Finding balance, calm and understanding in a hectic world – New Self-help books in July

This month’s selection delves into the workings of co-dependent relationships and offers tools to free yourself from them, cultivating intimacy, yet separateness, creativity and inner peace.
We also examine the role of death in life and the devastating effect of twin bereavement and loss and how to deal with it.

Syndetics book coverHow to predict the unpredictable : the art of outsmarting almost everyone
“We are hard-wired to believe that the world is more predictable than it is. We chase ‘winning streaks’ that are often just illusions, and we are all too predictable exactly when we try hardest not to be. In the 1970s, Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky coined the phrase ‘representativeness’ to describe the psychology of this behaviour. Poundstone makes these techniques fun, easy, and profitable for everyone, in the everyday situations that matter. You’ll learn how to tackle multiple choice tests, what internet passwords to avoid, how to up your odds of winning the office Premier League sweepstakes, and the best ways to invest your money.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverThe joy of missing out : finding balance in a wired world
“Over the past few decades, the world has embraced “progress” and we’re living with the resultant clicking, beeping, anxiety-inducing frenzy. But a creative backlash is gathering steam, helping us cope with the avalanche of data that threatens to overwhelm us daily through our computers, tablets and smartphones. The Joy of Missing Out considers the technologically focused life, with its impacts on our children, relationships, communities, health, work and more, and suggests opportunities for those of us longing to cultivate a richer on- and off-line existence. This book is a must-read for anyone wishing to rediscover quietness of mind, and seeking a sense of peace amidst the cacophony of the modern world.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverCalm : calm the mind, change the world
“Join the Calm revolution. Modern life is hectic and relentless. There has never been a more important time to rediscover your pause button. Calm is the book that will show you how to take back a little bit of peace, space and all-important calm. It is a practical and pleasurable guide to twenty-first century mindfulness. Regular meditation is medically proven to be good for you.  Calm is about simple, achievable habits that work with the demands of your busy life instead of pretending those demands don’t exist. Calm does not require specialist training: it uses abilities that every single one of us is born with, like creativity, spontaneity and simply noticing the world around you. Calm demystifies mindfulness and shows you the many simple ways to be mindful while carrying on with your life.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverThe upside of stress : why stress is good for you, and how to get good at it
“The author of The Willpower Instinct delivers a controversial and groundbreaking new book that overturns long-held beliefs about stress. More than forty-four percent of Americans admit to losing sleep over stress. And while most of us do everything we can to reduce it, Stanford psychologist and bestselling author Kelly McGonigal, Ph.D., delivers a startling message: Stress isn’t bad. In The Upside of Stress, McGonigal highlights new research indicating that stress can, in fact, make us stronger, smarter, and happier–if we learn how to embrace it. McGonigal combines science, stories, and exercises into an engaging and practical book that is both entertaining and life-changing. McGonigal’s TED talk on the subject has already received more than 7 million views.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverNo one understands you and what to do about it
“Have you ever felt you’re not getting through to the person you’re talking to, or not coming across the way you intend? You’re not alone. That’s the bad news. But there is something we can do about it. Heidi Grant Halvorson, social psychologist and bestselling author, explains why we’re often misunderstood and how we can fix that. Most of us assume that other people see us as we see ourselves, and that they see us as we truly are.  You can learn to clarify the message you’re sending once you understand the lenses that shape perception. Once you understand the science of perception, you’ll communicate more clearly, send the messages you intend to send, and improve your personal relationships.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverThe worm at the core : on the role of death in life
“Drawing from innovative experiments conducted around the globe, Solomon, Greenberg, and Pyszczynski show conclusively that the fear of death and the desire to transcend it inspire us to buy expensive cars, crave fame, put our health at risk, and disguise our animal nature. The fear of death can also prompt judges to dole out harsher punishments, make children react negatively to people different from themselves, and inflame intolerance and violence. But The Worm at the Core  offers a compelling new paradigm for understanding the choices we make in life–and a pathway toward divesting ourselves of the cultural and personal illusions that keep us from accepting the end that awaits us all.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverInvisible chains : overcoming coercive control in your intimate relationship
“When a man showers all of his attention on a woman, it can feel incredibly romantic, and can blind her to hints of a darker side. But what happens when that attentiveness starts to feel like domination? For certain men, the desire to control leads to jealousy, possessiveness, micromanaging–even physical violence. Understanding what this destructive pattern looks like and why it occurs is the first step toward repairing or ending a relationship that has become toxic. Readers get vital tools for determining if they are in danger and if their partner can change and for getting their freedom back.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverLessons of lifelong intimacy : building a stronger marriage without losing yourself–the 9 principles of a balanced and happy relationship
“Michael Gurian offers a groundbreaking plan for couples seeking to build a healthy relationship, work through past hurts, and create greater intimacy. Recent university studies show that the most frequent reason relationships dissolve is not abuse, alcoholism, money, or even infidelity, but rather a lack of emotional fulfillment. Most books on love and marriage focus on teaching communication and conflict skills, but neglect to help couples with the “other half” of intimacy–separateness. In this practical yet personal guide to love, Gurian details the benefits of creating a lifelong balance of closeness and separateness. Rich with examples and case studies, this book presents strategies for communication and conflict that build more emotional balance, while showing how intimate separateness can be the key to lifelong happiness.”(Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverRainbow way : cultivating creativity in the midst of motherhood
“Visioned as the guide and mentor that most creative women yearn for, but never find in their daily lives, The Rainbow Way explores the depths of the creative urge, from psychological, biological, spiritual and cultural perspectives. This positive, nurturing and practical book will help to empower you to unlock your creative potential within the constraints of your demanding life as a mother.”(Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverThe lone twin : understanding twin bereavement and loss
“People are fascinated with twins – intrigued by their closeness with each other. But what happens when twins are separated, especially by death? Twin mortality is high, but it is not uncommon for a lone twin’s loss, at any age, to go unmarked. They need extra help and support to take them through the loss of their ‘other half.’ Working as an Attachment therapist, Joan Woodward uses John Bowlby’s theories as her conceptual base for her research. In this book, she suggests that the highly significant attachment that twins make with each other may begin, for many, before birth. This is an important and rare book for many professionals – counselors, psychotherapists, social workers, psychologists, and teachers – who come into contact with bereaved twins and yet have little understanding of the dynamics of twinship and of twin loss.” (Syndetics)