Dr. Mara Karpel has been a practicing clinical psychologist for over twenty-five years, specializing in working with older adults and caregivers, as well as adults of all ages who are dealing with issues of anxiety, depression––or desiring to create more joy in their lives. She also specializes in evaluating veterans for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Mara is the host of Dr. Mara Karpel & Your Golden Years, a radio program about the social, emotional, and health issues of older adults, caregivers, Boomers, and all who want to grow older with greater health and more joy. She is a regular contributor to Huffington Post and to Ariana Huffington’s new online publication, Thrive Global. Her book, The Passionate Life: Creating Vitality and Joy at Every Age, is expected to be published in late 2018.

Mara speaks on a number of topics, including:

The Passionate Life: Creating Vitality and Joy at Any Age

No matter our age we can be living a joyful vital life. In this presentation, I share a wealth of information on how to create a life you love and to be healthy in the process. I cover:

  • Having a purpose gives our life meaning and excitement.
  • Life has a tendency to knock us off track, but we can get back on track even in the darkest times.
  • Worry about what other people think is a sure-fire way to take the wind out of our own sails.
  • Staying healthy through better food choices, exercising, healthy relationships, thought habits, and laughter creates vitality and joy, and gives us the energy to pursue our dreams with

Participants will leave with:

  • Inspiration to find a new dream or renew an old one
  • Tips to get back on track in their own lives
  • Guidance on staying well.
  • Calming the mind and body.
  • How to love yourself right now.

Suddenly, You’re Taking Care of Your Elderly Parents

We are in what is being called a “Silver Tsunami.”  The older population is the quickest growing population in America.  More and more of us are now in the position of taking care of our elderly parents.  Here I discuss:

  • How to utilize and tap into community resources.
  • Self-care is of the highest importance or you will not be of any good to anyone.
  • Conversations to have with parents and documents in order to be better prepared.

Participant will leave with tips for:

  • The adult/child caregiver near or far
  • Taking care of yourself as a caregiver
  • Finding peace in the middle of chaos

The Power of Humor for Healing

 Humor is one of the most powerful ways to break the cycle of negative thinking and it’s resulting depressed or anxious mood. Humor interferes with that downward spiral of energy-zapping thoughts, by helping us to notice the absurdity of situations that may anger or threaten us. Laughter creates positive emotions, such as joy, amusement, hope, confidence, and overall well-being. Here I cover:

  • Humor and laughter have actual mood and health benefits.
  • While some think it’s impossible to enjoy humor when things are stressful, this is precisely the time when it’s needed the most.
  • We don’t all enjoy the same type of humor and that’s OK.

Participants will leave with ways of making themselves laugh, when they don’t feel like laughing.

Realistic Optimism is Good For Your Health

 Optimism leads to a more positive mood and defeats feelings of depression. Being a realistic optimist means we’re aware of challenges, that we know we need to take the appropriate actions in order to achieve what we want, and that we focus on looking for the best steps to take and, conversely, that we work on accepting those things that cannot be changed. In this chapter, I discuss the myriad of health and mood benefits of optimism.

Participant will learn how to:

  • Become a realistic optimist
  • Using humor to increase optimism
  • Practice realistic optimism

The Power of Generosity without Expectations

 Numerous studies have found that there are many benefits to being generous. However, the benefits are only experienced when we expect nothing in return. Here, the benefits of giving without expectation, are explored, including how it adds meaning to our lives, including:

  • Generosity is one of the most powerful ways of improving your mood.
  • Expectation decreases the benefit of generosity
  • How to give, powerfully, even if you don’t have money to be financially generous.

Promotional Experience and Speaking Engagements

  • Quarterly speaking engagements at The Court at Round Rock Senior Residence as part of their Brain University. Topics included: “Humor for Healing,” “Optimism is Good for Your Health,” “Food and Mood, Dementia.”
  • “Caring for the Caregiver.” Multiple speaking engagements including, Austin Groups on Aging, Austin Area Home Care Council, Family Councils of various assisted living communities in Austin, Texas.
  • Optimism is Good for Your Health” at Longhorn Village Senior Residence in Austin, TX; Century Village (Over 55 Active Community). Deerfield Beach, Florida
  • Optimism is Good for Your Health,” Retirement Community in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.
  • “Healthy Aging,” Punta Mita Time Restaurant in Punta Mita, Mexico, 2007.
  • “Depression in the Elderly,” Seminar for the Capital Area Psychological Association, Austin, TX, 2005.
  • Multiple in-service seminars for staff members of nursing homes covering dementia and depression in the elderly.

To contact Dr. Mara, email: DrMara@DrMaraKarpel.com or call her at: 512-626-697

Some Previous Speaking Engagements


I very much enjoyed speaking with the Austin Area Home Health Council today about Optimism and how it's good for our health (a preview from my book, The Passionate Life:  Creating Vitality and Joy At Any Age.  What a warm and welcoming group of people!  So much fun!  It reminded me how much I love to give presentations!  Thanks, AAHHC!

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On Saturday, March 21, 2015, I held a talk in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, about the benefits of staying physically active, socially active, and involved in the community as we age and in retirement.  This talk was videotaped by Laura Gelezunas, Media Diva International, for my new YouTube channel, so stay tuned, as I will be posting the link when the

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Just came back from speaking to a group of 48 residents at the Querencia at Barton Creek.  What a great time!!  The residents were great!  Lots of really great questions and comments by the residents.  My topic:  Recognizing, treating and PREVENTING late-life depression...optimism and food & mood.  Thanks to the Querencia for inviting me

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  I will have a booth at this Expo, so be sure to come by and say "hi!" I will also be speaking. The time for that is to be announced. Saturday May 4,   10AM to 8PM    Wozniak Community Center, Austin, TX $3/Person, $5/Family, Seniors 65+ FREE, Discounted admission offers available. For more information and directions to ge

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  On April 27, from 10am -noon, I will be giving a free caregiver seminar at AGE of Central Texas. My topic will be "Caregiver Health & Wellness" from a mind-body approach. The information is below. If you're interested in attending, space is limited, so please pre-register with Bruce Kravitz: bkravitz@ageofcentraltx.org. I hope to

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Inner Peace, Joy, and Vitality

Inner Peace, Joy, and Vitality

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