of pain. Don’t be surprised if I recommend this book to you.
- The Body Keeps the Score – Bessel Van Der Kolk, M.D.: This is a fantastic book on trauma, its effects on our physiology/neurobiology, and suggestions for healing. This is the most comprehensive book on trauma I have read.
- Maybe You Should Talk to Someone – Lori Gottlieb: This is a comedic, touching book on the process of therapy–according to a therapist! In addition to being entertaining, it offers a clear look at what the process entails and reminds us that everyone–even therapists–need help sometimes.
- My Lovely Wife in the Psych Ward – Mark Lukach: This memoir would be a great resource for the family and loved ones of those suffering from severe and persistent mental illness, as it touches on the secondary effects experienced by caregivers and provides insight regarding the hospitalization process.
- An Unquiet Mind – Kay Redfield Jamison: This is a fantastic, beautifully written work from the perspective of a woman with bipolar disorder. I would recommend this for those with the disorder, as well as surrounding friends/family.
- The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work – John Gottman, PhD: This is a practical read for any couple wanting to understand what leads to a successful marriage, the most devastating factors to a marriage, and how to improve patterns of communication and behavior.