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Why Smart People Hurt
A Guide for the Bright, the Sensitive, and the Creative
Eric Maisel
ISBN: 9781573246262
Book (Paperback)
Conari Press
5 1/2 x 8 1/2
256 pages
September 1, 2013


The challenges smart and creative people encounter—from scientific researchers, genius award winners, to bestselling novelists, Broadway actors, high-powered attorneys, and academics— often include anxiety, over-thinking, mania, sadness, and despair.

Specifically, the challenges that smart people face, including:

  • “racing brain syndrome”
  • living in an anti-intellectual culture
  • finding ideas worth loving
  • dealing with boredom and hypersensitivity
  • finding meaning in their lives and their work
  • struggling to achieve success

In Why Smart People Hurt, psychologist Dr. Eric Maisel draws on his many years of work with the best and the brightest to pinpoint these often devastating challenges and offer solutions based on the groundbreaking principles and practices of natural psychology.

His thoughtful strategies include using logic and creativity to cope with the problems of having a brain that goes into overdrive at the drop of a hat. With a series of questions at the end of each chapter, he guides the reader to create his or her own roadmap to a calm and meaningful life.

Why Smart People Hurt is a must-read for parents of gifted children as well as the millions of smart and creative people that are searching for a more meaningful life.

From the introduction: “A smart person has a desire to think, a need to think, and an ability to think. But the nature of family, school, and work, the structure of society, and the proclivities of the people around her often conspire to put out her intellectual fire.”

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Eric Maisel, Ph.D., is the author of more than 40 books in the areas of creativity, psychology, coaching, mental health, and cultural trends. He is a psychotherapist and creativity coach, and writes for Psychology Today and Professional Artist Magazine and presents workshops internationally. Visit him at
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