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Jackie Schuld Art Therapy Blog

What A Therapist Reads

As an art therapist and psychology enthusiast, I love reading psychology books.

In fact, it’s just about the only thing I read (let me preemptively assuage you of a common misconception: sticking to one area of interest is not a sign that you’re imbalanced, it means you know what you like.)

My choice of book usually depends on what psychology subtopic interests me at the time or the recommendations of trusted colleagues and friends.

Picture of the book jacket of "Complex PTSD"

In the past couple of months, I finished “Complex PTSD: From Surviving to Thriving” because a client selected it (I sometimes offer to co-read a book with a client as a form of bibliotherapy). Due to the intensity of the subject, it took me almost two months to read the book.

It was well worth it though. The explanations and strategies offered by the book weaved their way into many discussions with my clients. It also inspired some of my essays.

Picture of the book jacket of "Your Rainforest Mind"

I also recently finished “Your Rainforest Mind,” a book about thriving with high intelligence. It was a quick and easy read, largely because I am familiar with the topic (you can read my essay on Multi-Passionate and Multi-Capable) and have many clients that fall into this category.

I would recommend this book to parents of highly intelligent teenagers.I think it will help them to understand them better. It would also be a good read for a highly intelligent individual who is currently struggling.

The other book I finally finished was Yalom’s “Love’s Executioner.” It’s a collection of true stories from his work as a psychotherapist with clients. While I loved some of the stories, there were others that truly made me cringe (such as when he lambasts fat people), and I therefore do not feel it is his best work to read. I would instead recommend his book “Letters to a Young Therapist.”

I have four books that I am in the process of reading.

Picture of the book jacket for "But you don't look autistic at all"

I picked up “Autism in Heels” as part of my quest to better understand neurodiversity and all of the subcategories that it holds (autism, ADHD, high sensitivity, etc.). The long-winded narrative didn’t capture me well and so I found another book, “But You Don’t Look Autistic at All.” It’s a far more engaging, insightful, and informative read. I’m about 2/3rds the way through.

I’m also reading Brene Brown’s “Atlas of the Heart.” It’s a conglomeration of thoughts on the vocabulary we use to describe our emotions and thoughts. Her words bring unique perspectives to almost every word she defines, and I’m enjoying reading a portion every day.

Picture of the book jacket of "Laziness does not exist"

Another fascinating read is “Laziness does Not Exist.” It has some excellent points about what’s really beneath “laziness” and ties well with the other book I’m reading, “Tired As F*ck.” Both look at what hustle culture, self-help culture, diet culture, and really our culture in general is doing to us.

Given the amount that I am currently writing, my reading place has slowed. I think that is natural though. Similar to the seasons, there is a natural eb and flow to how much I read and the subject matter.


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