Can a Book or Coaching Help You Find Meaning?
Below is an excerpt from my #1 bestselling book Making Meaning: Counseling Psychology & Buddhist Practices to Create & Live the Life You Want, which you can get buy here https://www.amazon.com/Making-Meaning-Counseling-Psychology-Practices/dp/B09HFXS491 or read for free with Kindle Unlimited.
In a sense, this is a good summary of the theoretical approach I use when I help clients create long-lasting positive changes in their lives and careers.
For centuries, people have sought the “meaning of life.” Each of you reading this now is on a search for defining and a re-evaluating for meaning in your own lives, consciously or sub-consciously. We seek purpose; we seek peaceful and joyful outcomes to our actions. As a practicing therapist and coach, I see many people whose lives are unquestionably changed for the better, once they clarify the purpose and meaning for their life and start consistently taking action to manifest it into reality.
For centuries, philosophers around the world have studied the concept of “meaning,” both in the East and West. In recent history, psychologists have also taken up the topic, and in the realm of counseling, there are numerous therapeutic approaches that help individuals to create the lives they want, freeing themselves from psychological setbacks. But still, there remain gaps between theory and practice.
This book explores a few of the methods that evolved over time, such as philosophy, psychotherapy, Buddhism, and coaching, to explore the methods by which people create and maintain meaning in their lives.
As a coach, psychotherapist and a counselor educator, trained in numerous therapeutic approaches, I continue to seek the answer to the question: How does someone – myself, my clients, my loved ones – go about finding and distilling the meaning in their life? What drives us to take action in the world, and what prevents us from experiencing joy and satisfaction?
The answer I have come to, from my own experience and from the work that led to this book, is similar to Victor Frankl’s, the author of Men’s Search for Meaning: it is not that people need to find meaning in their lives, but that they must create the meaning in their life, and this creation must arise from their commonplace, day-to-day actions, which weave together to form the psychological story each person tells about themselves and their lives.
In my unique practice and experience, I have been fortunate enough to see how the benefits of Buddhism, Western philosophy, and the tenets of psychotherapy combine to enhance people’s success on their journey. The process of disassembling the old stories about ourselves, clearing our mind by engaging in practical mindfulness techniques and expanding awareness beyond the world of thoughts into the world of emotions and physical sensations, and re-creating our own narratives more in alignment with our true goals is one of the most frightening, challenging, and rewarding undertakings for anyone.
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