Stay Loose

Seven months into the State of Emergency, and the virus has not changed. The ways it spreads have not changed. It’s degree of fatality has changed only slightly for all but the richest and most privileged. And the patterns of government and behavior that have escalated the spread of the virus have also not changed. “How do we cope with all this?” is the question I often hear from clients and friends, and…

Continue Reading

Pandemicide [Full text]

David J. Bookbinder, LMHC david@transformationspress.org First, they came for the Mexicans and the Muslims. Then, they came for the refugees and the immigrants. Then, they came for the Blacks, the Latinxs, the Native Americans. Then, they came for the old, the sick, the poor. Now, they come for us all. Pandemicide. Therapist as Analyst I’m a psychotherapist. It may seem unusual for someone with a background in psychology to analyze national public health…

Continue Reading

URGENT: Pandemicide

I hope you’re doing well during this difficult time.  For the past couple of years, I’ve been focusing on balance – in these posts, in my book The Art of Balance: Staying Sane in an Insane World, in a forthcoming online course, and in my own life. The greatest unbalancer most of us have experienced in our lifetimes is happening right now, so I thought I’d better directly address it. I began with…

Continue Reading

The Art of Balance in a Global Crisis – Step 2, Assess

I typically see people for psychotherapy after they’ve broken through denial but before they reach a state of true acceptance. Often, they come to my office wanting something to change but wanting to change nothing in themselves. Once we get to the radical acceptance phase, they’re able to stop vacillating between one strong emotion and its opposite and take a realistic look at their situations, the obstacles to their recovery, and also at…

Continue Reading

The Art of Balance in a Global Crisis – Step 1, Detect

Among my clients, friends, and family, those who are doing well in the pandemic have accepted that this is the way the world is now. They’ve arrived at a modified way of life that feels safe, and from that base of safety they’re looking for opportunities during this crisis and beyond. But they didn’t start out doing well, and neither did I. Shifting from the breakdown of denial to full detection of imbalance…

Continue Reading

The Art of Balance in a Global Crisis – Step 0, Denial

I’m a Licensed Mental Health Counselor, and my work for the past 17 years has been to help people overcome psychological and situational problems that cause them emotional distress. The COVID-19 pandemic has brought many people back into counseling – I’m now seeing, through telemedicine, almost twice as many clients as I was seeing in person before the pandemic. It has also led many who never worked with a therapist into counseling for…

Continue Reading

TL;DR: Do’s and Don’ts for Navigating a Global Crisis

I’ve been working on a detailed article about how the Art of Balance system applies to the current global crisis, and how to use it to navigate your way back to balance. In the meantime, I’ve also been keeping track of what’s been helping my clients, neighbors, friends, and family members — and also what hasn’t been so helpful. So, without further ado, I bring you this list of Pandemic Do’s and Don’ts.…

Continue Reading

White and Orange Daffodil I

How do Buddhists deal with the pandemic?

Much of what I’ve learned — and teach — about life balance comes from what I’ve gleaned from Buddhist teachers. In one of the magazines I subscribe to, Lion’s Roar, I  came upon this collection of recent teachings on dealing with the pandemic. If you’re already familiar with Buddhism, much of this will be familiar, too. If not, I hope you’ll find it helpful, both for its immediate content and as an introduction to…

Continue Reading

The Art of Balance in a Global Crisis: Part I, Origins

The scenario: UnBalancer sweeps the globe. It begins in the wild, unbalancing a tiny creature that’s captured, taken to a live market in China, and slaughtered. From one vendor’s cart, it scurries around the market, dividing rapidly, like tiny UnBalancer rats and fleas. Buyers, unaware, take it home and UnBalancer enslaves them to its will. Swiftly and relentlessly, UnBalancer spreads. Throughout the world it appears, emulating scenes from scary movies and silly pop…

Continue Reading