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Carlson, Richard 1961-2006

Carlson, Richard 1961-2006

PERSONAL:

Born May 16, 1961; died December 13, 2006, from pulmonary embolism; married; wife's name Kristine; children: Jasmine and Kenna. Education: Pepperdine University, undergraduate degree; Sierra University, Ph.D.

CAREER:

Psychotherapist, writer, and public speaker. Was practicing psychotherapist in San Francisco, CA. Appeared on numerous radio and television shows, including Oprah, Good Morning America, The Today Show, The View, Hardball with Chris Mathews, and The O'Riley Factor. Also starred in Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) special titled Don't Sweat the Small Stuff.

AWARDS, HONORS:

Honorary degree in law from Pepperdine University.

WRITINGS:

(With the Institute for the Advancement of Professional Bodyworks) The Business of Bodywork: Effective Ways to Build, Expand & Keep a Full & Prosperous Bodywork Practice, Regent Press (Berkeley, CA), 1987.

(Editor, with Benjamin Shield) Healers on Healing, J.P. Tarcher (Los Angeles, CA), 1989.

(Editor, with Benjamin Shield) For the Love of God: New Writings by Spiritual and Psychological Leaders, New World Library (San Rafael, CA), 1990.

(With Barbara Carlson) Everything I Eat Makes Me Thin: Waking Up to Overeating Attitudes, Bantam Books (New York, NY), 1991.

Celebrate Your Child: The Art of Happy Parenting, New World Library (San Rafael, CA), 1992.

You Can Be Happy No Matter What: Four Principles Your Therapist Never Told You About, New World Library (San Rafael, CA), 1992.

You Can Feel Good Again: Common Sense Therapy for Releasing Depression and Changing Your Life, Dutton (New York, CA), 1993.

(Editor, with Benjamin Shield) Handbook for the Soul, foreword by Marianne Williamson, Little (Boston, MA), 1995.

Shortcut through Therapy: Ten Principles of Growth-Oriented, Contented Living, Plume (New York, NY), 1995.

(Editor, with Benjamin Shield), Handbook for the Heart: Original Writings on Love, foreword by John Gray, Little, Brown (Boston, MA), 1996.

For the Love of God: Handbook for the Spirit, New World Library (Novato, CA), 1997.

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff—and It's All Small Stuff: Simple Ways to Keep the Little Things from Taking Over Your Life, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1997.

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff—and It's All Small Stuff: Simple Ways to Keep the Little Things from Taking over Your Life (sound recording), Simon & Schuster Audio (New York, NY), 1997.

Don't Worry, Make Money: Spiritual and Practical Ways to Create Abundance and More Fun in Your Life (sound recording), Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 1997.

(With Joseph Bailey) Slowing Down to the Speed of Life: How to Create a More Peaceful, Simpler Life from the Inside Out, HarperSanFrancisco (San Francisco, CA), 1997.

You Can Be Happy No Matter What: Five Principles Your Therapist Never Told You, New World Library (Novato, CA), 1997.

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff with Your Family: Simple Ways to Keep Daily Responsibilities and Household Chaos from Taking Over Your Life, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1998.

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff with Your Family: Simple Ways to Keep Daily Responsibilities and Household Chaos from Taking Over Your Life (sound recording), Simon & Schuster Sound Ideas (New York, NY), 1998.

The Don't Sweat the Small Stuff Workbook: Simple Ways to Keep the Little Things from Taking Over Your Life, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1998.

Don't Worry, Make Money: Spiritual and Practical Ways to Create Abundance and More Fun in Your Life, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1998.

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff at Work: Simple Ways to Minimize Stress and Conflict While Bringing Out the Best in Yourself and Others, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1998.

A Don't Sweat the Small Stuff Treasury: A Special Selection for Graduates, Andrews McMeel Publishing (Kansas City, MO), 1999.

A Don't Sweat the Small Stuff Treasury: A Special Selection for Mothers, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1999.

A Don't Sweat the Small Stuff Treasury: A Special Selection for Teachers, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1999.

You Can Be Happy No Matter What: Five Principles for Keeping Life in Perspective, New World Library (Novato, CA), 1999.

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff at Work: Simple Ways to Minimize Stress and Conflict While Bringing Out the Best in Yourself and Others (sound recording), Simon & Schuster Audio (New York, NY), 1999.

(With wife, Kristine Carlson) Don't Sweat the Small Stuff in Love: Simple Ways to Nurture and Strengthen Your Relationships While Avoiding the Habits That Break Down Your Loving Connection, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1999.

(With Kristine Carlson) Don't Sweat the Small Stuff in Love (sound recording), Simon & Schuster Audio (New York, NY), 1999.

A Don't Sweat the Small Stuff Treasury: A Special Selection for Fathers, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1999.

A Don't Sweat the Small Stuff Treasury: A Special Selection for Graduates, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1999.

A Don't Sweat the Small Stuff Treasury: A Special Selection for Newlyweds, Andrews McMeel Publishing (Kansas City, MO), 2000.

A Don't Sweat the Small Stuff Treasury: A Special Selection for Work, Andrews McMeel Publishing (Kansas City, MO), 2000.

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff for Teens: Simple Ways to Keep Your Cool in Stressful Times, Hyperion (New York, NY), 2000.

A Don't Sweat the Small Stuff Treasury: A Special Collection for Friends, Hyperion (New York, NY), 2000.

A Don't Sweat the Small Stuff Treasury: A Special Collection for New Parents, Hyperion (New York, NY), 2000.

A Don't Sweat the Small Stuff Treasury: A Special Collection for Newlyweds, Hyperion (New York, NY), 2000.

A Don't Sweat the Small Stuff Treasury: A Special Collection for the Office, Hyperion (New York, NY), 2000.

A Don't Sweat the Small Stuff Treasury: A Special Selection for Friends, Andrews McMeel Publishing (Kansas City, MO), 2000.

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff about Money (sound recording), Simon & Schuster Audio (New York, NY), 2000.

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff about Money: Spiritual and Practical Ways to Create Abundance and More Fun in Your Life, Hyperion (New York, NY), 2001.

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff for Men: Simple Ways to Minimize Stress in a Competitive World, Hyperion (New York, NY), 2001.

(Author of foreword) Editors of Don't Sweat Press, The Don't Sweat Guide to Weight Loss: Feeling at Peace with Your Body, Hyperion (New York, NY), 2002.

A Passion for Life (sound recording), Simon & Schuster Audio (New York, NY), 2002.

What about the Big Stuff? Finding Strength and Moving Forward When the Stakes Are High, Hyperion (New York, NY), 2002.

(Author of foreword) Editors of Don't Sweat Press, The Don't Sweat Guide for Dads: Stopping Stress from Getting in the Way of What Really Matters, Hyperion (New York, NY), 2003.

(Author of foreword) Editors of Don't Sweat Press, The Don't Sweat Guide for Newlyweds: Finding What Matters Most in the First Year, Hyperion (New York, NY), 2003.

(Author of foreword) Editors of Don't Sweat Press, The Don't Sweat Guide for Teachers: Cutting through the Clutter So That Every Day Counts, Hyperion (New York, NY), 2003.

(Author of foreword) Editors of Don't Sweat Press, The Don't Sweat Guide to Keeping Your Home Clean: Stop the Clutter from Messing Up Your Peace of Mind, Hyperion (New York, NY), 2003.

(Author of foreword) Editors of Don't Sweat Press, The Don't Sweat Guide to Entertaining: Enjoying Friends More While Worrying Less, Hyperion (New York, NY), 2004.

(Author of foreword, with Kristine Carlson) Editors of Don't Sweat Press, The Don't Sweat Guide to Pregnancy: Making the Most of the Months before the Baby, Hyperion (New York, NY), 2004.

The Don't Sweat Guide to Your Job Search: Finding a Career You Really Love, Hyperion (New York, NY), 2004.

Easier Than You Think—Because Life Doesn't Have to Be So Hard: The Small Changes That Add Up to a World of Difference, HarperSanFrancisco (San Francisco, CA), 2005.

Don't Get Scrooged: How to Thrive in a World Full of Obnoxious, Incompetent, Arrogant, and Downright Mean-Spirited People, HarperSanFrancisco (San Francisco, CA), 2006.

You Can Be Happy No Matter What: Five Principles for Keeping Life in Perspective, New World Library (Novato, CA), 2006.

The Big Book of Small Stuff: 100 of the Best Inspirations from Don't Sweat the Small Stuff, Hyperion (New York, NY), 2007.

(With Kristine Carlson) An Hour to Live, an Hour to Love: The True Story of the Best Gift Ever Given, Hyperion (New York, NY), 2007.

(Editor, with Benjamin Shield) Handbook for the Spirit, foreword by Marianne Williamson, New World Library (Novato, CA), 2008.

Also author of a nationally syndicated newspaper column for McClatchy-Tribune News Services (formerly Knight Ridder). Don't Sweat the Small Stuff has been published in 135 countries and translated into Latvian, Polish, Icelandic, Serbian and twenty-six other languages.

ADAPTATIONS:

Author's works have been adapted for audio.

SIDELIGHTS:

Richard Carlson was a practicing psychotherapist who became a best-selling author of "self-help" books and a motivational speaker who traveled the country and appeared on numerous television programs. His 1997 book Don't Sweat the Small Stuff—and It's All Small Stuff: Simple Ways to Keep the Little Things from Taking Over Your Life was the USA Today's number one best-selling book for two years in a row, spending over one hundred weeks on the New York Times best-seller list. He went on to write and edit numerous other books based on his philosophy, which he derived from older philosophies, such as Buddhism, and then presented in an easy-to-understand way that applies to modern life. His subsequent books often focused on specific situations or people, such as mothers, fathers, children, and teachers. He died in 2006 from a pulmonary embolism during an airplane flight.

Before authoring Don't Sweat the Small Stuff—and It's All Small Stuff, Carlson wrote or cowrote several other self-help books, including You Can Be Happy No Matter What: Five Principles for Keeping Life in Perspective, which presents information on how the human mind functions and how to achieve happiness. Nevertheless, it was Don't Sweat the Small Stuff—and It's All Small Stuff that placed Carlson among the elite of self-help writers and motivational speakers and which made him a perennial best-selling author.

Graham Bednash, writing in AdAgeGlobal, noted that Don't Sweat the Small Stuff at Work: Simple Ways to Minimize Stress and Conflict While Bringing Out the Best in Yourself and Others "delivers what it promises" in terms of helping to reduce work-related stress. In another work-related advice book, Don't Worry, Make Money: Spiritual and Practical Ways to Create Abundance and More Fun in Your Life, the focus is on making advances financially through getting rid of fear. "What distinguishes Carlson's advice from … self-centered think-and-grow-rich handbooks is his heartening contention that kindness, service and living in the present are riches in themselves," wrote a Publishers Weekly contributor.

Teen issues are at the heart of Don't Sweat the Small Stuff for Teens: Simple Ways to Keep Your Cool in Stressful Times. Writing in Booklist, Roger Leslie noted that the author "clearly holds teens in high regard in this small book with a big heart." Don't Sweat the Small Stuff for Men: Simple Ways to Minimize Stress in a Competitive World focuses on the male psyche and presents one hundred brief chapters focusing on topics from maintaining friendships to taking advice from the wife. "The author's ‘half full’ outlook will indeed inspire and soothe," wrote a Publishers Weekly contributor.

The author turned his focus to the real traumatic experiences of life in his book What about the Big Stuff? Finding Strength and Moving Forward When the Stakes Are High. This time, the book offers advices on topics such as divorce, death, and stress. Commenting on a section in the book titled "Dedicate Yourself to Mind-fullness," Library Journal contributor Douglas C. Lord noted that the author "exhibits uncharacteristic clarity in advising readers to experience thoughts and emotions peacefully." A Publishers Weekly contributor noted: "Carlson's many real-life examples of folks going through hard times and hard decisions are right on."

In Easier Than You Think—Because Life Doesn't Have to Be So Hard: The Small Changes That Add Up to a World of Difference, Carlson presents thirty-nine chapters in response to the numerous letters he has received asking for advice. Each chapter focuses on how to initiate a small change in your life that, with other small changes, will ultimately add up to a new life of inner peace and happiness. In Library Journal, Kay Brodie wrote that readers "should come away with some new perspectives." Don't Get Scrooged: How to Thrive in a World Full of Obnoxious, Incompetent, Arrogant, and Downright Mean-Spirited People was one of the last books published before Carlson's death. The book focuses on how to handle negativity and negative people during the holidays. Deborah Bigelow wrote in the Library Journal that "this wellwritten book is easy to browse and contains sound advice."

The author also collaborated with his wife, Kristine Carlson, on several books, including the 1999 book Don't Sweat the Small Stuff in Love: Simple Ways to Nurture and Strengthen Your Relationships While Avoiding the Habits That Break Down Your Loving Connection. A Publishers Weekly contributor commented that the book combines "homegrown wisdom and straight-up common sense." Carlson also served as editor of several self-help books with Benjamin Shield, most of them featuring short pieces of writing by various motivational writers and others. For example, in Handbook for the Heart: Original Writings on Love, the coeditors present various essays about love by people such as Deepak Chopra, Rabbi Harold Kushner, and James Redfield. A Publishers Weekly contributor noted that the book "definitely has its heart in the right place." Handbook for the Soul, also edited by Carlson and Shield, features essays focusing on nourishing the soul. Noting that not everyone views the soul the same way, Booklist contributor Donna Seaman wrote that "this diversity is reflected in the volume's assortment of viewpoints and experiences."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

AdAgeGlobal, August, 2001, Graham Bednash, review of Don't Sweat the Small Stuff at Work: Simple Ways to Minimize Stress and Conflict While Bringing Out the Best in Yourself and Others, p. 6.

Black Enterprise, March, 1999, review of Don't Worry, Make Money: Spiritual and Practical Ways to Create Abundance and More Fun in Your Life, p. 126.

Booklist, September 1, 1995, Donna Seaman, review of Handbook for the Soul, p. 10; December 1, 2000, Roger Leslie, review of Don't Sweat the Small Stuff for Teens: Simple Ways to Keep Your Cool in Stressful Times, p. 700.

Business Week, March 8, 1999, review of Don't Sweat the Small Stuff at Work, p. 22.

Contra Costa Times, October 22, 2002, "Still Not Sweating: Richard Carlson Moves On to the Big Stuff."

Esquire, January, 2002, Bryan Mealer, "A Question for Our Time," interview with author, p. 31.

Europe Intelligence Wire, April 2, 2007, "Happiness Is … the Bible of Wellbeing by a Serene Evangelist."

Family Circle, February 15, 2000, Margaret Jaworski, "Don't Sweat the Small Stuff: Spin Control," p. 10; August 1, 2000, Glenn Plaskin, "The Little Things That Make Life Happy," interview with author, p. 20.

Internet Bookwatch, March, 2007, review of You Can Be Happy No Matter What: Five Principles for Keeping Life in Perspective.

Library Journal, September 1, 1993, Linda S. Greene, review of You Can Feel Good Again: Common Sense Therapy for Releasing Depression and Changing Your Life, p. 206; October 1, 1995, Henry Carrigan, Jr., review of Handbook for the Soul, p. 87; March 1, 1997, Bernadette McGrath, review of Handbook for the Heart: Original Writings on Love, p. 81; November 15, 2002, Douglas C. Lord, "Allenbaugh, Kay. Chocolate for a Woman's Courage: 77 Stories That Honor Your Strength and Wisdom," includes review of What about the Big Stuff? Finding Strength and Moving Forward When the Stakes Are High, p. 89; March 15, 2005, Kay Brodie, review of Easier Than You Think—Because Life Doesn't Have to Be So Hard: The Small Changes That Add Up to a World of Difference, p. 100; November 15, 2006, Deborah Bigelow, review of Don't Get Scrooged: How to Thrive in a World Full of Obnoxious, Incompetent, Arrogant, and Downright Mean-Spirited People, p. 84.

Money, February, 1998, review of Don't Worry, Make Money, p. 21.

Monterey County Herald, September 11, 2000, "Author Urges Parents of Teens to Be Good Listeners."

New Scientist, February 28, 1998, review of Don't Sweat the Small Stuff—and It's All Small Stuff: Simple Ways to Keep the Little Things from Taking Over Your Life, p. 44.

People, December 29, 1997, "Richard Carlson," p. 136.

Publishers Weekly, September 6, 1993, review of You Can Feel Good Again, p. 80; September 2, 1996, review of Handbook for the Heart, p. 105; May 19, 1997, review of Slowing Down to the Speed of Life: How to Create a More Peaceful, Simpler Life from the Inside Out, p. 62; June 23, 1997, Paul Nathan, "Big Small Stuff," p. 35; September 1, 1997, review of Don't Worry, Make Money, p. 89; August 17, 1998, review of The Don't Sweat the Small Stuff Workbook: Simple Ways to Keep the Little Things from Taking Over Your Life, p. 62; September 13, 1999, "Loving Spoonfuls of Advice," p. 74; August 14, 2000, "Teen Advisory," p. 357; July 9, 2001, review of Don't Sweat the Small Stuff for Men: Simple Ways to Minimize Stress in a Competitive World, p. 57; September 2, 2002, review of What about the Big Stuff?, p. 67; March 29, 2004, John F. Baker, "The Bestselling Author of Don't Sweat the Small Stuff, Richard Carlson, Has Returned to His Roots at Harper San Francisco with a Two-Book Deal Arranged between Agent Linda Chester and Publisher Stephen Hanselman," p. 12; March 21, 2005, review of Easier Than You Think, p. 45.

Times Educational Supplement, September 12, 2003, review of The Don't Sweat Guide for Teachers: Cutting through the Clutter So That Every Day Counts, p. 19.

United Church Observer, July-August, 1998, review of Don't Sweat the Small Stuff—and It's All Small Stuff, p. 35.

USA Today, November 30, 2006, Craig Wilson, "‘Don't Sweat’ Guru Takes on Holiday Sneers," p. 05.

Washington Business Journal, January 19, 2001, "Simple Ways to Minimize Stress and Conflict While Bringing Out the Best in Yourself and Others," p. 30.

Writer's Digest, March 2001, Katie Struckel, "Public Speaking and Richard Carlson," p. 28.

ONLINE

Dontsweat.com,http://dontsweat.com (November 20, 2007), profile of author.

Richard Carlson in Memoriam,http://richardcarlson.com/ (November 20, 2007).

OBITUARIES

PERIODICALS

New York Times, December 17, 2006, "Richard Carlson, 45, Self-Help Author," p. A56

San Francisco Chronicle, December 16, 2006, Rick DelVecchio, "Richard Carlson: 1961-2006."

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