A Next Big Idea Club Winter 2021 Must Read
The ability to connect with another person's physical and emotional state is one of the most elusive interpersonal skills to develop, but this book shows you just how approachable it can be.
In our fast-paced, tech-obsessed lives, rarely do we pay genuine, close attention to one another. With all that’s going on in the world and the never-ending demands of our daily lives, most of us are too stressed and preoccupied to be able to really listen to each other. Often, we misunderstand or talk past each other. Many of us are left wishing that the people in our lives could really listen, understand, and genuinely connect with us.
Based on cutting-edge neuroscience research and years of clinical work, psychiatrist Edward Brodkin and therapist Ashley Pallathra take us on a wide-ranging and surprising journey through fields as diverse as social neuroscience and autism research, music performance, pro basketball, and tai chi. They use these stories to introduce the four pillars of human connection: Relaxed Awareness, Listening, Understanding, and Mutual Responsiveness. Accessible and engaging, Missing Each Other explains the science, research, and biology underlying these pillars of human connection and provides exercises through which readers can improve their own skills and abilities in each.
“An absolutely compelling perspective on the science and practice of authentic human connection. If you want to know how and why to get in sync with other people, this book is for you. I absolutely loved it!”—Angela Duckworth, Ph.D., author of Grit; Founder and CEO, Character Lab; Rosa Lee and Egbert Chang Professor, University of Pennsylvania
“In a world dominated by divided attention, the people who stand out are the ones who make us feel like the only person in the room. This book is a thoughtful exploration of how we can strengthen our connections by becoming more attuned to those around us.”—Adam Grant, Ph.D., New York Times bestselling author of Think Again and Give and Take, and host of the chart-topping TED podcast WorkLife
“If you want more love and meaning in your life, you must read this book. Brodkin and Pallathra give expression to an inchoate yearning more and more people feel today, yet do not know how to fulfill—how to make true contact, with another, which the authors call ‘attunement.’ Combining rigorous scholarship with heart and soul, Brodkin and Pallathra break down the four different pillars that make up a meaningful connection, and show readers, through concrete exercises, how to build those pillars so that we each may have richer, deeper relationships with loved ones, friends, and colleagues.”—Emily Esfahani Smith, author of The Power of Meaning
“If ever there was a book written for our time, Missing Each Other is it. Paradoxically, all the modern communications technology that has proven so important in the midst of a global pandemic has only reminded us how much we actually miss each other. This book will help us learn those lessons as we escape from our walls and screens.”—Jonathan Moreno, Ph.D., author of Everybody Wants to Go to Heaven but Nobody Wants to Die; David and Lyn Silfen University Professor, University of Pennsylvania
"In Missing Each Other, the authors, Edward Brodkin and Ashley Pallathra, share how attunement to ourselves and others can have a positive impact on our lives. How often have you walked away from a conversation and wondered how it turned into a disagreement? This book shares insight and activities to help understand each of our parts in creating communications and connections. Especially useful in the time of technology and social distancing."—Sharon Salzberg, author of Lovingkindness and Real Change
“They write with a passionate, encouraging, come-and-join-me quality, showing how we can find attunement through the exercise of its basic components…A dynamic approach to focusing, connecting, and developing mutual understanding.”—Kirkus
"Brodkin and Pallathra share helpful advice for fostering meaningful connections in their excellent debut…This refreshing take, devoid of trendy self-care speak, acts as a soothing salve for those anxious in social situations. The result is a highly informed guide on how to be fully present and open with others."—Publishers Weekly
About the Authors:
Edward S. ("Ted") Brodkin, M.D. is Associate Professor of Psychiatry with tenure at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. He is the Founder and Director of the Adult Autism Spectrum Program at Penn Medicine. He has been honored by Philadelphia Magazine as a Top Doctor in the Philadelphia region for 14 years, and has been honored as one of America's Top Doctors by Castle Connolly Medical for the past 13 years. He received his A.B. Magna Cum Laude from Harvard College and his M.D. from Harvard Medical School. He did his residency in psychiatry and a fellowship in neuroscience research at the Yale University School of Medicine, as well as a fellowship in genetics research at Princeton University. His research lab and clinical program at the University of Pennsylvania focus on social neuroscience and the autism spectrum in adults.
Ashley A. Pallathra, M.A. is a clinical researcher and therapist. After graduating with a bachelor's degree with Distinction in Neuroscience from the University of Pennsylvania, she received a Master's degree in Psychology and is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. She is the author of numerous published research articles and a book chapter in the fields of autism research, social neuroscience, and social-emotional functioning in youth. Her current research and clinical work center around strengthening social competence and building resilience in children and adolescents from diverse community settings.
Ted and Ashley have collaborated since 2014, when they first worked together at the University of Pennsylvania. Through their shared interests in neuroscience, psychology, social and emotional development, music, and martial arts, and their passion for making the world feel a little less lonely, Missing Each Other was born. Learn more at MissingEachOther.com.