Trudi Jane Wyatt, MA, RP, CCC
Registered Psychotherapist

Psychotherapy for individual male and female adults in Ontario, Canada. *New initial consults starting July 9, 2018.

trudistrasberg-new-head-shot-2016

416-901-0994 (no text)
130 Adelaide Street West PATH Toronto
By appointment only

You might enjoy reading these quotes*:

“If someone handed over your body to somebody whom you encountered, you’d be furious; but that you hand over your mind to anyone who comes along, so that, if he abuses you, it becomes disturbed and confused, [why is that okay?]” (paraphrasing Stoic Philosopher Epictetus, 50-135ad, The Handbook)

“‘You shameless creature!’ said Virtue [to Vice]. ‘What good have you to offer? …what do you know of what is really pleasurable, seeing as you will do nothing to earn even that?'” (Xenophon’s Memorabilia, The Choice of Heracles; Xenophon was a student of Socrates)

“So Zeus, fearing for our species, lest it should be destroyed completely, sent Hermes to bring shame and justice to men, so that there would be order in the cities, and uniting bonds of friendship. And so Hermes asked Zeus in what way he should give justice and shame to men: ‘Am I to allocate them, just as the arts have been allocated? For these have been allocated in such a way that one man who possesses the art of medicine is sufficient for many unskilled men, and likewise with other craftsmen. Now, should I place justice and shame amongst men in this way, or should I allocate them to everyone?'” [Plato’s Dialogue: Protagorus (the first “great” Sophist)]

“Don’t pride yourself on any excellence that is not your own. If a horse were to say in its pride, ‘I’m beautiful,’ that would be bearable; but when you exclaim in your pride, ‘I have a beautiful horse,’ you should be clear in your mind that you’re priding yourself on a good quality that belongs to a horse.” (Stoic Philosopher Epictetus, 50-135ad, The Handbook)

“Don’t seek that all that comes about should come about as you wish, but wish that everything that comes about should come about just as it does, and then you’ll have a calm and happy life.” (ibid)

“Nature requires that we resolve all these matters by measuring and reasoning whether the ultimate result is suitable or unsuitable to bringing about a happy life; for at times we may determine that what appears to be good is in fact an evil, and at other times we may determine that what appears to be evil is in fact a good.” (Epicurus: Letter to Menoeceus. Epicurus was a Greek philosopher who lived from 341 to 270bc.)

“Nature provides that life is made pleasant by sober contemplation, and by close examination of the reasons for all decisions we make as to what we choose and what we avoid. It is by these means that we put to flight the vain opinions from which arise the greater part of the confusion that troubles the soul.” (ibid)

“Epicurus’ enemies–and the Church especially–seized upon his celebration of pleasure, and invented malicious stories about his supposed debauchery… In reality, he seems to have lived a conspicuously simple and frugal life…It is impossible to live pleasurably, one of his disciples wrote, ‘without living prudently and honorably and justly, and also without living courageously and temperately and magnanimously, and without making friends, and without being philanthropic.'” [Stephen Greenblatt in The Answer Man – The New Yorker, 08 Aug 2011. He writes of the Epicurean poetry of Lucretious, a Roman who lived from 99 to 55bc and is known for his famous poem, “On the Nature of Things” (no Suzuki did not originate this and it may be a great irony that he chooses this title), aka “De Rerum Natura”]

“Poems are difficult to silence. At the time that the Church was attempting to suppress the text, a young Florentine was copying out for himself the whole of ‘On the Nature of Things.’ He was too cunning to mention the work directly in the famous books he went on to write. But the handwriting was conclusively identified in 1961: the copy was made by Niccolo Machiavelli.” (ibid)

“[Thomas More’s] use of the [Epicureanism] philosophy for the population of this alien island [of Utopia] showed that the ideas recovered by the humanists seemed compellingly vital… Reinjected into the intellectual bloodstream of Europe after long centuries, they were, in effect, voices from another world… (ibid)

“you cannot learn to know a man until you have eaten a peck of salt with him” (The Ethics of Aristotle, Book Eight)

“Thought is obviously important… You might say you don’t need to speak freely because you can think, and who’s going to get into your head. But the problem with that is… You can’t think very well, because there you are, in your little world, you know, with all your biases, and your ignorance. You’re wrong about so many things… Maybe you can trot out some of the things you think erroneously and ignorantly… Maybe you’ll walk away a little smarter! That’s why freedom of speech is so important because a lot of thinking especially about things that are beyond you, for whatever reason, have to take place publicly, as we stumble around towards an adequate formulation about the problems that beset us.” (Prof. Jordan Peterson, Queen’s University, The Rising Tide of Compelled Speech in Canada)

“Remember to look up at the stars, and not down at your feet.” (Stephen Hawking)

“‘How does one become a butterfly?’ she asked pensively. ‘You must want to fly so much that you are willing to give up being a caterpillar.'” (Trina Paulus)

“psychotherapy has been proven to help people live healthier, happier lives, all without frightening side effects, such as dry mouth, erectile dysfunction, kidney failure, and death” (Scott Miller, PhD)

“Regardless of whether or not the drugs work, to call pessimism the symptom of an illness and then to turn our discontents over to the medical industry is to surrender perhaps the most important portion of our autonomy: the ability to look around and say, as Job might have said, ‘This is outrageous. Something must be done.'” (Gary Greenberg in Manufacturing Depression: The Secret History of a Modern Disease)

“I freed a thousand slaves. I could have freed a thousand more if only they knew they were slaves.” (Harriet Tubman is often quoted, but she might not have said this)

“And it is rare, to see two trajectories meet—the abstract knowledge about the power of cultural conditioning, and the gut realization of what that conditioning has meant in one’s own life.“ (Panning for Gold, Mary Sykes Wylie)

“You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it.” (Maya Angelou)

“If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:

If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;
If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breathe a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: ‘Hold on!’

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!

(Rudyard Kipling’s poem ‘If’ from https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/46473/if—)

“We need to do better in terms of educating people in the virtues. We’ve lost that degree of moral language in our culture — or, we’re losing it — and we do that at our peril.” (The Hon. Peter D. Lauwers of the Ontario Court of Appeal in “Reflections on Charter Values” Q&A)

“You set yourself up on your damn crutches and you struggle up the bloody hill. That’s what you do! …Because the alternative is to descend into the abyss – that’s the alternative!” (Prof. Jordan Peterson, Queen’s University, The Rising Tide of Compelled Speech in Canada)

“The greatest part of mankind have no other reason for their opinions than that they are in fashion.” (Samuel Johnson, in Morris, 1999)

“Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice.” (Steve Jobs, 2005, Stanford Commencement Address)

“Now sometimes you’re about to do something and you don’t know whether it’s right or wrong… But — and I think this is a universal experience — people know, sometimes, that what they’re saying isn’t true, and people know, sometimes, that what they’re doing is wrong. And they state the untruth and they do what’s wrong anyways. And one of the things you can do is, stop doing that… “ (Psychologist Jordan Peterson, 19Oct2017)

“But it’s also a hazard of reading a book by an old-fashioned psychotherapist like me, who believes that when it comes to important and complex questions, the best approach is to leave yourself in doubt for as long as possible, to live with inner conflict rather than to end it, to withstand yourself rather than to become someone different, to understand how you arrived at an important juncture rather than strike out down a road simply for the sake of getting on with life.” (Gary Greenberg in Manufacturing Depression)

“Small changes in the diagnostic system [brought about by DSM-5] can result in tens of millions of people who were normal the day before suddenly qualifying for diagnosis… When my wife died, I felt sad, I lost interest,… In DSM-5, those symptoms — typical symptoms of everyday grief — would be called Major Depressive Disorder, after just 2 weeks.” (Dr. Allen Frances, Psychiatrist, author of Saving Normal, and chaired the task force that produced the DSM-IV)

“Clients sometimes wonder if there are many realities… My response is always to point out that if everyone experienced a different reality then people would constantly be bumping into each other.” (Peter Raabe, PhD, in Philosophy’s Role in Counseling and Psychotherapy)

“Philosophy is not just a game… It’s the most vital use of our minds for getting our bearings in life.” (Morris, 1999)

These people are not virtuous. They’re virtue signalers – it’s a difference! Being virtuous sometimes costs something — could even hurt your career if you stand on principle.” (Ezra Levant, The Ezra Levant Show, Rebel Media, 11Oct2017)

“The philosophy of relativism claims that all so-called truth is relative… suggesting that this [claim] is the ultimate, absolute truth about truth… [But then] it actually asserts what it denies, and so it’s self-defeating, simply logically incoherent as a philosophical position… [But] a number of otherwise very smart people have found it tempting… [it] can serve as a very persuasive intellectual excuse for very bad behavior. [For] If there is no absolute truth, there is no absolute moral truth, and we can get away with anything we want… it’s a view they can use speciously to attempt to convince otherwise good and sensible people to join them in their shenanigans.” (Morris, 1999)

“Make it thy business to know thyself, which is the most difficult lesson in the world.” (Cervantes, in Morris, 1999)

“Mindfulness techniques are extremely valuable, but equally important is threat reduction… You will also need to change your life so that you feel less threatened…” (Eric Maisel in Why Smart People Hurt)

“He cited an episode of The Simpsons in which Homer has a crayon removed from his brain, becomes smart, then gets depressed by the complexity of the world and asks that the crayon be put back in” (metronews 04 Nov 2014 quoting philosophy professor Mark Kingwell)

“If you put a good brain in a brain-unfriendly environment, it should not surprise you to see that brain get sad (a state that will eventually be labeled ‘chronic depression’)” (Why Smart People Hurt by Eric Maisel)

“Those things—they’re not even desires—they’re things people do to escape from desires—because it’s such a big responsibility, really to want something.” (The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand)

“there surely are those who are even more pregnant in their souls than in their bodies, and these are pregnant with what is fitting for a soul to bear and bring to birth. And what is fitting? Wisdom and the rest of virtue, which all poets beget, as well as all the craftsmen who are said to be creative.” (Socrates in Plato’s Symposium)

“But the incurability of schizophrenia is a myth that has evolved from its original pronouncement by Emil Kraeplin (1856-1926) a century ago… recovery can occur in almost 70% of cases…” (Peter Raabe, PhD, in Philosophy’s Role in Counselling and Psychotherapy; while I don’t specialize in helping people with symptoms said to constitute schizophrenia, I do operate with an eye to recovery rather than a deterministic and pessimistic assumption of chronicity of symptoms)

“‘Am I happy enough?’ has been a staple of American self-reflection since Thomas Jefferson declared ours the first country on earth dedicated to the pursuit of happiness. ‘Am I not happy enough because I am sick?’ on the other hand is a question that has just arisen in the last twenty years.” (Manufacturing Depression, by Gary Greenberg)

“Emotions are tools. Learn to appreciate what is in your emotional toolbox. Learn how to use these tools more effectively and what works best in particular situations.” (Todd Kashdan)

“Gifted adults need to know who they are and cannot escape the pull toward self-actualization, the unyielding pressure to make their lives count” (Mary-Elaine Jacobsen, Psy.D., in the book The Gifted Adult)

“As you can see, in any situation there are many ways to interpret what the events mean. The interpretation you make determines your mood.” (Mind Over Mood, 1995, by Greenberger and Padesky)

“…somehow psychology almost never gets around to the complementary goal of making the lives of well people even better.” (Martin Seligman, in Learned Optimism, 2006, a book about Positive Psychology)

“You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with” (Jim Rohn, Entrepreneur). So choose wisely…

“I’ve looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself, ‘If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?’  And whenever the answer has been no for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.” (Steve Jobs, 2005, Stanford Commencement Address; may he rest in peace)

*Note that these quotes are sourced from a variety of disciplines, and are not psychotherapy / counselling / advice.  For professional services please either contact me to schedule your free initial consultation (if you are in Ontario), and/or contact another qualified local professional. If you need urgent support, consider calling Toronto Distress Centres at 416.408.4357. If you need immediate help, call 911 or go to your local Emergency Room. Note this post is for information only, does not imply that a professional relationship has been established with readers, and does not imply intent to provide professional services to readers. Intended audience: Current adult residents of the Canadian province of Ontario only.

Trudi Jane Wyatt © 2018