EP58: How I Healed My Midlife Crisis With Christopher Ryan


About Chris:

Christopher and his work have been featured just about everywhere, including: MSNBC, Fox News, CNN, NPR, The New York Times, The Times of London, Playboy, The Washington Post, Time, Newsweek, The Atlantic, Outside, El PaisLa Vanguardia, Salon, Seed, and Big Think. 

Chris has been a featured speaker at TED, SXSW, The Festival of Dangerous Ideas at the Sydney Opera House, and the Einstein Forum in Pottsdam and appeared in well over a dozen documentary films.

Even before co-authoring the New York Times best-seller, Sex at Dawn: How We Mate, Why We Stray, and What it Means for Modern Relationships (translated into 15 languages), with his wife, Cacilda Jethá, MD, Chris was on a wild ride. After receiving a BA in English and American literature in 1984 he spent the next two decades traveling around the world, pausing in unexpected places to work at decidedly odd jobs (e.g., gutting salmon in Alaska, teaching English to prostitutes in Bangkok and self-defense to land-reform activists in Mexico, managing commercial real-estate in New York’s Diamond District, helping Spanish physicians translate and publish their research). In his mid-30s, Chris decided to return to school to pursue doctoral studies in Psychology at Saybrook Graduate School, in San Francisco, CA.

Drawing upon his multi-cultural experience, Chris' research focused on distinguishing the human from the cultural, first by focusing on shamanism and ethnobotony—studying how various societies interact with altered states of consciousness and the sacred plants that provoke them—and later, by looking at similarly diverse cultural perspectives on sexuality. His doctoral dissertation was a multi-disciplinary investigation of prehistoric human sexual behavior, guided by the world-renowned psychologist, Stanley Krippner.

Chris's latest book is Civilized to Death: Why Everything's Amazing but Nobody's Happy, and he hosts a weekly podcast, called Tangentially Speaking, featuring conversations with interesting people, ranging from famous comics to bank robbers to drug smugglers to porn stars to authors to rattlesnake experts. Check it out here.

In this episode:

  • We discussed how podcasting is connecting people in unique ways and bringing back a sense of community that we've lost in the technology age.
  • The thing that correlates most with life satisfaction is whether or not a person feels they're apart of a community that's supportive and loving.
  • We discussed the book, " Lost Connections" and how there are more people in the US that are living alone than ever and how this relates to the collapse of community in the western world.
  • The sweaty T-shirt Study
  • We share our own experience of going through a midlife crisis.
  • A midlife crisis is in a way always happening;  it can be a journey to knowing your inner self through a crisis of self and who you think you are or were.
  • The point at which Chris redefined what success looked like for him.
What makes us human is each other.
— Christopher Ryan

Connect With Chris:

Website:  https://chrisryanphd.com/

Podcast:  https://chrisryanphd.com/tangentially-speaking/

Shrimp Parade:  https://chrisryanphd.com/the-tripodcast/

 In this picture, my dear husband and friend Chris Ryan

In this picture, my dear husband and friend Chris Ryan


Chris's Books:



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