The stars of psychology give advice on what troubles us.
This book gives readers a free session with some of history's great psychotherapists, like Sigmund Freud and the men and women that have developed and applied the theories that underpin the "study of the mind". The book asks these luminaries for their help with the personal problems that threaten our happiness while also providing a comprehensive and fascinating overview of the various disciplines.
The book has five sections that use common questions which, whether mundane or disturbing, do cause psychological distress to some degree. Some examples are:
1. What am I like?
Why do I keep leaving things to the last minute
Am I a caring person or am I a "doormat"
I was only joking
If I was more selfish, would I have more fun
2. Why am I acting like this?
I keep looking at my phone every few minutes
Why can't I concentrate
I'm usually so well-behaved. . . what's with the road rage
Why do I lie when she says "Does my butt look big in this?"
3. Other people
Why can't I find Mr/Mrs Right
How do I stop my teenage daughter getting a tattoo
My partner is great - so why am I thinking of having an affair
How can I stop people unfriending me on social media
4. What's happening?
Why do I keep saying embarrassing things
Should I work for love or money
Why do I always buy the more expensive option
What's the point
5. How can I improve myself?
Why can't I lose weight
I'm scared of moving on in my career - how can I change this
How can I think more creatively
How can I cope better with the tough times.
Readers will discover their personality type, their default behaviors, and consider how the various theories play out in their life and what they may want to change. They can learn what specialists say about a specific behavior or unrecognized motivation, among the many other emotional drivers in life. There are Venn diagrams, mind maps and other illustrations to add clarity. Side notes list the theories that address a particular problem, such as positive psychology and existentialist psychotherapy in response to "Why does it always happen to me?"
Life is not simple and it is certainly not without identity confusion, paralyzing fear and other deeply felt emotions and problems. Now a reader need only to turn to the question troubling them and Freud along with his psychoanalyst colleagues will lend a helping hand.
Sarah Tomley is a psychotherapist, writer and editor.