Dr. Patrick Quirk and Dr. Margaret Bibb Quirk are a married couple of clinical psychologists, each with more than 30 years of clinical experience. They own and operate Longwood Psychological Center, a large multidisciplinary mental health practice in Huntsville Alabama.
They wrote a weekly psychological self-help column, Real Life Answers, in the Huntsville Times from 2004 through 2012. The column addressed a broad range of topics related to all types of real life issues. The columns provide practical strategies for managing the complexities of real life situations, while seeking personal growth through membership in a broader community. The Drs. Quirk have created Real Life Collections, 23 illustrated e-books targeted at the full range of human experiences. Real Life Collections focuses on personal growth toward realization of our life purpose, through functional relating in relationships, within the many communities in which we live.
Since 1993, the Drs. Quirk have been adjunct faculty with the University of Alabama School of Medicine Huntsville Campus. They are strongly involved in the medical community as reflected in their e-book Integrating Medicine and Psychology. Their involvement in a spiritual community and their responses to their readers with issues around their own spiritual communities are reflected in their e-book Creating a Spiritual Community for You and Your Family. Bringing the benefits of psychology to many parts of their community is an important part of their mission. They maintain a strong relationship with their local legal, medical, business, government, religious, news media, sports, and theater communities. Dr. Bibb Quirk was PTA Vice President for The Academy of Academics and Arts (AAA) and was PTA President for Lee Arts Magnet High School for two of the years when their daughter was a student there. Their e-book Help your Child Create Success in School shares strategies for success in the educational community. She is a long time member of three local theater boards and is the current President of the Fantasy Playhouse Children’s Theater Board of Directors. Their e-book Awaken Your Inner Hero with Theatrical Therapy shares their passion for the psychological and cultural value of theater.
The Drs. Quirk are longstanding members of their local, state and professional organizations. They are both members of the North Alabama Association of Licensed Psychologists (NAALP) and Dr. Pat is the current President. They are members of the Alabama Psychological Association (aPA) and Dr. Pat is a current aPA Board Member. They are both members of the American Psychological Association (APA). Within the APA their greatest involvement has been with the Media Psychology Division. Dr. Pat was a member of the Media Psychology Division’s Ethics Committee in 2005. Both of the Drs. Quirk were members of the Media Watch Committee in 2009 and 2010 and Dr. Pat was the chair of this committee during this time. The Media Watch Committee monitored TV and Film and provided annual awards to media that represented psychology in a positive and accurate light.
Readers of the newspaper column will remember stories about both of the Drs. Quirk's daughters. Claire has completed her B.B.A and M.B.A from the University of Montevallo and is pursuing a career in Marketing. Anna is a graduate of Birmingham Southern College and is currently pursuing a career in theater in New York City. Throughout their lives, the Drs. Quirk have been active supporters of their children’s involvement in community activities. Many of these community experiences and the lessons they learned through them are shared in the Real Life Collections. They have been especially supportive of their daughters’ involvement in their greatest love, musical theater.
In addition to her participation in theater with her daughters, Dr. Maggie also has played and sung in a local rock and roll band for more than 30 years. Two of the band members are old friends who are also mental health colleagues, who also work with Longwood Psychological Center.
Drs. Quirk Mission
1. The Dual Meaning of “Real Life”
People often approach life and human relationships from a philosophy of how we have been taught life and human relationships should be or how we would like for life and human relationships to be. However, life and human relationships are often neither how we were taught they are nor how we want them to be.
Real Life and human relationships are driven by real life principles that the Drs. Quirk have spent the last third of a century studying. These principles are what we share with you in our work. However, we strive to make what we share as entertaining as possible, as one of the central principles of real life is that people pay attention and retain much better when they are entertained..
First, Real Life refers to helping our readers with practical understanding and strategies for the complex nature of everyday Real Life. Like it or not, humans are complicated and sensitive beings. Creating a successful life requires not just practical strategies, but finesse to implement those strategies. Doing what is best for yourself and others is extremely complex.
Second, Real Life also refers to the real higher order purpose of life. The higher order purpose of Real Life is to become your Best Self in relationship with your communities, and to see to your benefit and growth to make the world a better place.
2. Awaken Your Best Self, “Your Inner Hero”
"To aim at the best and to remain essentially ourselves is one and the same thing.” Janet Erskine Stuart
Your Best Self is born of your own unique gifts and challenges within yourself and your circumstances. Whether you use your gifts to spoil yourself or to become your best self and improve the world around you, is up to you. Whether you let your life challenges make you wounded and withdrawn or wise and connected, is up to you. To become your best self, you must learn to accept and even love all that you are as having purpose toward becoming your best self. In the unfolding story of your life, awakening your best self is to awaken your “Inner Hero.” Awakening your best self, becoming the Hero of your life story allows you to create your best life for yourself and to help those around you to create their best lives.
3. Loving Communities Awaken Your Inner Hero, Individually and as a Unified Whole, to create "Hero Communities"
“Love your neighbor as yourself.” The Golden Rule
Humans form communities to unite with others for our mutual benefit and mutual growth. Through that unity with others we create a whole which is greater than the sum of its parts. What allows communities to serve the needs of the individuals and the whole is their ability to function by the Golden Rule: Love your neighbor as yourself. Real Life Collections examines how to Awaken Your Inner Hero to awaken the the Inner Hero Potential of the communities in which you live, to include your marriage, family, friends, neighborhoods, schools, workplaces, churches, sports leagues, arts, municipalities, and your governments. Within each individual's and community's stories, the subtleties of awakening their Inner Hero revolves around how to create a functionally loving experience, which ultimately creates "Hero Communities."
To awaken your own "Real Life Inner Hero," explore the following sections of this website:
Real Life Collections Library 23 illustrated e-books (see Real Life Collections Library), each targeted at awakening your inner hero in a different specific area of Real Life.
Real Life Lesson are a sequential collection of brief videos that clarify the step wise process of Awakening Your Own Inner Hero.
Real Life Super Heroes are a collection of brief videos clarifying the Real Life factors in creating the Super Heroes of our world.
Real LIfe Heroes Awakenings are a collection of brief videos which explore the Hero's Awakening of Real Life people.
Political Synergy(TM) Video presentations and articles on Political Synergy (TM) are part of the Drs. Quirk movement to awaken America to the need for integration of Democratic and Republican Principles. America's socio-political polarization is a serious threat to the future of what has been the greatest country in the history of the world. Until we can truly collaborate, we cannot solve the many problems that threaten our country. Please go to the Political Synergy page of this web site, to find articles, and videos.