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Success Over Stress - Seven strategies for radiant living

by Jane Revell

listed in stress

[Image: Success Over Stress - Seven strategies for radiant living]

Written by a Master Practitioner and Certified Trainer of NLP as well as an Ericksonian hypnotherapist and stress management consultant, this book offers the reader an 'inside out' approach to reduce stress, increase vitality and revitalize your life.

At first flick through, all I could see were cartoons, illustrations and photos. For the more visual reader, these hooks will help link the text together but I found them a little intrusive. The contents page doesn't so much outline chapters as chunks of information. The first major chunk looks at what happens to us under stress, why it's dangerous and the signs and stages of stress. The second chunk explores the seven strategies for SUCCESS. This word is the key to seven different techniques e.g. Stretching, Unwinding, Cut the criticism, Counter conflicts, Eat for energy, Simulate your system and Smile. The final part of the book shows you how to create an action plan as well as providing lists of further reading, music and addresses.

The book kicks off with a short quiz designed to measure how you manage your stress. It then opens up to scene-setting some of the causes and results of stress. The Stretch section offers simple exercises (plus photos). Unwind and unbend looks at various ways of doing just that e.g. staring at a mandala, relaxing your eyes and doing guided relaxation. Cut the criticism explores how we can stop criticising ourselves. Counter conflicts looks at how to identify and deal with your stressors e.g. time manage-ment. Eat for energy explores the zest and zonk (more zest, less zonk is needed) foods. The section, Stimulate your system is about water, water and more water. The last section in the seven strategies, Smile, will make you do just that.

Each section finishes with a full-page cartoon summary. The popular psychology is easy to read and understand and there are several exercises and self-assessments scattered through the text. One of the things I particularly liked about the book is the holistic approach. Also the strategies are simple, cost-free and depend on you rather than on anyone else. Some strategies are based on ideas from Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP), some are based on research into how the brain works, and some are based on nutritional theory.

I also liked the occasional homily 'change is inevitable – except from a vending machine'. The main criticism is the somewhat disorganized layout and occasional half-completed thoughts. But I did like the friendly touchy-feeling approach. The book bounces along from technique to technique linked together with easy-to-read theory.

There are a few techniques I might use like hook ups and the transcendental chuckling! Overall, I found this a useful book and if you want a fun, easy way to manage your own stress, you could do worse than buy this book. By the way did you know the word STRESS comes from the Latin 'stringere', which means to 'pull tight'? We need to learn 'to stay loose'.

Laurel Alexander
Saffire Press

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