BOOK REVIEW: Emotional Wisdom by Mantak Chia & Dena Saxer

What is the role of human emotions? What can they tell us about our health and well-being? Are they good or bad? Have you thought about emotions and how they impact your life? Should they be managed or prevented at all costs? These are some of the questions you will be invited to ask and seek answers to when you start reading the book Emotional Wisdom by Mantak Chia and Dena Saxer.

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One of the aspects I loved about this book is that it introduces you to Taoism, a Chinese philosophy that teaches us how to go through life in harmony. The most basic principle of Taoism is that there’s a universal cosmic force that flows through all things. This energy constantly binds and releases itself, contributing to the greater natural order of the cosmos. Emotions are not excluded from this dynamic.

There are positive and negative emotions. Positive emotions are usually an indicator that we are in harmony with cosmic energy. Negative emotions mean there is something out of balance and which needs some tender loving care. They help us identify when we are out of balance and need to recalibrate. They can also work as a sign or compass for decision-making and pursuing creative endeavors (e.g. painting).

Every addiction arises from an unconscious refusal to face and move through your own pain… you are using something or somebody to cover up your pain (Eckhart Tolle)

Emotions are a form of energy and they are part of our human existence, no matter how much we try to deny them. I would like to know exactly when human beings decide that emotions are ugly and bad. This false belief has taken a toll on us. We have grown to reject emotions and disregard the value of emotions, especially the negatives ones. Negative emotions are messages from our soul saying there is something that is just not right.

According to Chinese Philosophy, the internal root cause of ill-health is the existence of an emotional imbalance, and Western medicine has finally caught up with this valuable insight. Studies have shown that negative emotions make our blood thicker and more acidic, making it more difficult to circulate in the body. A lot of findings like this have been discovered in the field of Psychoimmunology, which studies the mind-body connection and its impact on health and well-being.

Today’s problem is that most of us don’t want to feel and process negative emotions. Instead of sitting with them and learning what they want to tell us, we either get paralyzed or seek ways to numb ourselves (e.g. food, violence, sex). In the long term, it is our body that pays the highest price through discomfort and disease. Emotional Wisdom addresses these emotions and teaches you techniques to deal with and release them. One of these techniques is the inner smile meditation.

The inner smile meditation is a Taoist practice that has you visualizing and experiencing an event that makes you smile in your mind’s eye and extend the energy of that smile to all your organs and body parts. It takes you about ten minutes to perform this practice and the result is that you will feel more relaxed, more at ease, and also kinder to yourself. This occurs because you will be helping your body reduce stress hormones: adrenaline, noradrenaline, and cortisol.

There are other very interesting and useful concepts and techniques in this book, Emotional Wisdom. I strongly recommend it if you are already familiar with eastern philosophy, or you want to learn more about it.

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BOOK REVIEW: Creative Journal Writing by Stephanie Dowrick

I did enjoy Stephanie’s book a lot and I strongly recommend you to peek on it, if you are into journaling and writing as a method of self-expression and personal transformation. You will find many interesting prompts across the entire book so that you can work your writing flow and perhaps discover more about yourself within specific topics to which you never really paid much attention to.

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BOOK REVIEW: The Resilience Workbook by Glenn R. Schiraldi

What is Resilience, and why does it seem so important in today’s fast-paced society? Have you considered what resilience means to you? Do you think you are resilient enough? Is it possible to have more resilience? And if so, how can you build more of it? These are some of the questions you will see answered once you pick The Resilience Workbook written by Gleen R. Schiraldi, one of the books I selected to read throughout 2022.

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BOOK REVIEW: The Resilience Workbook by Glenn R. Schiraldi

What is Resilience, and why does it seem so important in today’s fast-paced society? Have you considered what resilience means to you? Do you think you are resilient enough? Is it possible to have more resilience? And if so, how can you build more of it? These are some of the questions you will see answered once you pick The Resilience Workbook written by Gleen R. Schiraldi, one of the books I selected to read throughout 2022.

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Resilience includes both inborn and developed mental and emotional skills that allow us to cope and respond to adverse experiences. These experiences may vary in severity and can represent different realities to different people. For some people, getting into a plane is terrifying while for others it’s an exciting moment. The first group can benefit a lot from developing their resilience skills so that their flight experience doesn’t impact them so negatively.

Instead of giving in to stress, anxiety, and depression, resilient people have a greater capacity to process and transform negative life events. They can’t control what happens to them but they can choose to respond from a more collected head and heart space by working on a few techniques. Resilience is an indicator of mental and emotional fitness, and thus helps us:

  • bounce back more quickly,
  • navigate through complex situations, and
  • manage and prevent stress-related emotions

When you build up your resilience muscle, your health and well-being tend to benefit as well. This occurs because the mind and body are not separate from each other. They are connected, which means negative mental and emotional conditions can be manifested in the body, making us more vulnerable to disease and several medical conditions. Some of these conditions include heart disease, chronic pain, and fibromyalgia.

Heart diseaseRheumatoid Arthritis
HypertensionThyroid disease
Irritable bowel syndromePsoriasis
Chronic painObesity
FibromyalgiaMetabolic Syndrome
CancerGynecological complaints
Stress-related medical conditions

So what can you do to enhance your resilience? The Resilience Workbook offers you plenty of ideas and techniques you can learn from and put into practice. Mindfulness is only one example of a tool you can learn more about with this book. Mindfulness gives you the opportunity to reduce mental and emotional stress by making you grounded in the present moment. You learn to become the observer of your human experience and less reactive to what is.

Expressive Writing is another useful tool presented in this book. By writing down your thoughts and feelings for twenty minutes a day, you give yourself the opportunity to process and transform your experiences into something more positive. You gain a wider perspective on what happened and how you can brainstorm ways to move on from there, reducing the risk of falling into overwhelming levels of anxiety or even depression.

I believe this is likely one of the most useful books I have on my 2022 reading list. It is fully packed with tools and techniques to help you navigate through stressful and depressing times. Whether you are more mentally or emotionally wired, I’m sure you will find a resource in it that fits your needs and personality. If you are a mental health professional or you work to improve your clients’ well-being, this is definitely a book you must have in your personal library as it gives you both the science and the practice you need to help others become more resilient.

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BOOK REVIEW: Creative Journal Writing by Stephanie Dowrick

I did enjoy Stephanie’s book a lot and I strongly recommend you to peek on it, if you are into journaling and writing as a method of self-expression and personal transformation. You will find many interesting prompts across the entire book so that you can work your writing flow and perhaps discover more about yourself within specific topics to which you never really paid much attention to.

Keep reading

The Wheel of Life – Free Coaching Printable

The Wheel of Life is one of my favorite coaching tools. My previous blog post was somewhat inspired by it. I like it because it is an easy and very visual way to assess different aspects of life. These may include health, relationships, finance, career, fitness, and leisure among others. I picked eight areas last time I drew a Wheel of Life for myself. You can select more or fewer areas as it depends on what you find to be important.

Continue reading “The Wheel of Life – Free Coaching Printable”