Book Spotlight and Author Interview – DECONSTRUCTING ANXIETY by Dr. Pressman



Book Details:
Book Title: DECONSTRUCTING ANXIETY The Journey from Fear to Fulfillment by Todd E. Pressman, PhD
Category:  Adult Non-Fiction (18+) (336 pages)
Genre:  Self-Help/How To
Publisher:  Rowman & Littlefield
Release date:  January 2020
Tour dates: Jan 13 to Feb 7, 2020
Content Rating: PG

Book Description:
In Deconstructing Anxiety, Pressman provides a new and comprehensive understanding of fear’s subtlest mechanisms. In this model, anxiety is understood as the wellspring at the source of all problems. Tapping into this source therefore holds the clues not only for how to escape fear, but how to release the very causes of suffering, paving the way to a profound sense of peace and satisfaction in life.
With strategically developed exercises, this book offers a unique, integrative approach to healing and growth, based on an understanding of how the psyche organizes itself around anxiety. It provides insights into the architecture of anxiety, introducing the dynamics of the “core fear” (one’s fundamental interpretation of danger in the world) and “chief defense” (the primary strategy for protecting oneself from threat). The anxious personality is then built upon this foundation, creating a “three dimensional, multi-sensory hologram” within which one can feel trapped and helpless.
Replete with processes that bring the theoretical background into technicolor, Deconstructing Anxiety provides a clear roadmap to resolving this human dilemma, paving the way to an ultimate and transcendent freedom. Therapists and laypeople alike will find this book essential in helping design a life of meaning, purpose and enduring fulfillment.

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About the Author:
TODD E. PRESSMAN, Ph.D., is a psychologist dedicated to helping people design lives of fulfillment. He is the founder and director of Logos Wellness Center and Pressman and Associates Life Counseling Center. An international speaker and seminar leader, he has presented at the Omega Institute, the New York Open Center, and numerous professional conferences, including the prestigious Council Grove Conference, sponsored by the Menninger Foundation. He has written dozens of articles, educational programs, and two highly acclaimed books, Radical Joy: Awakening Your Potential for True Fulfillment and The Bicycle Repair Shop: A True Story of Recovery from Multiple Personality Disorder. He earned his doctorate in psychology from the Saybrook Institute and an undergraduate degree from the University of Pennsylvania, has studied under renowned leaders in the Consciousness movement and Gestalt therapy, and has traveled around the world to study the great Wisdom traditions, from Zen Buddhism to fire-walking ceremonies, providing a cross-cultural perspective of the extraordinary capacities of the mind and spirit. He makes his home in Philadelphia.
Connect with the author:   Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Instagram
 

TODD E. PRESSMAN, Ph.D. 

Author of Deconstructing Anxiety

  1. Would you tell us about your journey to writing Deconstructing Anxiety (Rowman & Littlefield)?

I always seemed to have a strong philosophical bent, even from an early age.  In adolescence, I began asking the usual existential questions like “Why are we here?” “Who am I really?” “What is the meaning of life?” etc., but I came to these things with quite an intensity, determined to find real answers.  Eventually, this led to a spiritual quest, at the same time that I was pursuing a degree in psychology.  The two combined to create, over many years of personal and professional exploration, the Deconstructing Anxiety program.  I do believe that it answers the questions of how to find out who we are and what is the purpose in our lives with a solid philosophical base and effective, reliable exercises that really help life work better.

  • Would you also shed light on the related concept of a chief defense?


The chief defense is our primary strategy for protecting ourselves from the core fear.  Just as we meet every situation with the question of whether it might confront us with our core fear, we are prepared to use our chief defense if protection proves necessary.  For example, someone whose core fear is of abandonment might adopt a chief defense of becoming a people-pleaser, or they might become what in psychology we call a dependent personality.  Both of these (and a huge array of other possibilities) might constitute a chief defense, if the person believes it will protect them from the experience of abandonment they so dread.  And, as with the core fear, once we land on a chief defense as our best understanding for how to protect ourselves from the core fear, we look through its lens in every situation, ready to use the defense at a moment’s notice, should a situation threaten us in some way. 

  • How does the fear-defense mechanism affect not only individuals and families, but also government regulations, social conditioning, and wars?

A group of any size (from a couple to a society to a world) will develop its own “culture” which is really a description of its core fear interpretation of how to reach for fulfillment while ensuring safety first, and its chief defense strategy for how to achieve that safety.  Governmental regulations are designed to maximize fulfillment (“the common good”) while protecting against threats to that fulfillment.  Social mores are additional aspects of the culture that monitor where it is safe or acceptable to pursue fulfillment and what restrictions must be observed to keep order and protect from selfishness, greed, etc.  War is an almost complete expression of the core fear (one group feels threatened by them and declares war) and uses their chief defense as the strategy to try to win that war, protect their interests and so forth.  Hopefully, there is still some recognition of the need to preserve fulfillment, resulting in Geneva Conventions, war tribunals, and other understandings of the need to bring some order to the horror.

  • Would you enlighten us about the practice of “Vision Questing”?

After fear is resolved, the way to fulfillment is clear.  Vision questing is a way to detail what fulfillment looks like for each of us (where our talents, passions and gifts lie), and then use all the other practices from the book for moving through any fears and defenses that would try to interfere with our achievement of that fulfillment.  Of course, this is an ongoing practice since we have a lifetime’s habit of fear and defense to counter, but as we become more and more skilled, and as we adopt a Vision that deeply inspires us, it becomes easier to move through such fears and defenses.

  • You state in your book: “The only way to make real change, whether on an individual or global basis, is to resolve our fear.” Towards that goal, what would you most like readers to take away from Deconstructing Anxiety?

That, no matter the circumstances we find ourselves in, there is a fear at the root of the problem and this fear can be unearthed and resolved.  There is literally nothing outside of us that can rob us of our chance for fulfillment, even in the worst of circumstances.  Viktor Frankl demonstrated this in the Nazi concentration camps, and Thich Nath Hanh demonstrated this in the killing fields of Vietnam.  Even if we protest that they were exceptional people, we must devote ourselves to this goal.  Otherwise, we are arguing against the possibility of true fulfillment in life, real answers to resolving suffering, and how can we ever be satisfied with that?

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REVENGE by George Lockie – Book Spotlight


Join us for this tour from January 6, 2020 to January 17, 2020!

Book Details:
Book Title
Revenge by George Lockie
Category:  Adult Fiction, 178 pages
Genre Thriller
Publisher Austin Macauley
Release date:   December 2018
Tour dates: January 6, 2019 to January 17, 2020
Content Rating: PG-13 – M: 
 This is an action thriller involving special forces military. There are scenes of violence, including torture.

Book Description:
Rory Glassen is selected to join an elite SAS cell. They are sent to Libya to seek retribution for the near-death torture of two of their SAS troopers, at the hands of a medieval-run empire led by a despotic Sultan. What was to be a milk-run operation turns sour, as a battle of wits to survive soon develops between two warring factions. Sultan and Rory lock horns, trying to outwit each other and prevent any more deaths. It is only when a most unexpected ally emerges from Rory’s distant past, and offers the cell information, that a solution appears. Like worms, they burrow into the catacombs of the old Roman Fort on which the Sultan’s Palace is built and seek their revenge.

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Meet the Author:
Born in Edinburgh, Scotland in 1941. Married in 1964 in Edinburgh, Scotland. Wife’s name is Avril. Has two children, Darren (52) and Vanessa (47). Enjoyed six years’ service in the Parachute Regiment in the British Army from 1960 to 65, mainly in the Middle East and Europe. Migrated as a family to Australia, in 1965, seeking new challenges and a different lifestyle in a more exciting environment. Traveled extensively worldwide whilst employed by a major Australian International Packaging Group, as National Operations Manager, a senior management role from 1986 to 2003. Started writing in 1995, as he felt that the Army relationships and strong emotional bonds that are created in life-threatening experiences in the field, had not been exposed, or described adequately, in the novels he had read. His first novel tried to cover that. It takes place post-WWI through to post-WWII. The second novel, a follow-up military story, again covers a subject not exposed as a problem before. His third novel covers a criminal gang and its unique way to produce huge profits from the saddest moments in human life; yet a boon to the medical world. The fourth exposes the world of computer hacking, with a clever killer achieving his aim of executing a crime boss in revenge for his wife’s death at his hands. 1st: Eye of the Hunter (Thriller, suspense.) 2nd: Chameleon (Suspense, thriller, crime.) 3rd: Miracle Cure (Military, Crime, Police.) 4th: Furtive Shadows (Military, SAS, MI6) All novels are linked by a common major character, Rory Glassen – a ruthless, dedicated soldier with extraordinary senses and physical attributes gleaned from his childhood upbringing alone in the Scottish Glens.

Connect with the author:    website


Tour Schedule:
Jan 6 – Locks, Hooks and Books – book review / giveaway
Jan 6 – Ruvi – book review / giveaway
Jan 7 – Rockin’ Book Reviews – book review / guest post / giveaway
Jan 8 – My Reading Journeys – book review / giveaway
Jan 9 – The Clipped Nightingale – book spotlight / guest post
Jan 10 – Life as Leels – book review
Jan 13 – Four Moon Reviews – book review
Jan 14 – I’m All About Books – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
Jan 15 – StoreyBook Reviews – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
Jan 15 – Turning the Pages – book review
Jan 16 – A Fountain of Books – book review / author interview
Jan 17 – Adventurous Jessy – book review / giveaway
Jan 17 – fundinmental – book review / author interview / giveaway

Enter the Giveaway:
 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Second Sister by Chan Ho-Kei – Book Review

Second Sister originally written by Chan Ho-Kei and translated to English by Jeremy Tiang is a crime novel set in Hong Kong. The story is very compelling. The author has intelligently put various lifestyles, working conditions, family lives, digital world, crime, corruption, everything into this story which will make the reader pause for a bit.

Nga-Yee is a hardworking young woman trying to provide food, shelter and education for her fifteen year old sister, Siu-Man. The sudden death of Siu-Man comes as a shock to Nga-Yee. When she realizes that the trolls in the internet world have pushed her sister off the building, Nga-Yee decides to go after the person who did this. She hires a private detective, N.

N is a hacker and an extremely talented detective who accepts Nga-Yee’s case and promises her to help her avenge her sister’s death. The kind of dark secrets that unfold in the process are shocking. During their investigation, Nga-Yee notices how teenagers struggle to fit in this fast paced digital world and how it’s impacting them in their minds. The story is about how Nga-Yee takes her revenge at the end and if it’s worth it.
The author also covered how some evil people use internet to blackmail young and weaker ones for their own benefits. By the end of the novel, the reader realizes that no matter how advanced the technology is, human relationships and emotions are way too important.

The story gives the reader a glimpse of life in Hong Kong. The author gave a great detail about technology, hacking, stringray, how it all works, etc. I really adore the author for doing extensive research about the same and putting it in a wonderful way in the story.
This book is releasing on February 18th, 2020. I thank the author Chan Ho-Kei, Edelweiss Plus, Crown Publishing Company and Grove Atlantic for sharing the ARC copy with me.

The Bright Side Sanctuary for Animals by Becky Mandelbaum – Book Review

The Bright Side Sanctuary for Animals by Becky Mandelbaum is a literary fiction. The story is about The Bright Side Sanctuary in St Clare run by Mona. The story has a wonderful way of bringing a buried sensible side of the reader. Mona and her daughter Ariel whose relationship is ruined after Ariel decides to leave the sanctuary six years ago, get a second chance to fix the damage. 

Mona’s love for animals makes my heart ache. Ariel who is living a different life with Dex in Lawrence, comes back after hearing about the fire at the sanctuary. The mother daughter relationship is beautiful in a unique way. Ariel’s first love Gideon and the current love Dex who are complete opposites become friends in strange circumstances. 

The story is basically the contradiction Ariel is experiencing between her current life and her life at the sanctuary. There is love, friendship, hope, forgiveness and letting go. If you are an animal lover, this book brings new meaning to your love for animals. I loved the author’s way of putting a bigger picture in front of the reader. I totally enjoyed reading this book. 

Thanks to Edelweiss and Simon & Schuster for sharing the ARC copy with me. The book is releasing on August 4th, 2020.

The Girl Who Cheated Death by Alan Baker – Book Review

The Girl Who Cheated Death by Alan Baker is a thriller which is very intriguing. The story is about a happy teenager, Alexandra who suddenly loses her family in an accident while she the lone survivor. 

Alex starts questioning her own sanity when she sees a strange figure who goes around capturing souls from dying people. Nobody believes her story but finally she finds her friend Carl and Dr. Khan on her side. The frequent encounters from the Angel of Death Azrael scare her to death. Alex travels back in time when she accidentally changes an event in future. Eventually, she figures the reason behind the visits of Azrael. 

Alex decides to bring her family back by changing an event in future. The story is a little complicated. The theory of Newcomb’s paradox is applied in the story. 

I enjoyed the story. I received the book’s free copy in return for a review from #NetGalley. Thanks to #BooksGoSocial for sharing this book with me. The story, the female lead, the paranormal side and the suspense are a huge plus to this story.