Friday, February 12, 2016

Endorsements from Professional Associates and Readers

The world of mental health, both clinical diagnosis and treatment, is bewildering at best. Complicating the picture further are the stereotypes imposed on those who most need support from their families and communities. While well meaning community leaders, scientists and mental health practitioners can press forward with changing the quality of lives for those challenged by the extremes of mental experiences, it takes the honesty, bravery and intellect of someone like Brad Esau to bridge the gap for those in need of understanding and guidance. Brad isn't a trained scientist or clinician. Brad is a compassionate and intelligent individual who can speak directly to the experiences of some diagnosed with a mental illness. Whatever your diagnosis or lack thereof, there's something about the raw honesty and well thought out advice in Brad's conversations that will help raise the quality of your life. I recommend that you add Brad's work to your reading regimen.

Jeffery Mercer,
Clinical Psychologist

I came across Brad and his blog about two years ago (fall of 2013) and have known him and followed his blog since then. From the enormous creativeness of the blog's name to the meticulous and well worded prose translated from very difficult science content, there is nothing not to love about Brad Esau's blog, Taming the Polar Bears.

Working with neuroscientists on a daily basis, I've been taught to distinguish the real from the fake and to appreciate the enormous abilities it requires to sort through the paths of the mind as well as searching for the truths that explain many of our lives. 

Brad explores bipolar and other mental health disorders with a rarely seen authenticity of mind, spirit and scientific integrity. In my opinion, his material is worth archiving and you can't get any better than that.

Christy Johnson, Business Manager, Society for Mind and Brain Sciences

Brad Esau is one of the most remarkable persons in the neuroscience scene dealing with mental health disorders. It's his personal perspective and experience, powered by a tremendous amount of neuroscience knowledge, that invite the reader to walk in his shoes and to better understand what so-called mental health disorders are and what they mean.

It's not primarily a scientific interest to understand the matter. Brad's "Taming The Polar Bears" is first and foremost written based on the burning desire to understand what's going on in his brain and to develop and share principles and models how to live with those mental health disorders.

Brad's unique perspective of neuroscience, knowledge, experience and expertise, and his wisdom from walking the path - leveraged by his passion for writing - make a huge difference and create a very specific value for the readers of Taming The Polar Bears."

From my first interactions with Brad in early 2013, I could sense his passion for neuroscience.  Over the last several years I have seen him take that passion and blend it with an unmatched discipline to delve deep into the world of understanding the brain, its functions and human behaviour.  Brad leverages his own personal history of bipolar disorder as a resource as he takes readers on a first person tour of the working of the mind on his blog Taming the Polar Bears.  He has done years of meticulous research into the disorder and other aspects of neuroscience through a combination of reading research articles and daily conversations with the leading minds in the field.  I continue to be impressed with his insights and daily diligence and look forward to his continued contributions to the field.

Mani Saint-Victor, M.D.

I heartily recommend Brad Esau's wonderful and courageous blog full of wisdom, insight, compassion, and brilliance. We all struggle with something or another in our lives. Brad lays bare his own journey so that we can learn and grow alongside him. I am moved to the very core of my being by Brad's courage and generosity. 

One of the things that impresses me most about Brad is the inexhaustible personal integrity he brings to his struggles and his efforts to understand them as fully and deeply as possible. Brad plumbs the depths of neuroscience literature, consults experts, and subjects conventional pharmacological treatment approaches and his own thought processes to equally fierce scrutiny. He is unflinching in his honesty, unflagging in his persistence, and deeply committed to sharing his hard won understanding of the complex, interconnected biological and psychological processes that drive bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and mitochondrial disease. 

Rebecca McMillan

Founder, The Brain Cafe

Senior Editor | The Creativity Post

Founder & Ambassador, GHF Online

It's difficult to translate the complexities of the brain to layman's language so I read how different people do it and get ideas on how to frame things in the classroom to make it understandable. Yours (Brad's) is a good approach. So many people - smart people like yourself - are brought into the neurosciences because they wrestle with depression or something that affects them and I pay attention to their interpretation because they are motivated from the heart instead of some obscure, even academic interest. You are closely linked to understanding neuroscience and your passion shows. I encourage you to continue on your path and share your thoughts with the world.

Gerald Paul Kozlowski, Ph.D., BCN                                             
Board Certified Senior Fellow in Neurofeedback
Department of Clinical Psychology, Saybrook University

Brad Esau and Taming the Polar Bears

I have been a reader of Brad Esau’s essays in Taming the Polar Bears since he began the project. I myself am trained communication scholar with a Ph.D. Though while not a psychologist, I feel very capable of evaluating Brad’s work. In reading his work I have learned a great deal about the brain, human behaviour and mental health and have constantly been impressed with the thoroughness of his scholarship and growing expertise in the subjects he tackles. While Brad certainly has his own standpoints, he is also careful to take into consideration other evidence and present balanced views. I can recommend Brad's “Taming the Polar Bears” approach to anyone wanting a better understanding of mental health issues and how to deal with them.

Jim Parker, Ph.D

Brad Esau generously shares his knowledge, experiences, and wide-ranging research with the world at large both through his excellent blog and and also through his presence at the Google+ network, which is where we first connected years ago. Thanks to all that Brad shares online, I am able to reshare what he has learned with my students, helping them to better understand their brains, their emotions, and the ups and downs of their complicated and often stressful lives. And it's not only Brad who has been helping: his intrepid cat, Mrs. Bean, is well known to my students too! I've made memes with Brad's gorgeous photographs of Mrs.-Bean-in-the-wild that encourage my students to practice mindfulness, fearlessness, and empathy. My online classes have benefited from Brad's contributions, directly and indirectly, in so many ways, and I am deeply grateful.

  • Laura Gibbs, Ph.D., Online Instructor, University of Oklahoma

Your posts are excellent, informative, well written and honed to your audience.

Jon Lieff, M.D. Yale, Harvard, author of top ranked neuroscience blog, Searching for the Mind

TAMING THE POLAR BEARS by Brad Esau is a great mental health education blog.

This post gives an outstanding introduction to brain science, Brad! It's a great piece of writing for an intelligent general audience, and it is directly relevant to people's lives. The figures are very cool and exactly the right ones.

I've written two college textbooks on cognitive neuroscience with Nicole Gage, and we constantly try to bridge the gap that you are navigating so well.

It takes a lot of work and talent, and I appreciate your ability to reach out with it.

--- Bernard J Baars, PhD
Affiliate Fellow
The Neurosciences Institute
La Jolla, CA

With Taming the Polar Bears, Brad Esau has masterfully distilled complex data into meaningful and digestible information that is exceptionally useful for a wide range of audiences. As a researcher, I am impressed with Brad’s depth of knowledge in neuroscience and psychology. As a clinician, I am struck by his ability to profoundly touch the lives of individuals struggling with mental health issues. Brad’s generosity of spirit shines through as he guides those in need through the labyrinth that is our ever evolving understanding of mental “disorders” or differences. His compassion, bravery, and personal insight are evident throughout his body of work. Brad Esau is the passionate and disciplined creator of Taming the Polar Bears, an impressive and wide-reaching resource that I cannot recommend highly enough. More importantly, however, Brad has that rare authentic voice and intellect that is certain to resonate deeply with those seeking to better understand and navigate the challenges faced by so many of our friends, families, patients - and ourselves - who have suffered along the path towards a healthier and more meaningful life. 

Amy E. Lansing, Ph.D. Cognitive and Neurobehavioral Studies in Aggression, Coping, Trauma and Stress, Director University of California, San Diego

No comments:

Post a Comment