“We generally feel better when we are doing something. Perhaps it’s because it distracts us, or it makes us feel like we have some control. The reason is not so important – if being productive and taking some action makes you happier then it’s a good strategy”
Happy Mental Health Awareness Week everyone! This year, the theme is focusing on stress. Stress can can affect you in different ways, and has the ability to negatively effect your mental health, and build up until it feels unmanageable.
Happier Thinking by Lana Grace Riva is a small book of 50 pages which gives little tips that have helped the author to challenge and change the way she thinks, to make things more manageable. This book was well timed for me as I have recently started cognitive behavioural therapy for anxiety, and a major part of that involves challenging negative thoughts that pop up all the time, and are obviously unwelcome.
Whilst there was nothing new I learnt from the book, and most of the tips are readily available online, it feels like a handy little book to keep and refer to if I ever need it. Each tip appears as a chapter title where she talks about it and then gives an example of how it can be used in daily life. Because of this format, it was quick to get through, and useful to read about challenging the thoughts that you have instead of just accepting them.
I will say that, although I thought the simplicity of the book was appreciated and makes it accessible for a broad range of people who may not know a lot about mental health issues, I felt somewhat disconnected from the author. It felt like there could have been a bit of background about her struggles to root me as a reader in really understanding the tips she suggests, and see how they worked for her.
Because of this disconnect from the author, it was harder to really get to grips with what she was saying. However, I still found it useful as an additional piece of advice to go alongside professional counselling. It goes without saying, and Lana also states this in her introduction, that this is not a quick fix book. The things she writes are simply what has worked for her and she is offering them in pamphlet form in the hope that they may help others.
I’ll be posting a few blogs this week to raise awareness about the importance of looking after yourself and your mental health, so be sure to keep your eyes peeled for them.
Thank you to the author for sending me a copy of her book in exchange for an honest review.