Groundbreaking Therapy Book That Elaborates on Ego Psychologist Erik Erikson’s Work
Dr. Emeka Anyiam is the Founder/CEO of Embridge Counseling Services, LLC and has been a licensed therapist of 10 years in the Daytona Beach, FL area. In his new book "Embracing Life", Dr. Emeka Anyiam focuses on the eight stages of life as defined by famous ego psychologist Erik Erikson and elaborates on his work by incorporating contemporary issues. Here are some of the questions Dr. Emeka Anyiam answered in response to me asking about his book.
Interview with Dr. Anyiam
What was your inspiration to write “Embracing Life”?
I am a marriage/ family therapist and see a lot of clients, both self-admitted and assigned to me by the state. I usually meet for the first time with my clients when they are having a meltdown, or something is going on with their lives. This made me want to write something comprehensive to encourage people to become the best versions of themselves. Since its impossible to reach everybody…I thought I should write a book.
Can you tell me briefly about the eight stages you discuss in your book?
When I separate life into 8 stages, I am simply following the work that originated from Sigmund Freud that was later elaborated on by Erik Erikson. There are 8 stages to life that one must go through from birth to death, and if there is a conflict in one of the stages, a person can get stuck, which causes lots of anxiety and depression.
When I talk about the eight stages in my book, I use more relational examples throughout the eight stages, such as family, marriage, and friendships that expand on Erikson’s work.
In writing “Embracing Life,” I also went deeper than Erikson. He believes that trust versus mistrust begins in infancy, while I believe it starts from conception. I had the privilege of doing research on women when they were pregnant and learned that the father/partner must be respondent to the baby from conception until birth.
What percentage of the population do you believe get stuck in these stages?
I would say about 99.5% of the population is susceptible to getting stuck in one of these stages of growth. It’s mixed as to what stage they can get stuck on. When working with kids, as I usually do, I use a system called ABC, where I first identify the antecedent of their problem, categorize their behavior, and explore the consequences. Everything goes back to the parents. If we can’t stabilize the parents, we can’t stabilize the children.
I’m interested in learning more about your therapeutic intervention that you promote with your book. So, for example, what advice would you give a reader who had trouble dealing with adulthood?
First and foremost, we have them calm down. We would allow them to process their feelings without any judgment…. we’re think it’s important to let them cry it out or go through a meltdown, as long as they don’t completely unpack and set up camp there, metaphorically speaking. Secondly, we try to get the patient to accept the circumstances. This is often the most difficult stage, as it’s met with denial. If we can’t accept the challenge, we can’t move forward. But we try to accommodate them by helping them with the third stage, which is refocusing. At this point, a person is just overwhelmed with negatives, so we try to get them out of this stage and refocus on this stage with their strengths to meet the fourth stage, which is developing a course of action.
Can you elaborate on your book’s subtitle, “Surviving the Struggle by Learning to Embrace the Experience”?
I believe you have the right to have meltdowns, you have the right to go crazy, but at some point, you have to accept the circumstances. This goes back to one of the quotes I have on the back of my book, which says, “Remember the times you felt like you wouldn’t survive or succeed? Guess what - you did, and you can do it again.”
Have you used any of your own life experiences to contribute to this book?
Yes…I refer to lots of my own life experiences in this book.
Where can prospective readers people find your book?
They can find it on my website, Amazon, Booksamillion.com, Thriftbooks.com, Alibris.com, and eventually other platforms such as iBooks and Barnesandnoble.com in the near future. On my website
“Embracing Life” is about the challenges we all face as we move through them. As Dr. Anyiam how we can resolve those inner conflicts and lead happier lives. He is currently working on a second book, called “Embracing Adoption: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly”
For further information visit: https://www.embridgecounselingservices.com