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Psychology professor authors first book

Upper Iowa University adjunct professor of psychology Dr. Larry Katz has authored his debut book, “The Joy Pyramid: A Journey from Trauma to Triumph,” based in part on his own close call with a distressful life experience.

The aspiring author had researched areas of interest for many years, including the concept of happiness and how people create it in their lives. His work the last 11 years as a psychologist for veterans struggling with trauma memories heightened his interest in the subject. It became increasingly clear to him that focusing on the road ahead toward joy is often more effective than attending to a client’s difficult past.

“When I experienced a potentially tragic situation myself but responded with a strong sense of confidence and contentment, it left me asking, “How do we struggle through life’s trials and still create joy rather than fall into despair?” Katz said. “I reflected on what I’ve learned in life and as a psychologist for the past 30 years, updated my understanding of what we know about happiness from both a scientific and a spiritual perspective, and just started writing. The whole process was cathartic, easy and joyful. I related my ideas to a well-accepted model of healing and growth and ‘The Joy Pyramid’ was born.”

Katz, who resides in Dothan, Alabama, notes that writing the book helped him understand more clearly how he has developed resilience in his own life using specific strategies, and he then parlayed that into guidance to his clients and others to help them cope with traumas and hardship.

“I have always viewed myself as a naturally optimistic and joyful individual with a propensity for seeing the positive side of things, but writing this book clarified for me exactly how this happens and how it involves mind, body and soul,” Katz said. “The ‘Joy Pyramid’ breaks down to a 5-step process that anyone can apply to their lives, and I am so excited about sharing it. We all want to be happy, but we end up weighted down with anxiety, frustration and depression, because nobody gets through this life unscathed. I hope the reader finds that the book presents an enjoyable, easy read that explores how we can move through life’s struggles with passion and purpose.”

“The Joy Pyramid: A Journey from Trauma to Triumph” is currently available for purchase on Amazon. It will also be available through iTunes, Barnes and Noble and other venues.

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