Jerrold Lee Shapiro, Ph.D.
Licensed Clinical Psychologist
Professor, Santa Clara University
Author & Speaker

5 star reviews of books


5.0 out of 5 stars
A Magnificent Journey With A Wise and Clear-Thinking Experienced Clinician

ByMichael Richfieldon January 28, 2016

Format: Paperback

A rare and sensitively written book that is both personal and scholarly. Shapiro succeeds in a highly original manner of ‘walking the talk.’ In particular, he writes in a manner that is both congruent with his theoretical perspective and yet takes his readers along in a ‘road less taken’ that led to his becoming a wise elder in the psychotherapeutic domain. His book represents a highly successful coupling of existential thinking and a down-to-earth, pragmatic approach to treatment while opening the reader’s mind to a wealth of clinical insight and life-long wisdom. Writing in an authentic, accessible, and cogent manner, Shapiro demonstrates how living life in an existential way informs his praxis as a clinician working across a wide swath of client populations. Ever mindful of the context that includes gender and culture, Pragmatic Existential Counseling and Psychotherapy is a tour de force presenting a brilliant and talented clinician’s hard won understandings and insights about counseling, psychotherapy, and living fully. I enthusiastically recommend this book for beginning and experienced clinicians as well as any 21st Century student of existentialism.

5.0 out of 5 stars

If you read only one book about psychotherapy this year, this is the one.

ByDr. Edon January 27, 2016

Format: Paperback

Colleagues ask me all the time to review their books. While I am always honored,
I never do so. I am making an exception. Dr. Jerrold Shapiro's Pragmatic Existential
Counseling and Psychotherapy is a superb book. Its portrayal of existential psychotherapy is lucid and accessible. That is reason enough to read this book. But the best parts of all are Dr. Shapiro's personal stories and the line by line depictions of his therapeutic interactions with his patients. This is really an outstanding professional memoir of a gifted clinician.
As a reader, you get to see very closely what he is thinking and feeling, what he does,
and how he does it. It's a fun read, an enlightening read, and an inspiring one. If you read only one book about psychotherapy this year, this is the one. Enjoy!

5.0 out of 5 stars
This intimate and engaging book provides a window into the mind of a brilliant and insightful researcher and clinician

ByIan C Fischeron January 19, 2016

Format: Paperback

As usual, Dr. Shapiro has produced an outstanding piece of writing. This intimate and engaging book provides a window into the mind of a brilliant and insightful researcher and clinician, affording one a front-row seat to some of the most touching moments of therapy. Thorough, encyclopedic, and refreshingly honest, "Pragmatic Existential Counseling and Psychotherapy" clearly and confidently maps out an effective approach to existential psychotherapy. Dr. Shapiro provides illuminating case studies, and makes sure to bookend complex philosophical ideas with easy-to-understand explanations and interpretations. This book is essential reading for all of those who hope to making counseling their profession, and for all those who hope to get the most out of life.
Dr. Shapiro stands on the shoulders of giants, elucidating and expanding upon the ideas of Viktor Frankl and Rollo May. But he also stands alone, earning his spot as one of the most influential and prolific existential thinkers alive today. This book is monumental and should not be missed.

Comment1 of 1 people found this helpful


on April 7, 2015

This is an extremely relevant, thoughtful, helpful, and engaging book to give to all your baby boomer friends as they turn whatever age they are turning. I have used it both professionally as a psychologist and personally as one of those baby boomers.
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on July 24, 2014
"Finding Meaning Facing Fears" is an insightful and thought-provoking look at the myriad of issues facing the so-called “Baby Boomers”. In a relatable and often humorous way, Dr. Shapiro produces a comprehensive account of the challenges and potentialities that accompany the beginning of the latter-half of life. Gently and eloquently, he guides readers through joys and sorrows, opportunities and tribulations, always taking care to suggest, not tell.
Although at its most specific a book about the autumn of life, "Finding Meaning Facing Fears" is relevant and profitable for any person going through transition. More than that, this book is useful for any person who wishes to nourish and invigorate his or her life. Put simply, this book is essential reading for all those hoping to become more fully human.
on July 24, 2014
The perfect word for this book is: Wise! It addresses the challenges, opportunities, and beauties of the autumn years of life in a way that everyone--absolutely everyone--can benefit from. It's not every day that reading a book makes you a better person. This one does.
on May 15, 2013
This book was one that was assigned to me in a class that I took regarding existential psychotherapy. I found it so compelling and well written that I gave it to my father as he is approaching retirement. Not only has he gotten a lot out of this book, both practically and in the big picture, but I (a 30 year old) have also.
Comment2 of 2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?
on August 27, 2012
Dr. Jerry Shapiro, Ph.D. has written a wonderful book about the Autumn Years, ages 45-65, that is actually very relevant for anyone over 45. Based upon 122 in-depth interviews, over 50 internet interviews, 40 years of his clinical practice as a psychologist and that of his colleagues (he is Professor and former Department Chair of Counseling Psychology at Santa Clara University), and a rich understanding of the literature, Facing Meaning Finding Fears is accessible, practical, eloquent, and wise. It is also very comprehensive--covering everything from different kinds of age to meaning to loss to relationships to the nature of time to retirement to recreation to health to spirituality to honoring our heroic selves. Ultimately, it is not only
accessible, practical, eloquent, and wise, it is also warm, reassuring, and
inspiring. It is outstanding. I give it my highest recommendation.
Comment3 of 3 people found this helpful
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