Barry Cohen’s “Living Wisely” Blog Post

Posted by Reeve Staff in Daily Dose on December 14, 2018 # Travel, Safety, Safety

From our Fall Intern Brooke:

I think I can speak for us all when I say life might be a little easier if there were some kind of guidebook. Sure, we’re all dealt different hands, but learning new ways to cope with whatever is thrown our way could certainly be helpful. Especially in the paralysis community, the ability to handle unexpected twists and turns is paramount. I’m confident in saying that all of us in this community — whether living with paralysis or close to someone who does — naturally gain quite a bit of gumption. But still, we can never learn too much, especially when it comes to leading fulfilling lives.

One of our very own Reeve community members, Dr. Barry M. Cohen, recently published a book entitled Living Wisely—For Millenials & Beyond. Cohen previously co-wrote two books, Disabled & Challenged: Reach for Your Dreams! and Travel Near & Travel Far: Step Out of Your Disabled World! in 2005 and 2016 respectively, with his son, who lives with myotonic dystrophy.

His latest release aims to chronicle the life skills millennials — and the generations beyond them — need to thrive and live their lives to the utmost potential. Cohen, a renowned psychologist who has worked at the University of West Florida and with companies such like American Express and Pepsi, pulls from his academic background to identify what it means to live wisely, the life skills that it takes to do so, and how to acquire those skills. I myself was born on the cusp of Millenials and Gen Z, and, while I’ve always had a sense of self-assuredness, I’m admittedly still figuring out this whole “life” thing. Maybe Dr. Cohen can help me do that.

Living Wisely is a book that seeks to help readers to live lives full of happiness, career success, robust personal relationships, and longevity, with the ability to make judicious life choices. A key theme throughout the book is that wisdom requires self-examination, which ultimately leads to personal improvement and robust accomplishments. Personally, I find self-examination to be one of the most direly needed processes for people to go through, so I appreciate that Dr. Cohen focuses on this. I think this could ring especially true for people adjusting to a sudden and impactful life change, such as sustaining a spinal cord injury. It is so incredibly important to know who oneself is at his or her core, what one values, and how one’s own thoughts and actions will affect life’s outcomes. Many things are beyond our control, but how we deal with those things can, at the very least, be a little bit better with some self-reflection.

I have never read any kind of “how-to” or self-help book, but perhaps I will give this one a go.