701: Talking to Crazy, with Dr. Mark Goulston

How should we deal with irrational or difficult people? And what are some good strategies for establishing healthy boundaries with such people in our lives?

As a very pro-social podcast, we realized this may be our weakness after we talked to Chrissy Stroop in Episode 618. Chrissy, a trans woman, told us she did not feel it her responsibility to keep toxic or unsupportive people in her life, and Bart pushed back because he feels building bridges across such divides is so important. Where should the healthy limits of our empathy, tolerance and relationship-building be set?

Mark Goulston is a psychiatrist, author, professor and consultant to corporations and large organizations who is known for a process called ‘surgical empathy’ among many other things. His book Talking to Crazy was the reason we wanted him on, but he has many others available everywhere books are sold.

In this conversation with Bart, Mark talks about validation therapy, the mirror neuron gap, surgical empathy, connecting with people in pain, the direct relationship between oxytocin and cortisol, awareness conversations versus advice conversations, givers, takers and receivers, assertive humility, the role of adrenaline in coping with trauma, Sharon Tate’s mom, the five ‘really’s, and more.

Mentioned in the episode:

Naomi Feil and Gladys Wilson in Russia
What made you smile today? on TED
The Nail


By | 2022-08-10T03:12:09+00:00 January 11th, 2022|Podcast|

About the Author:

Bart Campolo is a secular community builder, counselor and writer who currently serves as the Humanist Chaplain at the University of Cincinnati. Listen to his podcast HERE!