- Paperback: 249 pages
- Publisher: Pearson Education Limited (December 4, 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0273772392
- ISBN-13: 978-0273772392
- Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 5.5 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 15.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,775,104 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Psychobabble: Exploding the Myths of the Self-Help Generation
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From the Back Cover
Is self helpreallyhelping?
Self help is now seriously big business. It’s also having a big influence on all our lives – whether we’re aware of it or not.
After several decades of huge growth in the industry, most of us believe without question that we should do more, be more, expect more. But given that we seem to be less happy than at any time in history, could it be that self help is actually counterproductive? Is it possible that self help is just messing with our minds?
It seems that in the quest for greater confidence, happiness, wealth, attractiveness and success, we’ve lost our ability to critically assess what we’re being fed. Many of the ‘undisputed truths’ of self help have precious little scientific support, and some have a fair body of evidence against them.
In this brilliantly articulate pause for thought, Dr Stephen Briers takes a hard look at the casual psychologising of everyday life, exposing the science that has been swept under the self help carpet, and questions whether what’s supposed to set us free is in fact providing the shackles on our lives.
Psychobabbleeases the heavy burden of unrealistic expectation, gently suggests that some things need to be endured not fixed, and leaves us with the liberating possibility that we might be good enough just as we are.
About the Author
Exposing the self-help myths that make us all more miserable. This is what your psychologist would really tell you-if he thought you could handle it! This is the kick up the backside the self-help genre needs: an intelligent, provocative and thought-provoking expose of the modern myths that we're told make us happier, but in reality screw us up. Clinical psychologist, Dr Stephen Briers shines a light into the dark corners of self-help and explodes the myths, false hopes, quack philosophies and unrealistic expectations it routinely advocates. It is a refreshing antidote to the 'same old same old' approaches, offering a radical re-think of the way we approach problems in our lives, offering empowering new perspectives and expert advice on avoiding the biggest life traps. Dr Briers questions the perceived wisdom, shakes up the status quo, and encourages us to think again.
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Top customer reviews
I've read tons of self-help books... just to mention a few: the classics (The Law of Success and Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill, How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie), The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey, The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle, Flow by Mihály Csíkszentmihályi, The Power of Your Subconcious Mind by Joseph Murphy, The Common Denominator of Succes by Alan Gray, The Science of Getting Rich by Wallace Wattles, As a Man Thinketh by James Allen, etc. I could go on. I stumbled upon some of the modern titles as well (Robert Kiyosaki, M. J. DeMarco, Rhonda Byrne...). I could go on. I've read books on the subject of mindfulness, personal finance, self-management, happiness in general, the psychology of love, men and women, relationships, charisma - you name it. My thoughts revolved around these matters in the past 1-1,5 years, 24/7.
At the beginning I truly felt my life was going to make a 180 degree turn. I was enthusiastic. The prospects seemed limitless as I devoured more and more books. I did my best to implement the new ideas and methods I learned. I tried to live by the ”laws of success”, I tried to ”be proactive”. At first, it really felt I was going in the right direction. I would talk to my friends about all the new things I learned, trying to convince them to apply them on their lifes. Ultimately, however, I always fell short in my own life. Something never seemed to work out as it should have. Something always was off. Something always felt forced and just basically alien to my life and to the person who I am. At first I thougt I needed to read MORE books. MORE ideas, MORE perspectives, MORE methods. Finally, I noticed that the more books I read, the more unhappy I became in my life.
I felt this nagging pain in my guts and knew something went astray. Finally the sudden ralization struck me when I was reading one of David Deida’s books, the Blue Truth: A Spiritual Guide to Life & Death and Love & Sex. Let me qoute it as it captures the situation perfectly:
„So you grow to the next stage. You dedicate yourself to self-improvement. You can use many methods to transform your negative emotions into positive ones. […] Eventually, however, if you continue to grow, your desire to transform negative emotions into positive ones begins to feel false. Your need to feel good about yourself begins to be a burden. Your need to feel successful, lovable, and unique begins to feel unnecessary, like a scab ready to fall off. Just as you were once motivated to feel good rather than bad, now you are naturally ready to open without any self-image—positive or negative—to protect you from what is. […] As you grow spiritually, your approach to negative emotions naturally matures. First, you flounder in negativity, alternating between denial and shame. Then, you embark on a well-intentioned effort to transform negative emotions into positive ones, improving yourself so that you become a more successful and lovable person in the mirror of your self-worth. Finally, you can’t help but live true to what is, whatever is. You stop trying to buoy yourself with motivation and positive thinking.”
Deida, David. Blue Truth (pp. 71-73). Sounds True. Kindle Edition.
THIS BOOK I am writing my review about came as a true life-saver. It draws attention to the fact that these self-help books (yes, EVEN the hundred-year-old classics) may be no less harmful than helpful if one is not available to read and apply them carefully, critically, with the proverbial grain of salt. It reveals that the methods suggested in most self-help books are often unworkable at best (in a mortal man's life), or, in the worst case even harmful and dangerous to our lifes, leading to utter unhappiness.
Now, I am not suggesting that the self-help literature is useless as it is or that I regret having read the books I mentioned before (not all of them at least). I am just saying that THIS BOOK opened my eye, took a huge burden off my shoulders and allowed me to return to my REAL SELF. I will never allow again any book to take away my common sense and my own faith in my abilities. I will not let any book to shake my faith in my own self ever again. I will not let any book to make me behave like a clown ever again. I hope more people who are in a similar situation than I was will read this book. Thank you Stephen Briers.
human behavior or of daily living where one retreats even more confused and with a zilched self esteem as one hasnt been doing what ought to be done rather than what is done . I personally have had the experience of undergoing "therapy" with a person who was keen on psychobabble and new age balderdash/codswallop , the person wasnt qualified in psychology but loved endorsing the secret/NLP/Reiki/ the sedona method which are all pseudoscientific , untested and not backed my psychological research , that so called shady "healer" repeated these aphorisms that to me made no sense but i believed them all considering the low point i was at my life , aphorisms for justifiying bad behavior and narcissistic tendencies and that all you need in life is self-love . I personally would love to see those crooks in solitary confinement for quite sometime and let me see how self-serving that self love is . Humans are social creatures , its lovely to have healthy relationships and friendships . Im glad Dr.Briers wrote this book to debunk all these myths and useless balderdash that make us more miserable than better :)