Can you share with us a little about your background, experience and your passions in life?
Thank you so much for this opportunity! I am a psychologist, writer, and author who loves to explore the intersection of real-life with psychology. I’m passionate about helping the most vulnerable not just survive but thrive.
I’ve had a lifelong love for psychology. After obtaining a doctorate in Clinical Psychology, I began counseling individuals, families, and couples. All the while I had a secret wish to publish. My life turned upside down when my first husband of 31 years was diagnosed with terminal cancer. Shortly after his death, I made a huge career change and started writing.
Currently, I blog, write creative nonfiction, and coach new writers. I plan to publish a memoir that explores my survival of severe deceit and betrayal. It’s due out late next year. I love to take a closer look at issues related to mental health, dating and sexuality, relationship dynamics, and trauma recovery.
What would you say are your top 3 core values in life?
Through the years my core values have changed quite a bit. Currently, I’m passionate about living a life marked with authenticity, personal integrity, and compassion for others.After surviving several huge losses and trauma, I know better than most that we are all doing our very best with what we have. Most of us could benefit from being shown a bit of kindness. Click To Tweet
If you could choose any new skill to have, what would it be?
I would really love to be able to write software code. I think that skill would come in handy with all the technical stuff I have to do as a writer.
If you could select one piece of advice that you feel the world needs to listen to and bring into reality, what would it be?
As we increasingly engage online, we forget we are meeting and interacting with other people who have their own dreams, wishes, and needs. Too often we feel the freedom to express an opinion via social media that we would think twice about before saying to someone if we met them in real life. It’s important never to lose our compassion and consideration when dealing with one another, whether in person or digitally.
Who is your virtual coach/mentor, and why?
Coaching and mentorship have been a vital part of my personal and professional life. I’m in a coaching group for women recovering from betrayal trauma. That community has created a safe space for me to heal after leaving an abusive marriage.
I also belong to a large online writers group. The support of the mentors and other writers has helped me to hone my skills and to grow my identity and brand as a writer/author.
Both of these experiences have taught me so much.
What is your “secret ingredient” for a happier and fulfilling life?Life is more fragile and shorter than we think. Since learning to live in this present moment–not in the guilt and regret of the past or the worry and stress of tomorrow–I've been so much happier. Click To Tweet
Which habit do you think is making you a better, happier and healthier person?
Most things we want to accomplish are big, like writing a book, The scope of the project can be overwhelming.Since I've learned to break everything I do into tiny bite-sized tasks, I've been able to accomplish things I never imagined possible. Click To Tweet
How did you build this habit?
I discovered this secret in graduate school. Through its use, I was able to finish my dissertation and several other large projects. This habit has changed my life.
What helps you when you are stressed or anxious?
Recognizing the limitations of my control has been instrumental in helping me manage anxiety. What areas can I impact? Am I taking the necessary steps today? And what do I need to entrust to God or my higher power? Using these questions, I’m able to refocus my anxiousness, bringing me greater peace.
What book changed your life, and in what way?
Nearly every book I read is impactful. Each gives me a new perspective or challenges my thinking. There’s not a favorite, though.
Are you into journaling/bujo? If yes, in what way do you journal?
Writing personal essays and memoirs are the closest I get to journalling. I write a lot each week, making it difficult to journal just for myself.
Do you practice mindfulness? If yes, why did you start and what do you like about the practice of mindfulness?
I haven’t received any formal training in mindfulness, but as a spiritual person with a faith practice I find many of its principles very useful.
What do you do when you don’t know what to do?
Reaching out for more help, advice, or support is often the first step I take when I don’t know what to do. I contact someone who can ground me and help me figure out the best next step.
What is the most bizarre thing you are grateful for?
As sad and horrible it was to lose my late husband to cancer, grief has taught me the preciousness of life. I’ve learned to savor every single moment. We never know when it just might be our last.
What makes a “Good Day” a good day for you?
I love those days when I’m hanging out with those closest to me doing the things we love. It doesn’t get any better than that.
Discover more about Kerry on her website, Medium or Quora.