Ask a Climate Psychologist: Advice Column #1

Dear Climate Psychologist, My partner and I are beginning to have conversations about having kids, but I’m quite pessimistic and extremely worried about our future. Why would I want to bring a child into this world, right now? Imagining the future they would grow up in fills me with terror. When I have tried we’ve …

Self Help for the Climate Emergency–Announcing my book!

My friends– I am excited to tell you that Facing the Climate Emergency: How to Transform Yourself with Climate Truth is available online & in stores now. *All proceeds go to Climate Mobilization. There is also an audiobook, which I recorded myself 🙂  Are you feeling increasingly depressed about the future? Terrified? Enraged? Helpless? Facing …

Grieving the Future you Thought you Had: Excerpt of Facing the Climate Emergency

I’ve published an excerpt from my forthcoming book “Facing the Climate Emergency: How to Transform Yourself with Climate Truth” on Common Dreams. Where do you see yourself in 10 years? In 20? Perhaps you plan to be advancing in your career, married, with children or retired, living near the beach, traveling often. Whatever it is—have …

Climate Truth and the New York Magazine’s “The Uninhabitable Earth”

Last Week, David Wallace-Wells published a cover story in New York Magazine, “The Uninhabitable Earth,” on some of the worst-case scenarios that the climate crisis could cause by the end of this century. It describes killer heat waves, crippling agricultural failures, a devastated economy, plagues, resource wars, and more. It has been read more than …

Leading the Public into Emergency Mode: A New Strategy for the Climate Movement

  I published Leading the Public into Emergency Mode: a New Strategy for the Climate Movement in 2016. I published an updated version, Leading the Public into Emergency Mode: Introducing the Climate Emergency Movement in 2019, reflecting the development that a climate emergency movement, as I imagined years before and attempted to lay groundwork for, had finally arrived. …

“Moral Power for Climate Action” Video from Climate Collaborative

This is a Climate Psychologist milestone! While I have, until now, posted only original content, this video, by Climate Collaborative provides a fantastic reason to change it up. Moral Power for Climate Action From the video: “When I look at my own 3-year old daughter, I almost never allow myself to think about climate change and …

Climate Change: It’s Personal. Want to be Involved in an Upcoming Facebook Group?

Climate change is generally discussed from an objective, scientific, fact-based angle. But what of our subjective, psychological experience of climate change? What about the emotions it stirs, the relationships it alters, and the hopes and fears it inspires? To help explore these questions, I am excited to announce the (upcoming) Facebook group, “Climate Change: It’s …

Terror, Hatred, Despair, and Hope Must Co-Exist: Reflections on a Discussion with Believers in Near Term Human Extinction

Something remarkable happened a few days ago in the Facebook Group “Global Warming Fact of the Day,” (GWFoTD) something that I think there is much to learn from, especially regarding the emotional and psychological elements of climate change. Summary of events What happened is this: the group — which has over 2,500 members, many of …

Best Metaphors for the Climate Crisis

Use of Metaphors in Therapy and beyond. Therapists, especially of the psychoanalytic persuasion, love and value metaphors. Metaphors are vivid, creative interpretations of reality that communicate on multiple levels. Like dreams, metaphors integrate rational thought with fantasy, imagery and emotion; they are simultaneously rational and irrational. Therapists use metaphors to explain psychological concepts, like, “You …

Physical vs. Psychological Growth: The Teenage Dilemma!

It has been interesting to read political and environmental critiques of economic growth, coming from a psychology background. Gus Speth, for example, devotes a good portion of “Bridge at the End of the World” to arguing against the doctrine of infinite economic growth. Environmentalists and progressives decry the evil of economic growth, often calling it …

Couple’s Therapy: Tough Love for the Feuding Naomi Klein and Joe Romm

Reading the recent acrimony between Naomi Klein and Joe Romm reminded me of conducting therapy with couples. Here is the scenario that it reminds me of: A middle-aged married couple is distraught over their young adult son who seems relentlessly bent on self destruction. He abuses drugs and alcohol, is frequently involved in violent conflicts, …

The Moral Imperative of Hope and the Wasteland of Climate Cynicism (W/ Glory Clip)

Since making The Climate Psychologist public a few days ago, and publishing my article on Living in Climate Truth on Alternet, I have been extremely pleased with readers’ responses. People have engaged in several ways: commenting, emailing me, and sharing articles on Facebook and Twitter. One reader even offered to help design the App that …

Meet the Other Climate Psychologists– TIME Article on the Psychology of Climate Change Denial

Last week, TIME ran an article on the contributions that psychologists are making to understanding inaction on climate change. This is a good opportunity to acknowledge the work that other psychologists have contributed to this issue, and also to delineate differences in thinking between them and myself—particularly, that I think the focus on “individual action” …

The Emotions of Climate Change: A Guide

The vast majority of reporting on climate change is about data and facts. Temperatures have risen by this amount, glaciers have melted by that percent, Hurricane Sandy has cost this many billion dollars of damage. This type of discussion, though obviously necessary, speaks almost purely to the intellect. It fails to address what changes to …