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Ayelet Waldman: Exploring Microdosing

Ayelet Waldman is a former federal public defender, current adjunct professor at UC Berkeley Law School, and a bestselling author. Her books include Love and Treasure, Daughter’s Keeper, and A Really Good Day: How Microdosing Made a Mega Difference in My Mood, My Marriage, and My Life. In this episode of Insights at the Edge, Tami Simon speaks with Ayelet about the practice of microdosing with small quantities of psychedelic drugs in order to treat mental health conditions. Ayelet shares her own story of microdosing with LSD and how it helped her climb out of a pit of suicidal depression. Tami and Ayelet discuss the legal limitations on microdosing, the difficulty of researching the effects of psychedelics, and the possible future of the war on drugs. Finally, they talk about the many clinical applications of MDMA, including a surprising application for couples therapy. (59 minutes)

Tami’s Takeaway: Research! Research! Research! If we are to understand how to effectively microdose with LSD and other psychoactive substances, we need open minds and quality research to guide our way. Let’s move beyond any preformed biases we might have (pro or con) and pursue research that will give us the data, proper protocols, and safeguards we need.

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Radical Self-Care Changes Everything

Anne Lamott is the celebrated author of many books of fiction, essays, and memoirs. Her works include Bird by Bird, Hallelujah Anyway, and Crooked Little Heart. In this special edition of Insights at the Edge originally recorded for The Self-Acceptance Summit, Tami Simon speaks with Anne about acts of “radical self-care” and how they are essential for anyone’s well-being. Anne talks about self-acceptance as an innately feminist concept, especially around issues of body image and self-esteem. Finally, Anne and Tami discuss how it is necessary to fully accept oneself before being able to show up for others, and why modern society often argues the opposite.

Becoming an Active Operator of Your Nervous System

Deb Dana, LCSW, is a clinician and consultant specializing in using the lens of Polyvagal Theory to understand and resolve the impact of trauma and create ways of working that honor the role of the autonomic nervous system. Her clinical publications include The Polyvagal Theory in Therapy: Engaging the Rhythm of Regulation and The Polyvagal Flip Chart: Understanding the Science of Safety, and her Sounds True publications include the audio program, Befriending Your Nervous System: Looking Through the Lens of Polyvagal Theory, and her new book Anchored: How to Befriend Your Nervous System Using Polyvagal Theory.

In this podcast, Tami Simon converses with Deb Dana to offer listeners a practical understanding of Polyvagal Theory and how we can begin to decode the language of our body for better health and better relationships. Tami and Deb also discuss the dorsal, sympathetic, and ventral states of our nervous system; the gifts of becoming “anchored in ventral”; neuroception, your nervous system’s way of taking in information to assess your safety; curiosity and the capacity for self-reflection; the importance of self-care; co-regulation as a biological imperative; why self-regulation is especially critical for therapists and other helping professionals; music and nature as healing resources; the practice of self-compassion as a means of “getting our anchor back”; and more.

Trauma: The Invisible Epidemic

Dr. Paul Conti is a graduate of Stanford University School of Medicine. He completed his psychiatry training at Stanford and at Harvard. Dr. Conti has served patients and clients throughout the United States and internationally. With Sounds True, he has released a new book called Trauma: The Invisible Epidemic: How Trauma Works and How We Can Heal From It (featuring a foreword by Lady Gaga). In this podcast, Tami Simon speaks with Dr. Conti about healing the unresolved trauma we hold inside both individually and collectively. They also discuss how trauma operates differently in different people, overcoming “reflexive shame,” self-inquiry and the embrace of a “true life narrative,” perseverance and self-compassion, strategies for dealing with traumatic triggers, resolving our grief, how trauma affects the map of our inner landscape, inherited trauma, become a healing resource for others, and much more.

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