Anxiety First Aid Kit: Quick Tools for Extreme, Uncertain Times

New Harbinger. Aug. 2020. 120p. ISBN 9781684038480. pap. $16.95. SELF-HELP
This is one of the first books to address anxiety owing to the impact of COVID-19. Suggestions for relief offer techniques for calming down before concentrating on the more difficult work of managing anxious feelings. The authors, ranging from clinical psychologists to meditation teachers, tell readers how to feel better right now. The first chapter helps one “find calm right away” by offering awareness techniques and acknowledging that bad things sometimes happen. Following chapters provide readers with sample stressors, what to do about them immediately, and further steps to take going forward. The authors posit scenarios of possible stressful situations and offer healthy, positive responses to each. One chapter has readers explore their worst thoughts to a point of absurdity, which diminishes their power. Another offers steps for replacing worry with planning, thus mitigating anxiety. The final chapter provides techniques (the pendulum drop, the five-finger exercise) for quick relief.
VERDICT What’s enticing about this book is its no-nonsense guide to feeling better. Ideal for these unsettling times; highly recommended for general readers.
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