Stress & Trauma

(by Martha Davis, Elizabeth Robbins Eshelman, Patrick Fanning ) - Recommended by Andrea Cook
A fabulous workbook which is my starting point with ALL clients to give them the tools to manage any therapeutic issues in need of processing. This workbook can be read through in its entirety or the reader can select individual chapters to tackle. It’s particularly useful for those suffering from depression, anxiety, perfectionism, and self-injury.
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(by Dena Rosenbloom, Mary Beth Williams) - Recommended by Hilary Stephenson & Andrea Cook
This workbook is fabulous for processing ALL forms of trauma. Its non-specific exercises gently ease the reader into a safe place prior to delving into whatever incident brought them to consider treatment.
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(by Bessel A. van der Kolk, Alexander C. McFarlane, & Lars Weisaeth) - Recommended by Hilary Stephenson
This is a helpful text on trauma and its clinical treatments. The book explores the individual and societal responses to trauma, acute traumatic reactions to trauma, and adaptations to trauma (i.e., course of posttraumatic reactions). It discusses early prevention and intervention strategies, as well as covers issues related to the therapeutic relationship.
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(by Mary Beth Williams & Soili Poijula) - Recommended by Hilary Stephenson
This workbook assists individuals to better understand their diagnosis of PTSD by first determining the type of trauma their endured, and then through the identification of their current symptoms. The workbook covers effective exercises that assist in the management of PTSD/complex PTSD symptomatology such as helping the individual to feel safe in their environment, helping with the regulation emotions, dealing with survivor guilt, and dealing with perpetrators.
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(by General Rick Hillier) - Recommended by Hilary Stephenson
A great read for anyone who has had any involvement with the Canadian military forces (past and present). General Rick Hillier gives an honest account of his experiences as Canada’s Chief of the Defence staff. View book on Amazon
(by Tian Dayton, Ph.D) - Recommended by Hilary Stephenson
This book should read by any individual who is suffering from trauma (past and present) and who is coping with an ongoing addiction. “Talking about trauma allows us to name the related feelings, which has the affect of lifting the memories out of the shadowy, semiconscious state into light and air (Dayton, 2000,p.40).”
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Relationships

(by Esther Perel) - Recommended by Andrea Cook
A very interesting read on how marital relationships have evolved over the years and how to keep the excitement going in a monogamous relationship.
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(John Gottman, Ph.D) - Recommended by Amy Manuel Weins
This book is a practical application of tools and techniques that couples can do on their own to help enhance and 'save' their relationship. Dr. Gottman is well known for his research in couples' relationships, and he has put together seven principles to help retrain couples on how to deal with each other and with their probems in a way that is easy to understand and worth trying. This book explains what happens when we do not feel validated by our partners and some of the most common mistakes made by us all. He discribes the four major 'Don't's' in any relationship and how to change those behaviours into relationship 'Do's'. Lastly, this book comes with built in exercises that you and your partner can do to improve the dynamic of your relationship.
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(Gary Chapman, Ph. D.) - Recommended by Amy Manuel Weins
This 'oldie' but a 'goodie' is written by a psychologist who has spent his career working with couples. The 5 love languages he identifes are the groupings of actions and approaches which communicate love between partners. When our partners do the loving act that relates best to us, we are left feeling cared for and loved. Dr. Chapman has written this book to help couples relate to each other better and to help couples realize that their partners' love language could be different then their own. This book helps us understand the differences in all of us and how understanding our own differences can actually enhance our relationship and give us the opportunity to love one other uniquely.
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(Sue Johnson, Ph. D) - Recommended by Amy Manuel Weins
This is a popular book among many therapists dealing with couples as it beautifully explains why we crave our partners and why our relationship with them is more than just a relationship, it feeds our innate need for attachment. Stemming from John Bowlby's attachment theory, Dr. Johnson explains how our attachments with our partners are of the utmost importance and how we can enhance our relationships by emotionally connecting with each other. Dr. Johnson gives seven conversations that will help any couple grow more intimate together from a true emotional connection. The exercises and conversations presented in this book are easy to follow and, if both partners are willing to complete them, they will see a change in the intimacy of their relationship.
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(David Schnarch, Ph. D.) - Recommended by Amy Manuel Weins
This intimate book on sex can be either the first step in exploring this area or it may be the only step needed to take to understand and address sexual issues within the relationship. Dr. Schnarch has developed a new approach for couples dealing with sexual issues. He is coming from a holistic approach, educating the reader on how emotions, thoughts and feelings are areas that need exploration when dealing with this issue, not just the biology or physiology of the body. This book provides a sophisticated picture of relationships as well as shows the reader how to apply this to their specific situation. It covers everything from how genitals work, how sexual relationships operate, the marvels of sexual medication, what to do about sexual problems, and how to do it. After reading this book you will have a new outlook on intimacy and your sexual relationship.
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Personal Growth

(Russ Harris, MD) - Recommended by Julia Somody
This book builds on the principles of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and uses mindfulness, acceptance and action to help us become more actively present in our day-to-day existence and live more satisfying lives. In his book, Dr. Harris teaches us techniques to become more accepting of our thoughts and more flexible with our decision-making to live in greater accordance with our core values. This book is particularly helpful because the author has made all of the exercises, as well as additional information, available on his website, www.thehappinesstrap.com.
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(Paul D. Tieger and Barbara Barron-Tieger) - Recommended by Julia Somody
This book provides an introduction to Personality Type and explains which of the 16 types would best match your own personal style: how you gather information, interact with others, and make decisions. Using step-by-step exercises and practical activities, the authors then highlight how you can use the strengths and challenges of your type to your advantage in both your current career and career exploration. I particularly like the real-life examples that the authors provide which illustrate how your type can work in several different occupations. I find this book especially helpful for anyone just beginning their career search or considering a career change.
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(M. Scott Peck, MD) - Recommended by Julia Somody
In this popular book, the author provides insight into the reasons that we avoid our pain, examines why change is difficult, and recommends ways that we can challenge and solve our problems. Although he wrote this book in 1978, Dr. Peck’s messages about life and personal growth continue to resonate and touch readers today. I recommend this book to anyone struggling with existential questions of love, existence, and death, and for those looking to gain guidance on life’s journey.
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(Chad LeJeune, PhD) - Recommended by Julia Somody
Do you ever find yourself awake, late at night, unable to sleep because you are worrying? Often what may have started out as a small concern becomes larger as worry about it until it feels incredibly overwhelming to tackle. Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) is a relatively new, but highly effective, approach to dealing with stress, chronic anxiety and worrying. In a nutshell, ACT blends the principles of awareness, acceptance and action to help us move past our anxiety and live more meaningful lives. I really like this book because it is short and easy to read (only 189 pages!) and is filled with practical activities that demonstrate ways to reduce stress and worry as well as build skills in time management, assertiveness and problem-solving.
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(Therese A. Rando, PhD) - Recommended by Julia Somody
Grieving the loss of a loved one is a difficult process that we all face at one time or another – yet, it is also an issue that is often not discussed and for which we are not prepared. In her book, Dr. Rando provides guidance through the grieving process: normalizing common grief reactions, reinforcing the notion that each of us moves through grief at our own pace and helping each of us find our own way. She offers helpful suggestions for caring for yourself, talking about grief with children and others, asking for and accepting help from others, and understanding and resolving your grief.
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Parenting

(by Susan Besze Wallace and Monica Reed, MD) - Recommended by Andrea Cook
Feeling a little overwhelmed by your new role as mother? This book will help reaffirm your sanity and keep you on track in the early days of motherhood. It will also help you understand the difference between how women and men handle the new family addition.
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(by Lesley Regan MD ) - Recommended by Andrea Cook
A fabulous, comprehensive, non-repetitive, and positive guide to pregnancy. This book does discuss the realities and concerns relating to pregnancy but does not bombard or scare the reader, as some other guides have done in the past.
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(by Tracey Hogg and Melinda Blau) - Recommended by Andrea Cook
Flailing about and wondering where you misplaced the instruction manual to your newborn? Here it is! Although, every child is obviously different, this book gives you some kind of indication about what a schedule can look like. It also walks you through the various stages of your newborn’s life from interpreting what the heck he/she is trying to tell you to introducing solids.
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(by Harvey Karp, M.D.) - Recommended by Andrea Cook
Although, I am a little uncertain about the theoretical background for Dr. Karp’s techniques, this book helps to look at infants from a different perspective allowing for more empathy during any periods of intense crying or fussing, and the techniques for soothing are invaluable.
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(by Jenny Mccarthy) - Recommended by Andrea Cook
Just a good, simple, comedic look what to expect in that first year. A good break from the serious, research-oriented literature.
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(by Pam England, Cnm, Ma, Rob Horowitz, Phd ) - Recommended by Andrea Cook
A wonderful book to help get parents-to-be mentally prepared for birth and parenthood. Although many people may find it very time consuming to tackle all art activities in the book, the chapters regarding the birthing process are highly recommended for anyone but especially those considering a natural child birth.
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(By JohnM. Gottman, PhD, and Julie Schwartz Gottman PhD) - Recommended by Andrea Cook
Life is all about balance and you may feel that the balls you are juggling are all in perfect motion. That is, until you toss a newborn into the mix! The Gottmans are truly gurus in the area of marriage therapy and in this book, they examine how just about everything in your relationship is going to require recalibration after the arrival of your little one. If you already have communication difficulties in your relationship, a baby will not help matters. You need to read this book. If you have wonderful communication with your partner and are in a perfect place to start your family…you still need to read this book.
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(by Michael Riera) - Recommended by Andrea Cook
There are many books about teenagers out there but this is one of my favorites. It really explains good practical parenting strategies when encountering many teen problems, e.g. drinking, drug, sex, etc.
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Addiction

(by Robert J. Ackerman) - Recommended by Andrea Cook
An absolute favorite therapeutic starting point of mine for any woman who grew up in an alcoholic or emotionally abusive/neglectful household. Dr. Ackerman outlines how living with an alcoholic impacts development and relationships throughout the lifespan and offers suggestions for recovery.
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(by Melody Beattie) - Recommended by Andrea Cook
From the author of “Codependent No More” and “Beyond Copendency”, Melody Beattie expands her focus of codependency from origins in alcoholism to other illnesses impairing healthy parenting ability. For anyone struggling with the sacrificing of self for an extreme need to help others, this book is fabulous.
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Anxiety

(Edmund J. Bourne, PhD) - Recommended by Julia Somody & Hilary Stephenson
This book provides information, techniques, and exercises on how to deal with and resolve many different types of anxiety, including social phobia, specific phobia, generalized anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and panic attacks. Although geared towards anxiety, I also find the principles and methods presented in the book to be very helpful in improving confidence and self-esteem. In the book, Dr. Bourne outlines a holistic approach to reduce anxiety through breathing and relaxation exercises, challenging mistaken beliefs and negative self-talk, imagery and desensitization, and lifestyle, nutrition and exercise changes.
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