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Weekly Doses of Pop-up Psych

Life is full of gray areas. Whether it's an awkward social situation or taboo question, my goal is to provide the perspective and solutions you didn't know you needed. Each week, I shine light into those murky social, life cycle, or pop culture topics to help you understand, learn, and move on. As a former academic, I am a super-picky consumer of research (as you should be too) as well as the content I create and share, so those new solutions, data and/or additional resources have certainly met my approval.

In Honor of Father’s Day, Wisdom from my Favorite Father Figures

Father figures have evolved beyond raising someone and being a sperm donor. Fathering feels similar to mothering, a role filled with nurture, support, and guidance, but with a masculine touch. Thus, anyone can step up and be the dad that someone needs. 


Watch and Listen


I have been blessed to be surrounded by amazing men and fatherly figures my whole life. In addition to my father, grandfather, stepfather, and two uncles, I am grateful for my brothers from other mothers, colleagues, uncles, cousins, and mentors. The aforementioned taught me through actions of simply being themselves, which I try to practice every day in some way.


Be passionate about what you do by my dad Michael Broder

If my dad lectures my sons and I about anything, it’s to love what you do for work. If not, then do something else. We hear stories about people who had a successful career, but weren't happy despite having a lot of money, accomplishments, and respect. My dad did that in the 70’s, which was rare for a Baby Boomer aka career loyalist, when he sold his accounting firm to pursue a career in psychology. He’s been a psychologist for most of my life, so I have always known him to love what he does for work. My career has always brought me a great deal of joy and gratification, so being passionate about whatever I am doing has been essential.

There’s always a solution by my late grandfather Pop Hesh


Pop Hesh was a master problem solver.  He was a DIY guy with maintaining his home and car until he became physically limited. Although duct tape was his favorite tool, he was all about finding the best way to solve the problem or make things easier. He was very organized, so he always had his own way of doing things to be more efficient.


Make magic out of the mundane by my Uncle Harry 


This is one of my Uncle Harry’s favorite pics of us. With anyone else, this would be an ordinary moment of grabbing a slice of pizza before the Justin Timberlake concert.  Harry made it extra special with our timed, exaggerated, and posed bites, which I giggled my way through while creating a fantastic memory. It’s like he intuitively knows the right moment to insert the perfect twist into the situation without hijacking it.


Embrace your inner child by My Uncle Scruft


Uncle Scruft is a big kid: very playful and all about having fun. He’s the guy with the biggest smile, who claps his hands and laughs the loudest.  He tackles every experience with a gusto and his big smile. He is silly and all around fun. Something that most of us need to be more often.


You’re never too old to become good at something new by my stepfather Ken


People are always saying how they are going to do this and that, but how many actually do it? There are no rules for when you can start and master a hobby. Ken picked up a guitar in his early 20’s and put it down for 40 years until he was in his 60’s. Now, he is in his late 70’s and in a band (The Weezers) that practices regularly and has their share of  local gigs. Impressive!


What about your Father Figures?


  • Who are the father figures in your life?

  • What did you learn from them?

Hi Beautiful Readers and thank you for reading this! I'm Dr. Joanne Broder, Media Psychologist, Author, and Fellow of the American Psychological Association. Please consider me to help you write your memoir, blogs, speeches, e-books, as well as coach you on your dissertation or thesis.  Click here so we can connect!

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