Winter can be an ideal time to turn in, turn off the Wi-Fi, and open a book. We asked a few Open Path therapists to select a title from their shelves that deepened their practice, their lives, or both — a book that they would recommend to others. Happy reading!
Queering Sexual Violence: Radical Voices from Within the Anti-Violence Movement, edited by Jennifer Patterson, is required reading for therapists working with clients whose marginalized identities increase their risk of sexual violence. Calling into question the survivor/perpetrator dichotomy and naming the violence inherent in the criminal justice system, the contributors of this anthology complicate conventional notions of who commits sexual violence and how to end it. As a therapist who specializes in supporting queer and transgender trauma survivors, this book has offered me a much needed view into the perspectives of survivors whose stories have been largely left out of the recent cultural conversations about sexual harassment and assault.
LPCA based in Chapel Hill, NC
Open Path Clinician Consultant
Mask of Masculinity: How Men Can Embrace Vulnerability, Create Strong Relationships, and Live their Fullest Lives by Lewis Howes. Howes is an uber-successful athlete and entrepreneur who tackles the deconstruction of masculinity in an approachable and personal way. As a new father and a clinician with a caseload of 90% young males, I have been extremely interested in the topic of developing more integrated and healthy male consciousness. The book incorporates insights from a broad spectrum of cultural influencers to present the current crisis of “armoring” and “masking” in males through nine modern archetypes of maleness. It offers an important perspective on how the nine masks serve a purpose, while also distressing males and those in relationship with them. It’s an accessible book that can be an important conversation starter and guide for clients exploring the societal and cultural trappings of masculinity and gender norms.
Twelve Months to Ideal Private Practice by Lynn Grodzki. This book is simply amazing: it has taken me on a whole journey as an entrepreneur-therapist. The author has required me to use my mind, body, and spirit as I set out to build my practice. I have had to dig deep in ways I found difficult, but much needed. I started a Facebook Mastermind Group for other private practice practitioners so we could support each other while working our way to building our ideal practices. I have read other private practice building books and this one by far has been helpful and practical beyond my belief. I enjoy completing the practical exercises throughout each chapter for easy to moderate application. The books is meant to be completed over a 12-month period: I highly recommend going with that time-frame, especially if you are going on this journey alone.
Esther Perel’s The State Of Affairs: Rethinking Infidelity is an honest exploration of modern relationships through the lens of affairs. What is monogamy in our digital age? Why do happy couples cheat? What can we learn about the sacred and erotic needs of modern coupling and what influence does intimacy have on identity? Esther helps to open and explore the deep conversations many aren’t having and helps us understand why these conversations are so central to healthy modern relationships. I’d recommend this book to anyone in a relationship; and most certainly to every therapist working with couples.
LPC based in Asheville, NC
Founder, Open Path Psychotherapy Collective
Feeding Your Demons: Ancient Wisdom for Resolving Inner Conflict by Tsultrim Allione. Allione, a Tibetan Buddhist nun, gives us a clear meditation practice in this book that asks us to identify, greet, and care for the demons we carry. Rather than struggling or fighting against them, Allione shows us how to see the very human demons behind our self-defeating behaviors and patterns. What I like about this book is how it welcomes our negative voices and impulses into the open, where we can include them in a more challenging awareness of ourselves in relation with others.
Are you an Open Path therapist with a good read to share on this blog? Email firstname.lastname@example.org