New self-help books

Whether it’s helping yourself or helping others close to you, take ideas and inspiration from these new items this month.

Syndetics book coverTransforming negative self-talk : practical, effective exercises / Steve Andreas.
“Hearing critical or disapproving internal chatter is a common frustration. It can follow us around daily, calling into question our self-confidence, making us anxious or obsessive, and generally wreaking havoc on our sense of balance and well-being. In this user-friendly guide, an experienced clinician presents an array of original, take-charge exercises, which don’t suggest simply ignoring your ruminations. On the contrary, by learning how to change the way the words are spoken, the location of the voice, its tempo, tone, and volume, and stamp out generalizations, evaluations, and presuppositions, we can gain control of the downbeat voices and use them to our advantage.” – (adapted from Book cover summary)

Syndetics book coverBeyond words : grieving when your child has died / by Andrew Thompson and Tricia Irving Hendry.
“The death of a child is a heartfelt experience like no other.It is a deep grief experience that goes beyond words.The loss affects bereaved parents emotionally, physically, mentally, spiritually and socially. It makes more demands on them than most others ever realise. Many bereaved parents say that the only people who can ever genuinely begin to understand what it’s like for them are other bereaved parents. Hearing from others who have ‘been there’ can make all the difference. For this reason, Beyond Words is a handbook that features the honest words, perspectives and suggestions of many bereaved parents. It also offers useful information about managing grief, support options and ideas that may be helpful on the grief journey. It is comforting, encouraging, informative and practical. It will also provide understanding and insights to professionals and others seeking to effectively support bereaved parents.” – (adapted from Global Books in Print summary)

Syndetics book coverThe guide to compassionate assertiveness : how to express your needs & deal with conflict while keeping a kind heart / Sherrie M. Vavrichek.
“Many people who struggle with assertiveness are paralyzed by worries that they’ll seem mean, petty, or that they will hurt the other person’s feelings. Even though they want to speak up, they may keep their true needs and opinions to themselves because of these fears – eventually building stress, resentment, and alienation. The Guide to Compassionate Assertiveness does not require that readers ignore the needs of others and focus solely on their own desires. Rather, this unique blend of cognitive behavioral therapy-based assertiveness training and Buddhist psychology helps readers practice assertiveness skills while caring deeply about the welfare of others. This book helps readers develop a form of assertiveness that emphasizes collaboration, negotiation, and compromise. It focuses on speaking up for the benefit of others and speaking up for the relationship, not just one’s own needs. In this way, readers learn to assert their needs in ways that match their compassionate value systems. This book is the ideal assertiveness guide for those who are afraid of rejection, have a deep concern for how others perceive them, often feel judged by others, or have difficulty expressing their feelings and needs. Readers learn to apply assertiveness skills in all domains of their lives, including in romantic relationships, as parents, at work, and in social settings.” – (adapted from Global Books in Print summary)

Syndetics book coverThe parent’s guide to self-harm : what parents need to know / Jane Smith.
“Written by parents for parents, this handy guide book shows both how to deal with and help when a child is engaging in self-harm. An ever-increasing number of young people are turning to self-harm in order to cope with the pressures of modern living, and this poses a huge problem for parents and others who care for them. This book provides the answers needed to the pressing questions these parents struggle with daily, and shows that there is hope in these distressing situations. Questions addressed include: How do I know for sure whether my child is self-harming? How should I approach my child? What help and treatment is available to us? What can I do to help my child? and How have other parents coped? Full of the real-life experiences of parents who have been there, this is a practical book that will both inform and equip parents to help their children and themselves get through this difficult time.” – (adapted from Global Books in Print summary)

Syndetics book coverThe diviner : the inspiring true story of a man with uncanny insight and the ability to heal / Joe Cassidy.
“Though many of us suspect that there is more to the physical world than meets the eye, reading diviner Joe Cassidy’s story, simply called The Diviner, is still both amazing and inspiring In The Diviner, Joe explains the ancient art he practices. He describes how he discovered his gift and why he resisted it for many years, suffering the consequences in stress and ill-health. Over a decade ago he realised he had to accept his destiny and despite having a young family, he began working as a diviner. Since then he has worked on over five thousand cases. Joe does not advertise but somehow people find him. Everyone from housewives and lorry drivers, to lawyers and record company executives, turns up at his door. What they each sense is that Joe’s timeless insights can help with a problem that appears insoluble.The Diviner is a story of listening, divining and healing that throws a light on a side of life that is both ancient and still very much part of modern life. And it is a fascinating and uplifting story of a life less ordinary.” – (adapted from Global Books in Print summary)

Celebrate Money Week at Wellington City Libraries

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New Zealand’s first annual Money Week is happening from 2-8 September.  Run by The Commission for Financial Literacy and Retirement Income (the team responsible for Sorted), the week will see a wide range of financial education events and activities being run by different organisations all around the country – all with the aim of raising awareness of how people can better manage their money and get help to do so.

Come into Wellington City Libraries during Money Week to check out books, magazines and other resources we will have on display to help you get the information you need for getting your finances sorted.

You can also visit our Personal Finance & Budgeting popular topic page on our website for more information, including new items, dewey numbers for finding more books on the topic, and links to other helpful websites and online resources.

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Curious about Curiosity?

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NASA’s Mars Curiosity Rover is scheduled to land on the red planet at 5.31pm on Monday 6 August and you’re invited to Carter Observatory to witness this scientifically significant event hosted live by Carter and their colleagues from the KiwiSpace Foundation (if Curiosity survives its descent to the Martian surface that is…).

This special event will be running from 4.30pm with insights provided by the KiwiMars crew, followed by the live link up to that last “7 minutes of terror” as the rover descends onto the planet surface. This will be a great opportunity to learn about humankind’s next steps into space exploration, with the rover’s objectives including searching for past or present life, studying the Martian climate and geology, and collecting data for a future manned mission to Mars. (Note that the last planetarium show that day will be at 3pm so if you go up after that to watch the event admission will be on an exhibition only ticket basis: $10 adults / $ 8 concessions / $4 children / free entry to Star Pass holders).

Be your own champion this month

Be inspired by those who have pushed themselves to the limit with their Olympic goals this month and arm yourself with tools to reach the next level in your own life.

Syndetics book coverLife coaching activities and powerful questions : a practical workbook for life coaches and all involved in personal development / Phyllis Reardon.
“Life Coaching Activities and Powerful Questions has been designed for a dual purpose; first and foremost it is a working book for the life coach; it is also designed for the individual who wishes to make changes in their life using the Life Coaching Process. Parents, managers, teachers, career coaches, school counsellors and anyone involved in human or personal development, this book is a great asset. The Life Coaching Activities Exercise Workbook takes you through the Life Coaching process in terms of definitions, quotes, activities or exercises and Coaching Questions as designed by CoachPhyllis.com Inc. Use this book to focus on your life and make it the best it can be.” – (adapted from Global Books in Print summary)

Syndetics book coverE is for exceptional : the new science of success / Rob Yeung.
“What qualities raise high achievers in business, sport and entertainment above the crowd? How do exceptional people overcome setbacks and stay confident? Why do successful individuals not only earn and achieve more, but also feel happier and more fulfilled? Psychologist Rob Yeung has interviewed hundreds of remarkable entrepreneurs and leaders from the worlds of advertising, banking, fashion and sport to gain insight into the minds of exceptional people. Combining this knowledge with cutting edge scientific research, he shatters myths and outlines new lessons about how to achieve your goals in both work and life. By uncovering the secrets and science of successful people, E is for Exceptional provides proven techniques and a foolproof route map so you too can learn to come out on top.” – (adapted from Book cover summary)

Syndetics book coverThe thing you think you cannot do : thirty truths about fear and courage / Gordon Livingston.
“What are we afraid of and what can we do about it? Fear – of change, of intimacy, of loss, of the unknown – has become a corrosive influence in modern life, eroding our ability to think clearly. Exploited for power by politicians and for money by the media, it has become embedded in the way we think about our lives. Overcoming our fear, says Gordon Livingston, constitutes the most difficult struggle we face. Dr. Livingston, a psychiatrist, has increasingly found himself prescribing virtues like courage to his patients instead of tranquilizers or antidepressants. Now he tells us all what we need to do to develop personal virtues in the face of societal fear and our own individual fears.” – (adapted from Global Books in Print summary)

Syndetics book coverThe charge : activating the 10 human drives that make you feel alive / Brendon Burchard.
“Burchard, a world-renowned motivational speaker and bestselling author, makes a compelling case that it’s time for an entirely new approach to understanding what drives human ambition and achievement today; it’s time to change the conversation about what it takes to succeed and feel alive and fulfilled in a stressful, chaotic, distracted world. In The Charge: Activating the 10 Human Drives that Make You Feel Alive, Burchard, using pioneering studies from the fields of positive psychology and neuroscience, as well as great stories from his own experience, identifies the ten simple drives of human emotion and happiness: Control, Competence, Congruence, Caring, Connection, Change, Challenge, Creative expression, Contribution, and Consciousness. The Charge provides the keys to understanding and activating these drives in clear and concrete ways that will inspire and help everyone find the one thing we all are searching for: more life in our lives.” – (adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe gifts of imperfection : let go of who you think you’re supposed to be and embrace who you are / by Brené Brown.
“Each day we face a barrage of images and ideas from society and the media telling us who we should be. We are led to believe that if we could only change those flaws by looking perfect and leading a perfect life, then we’d no longer feel inadequate. In The Gifts of Imperfection, Brené Brown, Ph.D., the leading expert on shame, reveals that it is actually our imperfections that connect us to one another as human beings and make us who we are. In this fresh guide, Brown engages our minds, hearts, and spirits in finding the greatness in our flaws and evolving our self-perceptions through fifteen guideposts, from embracing our mistakes to letting go of our fear of rejection to an authentic, WholeHearted life. Each guidepost to live by is illustrated with essays, stories, inspiring quotes, meditations, and dynamic creative exercises designed to help us develop the skills to accept our humanness with compassion and practice empathy with ourselves and others.” – (adapted from Global Books in Print summary)

The Transit of Venus is TODAY!

Watching the Transit of Venus at Central Library

Well, sadly the weather may be stopping us from seeing the Transit of Venus as it happens here in Wellington today – but all is not lost.

Come into Central Library today and see the transit streaming live from the NASA website by the display on the 1st floor.  You can also meet and ask questions with members from the Wellington Astronomical Society who are available until around 2pm to talk with people who are interested in the transit or astronomy generally.

So do come and take a look if you’re passing by – this is still the last opportunity in our lifetime to see the Transit of Venus and join in with thousands of people all around the world who will also be watching at the very same moment.

And you can still also see displays about the Transit of Venus on the 1st and 2nd floors at Central Library at the moment, including items from our Rare Book Collection such as an original copy of Sydney Parkinson’s journal of Captain Cook’s voyage to Tahiti to specifically observe the 1769 transit (before he then further explored the Pacific, including New Zealand).  And check out our Science popular topic page with links to books and good websites with more information about the Transit of Venus too.

Great Transit of Venus talk last night

Transits of Venus talk by Professor John HarperA big thank you to Professor John Harper for a great talk about Transits of Venus at Central Library last night. Both the scientific aspects of the Transit of Venus and historical notes of interests from previous transits were explained and brought to life by Professor Harper as he shared his considerable expertise and knowledge on this fascinating astronomical phenomenon.

And thank you also to everyone who came along last night – it was fantastic to see so many of you who are interested in the Transit of Venus.

If you would like to take the last opportunity in our lifetime to see the Transit of Venus yourself, you can join the Wellington Astronomical Society next Wednesday 6th June on the City to Sea Bridge (next to Civic Square) from 9.30am – 2.30pm to view the Transit of Venus as it happens (weather permitting). It’s so important that you don’t ever look at the sun directly as it will damage your eyes irreparably, but you’ll be able to view the transit safely with the Society, using their equipment. If the weather prevents any viewing outside on Wednesday the Society will be stationed inside the library on the first floor (by the current Transit of Venus display) and we’ll have live feeds streaming from around the world.

Also, take a look at the website for The Royal Society of New Zealand, with a range of really good information about the Transit of Venus and what’s happening this year, including the 2012 Transit of Venus Forum – Lifting our Horizon and Pounamu, an online game which asks the question – “How do we treasure and build on what we already have – land, people, knowledge and connections – with new tools, new capacities, new connections and new ways of thinking to generate prosperity for all?” Sign up to play the game and have your say on the issues discussed at the Transit of Venus Forum.

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Free Transit of Venus talk tonight

Transit of Venus

Only one week left to go until we will have the last opportunity in our lifetime to see the Transit of Venus on Wednesday 6 June.   Fingers crossed the weather will be clear and sunny again like it is today for a clear view!

In the meantime join us at Central Library tonight (Wednesday 30 May) for a free talk at 7pm by John Harper (Emeritus Professor of Applied Mathematics, Victoria University) who will bring the story of the Transits of Venus to life in a free talk . Professor Harper will discuss not only what transits are and why they happen, but also why they were considered important enough for expeditions to be sent all over the world to observe them, and New Zealand’s role in previous transits.  Don’t miss out on this great talk – there’s no need to book, just come along and join us on the 2nd (top) floor at Central Library, ready for the talk to begin at 7pm. 

And don’t forget that you can join the Wellington Astronomical Society next Wednesday on the City to Sea Bridge (next to Civic Square) from 9.30am – 2.30pm to view the Transit of Venus as it happens (weather permitting).  It’s so important that you don’t ever look at the sun directly as it will damage your eyes irreparably, but you’ll be able to view the transit safely with the Society, using their equipment.   If the weather prevents any viewing outside on Wednesday the Society will be stationed inside the library on the first floor (by the current Transit of Venus display) and we’ll have live feeds streaming from around the world. 

You can also see displays about the Transit of Venus on the 1st and 2nd floors at Central Library at the moment, including items from our Rare Book Collection such as an original copy of Sydney Parkinson’s journal of Captain Cook’s voyage to Tahiti to specifically observe the 1769 transit (before he then further explored the Pacific, including New Zealand).  And check out our Science popular topic page with links to books and good websites with more information about the Transit of Venus too.

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Jump into winter with flying lessons and emotional equations

Equip yourself with flying lessons and emotional equations for understanding – amongst other things – love and betrayal, angry brains and how to lose your mind to create a new one.

Syndetics book coverBreaking the habit of being yourself : how to lose your mind and create a new one / Joe Dispenza.
“You are not doomed by your genes and hardwired to be a certain way for the rest of your life. A new science is emerging that empowers all human beings to create the reality they choose. In ‘Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself’, renowned author, speaker, researcher, and chiropractor Dr. Joe Dispenza combines the fields of quantum physics, neuroscience, brain chemistry, biology, and genetics to show you what is truly possible. Not only will you be given the necessary knowledge to change any aspect of yourself, but you will be taught the step-by-step tools to apply what you learn in order to make measurable changes in any area of your life. Dr. Joe demystifies ancient understandings and bridges the gap between science and spirituality. Through his powerful workshops and lectures, thousands of people in 24 different countries have used these principles to change from the inside out. Once you break the habit of being yourself and truly change your mind, your life will never be the same!” – (adapted from Book cover description)

Syndetics book coverThe science of love and betrayal / by Robin Dunbar.
“Falling in love is one of the strangest things we can do – and one of the things that makes us uniquely human. But what happens to our brains when our eyes meet across a crowded room? Why do we kiss each other, forget our friends, seek a ‘good sense of humour’ in Lonely Hearts adverts and try (and fail) to be monogamous? How are our romantic relationships different from our relationships with friends, family or even God? Basing his arguments on new and experimental scientific research, Robin Dunbar explores the psychology and ethology of romantic love and how our evolutionary programming still affects our behaviour. Fascinating and illuminating, witty and accessible, ‘The Science of Love and Betrayal’ is essential reading for anyone who’s ever wondered why we fall in love and what on earth is going on when we do.” – (adapted from Book cover description)

Syndetics book coverFlying lessons : how to be the pilot of your own life / Pamela Hale ; foreword by Alberto Villoldo.
“Flying Lessons is an inspirational manual for leading, living, and loving with passion and joy. It is a seven-step journey that helps anyone break free of the “gravity” of old limits and recognize one’s power to soar-without even leaving the ground. Pamela uses seven stories from her own private pilot lessons to draw the metaphor between flying and life. A multilayered creative work, Flying Lessons is augmented by Pam’s stunning aerial photos, which enhance the ancient and classic metaphor of flight. Each lesson corresponds with a chakra, a yoga pose, and an archetype, so the manual works as a course for readers on all levels of body, mind, and spirit. From the “dipstick” that helps flyers manage their energy, to the story of how the flying lessons helped Pam in her cancer journey, Flying Lessons is a practical and entertaining journey into authentic power, freedom, and fulfillment.” – (adapted from Global Books in Print summary)

Syndetics book coverEmotional equations : simple truths for creating happiness + success / Chip Conley.
“Hotelier and motivational speaker Conley (Marketing That Matters) introduces his concept of emotional equations (such as “Joy equals Love – Fear”) to help readers “get a handle on how emotions work together and how you can work with them.” To deal with despair, he turned to the post-WWII classic Man’s Search for Meaning, in which Viktor Frankl recalled how concentration camp prisoners who focused on meaning and learning survived while others who saw only suffering died. Trying to explain Frankl’s ideas to friends, Conley reduced them to an equation: “Despair = Suffering – Meaning.” Now he takes off from that first equation. For Conley, these equations are a way of allowing the brain to gain some control over irrational emotions, a new twist on the self-help staple of learning to monitor one’s emotions. But his equations do help break down the components of an emotion: for instance, both mistrust and self-esteem are elements in jealousy. Exploring such emotional landscapes as disappointment, regret, jealousy, anxiety, pleasure, pain, courage, narcissism, love, and fear. Conley filters his own readings in psychology and philosophy into his teachings, which may help some readers who can appreciate a rational, mathematical approach to managing their emotional lives.” – (adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverHealing the angry brain : how understanding the way your brain works can help you control anger & aggression / Ronald Potter-Efron.
“Practicing therapist Potter-Efron examines the biochemical reasons why some people are wired for anger and more likely to fly into dangerous rages that leave them feeling out of control. He reviews the structure of the brain, the limbic system in particular, and details how it regulates anger in both helpful and detrimental ways. Potter-Efron delivers a measure of hope to people who accept that they can lose control but who also recognize that they can change their behavior and neural pathways to create a more balanced personality. Appendixes on medications round out the guidance. Potter-Efron helps sufferers recognize unconscious anger activation, avoid conscious bad choices, and develop empathy. Of great use to those who realize they have such a problem.” – (adapted from Syndetics summary)

Seize the day – it’s never too late!

Begin with your thoughts and seize the day – whether you’re better than normal or exceptional, it’s never to late to be great!

Syndetics book coverIt’s your thoughts that count : how to use your thoughts to transform your life / by Wendy Betteridge.
“”Your thoughts that count” is a voyage through Wendy’s many training experiences. It brings together the best of what she’s learned as she has taught and trained others. Her book provides great skills for leaders and managers, confidence and certainty for sportsmen and women, comfort and solutions for those who are depressed or whose self esteem is low, techniques for children and young adults who are studying, and great communication skills for everyone. It provides the tools for seeking out personal values, for avoiding procrastination, for setting goals and committing to make them a reality.” (Global Books in Print)

Syndetics book coverBetter than normal : how what makes you different can make you exceptional / Dale Archer.
“What if the inattentiveness that makes school or work a challenge holds the secret to your future as an entrepreneur? What if the anxiety you often feel can actually help energize you? Renowned psychiatrist Dr. Dale Archer believes that labels for behavior like “ADHD,” “bipolar,” and “OCD” are normal human qualities–and contends that we all experience these and other psychological traits to some extent, yet fail to leverage the significant advantages they can offer. Here, Dr. Archer offers a framework for redefining what constitutes mental health. Drawing on his twenty years of clinical experience, he describes eight traits of human behavior. Each of these occurs along a continuum rather than as a simple on-off switch (where “off ” means we’re fine, and “on” means we’ve got a problem). These are the aspects of our personality that we worry about the most, but these are also the very things that make us distinctive and different.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverCouples : how we make love last / Kate Figes.
“These days, many of us enjoy unrivalled freedom and equality when it comes to choosing and building a relationship. Yet new myths about how to live and love compromise that happiness.Kate Figes argues that, whether married or cohabiting, gay or straight, remarried or a couple living apart, the quality of our intimate relationship is fundamental to our long-term health and happiness, because our need for commitment and love hasn’t changed.This is not a handbook. There are no easy ‘Mars and Venus’ universal recipes for success, because relationships are far too complicated, individual and important for easy answers. But learning how others sustain lifelong love, and what really goes on in other people’s lives can help us to understand our own partnerships and take responsibility for making them work. Couples is an incisive and important look at how we can learn to make love endure.” (Global Books in Print)

Syndetics book coverNever too late to be great : the power of thinking long / Tom Butler-Bowden.
“It is rarely too late to begin the journey of being or doing something remarkable. ‘Never Too Late to be Great’ is about the power of thinking long. Drawing on wide research into ‘lead time’ and the ‘ten-year’ rule, personal development authority Tom Butler-Bowdon shows that, contrary to popular belief, people, companies, products and ideas invariably need time to realise their potential. And how, when we give ourselves slightly longer timeframes, anything is possible. At the age you are now, many famous and remarkable people were only just getting into their stride. Given longer lifespans, it is likely that you have more time than you think to achieve your goals. This book will show you why, in all probability, your best is yet to come.” (Book cover)

Syndetics book coverSeize the day : how the dying teach us to live / Marie de Hennezel ; translated by Carol Brown Janeway.
“Marie de Hennezel is a gifted psychologist who works as part of a remarkable team of doctors and nurses in a hospital for the terminally ill. In this eloquent book, she shares her unique perspective on what life and death really mean – and explores how talking about death, and facing up to it, can actually help us lead more abundant lives. The men and women who come to the palliative-care unit do not always know that they are dying. It is de Hennezel’s aim to bring them and their loved ones to this knowledge, and then to encourage them to live each day as fully and serenely as possible. Through insight and humanity, and the unforgettable people she helps, we learn how precious the final days of a person’s life can be and how deeply moving it is to share these moments with someone else. In an age where people hesitate to talk about dying, ‘Seize the Day’ lends us the strength to confront the mysteries of death, gives us hope and celebrates the courage of the human spirit.” (Global Books in Print)

Wisdom or delusion?

Dip into the wisdom of previous generations – or irrational, thoroughly human behaviour here and now. Or gain new understanding about the power of introverts, your own unique emotional style, or how to build a new life in the process of overcoming verbal abuse.

Syndetics book coverThe wisdom of my grandmothers : lessons to live by, from one generation of remarkable women to the next / Adriana Trigiani.
“Adriana Trigiani’s two remarkable grandmothers, Lucia and Viola, lived through the twentieth century from beginning to end as working women who juggled careers and motherhood. From the factory line to the family table, the two of them – the very definition of modern women – cut a path for their granddaughter by demonstrating courage and skill in their fearless approach to life, love and overcoming obstacles. Trigiani visits the past to seek answers to the essential questions that define the challenges women face today: how we hold on to the values that make life rich and beautiful, how we can take risks and reap the rewards and how to stand resilient in the face of tragedy.” (Book cover)

Syndetics book coverVictory over verbal abuse : a healing guide to renewing your spirit and reclaiming your life / Patricia Evans.“You’re too sensitive.” “You’ll never amount to anything.” “You’re crazy.” If this is what you hear -from your spouse, your parent, your boss – then you’ve been the victim of verbal abuse. This insidious behaviour permeates our culture – from the privacy of our own homes to the public glare of our schools, workplaces, and other institutions. But you don’t have to live with it. In this groundbreaking companion to her bestselling ‘The Verbally Abusive Relationship’, acclaimed public speaker, educator and author Patricia Evans brings you the tools you need to triumph over verbal abuse, no matter where or how you encounter it. She’ll guide you step by step through a powerful healing process, and with Patricia’s help you’ll achieve the clarity you need to build a new life – far from senseless accusations, wounding words, and confusing comments that have taken an untold toll on your psyche. You’ll find validation, and learn to believe in yourself -and a better future – once more.” (Book cover)

Syndetics book coverYou are not so smart : why you have too many friends on Facebook, why your memory is mostly fiction, and 46 other ways you’re deluding yourself / David McRaney.
“Bringing together popular science and psychology with humour and wit, ‘You Are Not So Smart’ is a celebration of our irrational, thoroughly human behaviour. Growing out of David McRaney’s popular blog, ‘You Are Not So Smart’ reveals that every decision we make, every though we contemplate, and every emotion we feel comes with a story we tell ourselves to explain them. But often these stories aren’t true. By looking at the lies we habitually tell ourselves, this book answers question like: Why can’t we seem to break a bad habit? Why are group projects always a pain? And why are first impressions hard to overcome? Each short chapter – covering topics such as Learned Helplessness, Selling Out, and the Illusion of Transparency – is like a psychology course with all the boring parts taken out.” (Book cover)

Syndetics book coverQuiet : the power of introverts in a world that can’t stop talking / Susan Cain.
“Passionately argued, impressively researched, and filled with the indelible stories of real people, Quiet shows how dramatically we undervalue introverts, and how much we lose in doing so. Susan Cain charts the rise of “the extrovert ideal” over the twentieth century and explores its far-reaching effects–how it helps to determine everything from how parishioners worship to who excels at Harvard Business School. And she draws on cutting-edge research on the biology and psychology of temperament to reveal how introverts can modulate their personalities according to circumstance, how to empower an introverted child, and how companies can harness the natural talents of introverts. This extraordinary book has the power to permanently change how we see introverts and, equally important, how they see themselves.” (Syndetics summary)
 
The emotional life of your brain : how its unique patterns affect the way you think, feel, and live – and how you can change them / Richard J. Davidson with Sharon Begley.
“This groundbreaking book by a pioneer in neuroscience brings a new understanding of our emotions – why each of us responds so differently to the same life events and what we can do to change and improve our emotional lives. Just as we all have our own DNA, so we each have our own emotional ‘style’ depending on our individual levels of dimensions like resilience, attention and self-awareness. At the forefront of brain research for thirty years, Davidson helps us identify our own emotional style and explains the chemistry that underlies it. Giving us a new model of the emotional brain, he also provides strategies we can use to change our responses – if that is what we want to do. Deepening our understanding of the mind-body connection – as well as conditions like autism and depression – Davidson stretches beyond mainstream psychology and neuroscience and expands our view of what it means to be human.” (Book cover)