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Recommended Reading

 

 

 

 

Abstract: Seventeen-year-old Catherine Pulaski knows Zero is coming for her. Zero, the devastating depression born of Catherine's bipolar disorder, almost triumphed once; that was her first suicide attempt. Being bipolar is forever. It never goes away. The med du jour might work right now, but Zero will be back for her. It's only a matter of time.

 

 

 

 

 

Abstract: A small-town childhood, a close-knit family, a successful career, and an Olympic athlete - this was Amy's life...until it wasn't. That's the thing about mental illness, it doesn't care where you grew up, how smart you are, how many awards you've won, or how much money you make. It's an equal opportunity destroyer. From the earliest signs, to the denial, the manic highs, and despondent lows, bipolar disorder has the power to affect every aspect of a person's life. It derailed Amy's athletic and corporate careers, ruined relationships, and caused a whirlwind of chaos within her family. But now she's ready to tell her story. Ready to share the darkest parts of her life in hope of showing those diagnosed with mental illness that there is a way to overcome this world of uncertainty - a way to live and thrive in the midst of this life-altering disease. This is Amy's story..." --From back cover.

 

 

 

Abstract: Ever since he was a child, Keith O'Neil wanted to play football. Born on the same day that his father, Ed O'Neil, was cut from the New England Patriots, football was all Keith could think about...aside from his anxiety.Offered a scholarship to Northern Arizona University, O'Neil jumped at the chance to prove himself. Though it wasn't a Division I-A school, he brought his all and was a natural on the field, achieving first-team All-Big Sky choice as a junior and senior, as well as earning All-American honors.Going undrafted, luck came from the Dallas Cowboys, who offered O'Neil an invite to rookie mini-camp. But while trying to learn the playbook, his anxiety and insomnia returned. Even so, he made the team as an undrafted free agent. His dream had come true.While proving himself as a hard-nosed special teamer, sleepless nights, constant anxiety, and suicidal thoughts clouded his mind. O'Neil considered stepping away from the game multiple times, even speaking to his coach, Bill Parcells. Parcells gave him the wisdom that Everyone has a demon in their head, and we have to beat that demon. Beat the demon!"After being released from the Cowboys, O'Neil spent time with the Colts and Giants, but still could not escape his inner demons. He asked for help but never received the attention he needed. In fact, for suicidal thoughts was given a CD to help him relax--Enya. It finally became too much for him to handle, and the final decision was made to walk away from the game. It wasn't until sometime later that was finally diagnosed: Bipolar I disorder. Finally, everything made sense.Under My Helmet is the personal story of a man working every day to prove his worth while struggling with a debilitating--and undiagnosed--mental illness. O'Neil's voice is honest and open as he shares his battles and the steps he's taken to overcome adversity.

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Abstract: Offers fifty strategies for being productive while suffering from depression, such as avoiding isolation, eliminating distractions, and regulating sleep. Note by the author - Get It Done When You’re Depressed is not a depression treatment book.  But there’s no question that once you implement the strategies in this book and become more productive, your depression can definitely lessen.  For those whose depression treatment is ongoing or has not yet responded to other treatments, this book can be used as an integral part of an overall treatment strategy. 

 

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Abstract: PRISM Daniel Waters is an electrical engineer who has been creating a prism with his co-worker for two years. The energy they have discovered will revolutionize the world. But when he meets Jasmine Vallory, it is she who changes the world for him. However, Jasmine is harboring a secret that only her family has known, until now. Worse yet, someone is about to betray Daniel in the worst way possible.

BALANCE John Samuelson is a brainy unknown scientist working on a weapon of unimaginable power. His brother, Adam, has a big heart, but he is also mentally ill and homeless. But not all is what it seems. Both men are about to discover that sometimes the heart knows more than the mind about what is best.

AFTERMATH After Will Samson's life intersects with that of a mentally ill young woman, he shares his story during an interview, never imagining the impact it will have around the country. As backlash is instigated against those deemed unfi t for society by others, the lines between sanity and madness become blurred. Prism, Balance, and Aftermath are three short stories with a unifying theme that tackles the worldview of characters with bipolar disorder.

Summary: With all the struggles of modern life, it's easy to get lost in a quagmire of stress, worry, and indifference. For thousands of years, monks rose before dawn to meditate and greet the morning with an open heart. But you don't need to beat the sun to start the day mindfully. With these simple healing postures, exercises of awareness, and meditations, you can take on every day with tranquility, confidence, and composure. 

 

 

 

 

Summary: Historians have long puzzled over the apparent mental instability of great and terrible leaders alike: Napoleon, Lincoln, Churchill, Hitler, and others. This title offers a myth-shattering exploration of the powerful connections between mental illness and leadership. From Amazon.com - This New York Times bestseller is a myth-shattering exploration of the powerful connections between mental illness and leadership. Historians have long puzzled over the apparent mental instability of great and terrible leaders alike: Napoleon, Lincoln, Churchill, Hitler, and others. In A First-Rate Madness, Nassir Ghaemi, director of the Mood Disorders Programme at Tufts Medical Center, offers and sets forth a controversial, compelling thesis: the very qualities that mark those with mood disorders also make for the best leaders in times of crisis. From the importance of Lincoln's "depressive realism" to the lacklustre leadership of exceedingly sane men as Neville Chamberlain, A First-Rate Madness overturns many of our most cherished perceptions about greatness and the mind.

 

Abstract: We humans tend to get in our own way time and time again-whether it comes to not speaking up for ourselves, going back to bad romantic partners, dieting for the umpteenth try, or acting on any of a range of bad habits we just can't seem to shake. In Rewire, renowned psychotherapist Richard O'Connor, PhD, reveals exactly why our bad habits die so hard. We have two brains-one a thoughtful, conscious, deliberative self, and the other an automatic self that makes most of our decisions without our attention. Using new research and knowledge about how the brain works, the book clears a path to lasting, effective changes. Bringing together many different fields in psychology and brain science, Dr. O'Connor gives you a road map to overcoming whatever self-destructive habits are plaguing you, with exercises throughout the book. We can rewire our brains to develop healthier circuitry, training the automatic self to make wiser decisions without having to think about it; ignore distractions; withstand temptations; see ourselves and the world more clearly; and interrupt our reflexive responses before they get us in trouble. Meanwhile, our conscious minds will be freed to view ourselves with compassion at the same time as we practice self-discipline. By learning valuable skills and habits-including mindfulness, self-control, confronting fear, and freeing yourself from mindless guilt-we can open ourselves to vastly more successful, productive, and happy lives. The book even demystifies how to overcome what Dr. O'Connor calls the "undertow" (the mysterious force that sabotages our best efforts when we're just on the edge of victory) for long-lasting change. Offering a valuable science-based new paradigm for rewiring our brains, Rewire is a refreshing guide to becoming a healthier, happier self.

From Amazon.com - Wisdom from the Couch is a useful guide to understanding the mysteries of the mind and how we can change for the better.

In this intelligent yet user-friendly book, psychoanalyst Jennifer Kunst raises some key questions that are on the minds of all those who are seeking a more satisfying, meaningful life: How can it be that perfectly intelligent people do such obviously counterproductive things so much of the time? Why do we do the things we know we shouldn't do, and why do we fail to do the things we know we should do? The simple answer to these questions is that the unconscious mind greatly influences all that we do. If we come to understand ourselves at a deeper unconscious level, we have a chance to make changes in our lives that have the potential to last.
Written by an experienced psychoanalyst with a knack for describing complex ideas in a lively and easy to comprehend way, Wisdom from the Couch will change the way you think about your internal and external life.

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Abstract: If you have trouble bouncing back from low moods or just feel stuck in the doldrums much of the time, renowned cognitive behavior therapist David A. Clark has a clear message: there are simple yet powerful steps you can take to feel better. This encouraging book presents 80 strategies you can use to reduce sadness, promote positive feelings of contentment and joy, and decrease your risk for full-blown depression. Vivid stories and concrete examples help you learn specific methods for:

*Nipping negativity in the bud.
*Making unhappiness less overwhelming.
*Defusing self-criticism and rumination.
*Boosting your energy and motivation for change.  
*Feeling more confident and hopeful every day.

Using the practical tools in the book--forms, worksheets, and self-assessment quizzes--makes it easy to create and stick to a mood repair action plan. You can download and print additional copies of these tools as needed. The strategies that Dr. Clark provides are grounded in cutting-edge neuroscience and psychology research--and they work. Discover proven ways to start living a more satisfying and productive life.

From Amazon.com - Bipolar disorder can be devastating. It can disrupt relationships and careers, it can wreak havoc on family life, and, when not properly treated, it can be fatal. Since 1999 this compassionate and comprehensive guide has helped tens of thousands of people cope with this complex disease. This, the second edition of Bipolar Disorder, is thoroughly updated and discusses promising new options for diagnosis and treatment along with new information on the disease's genetic components.

Bipolar disorder is difficult to diagnose. Dr. Mondimore explains how symptoms fluctuate in persons with seasonal affective disorder, how they can lead to a mistaken diagnosis of attention deficit–hyperactivity disorder in children, and how they may be made worse by alcohol or drug addiction.

The disease can also be difficult to treat. Dr. Mondimore gives advice about how to pick a psychiatrist and cope with the stigma of psychiatric diagnosis. He provides extensive information on treatment options, including the advantages, disadvantages, and side effects of various drug therapies.

He also describes what it is like to live with bipolar disorder and discusses how lifestyle changes can improve quality of life. Throughout, he focuses on the importance of building a support system, planning for emergencies, and giving yourself permission to seek help.

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From Amazon.com - Out-of-control anger can destroy relationships, reputations, careers--even your health. But Dr. Robert Nay knows from extensive clinical experience that nearly anyone can learn to manage anger constructively--with enough practice. That's where this skillfully crafted workbook comes in. Using step-by-step learning exercises based on state-of-the-art knowledge about how the brain works, you can break old habits and replace them with more productive new ones. Dr. Nay's breakthrough STOP Method (Stop, Think, Objectify, and Plan) helps you:

*Understand how anger flares up in your brain and body--and how you can lower the heat.
*Identify the fleeting yet powerful thoughts that fuel destructive anger.
*Replace aggression with appropriate assertiveness.
*Effectively communicate your thoughts, feelings, and needs.
*Defuse conflicts and find "win-win" solutions.
*See how the strategies are applied in a wealth of realistic scenarios. While working through the book's simple checklists and fill-in-the-blank forms (you can download and print additional copies as needed), you'll be building real skills to apply in everyday life. When anger gets in the way of your personal goals, this book provides a blueprint for change.

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Abstract: In The Upside of Your Dark Side, two pioneering researchers in the field of psychology show that while mindfulness, kindness, and positivity can take us far, they cannot take us all the way. Sometimes, they can even hold us back. Emotions such as anger, anxiety, guilt, and sadness might feel uncomfortable, but it turns out that they are also incredibly useful. For instance: - Anger fuels creativity - Guilt sparks improvement - Self-doubt enhances performance In the same vein, we can become wiser and more effective when we harness the darker parts of our personality in certain situations. For instance: - Selfishness increases courage - Mindlessness leads to better decisions The key lies in what the authors call 'emotional, social, and mental agility, ' the ability to access our full range of emotions and behavior'not just the 'good' ones'in order to respond most effectively to whatever situation we might encounter. Drawing on years of scientific research and a wide array of real-life examples including sports, the military, parenting, education, romance, business, and more, The Upside of Your Dark Side is a refreshing reality check that shows us how we can truly maximize our potential. With an appreciation of our entire psychological toolkit, we become whole'which allows us to climb the highest peaks and handle the deepest valleys.