Gustavo Ferrer

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Gustavo Ferrer: Making Peace with Death

Gustavo Ferrer, MD, is a pulmonologist who specializes in end-of-life care and has been named one of the best doctors in the nation—including Most Compassionate Doctor—by US News & World Report. With Sounds True, he has published Graceful Exit: How to Advocate Effectively, Take Care of Yourself, and Be Present for the Death of a Loved One. In this episode of Insights at the Edge, Tami Simon talks with Dr. Ferrer about our society’s anxiety around death and how he tries to alleviate it for both patients and their families. Dr. Ferrer advocates strongly for a conscious approach to dying, especially when it comes to getting one’s affairs in order so that death does not become even more of a burden for loved ones. Tami and Dr. Ferrer also discuss the need for open, honest conversations about dying and why this can actually help alleviate our fears around the process. Finally, Dr. Ferrer recounts the time he spent with the Warao people of South America as a young medical student, describing how their acceptance of death and grieving as a people greatly influenced his current approach to end-of-life care. (60 minutes)

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Trauma Recovery and Post-Traumatic Growth

Dr. Arielle Schwartz is a clinical psychologist, author, teacher, and widely sought-out voice in the healing of trauma and complex trauma. She offers workshops for therapists on EMDR and somatic therapy, and maintains a private practice in Boulder, Colorado. She has written a book called The Post-Traumatic Growth Guidebook, and with Sounds True, has created a new audio teaching series called Trauma Recovery, A Mind-Body Approach to Becoming Whole. In this episode of Insights at the Edge, Tami Simon speaks with Arielle about reframing the narrative of trauma recovery to one of growth and meaning-making, rather than an effort to regain something we’ve lost. Arielle offers a look into different types of trauma, and explores how the body shapes itself around these wounds. She shares strategies for adapting to adversity and attending to trauma in ways that help victims return to a felt sense of safety within themselves. Finally, Tami and Arielle discuss how we can embrace the hero or heroine’s journey in our own lives as we grow from trauma.

Compassion as a Superpower

Michelle Maldonado is founder and CEO of Lucenscia, a firm dedicated to human flourishing and mindful business transformation. She is a graduate of Barnard College at Columbia University and The George Washington University Law School, as well as an internationally certified mindfulness teacher and founding faculty for Daniel Goleman’s Emotional Intelligence Coaching Certification Program. With Sounds True, she’s on the faculty of our Inner MBA program. In this episode of Insights at the Edge, Tami Simon talks to Michelle about how a brush with mindfulness at a very young age instilled her with a sense of presence that has guided her personal and professional path. They discuss why nurturing authentic connection and deep, intuitive care in the workplace leads to better human and organizational outcomes, and some of the challenges businesses face in making sustained change. She explains how unconscious bias seeps into our perceptions “like melted butter into nooks and crannies” and offers insights for addressing bias from a place of healing. They also discuss treating others as “human beings rather than human doings,” the journey of discovering our own power, embracing “compassion projects” as a means of public service and emotional release, and how we can best bring our care and attention to matters that affect us all.

No Bad Parts

Richard “Dick” Schwartz earned his PhD in marriage and family therapy from Purdue University. He coauthored the most widely used family therapy text in the United States, Family Therapy: Concepts and Methods, and is the creator of the Internal Family Systems Model, which he developed in response to clients’ descriptions of various “parts” within themselves. With Sounds True, Dick has written a new book titled No Bad Parts: Healing Trauma and Restoring Wholeness with the Internal Family Systems Model. In this episode of Insights at the Edge, Tami Simon talks to Dick about the transformation that occurs when we welcome every part of who we are. He explains that even our most destructive parts have protective intentions, put in place to shield us from unprocessed pain, and details his method for accessing and mending these inner wounds. They also discuss the myth of the “mono mind,” and why the mind is naturally multiple; how “exiled” trauma can manifest as bodily pain; connecting with our core Self and letting it lead us in our healing; and how the language of “parts” can be useful in our relationship dynamics.

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