How does technology affect emotional intelligence? Do the tools we use make us happier, sadder, dumber, smarter? Are those even the right questions to ask? We asked four mental health professionals to tell us about the role that technology plays in their practice, and in the inner lives of their patients.

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Sigmund Freud with one of his chows, 1927. Photo: ullstein bild via Getty Images

Alex Kriss: The job of the psychotherapist is, in no small part, to help the patient find middle ground between extremes. This is what Janet Malcolm called “the freedom to be uninteresting.” When the patient can imagine more ordinary ways of being than the Gothic binaries of love/hate, depression/mania, or serenity/suicide, she begins to discard oppressive patterns of behavior in favor of living like herself.

The same philosophy should be applied to considering the role of technology within the psychotherapy context: it is not pathology or balm, but something in between, and what that something is depends entirely on how it is used. …

Logic Magazine

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