Vitality: A Psychiatrist's Answer to Life's Problems

By Richard Esser | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 1.
GETTING A KICK OUT OF LIVING

We know immediately and instinctively what getting a kick out of living is. We feel great. Everything is just rolling along in our lives. There is a pithiness and succinctness in that expression which captures the qualities of enthusiasm, zest and high spirits in living. That is how most of us would want our living to be. How to get that kind of living is the central theme of this work.

When we get a kick out of living, there is a special character to the beginning and end of each day. We get up eager to meet the new day, eager to see what new experiences and new rewards that day will bring into our living. We go to bed at night with a sense of satisfaction that the day was well spent, that it brought just those new experiences and new rewards which added to the enrichment of our living.

One might well object that living simply cannot be that way all the time, that such a description makes sense when life is going great and everything is clicking, but what about all the other times? One can’t live on Cloud Nine every day. What about all those other days when one may feel overwhelmed by problems, setbacks, frustrations and all the other agonies in living?

Putting that objection in a somewhat different light leads to a different answer: How does one get a kick out of living in the face of all the severe problems that can and will crop up? The answer to that question pinpoints

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