Existentialism in Pandemic Times
Implications for Psychotherapists, Coaches and Organisations
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Building on Monica Hanaway’s previous publications, this timely volume considers the benefits of bringing an existential approach to psychotherapy, coaching, supervision and leadership, particularly in times of crisis.
The book uses an existential lens to examine the impact Covid-19 has had on our mental health and ways of being, making connections between situations that challenge our mental resources and the unique ways existential ideas can address those challenges. Featuring contributions from renowned existential thinkers and practitioners, the book connects personal experiences with clinical examples and philosophic ideas to explore concepts like anxiety, relatedness and uncertainty as they relate to key existential themes, helping to inform coaches and therapists in their work with clients.
Existentialism in Pandemic Times is important reading for coaches, therapists, psychologists and business leaders, as well as for scholars and researchers interested in applied philosophy.
Table of Contents
Part One: The Internal World - Self-reflection
1. From Fear, Uncertainty, and Loss to Embodiment, Dreams and Awakening
2. 'Without music, life would be a mistake': TheExperience of a Musician in Covid-19 Times
3. The Paradox of Freedom in Lockdown
4. Expecting the Unexpected: My Pandemic Pregnancy
5. What Really Matters? A Phenomenological Exploration of Two YouTube Dialogues on Living Through Corona Times
Ernesto Spinelli & Greg Madison
Part Two: The Therapy World - Psychotherapy and Coaching Clients
6. Birth, Death, and Isolation: Motherhood During a Pandemic
7. Relatedness and Relationships in the Time of Covid
Michael Worrell & Luci Moja
8. Existential Resilience and Covid-19
9. 'It's been a good pandemic for me': Working With Coaching and Psychotherapy Clients, With a Focus on Those Therapy Clients With a Diagnosis of Pure Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (POCD)
Part Three: The Business World and Other Communities - Existential Issues for Businesses, Communities, and Organisations to Consider Post Pandemic
10. East of Eden - An Existential View of the Pandemic
11. Existential Challenges for Business Leaders Post-Pandemic
Monica Hanaway is author of several books on coaching, leadership and conflict resolution, including The Existential Leader, An Existential Approach to Leadership Challenges, Handbook of Existential Coaching Practice, Psychologically Informed Mediation and An Existential and Phenomenological Approach to Coaching Supervision. She is committed to introducing applied existential thought into new contexts, particularly the world of business.
'With this latest book Monica Hanaway and her chapter authors offer us a further brilliant insight into the power and relevance of the existential and phenomenological lens. Since the start of the pandemic, we have all faced numerous challenges, as well as some potential unseen gifts. In response, this book sensitively and intelligently helps to ground these experiences initially in theory, then with client case studies, before looking at wider implications and lessons for society and business. As a consequence, I cannot recommend this book highly enough. It speaks to all that are ready to listen.'
Jamie Reed, Team and Leadership Coach, Director of Human leadership Ltd
'Monica is uniquely placed to write this book as an internationally renowned practitioner whose work is founded on existential principles. Her expertise as both a therapist and a coach inform key issues that illuminate the range of challenges experienced by people and businesses alike. An impressive breadth of contributing authors helps us understand the existential threat of the pandemic, how people regain a sense of equilibrium, and possible opportunities for growth, purpose, and authenticity.'
Dr. Mark Burgess, Research Lead and Teaching Fellow (Social Psychology), Oxford Brookes University, Oxford
'This is a hugely fascinating book offering a range of insights from seasoned and well-regarded deliberators on both their personal and professional lived-experience of the Covid pandemic. It is important in times of such overwhelming existential peril for leading thinkers in the academic and professional world to disclose their experiences by writing about and describing their own angst, dependencies, disconnectedness, physical reaction, sense of time, being and freedom – or deprivation of – extraordinary thinkers thinking about extraordinary times. The potential for this book to become an exemplar of philosophical critique, phenomenological account, and authentic reflection of living through the pandemic presents itself with this range and collection of writers.'
Prof John Nuttall, Asst Dean and Head of School of Psychotherapy and Psychology, Regent’s University London. Certified Management Consultant
'The pandemic has confronted humanity with several complex and unprecedented challenges. This book excellently dissects the impact to human lived experience from an existential viewpoint e.g. the physical, personal, relational and spiritual experiences and the often paradoxical meanings we attach to them. Like any existential threat, the pandemic is rich in helping reveal who we are to ourselves and this book facilitates the reader in making sense of it all.'
Nigel Smaller, Psychotherapist and Coach
'The pandemic turned out to be for many of us nothing less than a mirror reflecting our biggest challenges and shadows as well as greatest gifts and virtues. It is crucial now not only to look at this experience as a "crisis to overcome", but as a reason to dive into the questions it raised. Monica does that brilliantly in this book by bringing in existential paradigm to rethink what we collectively and individually have gone and are going through. An excellent array of co-authors and personal stories/cases makes this work very personal, allowing it to speak not only to our minds but our hearts.'
Svetlana Hetrick, Clinical psychologist, Director of the Educational Centre for Psychological Education, St Petersburg, Russia
'Existential thinking has seen a remarkable comeback during the COVID 19 pandemic. The common thread running through is a sensitivity to human fragility that is felt to be particularly relevant. Our most important existential lesson is that our fears are inherent in the human condition. Anxiety is a wake-up call and not pathological. It is up to us to anchor ourselves, to value life in the midst of death, to nurture relationships in the midst of isolation, and to voice against shame and stigma of psychologically stressful experiences. And above all, to be there for our clients and show them that and how we can be responsible for our own resilience. Monica Hanaway's latest publication, together with her chapter authors, follows along this trail. It is with great enrichment to accompany her on this journey.'
Dr. Georg Martensen, Logotherapist, Existential Coach, Supervisor, Brunswick, Germany