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Mastering Adulthood


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About the Author

Lara E. Fielding, PsyD, EdM, is a psychologist specializing in mindfulness-based cognitive behavioral therapies, including dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR), MBCT, and their application for problems with emotion dysregulation. She has a doctorate in clinical psychology from Pepperdine University and a masters of education from Harvard University.

Fielding serves as a supervisor psychologist at the University of California, Los Angeles, department of psychology clinic to PhD candidates who provide DBT and ACT treatments to their clients, and teaches as an adjunct professor at Pepperdine graduate school of education and psychology. She also has a private practice in Beverly Hills, California, where she specializes in treating young adults who struggle with emotion dysregulation. She frequently offers trainings to clinicians in the community and also maintains an active social media presence, where she shares the skills she teaches in private practice through blogs on The Huffington Post,, and


"Mastering Adulthood does a masterful job of bringing timeless wisdom and practical solutions to young adults. Current social and economic conditions can seem challenging to young people who seek to live lives of meaning, purpose, and joy. Fielding provides evidence-based methods, humor, and practical enlightenment for those facing these hurdles. In fact, this user-friendly guidebook for living with mindful purpose could help just about anybody, at any stage of life."
--Dennis Tirch, PhD, author of The Compassionate-Mind Guide to Overcoming Anxiety, and founder of The Center for Compassion Focused Therapy--Dennis Tirch, PhD
"Adulthood is becoming more complicated. All of us need help, and Lara E. Fielding has written a wonderful guide. Mastering Adulthood will teach readers how patterned habits keep us stuck, how to then develop new and more effective behaviors, and the practice of mindfulness as key to establishing a more grounded and emotionally attuned life."
--Blaise Aguirre, MD, medical director of 3East DBT-Continuum at McLean Hospital, assistant professor in the department of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, and coauthor of Mindfulness for Borderline Personality Disorder and Coping with BPD--Blaise Aguirre, MD
"Finally, a 'how-to' book for transition age adults. So often manuals with behavioral skills are either too young or too old for eighteen- to twenty-five-year-olds. Fielding uses examples, stories, and practices that will resonate with people who are entering adulthood. Mastering Adulthood combines mindfulness and current emotion regulation strategies in a practical, easy-to-use format. This book can be used by young adults alone, with others, or in a counseling setting. I have begun to use the dashboard practices and the pauses with my own clients."
--Shari Manning, PhD, CEO and founder of Treatment Implementation Collaborative and SC Center for Dialectical Behavior Therapy, and author of Loving Someone with Borderline Personality Disorder--Shari Manning, PhD
"I could not love this book more! Fielding beautifully weaves case examples, personal experience, research, and brilliant use of metaphor, into a fun, easy-to-digest book designed to help young adults tackle the psychological complexities of growing into emotionally competent, independent adults. While the language and examples are geared toward a twentysomething to thirtysomething audience, any individual interested in greater self-knowledge and psychological growth can benefit from the evidence-based concepts in Mastering Adulthood--I know I did!"
--Jill A. Stoddard, PhD, director of The Center for Stress and Anxiety Management in San Diego, CA, and coauthor of The Big Book of ACT Metaphors--Jill A. Stoddard, PhD
"Lara Fielding's enthusiasm for helping those who wish to have an engaging and meaningful adult life shines through in Mastering Adulthood. Her ability to guide you through learning how to develop and practice psychological flexibility, as well as emotion management, is skillful. She has created a book grounded in solid evidence of psychological theory and practice that will help those grappling with how to participate in "adulting" find new ways to cope with the realities of adulthood in a fast-paced world. For those thousands of people seeking guidance on how to successfully navigate this thing called living, Fielding expertly teaches you how to get in the driver's seat and steer toward success!"
--Robyn D. Walser, PhD, licensed clinical psychologist; coauthor of Learning ACT, The Mindful Couple, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for the Treatment of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Trauma-Related Problems; and author of The Heart of ACT--Robyn D. Walser, PhD
"There is more to adulthood than handling its instrumental challenges: If you stop there, you will never learn how to create the kind of life you really want. This comprehensive and cleverly organized book invites you to look more deeply at your habits of handling emotions, to find what really motivates you, and then to construct the skills you need build your life around deeper goals: relationships that matter; work that prospers; a profound connection with life. Adulthood doesn't come with an owner's manual--you need to explore what makes you tick and draft your own. This book will help. Highly recommended."
--Steven C. Hayes, PhD, professor in the department of psychology at the University of Nevada, developer of acceptance and commitment therapy, and author of Get Out of Your Mind and Into Your Life--Steven C. Hayes, PhD
"This is the book I needed to grow up. Here is help to know what truly matters, what you truly care about. And with clarity about core values comes motivation and a surer sense of direction. Of equal importance is how Mastering Adulthood helps you overcome the emotional and mental roadblocks--those nasty passengers everyone carries--that sometimes keep you from fully embracing life. This masterful book, based on the principles of acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), can throw open the doors to becoming a vital, self-directed grown-up."
--Matthew McKay, PhD, coauthor of Mind and Emotions--Matthew McKay, PhD

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