“Everything Everywhere All At Once” and The Arc of Emotional Maturity

The Buddhist Therapist
5 min readMay 10, 2022

Firstly, apologies for the lack of posts of late! Momentum is really strange, it snowballs one way or the other. In this case, I had momentum writing blog posts, and then it went the other way very quickly.

Anyway, I don’t have a ton of time to write but want to get back in the habit of writing so here I am. I wanted to write a little about the movie Everything Everywhere All At Once, an A24 movie that is currently playing in the theaters. I’ve seen it twice and to put it frankly: it rocked. I thought it was an unqualified masterpiece, definitely my favorite movie since Parasite, and maybe even Moonlight, which is probably my favorite movie of the last 10 years.

As the title indicates, Everything has much to say about life, love, death, meaning, nihilism, and most importantly, the necessity of keeping your receipts for a tax audit. But I wanted to focus mostly on Michelle Yeoh’s main character, Evelyn, and her evolution. (Mild spoilers ahead).

I’ve thought a lot about what means to be emotionally mature of late. Maybe it’s because of my dad’s death or maybe because I’m getting older, but I’ve been replaying past choices and actions more recently, not from a lens of shame or regret, but one of empathy. So many choices and actions were made out of hurt, and as a result, I hurt those around me. With that eye, I can look at myself as a dumb young man who was just lost and scared and so wanted to just feel connected and not judged. Additionally, I now know how little I actually cared for myself and gave myself so little empathy. To put it simply, I was lost.

That has changed dramatically in the last 10 years for various reasons. Some of it was therapy, some of that was lots and lots of reading, some of that was meditation, and some of that was the people I surround myself with especially my wife, Melissa. All of that has helped me grow up into some sort of emotional maturity. To be clear, there is so much work left to be done, so much self-knowledge and reflection that needs to happen for the second half of my life. But there has been real growth in knowing who I am and why I am here.

In Everything, Evelyn also goes through her own emotional evolution. In the beginning, we meet a woman stuck in old patterns and…

The Buddhist Therapist

The relationship between mental health, spirituality and politics told from the point of view of a working psychotherapist.