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According to the National Institute of Mental Health, about four million Americans-more of them women-experience generalized anxiety disorder. These two books aim to help sufferers. Women Who Worry Too Much opens with an introduction by Michelle G. Craske that explains her research into how differently men and women deal with worry. Hazlett-Stevens (psychology, Univ. of Nevada, Reno; coauthor, New Directions in Progressive Relaxation Training) then discusses her cognitive behavioral therapy research before suggesting practical steps (e.g., gain a new perspective and then use relaxation and mindfulness techniques to redirect one's energy) for tackling various types of worry. Hazlett-Stevens weaves her scientific knowledge into an engaging and easy-to-read text that departs from the traditional emphasis on rationalizing away one's worry, and readers will be attracted to her spa retreat-like exercises. Leahy (Cognitive Therapy Techniques: A Practitioner's Guide) takes a different approaching to worry busting, focusing on outlining a system for transforming thought processes. Beginning with the "seven rules of Highly Worried People," he progresses logically through seven concrete steps that readers can take to control their worry. While not necessarily providing ground breaking insights, this book will appeal to many for its clearly outlined chapters with pertinent summaries, which make it both easy to read and to consult at a later date. Both books are appropriate and recommended for general self-help collections.-Crystal Renfro, Georgia Inst. of Technology Lib., Atlanta Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
For "highly worried people," or those who suffer from the "what-if disease," Leahy (president of the International Association of Cognitive Therapy and author of Cognitive Therapy Techniques: A Practitioner's Guide) presents a systematic, accessible self-help guide to gaining control over debilitating anxiety. Leahy is an expert in changing thought processes, and he walks worriers step-by-step through problems in the way they think, with pointers on how to change these biases. For self-assessment, he provides several questionnaires to take your worry profile, including estimations of your, personal beliefs on self and relationships, and your ability to tolerate uncertainty. The author then outlines a seven-step worry-reduction plan: beginning with identifying productive and unproductive worry, progressing to improving skills for accepting reality, challenging worried thinking and learning to harness unpleasant emotions such as fear or anger. With numerous examples, Leahy also covers the broad life anxieties that may spark dysfunctional thinking: relationships, health, money and work. Following Leahy's steps involves keeping emotion diaries, answering a battery of questions to monitor and challenge worries and maintaining regular vigilance over your thoughts. Those who can summon the discipline and commitment to stick to Leahy's program might find some relief. Agent, Bob DiForio. (Nov.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.