The Examined Life: How We Lose and Find Ourselves by Stephen Grosz

Recently, a friend mentioned she was reading The Examined Life: How We Lose and Find Ourselves by Stephen Grosz.  Whether through grief, marital breakdown, family, health, financial or career crises,  everyone experiences difficulties in life. And, at times, it is difficult to know what to do for the best. We can’t always discuss problems with family or friends.

Striking a chord

Grosz is a psychoanalyst so his thoughts and insights are interesting. The Examined Life is a series of  short stories based on cases he encountered during his years in practice. The individual stories are quite different but aspects of them will strike a chord for many people — either with their personal experience or experiences of friends or family.

At times, I found his observations surprising. And at times, the problems don’t seem significant enough to warrant so much therapy time. I was  frustrated that the problems didn’t always have clear solutions or resolutions. However, despite these reservations, I liked this book.  The individual stories are short but I took my time reading them because I wanted to think about each problem and solution before moving on to the next. If you’re interested in what makes people tick, I think The Examined Life is worth a read. I bought the Kindle edition.