In this groundbreaking and “poignant” (Los Angeles Times) book, David Kessler—praised for his work by Maria Shriver, Marianne Williamson, and Mother Teresa—journeys beyond the classic five stages to discover a sixth stage: meaning.
In 1969, Elisabeth Kübler-Ross first identified the stages of dying in her transformative book On Death and Dying. Decades later, she and David Kessler wrote the classic On Grief and Grieving, introducing the stages of grief with the same transformative pragmatism and compassion. Now, based on hard-earned personal experiences, as well as knowledge and wisdom gained through decades of work with the grieving, Kessler introduces a critical sixth stage: meaning.
Kessler’s insight is both professional and intensely personal. His journey with grief began when, as a child, he witnessed a mass shooting at the same time his mother was dying. For most of his life, Kessler taught physicians, nurses, counselors, police, and first responders about end of life, trauma, and grief, as well as leading talks and retreats for those experiencing grief. Despite his knowledge, his life was upended by the sudden death of his twenty-one-year-old son. How does the grief expert handle such a tragic loss? He knew he had to find a way through this unexpected, devastating loss, a way that would honor his son. That, ultimately, was the sixth stage of grief—meaning. In Finding Meaning, Kessler shares the insights, collective wisdom, and powerful tools that will help those experiencing loss.
“Beautiful, tender, and wise” (Katy Butler, author of The Art of Dying Well), Finding Meaning is “an excellent addition to grief literature that helps pave the way for steps toward healing” (School Library Journal).
David Kessler is one of the world’s foremost experts on healing and loss. His experience with thousands of people on the edge of life and death has taught him the secrets to living a happy and fulfilled life.
He is the author of six bestselling books. His new book is Finding Meaning: The Sixth Stage of Grief. His first book, The Needs of the Dying, a #1 best-selling hospice book, received praise by (Saint) Mother Teresa. He co-authored two bestsellers with the legendary Elisabeth Kübler-Ross: On Grief and Grieving and Life Lessons. His most newly released book is You Can Heal Your Heart: Finding Peace After Breakup, Divorce or Death with Louise Hay. He worked with Elizabeth Taylor, Jamie Lee Curtis, and Marianne Williamson when their loved ones faced life-challenging illnesses. He also worked with late actors Anthony Perkins and Michael Landon. David’s work has been discussed in the Los Angeles Times, Business Week and Life Magazine, and has been featured on “Brené Brown, CNN-Cross Fire”, NBC, Fox, PBS, “Dr. Oz” and “Entertainment Tonight”. David is a contributing writer on Oprah.com, Dr. Oz’s Sharecare.com, “Anderson Cooper 360” and “The Huffington Post”.
David has a master’s degree in Health Care Bioethics from Loyola Marymount University, he did his undergraduate work at University of Southern California and is a member of the American College of Health Care Executives. He is a certified AMA/EPEC (Education for Physicians) trainer. He also is the founding chairperson for the Hospital Association of Southern California Palliative Care Committee and spent the last decade as a C-suite executive in a 650 bed – three hospital system in Los Angeles County.
Financial: David Kessler is a presenter and receives compensation. He is the co-founder and President Emeritus of Project Angel Food. He is a published author and receives royalties. He receives a speaking honorarium and recording and book royalties from PESI, Inc. He has no relevant financial relationships with ineligible organizations.
Non-financial: David Kessler is a board member for the Farrah Fawcett Foundation and is a member of the Health Care Executives of Southern California.
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