"It's okay to make mistakes. Mistakes are our teachers - they help us to learn." -- John Bradshaw
John Elliot Bradshaw (born June 29, 1933) is an American educator, counselor, motivational speaker and author who has hosted a number of PBS television programs on topics such as addiction, recovery, codependency and spirituality. Bradshaw is active in the self-help movement, and is credited with popularizing such ideas as the "wounded inner child" and the dysfunctional family. His books are mainly works of popular psychology. In his promotional materials and in interviews and reviews of his work he is often referred to as a theologian.
"Children are natural Zen masters; their world is brand new in each and every moment.""Ego is to the true self what a flashlight is to a spotlight.""It's essential to tell the truth at all times. This will reduce life's pain. Lying distorts reality. All forms of distorted thinking must be corrected.""You can find more traditional Shakespeare than we do. But what we want to bring to these works is energy, passion, freshness."
Bradshaw was born in Houston, Texas, into a troubled family and abandoned by an alcoholic father. Bradshaw won scholarships to study for the Roman Catholic priesthood. He earned a B.A. degree in Sacred Theology and an M.A. degree in philosophy from the University of Toronto in Canada. Six years after his 1963 graduation, Bradshaw returned to academia at Rice University in Houston, Texas, doing three years of graduate work in psychology and religion. Bradshaw says alcohol addiction and other problems led to his decision to end his plans for the priesthood.
Bradshaw is the author of six books, several of which held top slots as New York Times bestsellers; his book Homecoming reached No. 1. During the 1980s and 1990s he hosted a number of PBS television broadcasts based on his books. He has served on the board of directors of the Palmer Drug Abuse Program and as the national director of the John Bradshaw Center at Ingleside Hospital in Los Angeles, California.
Bradshaw resides in Houston, Texas, with second wife, Karen, an artist.
Throughout the 1970s, John Bradshaw served as a management consultant at Drillco Manufacturing Company and as a leadership trainer at Denka Chemical Company. He was also director of human resources and served on the board of directors of Texas General Oil Company. Bradshaw is the developer and presenter of workshops for forty Fortune 500 companies and thousands of evolved non-profits and for-profit institutions.
He has presented lectures and workshops for educational, professional and social organizations since 1964.He has served as: member, board of directors and as president of the Palmer Drug Abuse Program (1981-88); national director of Life-Plus Co-Dependency Treatment Center (1987-1990); founder and national director of the John Bradshaw Center at Ingleside Hospital in Los Angeles (1991-1997); and member, national board of directors of The International Montessori Society (1990-present). He is an honorary lifetime board member of the Council on Alcohol and Drugs in Houston.
Since 1999, Bradshaw has also been a senior fellow at The Meadows Institute. The Meadows is a multi-disorder inpatient facility in Arizona specializing in the treatment of a range of addictions. The facility's intensive treatment focuses on drug and alcohol addiction, sexual addictions, depression, eating disorders, psychological conditions, affective disorders and compulsive behaviors. It takes a holistic approach to addiction recovery and includes a wide variety of therapeutic approaches, including the Twelve-step program of Alcoholics Anonymous.
In 1991, Bradshaw was nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Talk Show Host for his series Bradshaw On: Homecoming and his newest book Reclaiming Virtue, published by Bantam, a division of Random House, is Pulitzer nominated for this body of work
Bradshaw has appeared on Oprah, Geraldo, Sally, Dr. Ruth, Tom Snyder, Donahue, Politically Incorrect, CNN-Talk Back Live, and Sirius Radio.
Bradshaw is the author of six books, three of which are New York Times Best Sellers, and he has sold over 10 million copies and is published in 42 languages.
In 1999, Bradshaw was nominated by a group of his peers as "One Of The 100 Most Influential Writers On Emotional Health in the 20th Century."