German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche (1844–1900) said, “What doesn’t kill me makes me stronger.” Nietzsche saw people as capable of managing their own destiny. He didn’t see them as passive entities who couldn’t challenge fate. Psychologist and neuroscientist Ian Robertson reports that recent research backs Nietzsche’s position. If you wish to overcome adversity you must believe that you can. Robertson draws on his professional experience plus advances in neuroscience and psychology to offer a compendium of case histories that add up to a hopeful, inspiring message. getAbstract recommends his report to those responsible for employee welfare or those who’d like insight into their own ability to meet challenges.
The Brain and the Mind
In the book Twilight of the Idols – one of the few volumes available when author Ian Robertson taught in a small town in Fiji – Friedrich Nietzsche wrote, “What doesn’t kill me makes me stronger.” He saw people as capable of managing their destiny. He didn’t see them as passive beings who are helpless or unable to challenge or reverse their fate.
Now a psychologist and a neuroscientist, Robertson tackles this issue. He began his professional life as a clinical psychologist and shifted to brain research. His career followed a different trajectory than that of most people in either of his fields: He brought the two specialties together. Robertson sought insight into how the “software” of the mind interacts with the “hardware” of the brain. He regarded his initial work treating people who had emotional issues as distinctly different from his later work as a neuroscientist. His colleagues agreed. Most neurologists rarely talk to psychologists. However, Robertson dealt with both the software and the hardware issues affecting the mind. He wanted to understand how people calibrate their minds and brains to cope ...