Irvin D. Yalom Quotes

Who is Irvin D. Yalom?

Irvin David Yalom is an American existential psychiatrist who is emeritus professor of psychiatry at Stanford University, as well as author of both fiction and nonfiction.

Born June 13, 1931

Books by Irvin D. Yalom


Best 58 Quotes by Irvin D. Yalom | Page 1 of 2

“If one is to love oneself one must behave in ways that one can admire.”

“If you want to choose the pleasure of growth, prepare yourself for some pain.”

“Live your life to the fullest; and then, and only then, die. Don't leave any unlived life behind.”

“Living safely is dangerous.”

“The act of revealing oneself fully to another and still being accepted may be the major vehicle of therapeutic help.”

“When people don't have any curiosity about themselves, that is always a bad sign.”

Existential Psychotherapy Quotes

“Mature love is loving, not being loved.”

Existential Psychotherapy

“The horror of death is ubiquitous and so great that a considerable amount of life energy is spent denying it.”

Existential Psychotherapy

“To love means to be actively concerned for the life and the growth of another.”

Existential Psychotherapy

“To the extent that one is responsible for one's life, one is alone.”

Existential Psychotherapy

Love's Executioner Quotes

“As a general rule, the less one’s sense of life fulfillment, the greater one’s death anxiety.”

Love's Executioner

“Four major existential concerns—death, meaning in life, isolation, and freedom—play a crucial role in the inner life of every human being.”

Love's Executioner

“One of the great paradoxes of life is that self-awareness breeds anxiety.”

Love's Executioner

“People who feel empty never heal by merging with another incomplete person. On the contrary, two broken-winged birds coupled into one make for clumsy flight. No amount of patience will help it fly; and, ultimately, each must be pried from the other, and wounds separately splinted.”

Love's Executioner

Products by Irvin D. Yalom

“Some people are wish-blocked, knowing neither what they feel nor what they want. Without opinions, without impulses, without inclinations, they become parasites on the desires of others.”

Love's Executioner

“When you meet someone, you know all about him. On subsequent meetings, you blind yourself to your own wisdom.”

Love's Executioner

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“The task we must set for ourselves is not to feel secure, but to be able to tolerate insecurity.”

The Art of Loving


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Lying on the Couch Quotes

“Nonetheless, the past is part of your present consciousness — it forms the spectacles through which you experience the present.”

Lying on the Couch

“Only the wounded healer can truly heal.”

Lying on the Couch

“Sometimes fate puts us in a position where right is wrong.”

Lying on the Couch

Staring at the Sun Quotes

“Although the physicality of death destroys us, the idea of ​​death saves us.”

Staring at the Sun

“Fulfill yourself, realize your potential, live boldly and fully. Then, and only then, die without regret.”

Staring at the Sun

“It is not the experiences themselves, but the way we interpret them that determine the quality of our lives.”

Staring at the Sun

“Self-awareness is a supreme gift, a treasure as precious as life. This is what makes us human. But it comes with a costly price: the wound of mortality. Our existence is forever shadowed by the knowledge that we will grow, blossom, and, inevitably, diminish and die.”

Staring at the Sun

“The more unlived your life, the greater your death anxiety. The more you fail to experience your life fully, the more you will fear death.”

Staring at the Sun

“The pain is there; when you close one door on it, it knocks to come in somewhere else.”

Staring at the Sun

“Would you be willing to live this past year again and again for all eternity?”

Staring at the Sun

The Schopenhauer Cure Quotes

“A person of high, rare mental gifts who is forced into a job which is merely useful is like a valuable vase decorated with the most beautiful painting and then used as a kitchen pot.”

The Schopenhauer Cure

“He who would be everything cannot be anything.”

The Schopenhauer Cure

Products by Irvin D. Yalom

“Life is a miserable thing. I have decided to spend my life thinking about it.”

The Schopenhauer Cure

“Live right and have faith that good things will flow from you even if you never learn of them.”

The Schopenhauer Cure

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“Because drugs have become so profitable, major medical journals rarely publish studies on non-drug treatments of mental health problems. Practitioners who explore treatments are typically marginalized as “alternative.” Studies of non-drug treatments are rarely funded unless they involve so-called manualized protocols, where patients and therapists go through narrowly prescribed sequences that allow little fine-tuning to individual patients’ needs. Mainstream medicine is firmly committed to a better life through chemistry, and the fact that we can actually change our own physiology and inner equilibrium by means other than drugs is rarely considered.”

The Body Keeps the Score


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