The Meaningful Life with Andrew G. Marshall
David Kessler: Finding Meaning: The Sixth Stage of Grief

David Kessler: Finding Meaning: The Sixth Stage of Grief

May 16, 2022

David Kessler is one of the world’s best-known experts on grief, yet nothing could prepare him for the loss of his beloved son at the age of 21. Just as he’d advised his clients for decades, David attended grief groups, saw a therapist and sat with his pain. 

In this episode, Andrew and David discuss how society wants us to grieve versus the reality of loss. We will likely never “get over” the loss of someone close to us, nor will we learn life lessons that somehow compensate us for our pain. It is possible, though, to locate meaning in how we survive and experience loss.

Andrew and David also explore Elisabeth Kübler-Ross’s famous and now much contested “five stages of grief” (denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance) and discuss how useful they are in today’s landscape.

David Kessler’s new book is Finding Meaning:The Sixth Stage of Grief. His previous books have been praised by Saint (Mother) Theresa, and Elisabeth Kübler-Ross. He has co-authored two books with Louise Hay and Elisabeth Kübler-Ross. David also creates online communities who take courses together to learn more about the process of grieving.

 

Follow Up

Read Andrew’s new Substack newsletter and join the community there.

Join David Kessler’s online healing group, Healing the Five Areas of Grief.

Visit David Kessler’s website to explore resources including videos, webinars, books and training courses.

Follow David Kessler on Twitter and Instagram @IamDavidKessler and on Facebook @DavidKessler.  

Read Andrew’s book on grieving the loss of his partner My Mourning Year

You may also wish to listen to Andrew’s interview with palliative care physician and author Dr Kathryn Mannix, What You’ve Been Told About Death Might Be Wrong.

Andrew offers regular advice on love, marriage and finding meaning in your life via his social channels. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube @andrewgmarshall 

Join our Supporters Club to access exclusive behind-the-scenes content, fan requests and the chance to ask Andrew your own questions. Membership starts at just £4.50

 

Dr. Stephan Poulter: Shame: How to Break Out and Start Living

Dr. Stephan Poulter: Shame: How to Break Out and Start Living

May 9, 2022

Shame is one of the emotions we find hardest to talk about. It can feel paralysing, and is linked to despair, imposter syndrome, fear and the sense of an impending doom. 

This week’s guest, psychologist and author Dr Stephan Poulter, is the author of Shame Factor: Heal Your Deepest Fears and Set Yourself Free.  Andrew and Dr Poulter discuss how shame makes us feel - paralysed, unclean, not good enough, defective - and how we can reduce its impact on our lives.

As Dr Poulter states, “the best analogy is this gold brick inside you. Shame covers it with mud. Our work is to hose off the mud, and find the gold brick”.

Dr. Stephan B. Poulter, Ph.D is a psychologist, author and public speaker  working in Los Angeles. He is also a theological seminary graduate and a former police officer. Dr Poulter has worked with hundreds of individuals, couples and families, and regularly speaks on parenting, adolescent and spiritual/psychological issues. 

 

Follow Up

Read Andrew’s new Substack newsletter and join the community there

Buy Dr Stephan Poulter’s books, including Shame Factor: Heal Your Deepest Fears and Set Yourself Free, The Art of Successful Failure and The Father Factor.

Follow Dr Stephan Poulter on Twitter @StephanPoulter and on Facebook @DrStephanPoulter-PsychotherapistandAuthor  

Read Andrew’s blog on how keeping a journal can help you manage difficult emotions: Top Twelve Benefits of Journaling

Fear is a close companion to shame. You may also enjoy Andrew’s interview with Thom Rutledge on Embracing Fear in Four Steps

Join our Supporters Club to access exclusive behind-the-scenes content, fan requests and the chance to ask Andrew your own questions. Membership starts at just £4.50.

Andrew offers regular advice on love, marriage and finding meaning in your life via his social channels. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube @andrewgmarshall 

 

Daisy Turnbull: How to Talk to Teenagers

Daisy Turnbull: How to Talk to Teenagers

May 2, 2022

Teenagers have a big reputation for being hard to talk to. How can you find that spark of connection with your teen? Is there a way to set up a channel of communication so that you can help them through the rough patches?

In this episode Andrew talks to Australian teacher and author Daisy Turnbull about her new book, 50 Questions to Ask Your Teens.

Daisy shares insights from her work as a teacher, as well as from her own teenage years growing up in a household where both parents had high-profile and demanding careers.

Building a habit of positive communication with teenagers is possible, according to Daisy. Strategies include:

⚡️Asking “what do you think about that?”, and “tell me more?”.

⚡️Having some family rituals, such as a gratitude practice around the dinner table. 

⚡️Choosing your moment: car-trips are perfect as they don’t require direct eye contact and are timebound.

Andrew and Daisy also discuss the impact of social media on teens, building kids' independence and confidence, managing your career around your family and sharing parenting responsibilities.

Daisy Turnbull is an author, teacher, mother and Lifeline volunteer who lives in Sydney, Australia.

Follow Up

Read Andrew’s new Substack newsletter and join the community there.

Read Daisy Turnbull’s books 50 Questions to Ask Your Teens and 50 Risks to Take With Your Kids.

Follow Daisy Turnbull on Twitter @ms_dzt

Join our Supporters Club to access exclusive behind-the-scenes content, fan requests and the chance to ask Andrew your own questions. Membership starts at just £4.50.

Read Andrew’s book on building a stronger relationship as parents: I Love You But You Always Put Me Last: How to Child-Proof Your Marriage

Listen to some of our other parenting episodes:

Andrew offers regular advice on love, marriage and finding meaning in your life via his social channels. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube @andrewgmarshall 

 

Dr. Connie Zweig: From Role to Soul: How to Become an Elder Rather than Just Old

Dr. Connie Zweig: From Role to Soul: How to Become an Elder Rather than Just Old

April 25, 2022

Finding meaning and fulfillment in the second half of life requires us to make a conscious transition. We must explore “the unconscious denial and resistance that erupts around key thresholds of later life” if we are to be happy as elders. 

In this episode, psychotherapist and author Connie Zweig, PhD talks with Andrew about how to become an elder who is filled with purpose and vitality. She explains the concept of “shadow-work”, and how it can help you:

⚡️Repair the past and be fully present

⚡️Accept yourself as you are

⚡️Rediscover the creativity you may have lost along the way.

⚡️Move “from role to soul”.

Connie Zweig, Ph.D., is a retired psychotherapist, writer, and Climate Reality Leader. Known as the Shadow Expert, she has written several books about shadow-work, as well as her newest best-seller on aging as a spiritual practice, The Inner Work of Age: Shifting from Role to Soul. The Inner Work of Age won both the 2021 American Book Fest Award and the 2021 Best Indie Book Award for best inspirational non-fiction. 

Connie has been doing contemplative practices for more than 50 years, and is a wife, stepmother and grandmother. After all these roles, she’s practicing the shift from role to soul.

 

Follow Up

Join our Supporters Club to access exclusive behind-the-scenes content, fan requests and the chance to ask Andrew your own questions. Membership starts at just £4.50.

If you're interested in joining one of Dr Connie Zweig's groups, you can email her at conniezweig@gmail.com 

Buy The Inner Work of Age: Shifting from Role to Soul.

Take a look at Dr Connie Zweig’s other books 

Visit Dr Connie Zweig’s website 

Follow Dr Connie Zweig on Twitter @InnerWorkofAge and on Facebook at @Dr.ConnieZweig.

Get Andrew’s advice on creating real change in your life and relationships in his book Wake Up and Change Your Life: How to Survive a Crisis and Be Stronger, Wiser and Happier

Read Andrew’s blog “How To Avoid the Silver Divorce”

Andrew offers regular advice on love, marriage and finding meaning in your life via his social channels. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube @andrewgmarshall 

Alan Lessik: How to Deal with Change: The Backward Step

Alan Lessik: How to Deal with Change: The Backward Step

April 18, 2022

Everything is always changing, and nothing is ever the same. If we think about it, we all know that. But we tend to live differently, as though we can hang onto the same fixed self, the same ways of doing things, and the same people around us.

Alan Lessik, author and Zen practitioner, is an expert in change. He is known by his friends as someone who takes fearless leaps into new jobs, new countries and new possibilities. He has regularly made life-changes so huge they felt like jumping off a cliff.

 In this episode, Andrew and Alan talk about how we deal with change, and the usefulness of the “backward step”. They discuss Alan’s practice of Zen meditation, and Alan shares the following quote from Eihei Dogen, founder of Zen Buddhism in Japan:

“You should stop searching for phrases and chasing after words. Take the backward step and turn the light inward. Your body-mind in itself will drop off and your original face will appear. If you want to attain just this (suchness), immediately practice just this (suchness).”

Alan Lessik is a writer and novelist, zen practitioner, amateur figure skater, and LGBT activist. He has worked in the US and over twenty-two other countries and has served in leadership positions in numerous non-governmental organizations, university and governmental entities. Alan’s debut novel, The Troubleseeker, was a finalist for the 2017 LGBTQ Fiction Award given by the Publishing Triangle. He recently moved from the US to Berlin, where he is working on two new novels.

 

Follow Up

Join our Supporters Club to access exclusive behind-the-scenes content, fan requests and the chance to ask Andrew your own questions. Membership starts at just £4.50.

Find out more about Alan Lessik’s writing and work on his website

Watch Alan Lessik’s figure-skating videos on YouTube

Follow Alan Lessik on Twitter @AlanLessik

Get Andrew’s advice on creating real change in your life and relationships in his book Wake Up and Change Your Life: How to Survive a Crisis and Be Stronger, Wiser and Happier

If you are interested in meditation and mindfulness, you might also like to listen to Andrew’s interview with Dr Henry Emmons on how to Bring More Calm and Joy Into Your Life

Andrew offers regular advice on love, marriage and finding meaning in your life via his social channels. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube @andrewgmarshall 

Dr Wendy Suzuki: Stressed? Worried? Can’t Focus?: The Neuroscientist’s Guide to Anxiety

Dr Wendy Suzuki: Stressed? Worried? Can’t Focus?: The Neuroscientist’s Guide to Anxiety

April 11, 2022

If you dread parties, can’t face job interviews, or won’t start scary conversations with your partner, this is the episode for you. 

Dr Wendy Suzuki is a neuroscientist and an international expert on anxiety and the brain. Her new book, Good Anxiety, unpacks the science of everyday anxiety in a way that helps us manage it.

In this episode, Andrew and Wendy discuss: 

⚡️What “good anxiety” is, and how to channel it in the right direction.

⚡️How anxiety can lead to productivity and creativity.

⚡️Meditation, tea-drinking, and the jujitsu move that turns anxiety around.

Dr. Wendy Suzuki is a Professor of Neural Science and Psychology in the Center for Neural Science at New York University and a celebrated international authority on neuroplasticity. She was recently named one of the 10 women changing the way we see the world by Good Housekeeping. Her TED talk has more than 31 million views on Facebook, and her  first book Healthy Brain Happy Life was recently made into a PBS special.  

 

Follow Up

Join our Supporters Club to access exclusive behind-the-scenes content, fan requests and the chance to ask Andrew your own questions. Membership starts at just £4.50.

Read Dr Wendy Suzuki’s book Good Anxiety: Harnessing the Power of the Most Misunderstood Emotion

Visit Dr Wendy Suzuki’s website

Connect with Dr Wendy Suzuki on social media: find her on Instagram @wendy.suzuki, on Twitter @wasuzuki and on Facebook @WendyASuzuki

Read Andrew’s blog on how keeping a journal can improve your life: Top Twelve Benefits of Journaling 

If anxiety is a topic of interest for you, you may also enjoy Andrew’s conversation with Richard Paterson: No More Overthinking 

Andrew offers regular advice on love, marriage and finding meaning in your life via his social channels. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube @andrewgmarshall 

George Mumford: The Power of Mindfulness: How to Investigate Your Pain

George Mumford: The Power of Mindfulness: How to Investigate Your Pain

April 4, 2022

“Within your mind, body and soul YOU have an untapped potential that wants to be unleashed. It calls to you in your dreams and whispers to you when your mind goes silent. It is relentless because it knows you are capable of more than you give yourself credit for” (George Mumford)

George Mumford used his insights into pain, mindfulness and performance to enrich the careers of athletes including Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal.

George then realised that his ideas could help people “from locker rooms to board rooms, Yale to jail”, and so took his work beyond the sporting arena, including writing a book, The Mindful Athlete

In this episode, Andrew and George discuss mindfulness, George’s journey through pain and addiction, and George’s five superpowers:

⚡️Mindfulness

⚡️Concentration

⚡️Insight

⚡️Right Effort

⚡️Trust

 

Follow Up

Join our Supporters Club to access exclusive behind-the-scenes content, fan requests and the chance to ask Andrew your own questions. Membership starts at just £4.50.

Read George Mumford’s book, The Mindful Athlete  

Take The Mindful Athlete course

Subscribe to George Mumford’s YouTube channel 

Follow George Mumford on Twitter @gtmumford and on Facebook

Read Andrew’s advice on keeping a journal of your life and emotions 

Get Andrew’s advice on creating real change in your life and relationships in his book Wake Up and Change Your Life: How to Survive a Crisis and Be Stronger, Wiser and Happier

Andrew offers regular advice on love, marriage and finding meaning in your life via his social channels. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube @andrewgmarshall 

Paul Attinello: What is Your Relationship with Death and Mortality?

Paul Attinello: What is Your Relationship with Death and Mortality?

March 28, 2022

Some of us try our best never to think about death, while some of us “live in death’s basement”. Composer, academic and psychoanalyst Paul Attinello lived through the suffering and loss of the AIDS epidemic of the 1980s. After testing positive for HIV, he built a creative and achievement-filled life, over which death nevertheless always loomed. 

Then, the advent of lifesaving medications changed everything. Paul had to define a whole new relationship with mortality, as well as experiencing a profound sense of loss for what life might have been like without the spectre of HIV. 

In this episode, Andrew and Paul discuss music, psychoanalysis, and the different ways humans live with the knowledge of their own mortality.

Paul Attinello is an academic and psychoanalyst based in Newcastle University’s International Centre for Music Studies. He also taught at the University of Hong Kong and UCLA, living and working on four continents in the past three decades. 

 

Follow Up

Join our Supporters Club to access exclusive behind-the-scenes content, fan requests and the chance to ask Andrew your own questions. Membership starts at just £4.50.

Find out more about Paul Attinello's work and writing here 

Take a look at Paul Attinello’s research work 

Watch Psychosocial Wednesdays, a YouTube channel hosted by Paul Attinello and his colleagues. It offers weekly salons on Jungian ideas and other aspects of psychoanalysis.

Read Andrew’s memoir on grieving the loss of his partner, My Mourning Year

Get Andrew’s advice on creating real change in your life and relationships in his book Wake Up and Change Your Life: How to Survive a Crisis and Be Stronger, Wiser and Happier

Terry Real: The Five Traps that Undermine Your Love & One Simple Solution

Terry Real: The Five Traps that Undermine Your Love & One Simple Solution

March 21, 2022

Is society setting you up to fail in your marriage? World-renowned relationship therapist Terry Real sees a toxic culture of individualism troubling society at every level.

We are told to strive for personal productivity and perfection, ignoring the fact that we exist in a web of crucial relationships.

In this episode, Terry describes research showing that the mind exists in a social context, and that couples in fact co-regulate each other’s nervous systems.

Getting this right is very tricky, though, if you grew up without enough emotional support. The survival strategies that got you through childhood may, in fact, “torch your personal relationships”.

Andrew and Terry discuss the five most common traps that can undermine your relationship:

🚩 Needing to be right

🚩 Controlling your partner

🚩 Unbridled self-expression

🚩 Retaliation

🚩 Shutting down

We can overcome these, however, by tapping into our wiser, more collaborative self. If we can find the “us” rather than the “I”, we can achieve the warmer, more intimate relationships many of us long for. 

Follow Up

Join our Supporters Club to access exclusive behind-the-scenes content, fan requests and the chance to ask Andrew your own questions. Membership starts at just £4.50. 

Buy Terry Real’s new book Us: Getting Past You & Me to Build a More Loving Relationship (out 22 March 2022).

Take a look at Terry Real’s other books, including The New Rules of Marriage and How Can I Get Through to You?

Visit Terry Real’s website https://terryreal.com 

Follow Terry Real on Facebook and YouTube @TerryRealRLI 

Read Andrew’s blog “Three Secrets of a Happy Relationship”

 Read Andrew’s book Can We Start Again Please? Twenty Questions to Fall Back in Love

Andrew offers regular advice on love, marriage and finding meaning in your life via his social channels. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube @andrewgmarshall 

Thom Rutledge: Embracing Fear in Four Steps

Thom Rutledge: Embracing Fear in Four Steps

March 14, 2022

Lots of us are afraid of the very word: fear. We’d rather say anxiety, or worry, or panic. 

Yet according to Thom Rutledge, fear underlies most difficult emotions, and is a close companion to shame. Fear plays into just about every decision we ever make in our lives.

To defeat fear, according to Thom, is neither possible nor desirable. Instead we need to live beyond its control, and to understand it. Rather than squashing down the voices of panic and dread, we can face up to them, explore them and respond. 

In this episode Andrew and Thom explore:

✅ The meaning of fear

✅ How we can understand fear in our own lives

✅ How our family background shapes our experience of fear

✅ Four ways we can start to “embrace fear”.

Thom Rutledge has been a psychotherapist for more than 40 years and is the author of several books, including Embracing Fear, The Self-Forgiveness Handbook, Earning Your Own Respect, The Greater Possibilities and What Love Is. He draws on professional training and experience as well as his own personal experience in recovery and personal growth to work with his clients.

Thom and his colleague, Dr. Allen Berger, co-host their own weekly podcast, Emotional Sobriety.

Follow Up

 

Join our Supporters Club to access exclusive behind-the-scenes content, fan requests and the chance to ask Andrew your own questions. Membership starts at just £4.50.

Visit Thom Rutledge’s website

Read Thom Rutledge’s books, including Embracing Fear. 

Listen to Emotional Sobriety, a podcast co-hosted by Thom Rutledge and Dr Allen Berger.

Follow Thom Rutledge on Twitter @ThomRutledge

Read Andrew’s blog on how keeping a journal can help deal with difficult emotions: Top Twelve Benefits of Journaling 

If anxiety is a topic of interest for you, you may also enjoy Andrew’s conversation with Richard Paterson: No More Overthinking

Andrew offers regular advice on love, marriage and finding meaning in your life via his social channels. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube @andrewgmarshall 

Podbean App

Play this podcast on Podbean App