I am Dr. David Puder—a psychiatrist, educator and medical director of two intensive outpatient programs at Loma Linda University. I also created the “Connection Intensive Outpatient Program,” which focuses on helping clients understand their own experience and connect with other people as a way of treating mental health issues.
Developing deep relationships with people from all walks of life was something I desired. I wanted to more fully connect with people, which one of my mentors showed me was what actually helps people. I decided to pour myself into studying the science behind connection. In my journey I found mentors, read prolifically, and did years of personal psychotherapy. When a person feels connected to someone while they share their story, then feelings of shame, fear, and isolation become shared, heard and validated. Because of my research, I explored deeper levels of connection with my wife, daughter, family and friends, and I now have emotionally satisfying relationships.
My study of connection has influenced every part of my career and personal life. In my therapy practice I find it helpful to monitor the moment-to-moment change in emotion in myself and my clients. I teach resident physicians how to connect with their clients by watching videos of their sessions and exploring moments of closeness and moments of disconnection. We work on learning to read facial expressions and body language, and demonstrating empathy to those we want to connect with.
Healthy emotional connection affects every area of your life. People who struggle with undiagnosed body pains, depression, panic attacks, and with creating and maintaining meaningful relationships also struggle with being able to connect with others emotionally. My passion is to help people grow in their ability to read other’s emotions, respond appropriately, communicate their feelings, and develop deep and lasting relationships.
I built this website to train both professionals and everyday people in the art of connection. It is easy to navigate and will soon be brimming with tools, tests, videos and articles to help you. If you have any questions, feel free to send us a message here.