Before we get started, I wanted you to know that Facing Depression, my new course all about depression –  what causes it and what you can do about it – is available now, exclusively on Himalaya Learning. Himalaya Learning is an audio learning platform that provides an extensive library of courses straight to your ears from the world’s greatest minds like Malcolm Gladwell, Tim Ferriss, Seth Godin, and more. To listen to this course and others like it, go to and enter promo code OVERCOMING at checkout to get your first 14 days free. I hope to see you there!

Today’s episode, sponsored by BetterHelp, covers two topics – each one of them important to understand. The first topic is what positive psychologists (those that study what makes life worth living) call languishing – as its touted as the major emotion caused by the pandemic. What is languishing? It’s defined as a lack of well-being – or as one definition put it, an absence of a positive emotion about life.  Researchers in the positive psychology camp say it’s different than actual depression and identify how you can go from languishing to flourishing or true happiness by stabilizing your life with these five pillars  – focusing on positive emotions, being highly engaged, having quality relationships, identifying with something meaningful or broader than yourself, and feeling a sense of accomplishment.

The listener email is particularly poignant: it’s from a woman whose child died a decade ago. And her grief doesn’t seem to be remitting in any way.  I’ll answer her using the words of other mothers who’ve lost their children.

Important Links:

BetterHelp, the #1 online therapy provider, has a special offer for you now!

Article about Martin Seligman and the Five Pillars of Happiness

Article by Corey Keyes

NY Times article by organization psychologist Adam Grant on languishing

Six areas of psychological well-being

Episode 90 of SelfWork: Interview with Dr. Susan Averitt about grieving the death of a child

Best Online Grief Support Groups

HuffPost Article on Grieving the Death of a Child

You can hear more about mental health and many other topics by listening to my podcast, SelfWork with Dr. Margaret Rutherford. Subscribe to my website and receive one weekly newsletter including my weekly blog post and podcast! If you’d like to join my FaceBook closed group, then click here and answer the membership questions! Welcome!

My book entitled Perfectly Hidden Depression has arrived and you can order here! Its message is specifically for those with a struggle with strong perfectionism or need for control which acts to mask underlying emotional pain. But the many self-help techniques described can be used by everyone who chooses to begin to address emotions, long hidden away, that are clouding and sabotaging your current life.

And there’s a new way to send me a message! You can record by clicking below and ask your question or make a comment. You’ll have 90 seconds to do so and that time goes quickly. By recording, you’re giving SelfWork (and me) permission to use your voice on the podcast. I’ll look forward to hearing from you!

Image courtesy of Pixels.


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