A Few Of My Favourite Books
Looking for something to keep you busy over the next few weeks? Books can be a great way to get information, get inspiration and new ideas, and to keep momentum going between sessions. My clients often ask for book recommendations, so I thought I’d provide a few of the ones that I suggest most often.
is a great book for the basics of Democratic Parenting. Each chapter is filled with short vignettes and an analysis, along with advice for new strategies. A word of warning, though: this book was written in the ‘60’s and has not been updated. So while the content is still extremely relevant to today’s parents, the names of the children seem dated and quaint (not too many little Joans or Roys these days) and at times the book is not exactly politically correct. Still, a great resource.
is another one I refer to often. It’s a great choice for teachers as well as parents, as she shows how to implement the principles at home and in the classroom. (Just skip those chapters if you’re not a teacher.) Lots of examples and suggestions, and more modern than the previous title. And Jane used these principles to raise seven kids, so she knows what she’s talking about!
The goals of misbehaviour get their own book! In-depth discussions of the goals of attention, power, revenge and inadequacy make this a great resource for all sorts of parenting challenges. And her casual, girlfriend-to-girlfriend writing style makes for a very easy read.
is a fantastic book for understanding the dynamics of girl relationships. If you have a daughter who is being bullied or having trouble with her friends, I think this is the place to start for ideas in how to support her. The book focuses more on pre-teen and teenage girls, but if you have a younger daughter who is struggling, I’d still suggest picking it up and checking it out.
is a practical, action-oriented approach to getting your marriage back on track. Michele does not hide her “pro marriage” bias, and offers many “start tonight” ideas for improving your marriage.
is a cognitive-based approach to improving your mood and overcoming depression. With 20 years of success and clinical studies to prove his approach’s effectiveness, it has helped a number of my clients. Cognitive-based approaches are much more widespread now than they were at the time of the book’s original 1980 printing; this is the book that, in a sense, started it all.
is subtitled Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men. Immensely helpful in understanding how domestic violence and abuse happen. It will also help you to realize that it’s really not your fault and that you’re not alone.
The Courage To Be Disliked by Ichiro Kishimi and Fumitake Koga.
This book tells the story of Alfred Adler’s psychology as short conversations between a young man and an older philosopher. Very thought-provoking and the format is enjoyable to read and grounded in practical, modern examples. If you’ve ever wanted to know more about the theory of personality and psychotherapy that I use in my practice, this is the book to read. It will give us lots to talk about at our next session, I guarantee it!
Don’t let the title fool you; this book is about communication. You don’t have to have an anger problem to see the patterns that she expands on in the book. It’s a classic, published in the 1980’s, that I keep coming back to again and again. You’ll learn how to recognize repetitive, unhelpful patterns in your communication with loved ones, and what to do instead.
I have a few other parenting book suggestions here, too.
I hope this gives you some great reading ideas for the next few weeks. Let me know if you have other suggestions!
Keep in mind, books are not designed to replace medical or therapeutic interventions. If you’re struggling, book an appointment with your doctor or therapist to discuss what’s going on and see what s/he suggests. No problem is too small if it’s getting the way of you enjoying your life.