Customer Review

Reviewed in the United States on January 24, 2020
I purchased Dr. Ashton's latest release because I benefit from books that inspire me to live a healthier lifestyle. Unfortunately, the inspiration I derived from The Self-Care Solution was minimal. First, let me point out what I perceived to be the book's strengths, namely that Dr. Ashton calls her readers' attention to the importance of choosing a lifestyle that contributes to their well-being, vitality, and longevity. Equally as important, Dr. Ashton frames her call to better health in a way that is organized and doable, important for those readers who struggle with incorporating personal discipline and appropriate boundaries into their schedules. Dr. Ashton does this by packaging each of her self-chosen health practices into one-month increments. The monthly emphases that resonated with me were hydration in June, mindfulness of technology in August, and sleep in November. Each reader will recognize the emphases she or he needs the most. I'm glad I read Dr. Ashton's book for these reasons.
Having said this, let me point out what I believe to be The Self-Care Solution's drawbacks, which focus primarily on the author's excessive injection of herself into the narrative. Too much of this book was about "I, Me, and My" with too little emphasis on the scientific research that went into Dr. Ashton's recommendations. True, she occasionally cited various research studies, but the references merely stated conclusions without an accounting of more intricate data gleaned from the research. Frequently, she did not even identify the study she was citing.
Dr. Ashton's numerous personal references compose the majority of her book, a dynamic I found annoying and distracting from the book's original intent. For example, the author referred time and again to her concern about her skin (complexion). Her physical appearance seemed more important to her than her health. In the chapter where she described taking control of her use of technology, I was offended when Dr. Ashton acknowledged having difficulty unplugging when with her children but not when with her boyfriend. Did she not recognize how this may have looked to her readers, especially those who are parents?
Finally, let me say a word about chapter twelve where Dr. Ashton recounts her December effort to incorporate more humor into her life. The author found humor in wearing a tiara. I found this chapter adolescent in tone, lacking in substance, and detracting from whatever credibility the author had established in first eleven chapters. Equally problematic for me was the author's assumption that other persons, including her colleagues, appreciated her expression of humor as much as she did even though they gave no indication of it. At the chapter's conclusion I found myself questioning the author's self-insight, emotional maturity, and ability to read social cues. For me, the final chapter lessened the authority with which I invested Dr. Ashton when I initially opened the book, thus taking away from the book's overall message--and this is the reason I awarded The Self-Care Solution two stars instead of three.
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