UnTherapy: A Positive Psychology for Enlightened Living

ABOUT Sunny Massad, Ph.D.

Sunny Massad, Ph.D.
I am the originator of the trademarked system of counseling called UnTherapy® and the author of UnTherapy: A Positive Psychology for Enlightened Living.  I am in private practice as a counselor in Honolulu and am mostly known for my solution-oriented, no-nonsense approach to enlighten More...


UnTherapy was written for busy, productive, and successful people who recognize that job apathy, stress, and anger can result in compulsions to overeat, drink, isolate, stay too busy or “veg out” for too long. These very coping strategies, originally adopted to “take the edge off,” can inevitably result in a life that feels passionless and empty.  

UnTherapy provides the methods necessary to change the direction and pace of one’s life, regardless of the reader’s religious faith.  UnTherapy is formatted into short, 2-3 page subsections that can be read at night before retiring or any time a few minutes can be seized.  

Exercises are presented throughout the book to assist readers to reflect on their personal lives, to identify what is important to them, and to integrate their values and principles into their lifestyles.  For example, if a person claims to value solace and self-reflection but works in an environment that does not allow for privacy and lives in a home that is filled with noise, it would be no wonder that his or her stress levels are high and life satisfaction is low.  The exercises guide the reader into finding a way to reclaim time for solace and self-reflection despite the distractions at work and at home. 

"To transform one’s life into a path of enlightenment requires acceptance, not judgment.  Learning how to accept oneself as a work in progress, to cultivate compassion in place of self-criticism, and to nurture and nourish oneself in place of 

self-neglect provides internal validation that sustains over time, regardless of circumstance."  

The 21st century has seen a rise in a new kind of stress: technology related stress or techno-stress. People who live in urban areas report feeling less meaning in their lives, less patience, a shorter concentration span, sleep disturbances, shallow breathing, internal and external conflicts, and apathy that drives addictions and other emotional imbalances. This is largely due to a lack of understanding of how to control the thinking mind and, thus, one’s own emotional state of being. We learn at a young age to seek validation and security from people and things, but security is an inside job. Many adults, unfortunately, were never taught how to access it. I trademarked the term UnTherapy and wrote the book by the same name for the forgotten majority: healthy and well-adjusted people who feel “stuck” in some way: people who have “tried everything” and can’t seem to stop unwanted behavior patterns; people who want to stop procrastinating and get motivated; people who want to restore a sense of well-being; and people who want to live a higher quality of life with less conflict. Unlike orthodox psychology, which focuses on healing the wounds of the past, UnTherapy clients are not considered patients because those who are able to use this mental technology do not suffer from emotional or psychological illnesses and are not diagnosed as “sick”. UnTherapy provides a boost when someone needs to move forward but either doesn’t know how or prefers the accountability of having someone to coach them through change. Past history is irrelevant to the success of present dreams and aspirations, so the question “why” is never asked. Instead the focus is on HOW to get to the preferred state of being. Despite the seeming contradiction in terms, UnTherapy is geared both toward people who drive themselves too hard and people who do not have enough drive. It's meant to be an aphrodisiac for restoring authentic happiness.

What people are saying about UnTherapy

"Sunny Massad has provided the distillation that we have all been waiting for. It is a smart little book, directed and utterly relevant for those of us with over-busy lives. She offers us clear choices for living fully, with grace and resilience."

Laura Sewall, Ph.D.

Author of Sight and Sensibility: The Ecopsychology of Perception

"Dr. Sunny Massad provides readers with a psychological and wellness-based owners manual.” 

        B. Eliot Cole, MD, MPA

    Executive Director, American Society of Pain Educators

"If you are looking for answers to your spiritual quest or want to know your indomitable innate qualities, then you must read UnTherapy! I assure you that you will feel spiritually lighter, ethically cleaner, and emotionally happier."  

Lama Wangchuck

"UnTherapy is a 'must read' that will shift your perspective and transform the way you interact with yourself and the world around you."

Dr. Laurie Steelsmith 

Author of Natural Choices for Women's Health

“This wisdom packed book helps reframe struggles of the heart while providing eminently practical ways to break free from negative thoughts.  I recommend it to all who are seeking a life that is rich, meaningful, and free.”

    Anita Johnston, Ph.D.

    Author of    Eating in the Light of the Moon

"I love good self-help books that give practical advice and tell me something new. Sunny Massad's UnTherapy pulls out the plug on a lot of old stories. Read this book and help yourself to heal."  

Alice Anne Parker

Author of The Last of the Dream People

“This book will serve us in those moments when we get stuck in limiting stories; especially those stories that nourish a false identity hell-bent on survival. UnTherapy gently invites us to see through this self-deception.”

Kriben Pillay

 author of Radical Work

"Sunny Massad's UnTherapy is a breath of fresh air that reveals the truth: you are enough, right now.  If you are ready to be fulfilled, satisfied and at peace with yourself and your life, then this book is a must read.

    Linda Giles

author of The Big Hunger

"This book belongs in the hands of anyone who obsessively texts, e-mails, phones, and abuses their thumbs in a constant quest for more, more, more. Instead, use your hands to hold this book, turn these pages, and receive the experience of 'enough' that Sunny Massad offers."

     Pam Chambers

author of Public Speaking Made Easy

"UnTherapy is exactly what we need at this time in history. It's time to stop talking and start listening. Stop doing and start being. Stop getting and start giving. This book provides inspiration, support, encouragement and tools to do just that. It is not a book to speed-read, put aside, and forget. Its short sections are to be savored, their taste to linger on our minds, seep into our consciousness, and flavor our way of life."

    Makana Risser Chai

author of Hawaiian Massage Lomilomi: Sacred Touch of Aloha

"We are all neurotic in one way or another. It’s just part of the human condition. UnTherapy teaches us to accept our neurosis with compassion, while not letting it rule our lives."

Brian Samo Ross

author of Talking to God without Calling Long Distance

"Sunny Massad's fresh view on the addiction to self-improvement, laced with useful quotes, can be carried in a purse, briefcase or backpack to lighten mental baggage.  "

    Dr. Rico Provasoli

author of Golf Between The Ears

“As an antidote to the endless alternative therapy production line, Sunny Massad’s book, UnTherapy, is a straightforward, honest, no-nonsense, sans jargon, back-to-basics guide to seeing things as they simply are. Buy it, read it, and laugh at yourself!”

Veena Schlegel 

author of A Seam for the Master

“This concisely written ‘how-to get real with your issues' book beautifully exlains why suffering is optional! It’s perfect for people like me who want clear information, and it’s filled with valuable insights that will change the quality of your life today.

Jane Pascual

    News/Public Affairs Director, Cox Radio Hawaii

"Dr. Massad's book is true preventive medicine and a must read for patients who are prepared to see life as it truly is; free of the excess baggage we so often carry. Each chapter opens and enlightens the reader to another facet of life's self-imposed burdens to return us to the path of joyful and calm abiding."  

    Ira D. Zunin, M.D., M.P.H., Medical Director, Manakai O Malama

Integrative Health Care Group and Rehabilitation Center

“In my work as an internist, I am aware of how physical symptoms, and even lifestyle choices, originate from emotional issues.  Dr. Massad teaches ‘how to’ make the necessary changes to improve health and well-being.”

Tamar Hoffmann, M.D.

“If you are in need of hope, UnTherapy will feel like a breath of fresh air.  Dr. Massad’s positive and optimistic approach helps you explore the peace of mind that comes by paradoxically accepting your negativity and pessimism – and with a genuine sense of humor as well!  UnTherapy is a delightful wellspring of wisdom and an excellent practical guide!” 

Ragini Elizabeth Michaels

author of How To Live With Paradox

"Sunny Massad has developed a no-nonsense approach to restoring passion and peace of mind that is fundamental for students who are determined to make societal contributions through the starting of new things. This is why the Hogan Entrepreneurial Program will now count on this book as one of our “must reads."  

John Webster, Ph.D.

    Director, Hogan Entrepreneurs, Chaminade University

"As a Certified Motivational Coach and Personal Trainer, I use UnTherapy to help others towards success. This handbook will be a valuable tool for anyone serious about living a full life.”

 KC Carlberg, MPH 

Owner of Try Fitness