Anxious for Answers - Book Review


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Book Review of :  Anxious for Answers



Anxious for Answers. The Surprising Truth about Anxiety and How you Can Master it for Good by Ilene S. Cohen, Ph.D., is a self-help volume that is timely for today's crisis, catastrophes, and chaos. Cohen's book could serve many as a panacea for the universal anxiety that has intensified as citizens isolate to prevent the spread of Coronavirus, watch depressing TV coverage of police brutality, destructive protests, societal upheaval, loss of jobs, mounting debt, natural disasters and ineffective government leaders bickering incessantly to the detriment of society.

Written by a psychotherapist, the book focuses on anxiety expressed in the form of "fight, flee or freeze" or panic attacks. She does not address anxiety as a mental illness, but as a naturally occurring state due to familial background, personality, and emotional response. There are two types of anxiety. The acute form is the natural alarm that signals danger and requires a rapid response.  Chronic anxiety involves unresolved relationships and learned behavior in the family. Most suffers can learn to master, alleviate, or lessen some of the symptoms of anxiety by learning how it forms and then learn to desensitize, adapt, or make changes.

Cohen's research and experience with anxiety sufferers in her therapy practice enable her to help people lead meaningful lives with a strong sense of self. Her book emphasizes that a person can learn to deal with chronic anxiety by learning what causes emotionally intense reactions in the body, how to handle the situations, and learn to tolerate the anxiety. By developing a better sense of self, an individual can deal with situations either without the physical manifestations of anxiety or at least reduce the symptoms.

Cohen sees anxiety similar to an infectious disease - if one is around a person with anxiety issues, likely, that person will also become anxious about something related to the initial concern or threat.

The book is laid out in a simple chapter format that can be read in sequence or selectively. Each chapter presents an overview of a specific topic and an extensive discussion followed by a life vignette of a particular person exhibiting anxiety from that specific source. Cohen then relates a solution to the client's problems. After a summary of the chapter, Cohen offers a suggested activity for the reader to complete that connects himself with the topic.

Additionally, Cohen discusses ways that anxiety affects the body and how people express and manage anxiety, such as panic attacks, rapid heartbeat, dizziness, and lightheadedness.  She presents what these symptoms mean and how to deal with the feelings. With little emphasis on medication, the author suggests natural ways, such as diet and exercise, to relieve stress.

 Anxious for Answers  is written with an emphasis on working to create a mature self with purpose and understanding, Cohen has written a self-help book that is appropriate to today's stressful times.  Likely, Cohen's many examples and metaphors about how to manage anxiety and/or see the world differently through a more positive lens will lead to a feeling of being more empowered.
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Anxious for Answers delivers to the anxiety afflicted a credible, valuable, and accessible resource for those who experience panic attacks, dread social situations, or are plagued by constant worry.

As a veteran with PTSD, I highly recommend this book to anyone who struggles with anxiety or panic attacks and want to get it under control.


About Ilene Cohen


Dr. Ilene S. Cohen, Ph.D. is a psychotherapist, professor, and blogger. She is also the author of the popular self-help guides, When It's Never About You and Anxious for Answers, as well as co-author (with Rabbi Aryeh Weinstein) of It's Within You. She's a regular contributor to Psychology Today, and her work has appeared in Psych Central and Tiny Buddha, along with many other online publications. Her books and her therapy practice are fueled by a passion for helping people achieve their goals, build a strong sense of self, and lead fulfilling and meaningful lives. As president of her family's foundation, Dr. Ilene oversees myriad initiatives geared toward creating better opportunities for those in need.




Visit www.doctorilene.com for more information on Ilene Cohen


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