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Arman Assadi



Arman Assadi

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8. Kristie Wood | The Psychology of Hell, Heaven, and Mental Health

Kristie Wood is a Doctoral Student in the Counseling Psychology program at the University of Texas at Austin. Her research focuses on parent adult-child relationships in the context of aging, loss, and dementia. She received her Bachelor’s degree from UC Berkeley in Cognitive Neuroscience and Creative Writing. She is a published researcher and conducts therapy as a Pre-Doctoral Clinical Trainee. In her free time, Kristie likes to write, make art, and interview psychoanalysts about grief and loss.

Contact and learn more at: KristieWood.com

Show Notes:

  • Arman introduces listeners to Kristie and the episode ahead. [0:45]
  •  How Arman and Kristie met, and their current book club connection [3:20]
  • A Carl Jung quote concerning heaven and hell serves as a launching pad for conversation — on the psychology of hell. [9:25]
  • How does Kristie define health and healthy mind? [19:03]
  • Arman dives into his own experience and addresses the “bubble of joy.” [22:05]
  • Jung on depression as a scary elderly woman at your door. Talk to her. [28:50]
  • Kristie talks about consciousness and navigation of injuries and pain. [35:59]
  • There may be a feeling of unworthiness when the caretaker voice is not external. [44:28]
  • What are heaven and hell? [47:25]
  • Pain can bring about different effects in people’s lives. [56:45]
  • Kristie defines a healthy mind space that integrates both good and evil. [1:02:10]
  • Arman and Kristie discuss the topic of suicide, their personal history with it, and Kristie’s first counselee. [1:10:17]
  • The purpose of life and embracing a full spectrum of emotion [1:19:11]
  • What does Kristie want to pioneer, focus on, and contribute? [1:22:01]
  • Arman shares a deeply personal tragedy and traumatic experience. [1:33:21]
  • How can we make sense of a mother’s pain? [1:39:12]
  • Kristie’s final thoughts on grief and meaning [1:45:45]


  • Kristie’s website
  • Kristie’s email: [email protected]
  • Text Arman at 619.825.2595 to share your thoughts on the episode and let him know if you’d like to hear more from Kristie!

If you enjoy the show please subscribe and leave a short 17-second review on Apple Podcasts here. It means a lot to me and really supports the podcast.

Text me directly at: 619-825-2595

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For show notes and more visit: armanassadi.com

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