- Daniel G. Amen, MD
Francine Shapiro's discovery of EMDR is one of the most important breakthroughs in the history of psychotherapy. Having used it as part of my practice for the past 15 years, I, and many of my patients, still marvel at the depth and speed with which it can help heal and change the minds and brains, and even bodily symptoms of people who have been locked in, and suffering from trauma, often for decades. Getting Past Your Past is a wonderful place to begin to understand how such mental healing can occur, filled with case histories of people that are so transformed that these accounts may seem exaggerated. They are not. This book has all the sobriety of a master clinician who has worked in the field of trauma for decades, and is clear, serious, helpful, as it shares with the reader a method of healing trauma that has already helped millions.
- Norman Doidge, MD
Author of The Brain That Changes Itself
In Getting Past Your Past, Francine Shapiro takes her innovative therapy, EMDR, to people everywhere, making the insights and strategies of EMDR treatment available to a broad audience. The transformation of EMDR treatment strategies into self-help techniques is yet another step in Shapiro's journey to make healing from trauma available to all. This book will be a valuable resource for therapists and clients alike, as well as for the many individuals who struggle with the effects of painful life experiences but who do not seek formal treatment.
- Laura S. Brown, Ph.D. ABPP
Past-President, APA Division of Trauma Psychology
Director, Fremont Community Therapy Project
I am forever indebted to Francine Shapiro and EMDR therapy, which helped me to heal from a terrifying panic disorder. People in pain will now be able to read this groundbreaking book and understand how disturbing memories can be reprocessed. Our lives can become joyful instead of fearful. We can live in the present instead of the past.
- Priscilla Warner, author of Learning to Breathe and coauthor of The Faith Club
Getting Past Your Past provides readers with powerful new insights to understand how traumas and disturbances of all kinds disrupt human potential, and how they can deal with their own distress. Through well-chosen case studies the reader shares the profound experiences of a wide range of individuals and learns the EMDR treatment strategies that have enabled clients to strip "visceral" feelings from memories as a turning point on their path to self-regulation and personal safety.
- Stephen W. Porges, PhD
Professor of Psychiatry and Director of the Brain-Body Center at the University of Illinois at Chicago
Author of The Polyvagal Theory: Neurophysiological foundations of emotions, attachment, communication, and self-regulation.
I am grateful to Francine Shapiro for having written Getting Past your Past, a lucid and practical book for transforming people's lives and helping them to savor living in the moment. EMDR is a powerfully effective treatment for overcoming the traumatic imprints of the past.
- Bessel van der Kolk MD
Medical Director Trauma Center, Justice Resource Institute
Director, National Complex Trauma Treatment Network
Professor of Psychiatry
Boston University School of Medicine
It appears that Dr. Francine Shapiro has discovered a profound linkage between the mind and body so that each might be healed. These stories of the rebalancing and revivifying of our dynamic nature reminds us that there are successful approaches to healing that are presently offering remarkable cures.
- Stephen and Ondrea Levine, authors of Who Dies?: An Investigation of Conscious Living and Conscious Dying
Are you painfully enslaved by emotional roadblocks and/or poor relationship choices? Unprocessed memories could be the problem...and EMDR could be the answer. EMDR is a powerful, scientifically validated process that has helped millions of people reclaim their freedom. In Getting Past Your Past, Francine Shapiro makes her practical methods available to the public for the first time. This is self-help at its finest.
- Jeffrey K. Zeig, PhD
Director, The Milton Erickson Foundation
Director, Evolution of Psychotherapy Conference
This self-help book is a cause for tremendous optimism. With EMDR the world finally has a therapy against the damaging effects of trauma, one that is scientifically proven to be effective and quick, low-cost, and widely applicable in a range of settings and cultural milieus. The future of the human potential‹and the world-- looks so much brighter for Francine Shapiro's discovery of EMDR.
- Rolf C. Carriere, former UN development professional and UNICEF
Representative in five Asian countries
About the Author
Dr. Francine Shapiro is the originator and developer of EMDR therapy. She is a Senior Research Fellow at the Mental Research Institute in Palo Alto, California, Director of the EMDR Institute, and founder of the non-profit EMDR Humanitarian Assistance Programs, which provides pro bono training and treatment to underserved populations worldwide. She is a recipient of the International Sigmund Freud Award for Psychotherapy of the City of Vienna, the American Psychological Association Trauma Psychology Division Award for Outstanding Contributions to Practice in Trauma Psychology, and the Distinguished Scientific Achievement in Psychology Award, from the California Psychological Association. As a result of her work, over 70,000 clinicians have treated millions of people during the past 20 years. She is an invited speaker at psychology conferences and universities worldwide, and has authored numerous articles, chapters, and books about EMDR therapy, including the primary text Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing: Basic Principles, Protocols and Procedures. Her new book for both laypeople and clinicians is called Getting Past Your Past: Take Control of Your Life with Self-Help Techniques from EMDR Therapy.
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.
More About the Author
Dr. Shapiro is a recipient of the International Sigmund Freud Award for distinguished contribution to psychotherapy presented by the City of Vienna in conjunction with with the World Council for Psychotherapy, the American Psychological Association Division of Trauma Psychology Award for Outstanding Contributions to Practice in Trauma Psychology, and the Distinguished Scientific Achievement in Psychology Award presented by the California Psychological Association.
Dr. Shapiro is a Senior Research Fellow at the Mental Research Institute, Palo Alto, California, Executive Director of the EMDR Institute, Watsonville, CA, and founder and President Emeritus of the EMDR Humanitarian Assistance Programs, a non-profit organization that coordinates disaster response and pro bono trainings worldwide. This organization is a recipient of the 2011 International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies Sarah Haley Memorial Award for Clinical Excellence.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
become who we are whether we're conscious of it or not. Memories of these
experiences are stored physically in the brain. Dr. Shapiro's book helps
people think about their lives and provides specific techniques to find the
links to make sense of who we are. She provides real life examples to which
one can relate, then suggests hands-on strategies and exercises that enable
the reader to connect the dots, make new decisions, take different actions,
and achieve the means to effect change and growth. However, nowhere in this
book does she recommend or mention moving one's eyes, nor does she suggest
self-administered EMDR, because that would be clearly unethical and
irresponsible. Rather, when an emotional problem is described, she offers a
variety of self-help techniques that can be safely used. In addition, she
offers guidelines for readers to decide if it would be useful to get
professional help with an experienced EMDR clinician.
Getting Past Your Past is full of accessible, empowering self-help
resources. It's a delight to read, difficult to put down, and has something
beneficial and fruitful for everyone.
EMDR is best known for its effectiveness in treating people who have experienced major trauma--like natural disasters, war, rape or other crime, an abusive childhood and so on--quickly and hence inexpensively.
But what about the rest of us? Fortunately most of us are not combat veterans or rape victims. We may have made a few bad decisions in our lives, or occasionally have nagging thoughts about the past. Maybe a certain type of person always pushes our buttons, perhaps we find ourselves becoming anxious in situations that don't bother most people, or we may have trouble relaxing, concentrating or sleeping. Can EMDR work for us? This book shows how it can.
The book is enjoyable to read, and the exercises are easy to understand and to do. I have read a number of self-help books over the years, and this is certainly one of the best. I highly recommend it.
Not long after I met Dr. Shapiro for the first time at a training I was teaching in hypnosis and age regression techniques back in the 1980s, she began stopping by my office to share her remarkable research. She showed me videos of Vietnam Vets who had been suffering the effects of PTSD (flashbacks, insomnia, social avoidance) for more than ten years. As they responded to her carefully structured questions about their inner experiences and memories, she moved a finger back and forth in front of their eyes. Within as few as two or three sessions their symptoms would disappear. Each time she visited there were even more amazing things happening.
Soon she had developed a protocol and was teaching classes in how to apply this tool in a therapy session. I hurried to become certified, and now, some 25 years later, I have used this tool thousands of times - nearly always successfully, and often remarkably so. The principles of EMDR Therapy have become important elements in my practice of mind-body medicine and psychotherapy, as it has in the practices of so many others. I have integrated EMDR therapy with my cognitive restructuring and guided imagery approaches with remarkable success.
Dr.Read more ›
The book provides a link to some impressive research you can download: just google "EMDR GPYP Trauma Research Findings and Further Reading" AND I just found that Dr Shapiro has a column in the New York Times website that is pretty interesting too: just google "EMDR NYTimes"
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book is awesome. I highly recommend it to anyone who suffers from PTSD.Published 2 days ago by L. G. Berkowitz
full of i psycho babble
altho my therapist swears by the emd therapy it is not for me
"While EMDR therapy needs to be conducted with the help of a trained and licensed therapist, you can use on of its components for self-care. Read more
I am so excited to read this book which was highly recommended to me by a fellow professional in the field of social work.Published 18 days ago by Ashley Roseann Hendrix
A great book for gaining some understanding of how our traumatic experiences impact our brain and our behavior. It includes some excellent self-calming techniques. Read morePublished 24 days ago by Jim Fox
I purchased this book to help research EMDR a little for myself as EMDR is being suggested to me, and I said I couldn't say yes or no until after I researched it a bit. Read morePublished 26 days ago by kim e
Shapiro makes accessible a form of therapy that many are finding helps with the processing of trauma by recognizing the feelings associates with past experiences and learning to... Read morePublished 1 month ago by David C