At 15 Keith wanted to be a barrister; but shadowing one during a murder trial, it was the suffering families who interested him; not the crime itself. That’s when he decided to study psychology.
“After UCD, I studied in England at the Maudsley Hospital, King’s College, South London, then I worked for the NHS in Oxford. The socio-economic climate was very different, but the people’s stories of emotional neglect and hurt were the same. That was eye opening.”
Since 2012, Keith has been working in the outpatient clinic at St John Of God’s.
“People assume it’s a depressing job, but it’s hopeful. There is an end for most people, and you carry them through.”
Used to writing reports, since arriving back in Dublin, Keith has given lectures, written articles, and is a regular on Prime Time and The Ryan Tubridy Show.
Who is Keith Gaynor
Date of birth: 20th October, 1980 in Dublin.
Education: Belvedere College. University College Dublin; Degree in Psychology, PhD in psychosis.
Home: Centre of Dublin.
Family: Fiancé, Fiona. “We’re getting married in six weeks time.”
The Day Job: Senior Clinical Psychologist, specialising in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.
Interests: Running. Theatre. Food; cooking it and eating.
Favourite Writers: Richard Ford; Annie Proulx; Philip Roth.
Second Novel: “I would love to continue writing.”
Top Tip: “I found my speaking voice. I wrote as if I was trying to explain it to someone; that way, I kept it simple and bypassed the jargon.”
The Debut: Protecting Mental Health. Veritas: €12.99.
Anyone can experience mental health difficulties, but if we learn to nurture our psychological health, we will be better able to overcome problems, and live with a sense of confidence and joy.
Along with lots of sound advice on coping with situations like sleeplessness, the book gives simple exercises people can carry out in order to help themselves. The chapter on Mindfulness, or Mindful Living, contains a wonderfully user friendly explanation.
“Over the years I have found myself having the same conversation with my clients time and time again. I thought it would be useful to people if I wrote it down.”
The Verdict: This is an excellent, jargon free guide for those in trouble, and those who want life to be more fulfilling.
Published in the Irish Examiner on 13th February.
© Sue Leonard. 2016