iOS app Android app

Pavel Somov, Ph.D.
Pavel Somov, Ph.D. is a licensed psychologist and the author of "Reinventing the Meal," "Eating the Moment," "Present Perfect," and "The Lotus Effect." He is also the co-author of "Smoke-Free Smoke Break." He is in private practice in Pittsburgh, PA. Pavel's website is

Entries by Pavel Somov, Ph.D.

Andreas Lubitz: Narcissism, Not Depression

(22) Comments | Posted March 30, 2015 | 8:54 AM

When I read about the crash of the Flight 4U 9525 in the Alps, particularly, about the 8 minute long ominous silence from the cockpit and that even breath, I had a clinical hypothesis: narcissism. I shared this with a fellow psychologist, who said: "Why?! Maybe it was a psychotic...

Read Post

Anger Management Is Fear Management

(0) Comments | Posted November 4, 2013 | 12:55 PM

I see anger as essentially a form of fear. And I see anger management as essentially a form of fear management. There are true tigers and there are paper tigers, true threats and symbolic/conditioned threats. Nobody needs to be taught how to fear a real tiger: that's hard-wired and taken...

Read Post

Beyond Eating, Beyond Money

(2) Comments | Posted October 30, 2013 | 3:44 PM

Dostoyevsky once described money as "coined liberty" (1915, 16). Indeed, money is independence.

But what is money?

All money is reducible to one and the same currency: energy. That's what flows through us, what moves us, and what motivates us. Money energizes because money is energy. The American greenback is...

Read Post

Eating Is Rebirth

(0) Comments | Posted October 13, 2013 | 5:30 PM

To eat is to recreate yourself -- literally, not metaphorically.

Each meal is the beginning of a metabolic rebirth. The physical you that you currently are is about to die as you replace yourself with a new you that you are about to create with the help of what you...

Read Post


(0) Comments | Posted October 11, 2013 | 3:02 PM

I want to share a vision of where we are heading, as a world. When I say "vision," I don't mean to say that I literally saw something. I just mean to say that I want to share some thoughts on where we might be heading as a world. But,...

Read Post

Collapse Your Favorite Duality

(5) Comments | Posted October 8, 2013 | 10:39 AM

How do people get better (existentially healthier)? That is the question that I ask myself a lot. In the course of my clinical work as a psychologist I keep looking for formulas and models and recipes of wellbeing, for ways and pathways and roads to psychological sovereignty. Early in my...

Read Post

Breaking Good 2

(0) Comments | Posted October 1, 2013 | 4:45 PM

A couple of days ago I wrote:

Watched the latest episode of Breaking Bad -- one more to go.

Time to project my worldview on this epic mess.

There is no evil here.

Walter is clear: I made mistakes but my motives were innocent -- I was just trying to...

Read Post

Breaking Good

(0) Comments | Posted September 27, 2013 | 7:14 AM

Watched the latest episode of "Breaking Bad" - one more to go.

Time to project my worldview on this epic mess.

There is no evil here.

Walter is clear: I made mistakes but my motives were innocent - I was just trying to take care of my family.

And he...

Read Post

Potemkin Shambhala

(0) Comments | Posted January 24, 2013 | 3:03 PM

Chances are you've heard the phrase "Potemkin village" -- a facade of prosperity built for show (a brilliant PR scam by Russian minister Potemkin to fool Empress Catherine II during her tour of Russian countryside in 1787). What you probably haven't appreciated is the semantic irony of this phrase. Zhit...

Read Post

3-D Pizza Printer and the Present Shock

(0) Comments | Posted December 26, 2012 | 11:00 AM

A couple of weeks ago I wrote up the following fake news story (just for kicks):

3-D Pizza Printer

Hewlett-Packard (HP) and Pizza Hut (PH) are rumored to have partnered to develop the first ever 3-D pizza printer. The HP/PH Pizza Printer (HP/PH-PP) is positioned to revolutionize...

Read Post

'Take It All': a Mandelian Display of the Machiavellian

(0) Comments | Posted December 12, 2012 | 4:37 PM

I've long suspected that Howie Mandel is a social provocateur, a rascal sage that tries to show us us. If you've seen the last (second) episode of "Take It All" then you know what I am talking about. The lessons are simple: when you try to screw others there is...

Read Post

A Neural Namaste in Nearly Real Time

(0) Comments | Posted December 4, 2012 | 8:00 AM

1:27 a.m. The baby has been crying, so I am awake. Downstairs, I sit to read. I see a stink bug on the floor. Correction: I see a fellow neural colony inside a stink bug body form. (I am relating to it: The neurons inside this insect are...

Read Post

Metabolize This!

(0) Comments | Posted November 24, 2012 | 3:56 AM

We tend to think of metabolism in purely physiological terms. I invite you to think of metabolism as information processing. Take the act of eating, for example. We can think of eating in purely physiological, metabolic terms -- or we can think of eating as an informational process in which...

Read Post

Next Economy, Buddhist Economy

(21) Comments | Posted November 12, 2012 | 3:00 PM

November 6 2012, the day we were expected to vote on the economy, is behind us. And so is the year of apocalyptic partisanship. The year of promises of new economy is still ahead.

I usually don't mess with economics. The last time I spoke on the topic was when...

Read Post

A Namaste of Metabolic Interdependence

(0) Comments | Posted October 17, 2012 | 2:30 PM

All life distinguishes "inside" from "outside," or "self" from "nonself." (I call this "SkinThink.") This is the fundamental duality of existence. This dichotomy, this distinction, this bias, this sapience is the software of living. Life (in order to begin, in order to continue) is self-preserving and, therefore, self-serving....

Read Post

A Reinvented Meal: First Course -- Relaxation

(17) Comments | Posted October 7, 2012 | 11:09 AM

Whereas a mindless meal begins with turning on the TV and zoning out, the mindful meal is a total body-mind self-care event that begins with a first course of relaxation. There are several good reasons for using relaxation as the first course:

  • Relaxation is restorative, grounding, and centering
  • It
Read Post

Understanding Emotional Eating

(19) Comments | Posted May 11, 2011 | 9:35 AM

Emotional eating is misunderstood and often unnecessarily demonized. However, emotional eating -- that is, eating to feel good, often termed "compulsive eating" -- isn't the problem. It's emotional overeating and mindless emotional eating that can be both psychologically and physically unhealthy. Emotional eating works as a coping strategy and stress...

Read Post

Reality at Its Practical (Not Theoretical) Best

(16) Comments | Posted April 3, 2011 | 5:11 AM

There are two ways to look at yourself and reality: a) dualistically -- as either perfect or imperfect, or b) nondualistically -- as neither perfect nor imperfect. You have a choice of psychological software: seeing the world as a discrepancy between "what is" and "what should be," or seeing the...

Read Post

Self-Definition Is Self-Limitation

(0) Comments | Posted February 24, 2011 | 1:05 PM

The question of "What am I?" may lead to self-objectification or to self-liberation. Which path would you take? How would you answer it? By saying something along the lines of "I am this" or "I am that" or "I am such and such"? I hope not.

Understand the self-limiting meaning...

Read Post

American Am-ness

(4) Comments | Posted January 22, 2011 | 9:13 AM

Some thoughts prompted by the divisive (i.e. dualistic, dichotomous, all-or-nothing) rhetoric and the Chinese visit...

The real threat to America (as I see it through my limited mind-lens) is not an economical one or a geopolitical one but a psychological one, not from outside but from within.

America is undergoing...

Read Post