Connection, Compassion, and Wholeness

Since the world lost Robin Williams, attention has once again turned to the treatment of depression. This is not another blog about that. If I were to write about Robin Williams, I’d start with how sad I am that all those significant obstacles overwhelmed him.

In this blog entry, I wanted to share some thoughts about the importance of wholeness, of seeing and extending care to the whole person. In almost 30 years of experience as a mental health professional, I have rarely seen anyone who had just one issue, traumatic or not. We are complex individuals, and managing the complex choreography of our lives can overwhelm us. Becoming overly focused on one aspect can mean that other important parts of us go without necessary attention.

Health insurance for psychotherapy has contributed to people being underserved in their search to feel happy, because it is based on allopathic medical systems where there is a primary diagnosis and a treatment for that diagnosis. Depression? There’s a protocol for a given number of sessions and a certain type of medication. Anxiety? Again, there’s a prescribed protocol and a range of given medications. I’m not saying having a direction isn’t helpful, and I’m not saying medication isn’t helpful. I am just suggesting this approach does not give people enough of what they need. Connection with a caring other who can assist in you making your own best map for your own best care honors your individuality while recognizing the importance of our interdependence with each other and our planet.

Connection and caring

Studies now show that the virtual connection of social media as the primary mode of personal interaction, and the hours spent surfing the web as an activity actually increases anxiety and depression. Studies now show that face-to-face compassionate connection is key to a person’s whole-hearted healing. When human relationships are integrated with movement, eating well, and activity that is creative and productive, the whole person is served, healed, and can move forward with well-being and being well in the world.


Let’s not lose sight of our whole selves and the happiness that can come from keeping all our parts in balance.