A Modern Day Fairy Tale

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Managing Worry and Anxiety: Practical Tools to Help You Deal with Life's Challenges by Jean Holthaus {A Book Review}

**I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher for consideration. All thoughts are 100% my own. 

Scripture says "be anxious for nothing," yet most of us find ourselves increasingly worried and anxious--about our families, our jobs, our finances, our security, and so much more. We're even worried about our level of anxiety!

Integrating both the psychological and spiritual aspects of anxiety, therapist Jean Holthaus offers this research-driven and faith-informed approach to understanding why we experience anxiety and shows us how to effectively manage it by developing three essential skills:

- living in the present moment
- suspending judgment
- believing yourself to be competent and equipped by God

Our world is never going to be a completely safe and understandable place. But with Holthaus's help, our hearts and minds can experience greater and lasting peace.

Jean Holthaus, LISW, LMSW, has more than 25 years' experience providing therapy. She currently works as a clinician and manages two clinics for Pine Rest Christian Mental Health Services. Her professional experience includes working with individuals, couples, and families dealing with abuse, anxiety, depression, marital issues, divorce, spiritual issues, changes of life, parenting, and more. A member of the National Association of Social Workers and the American Association of Christian Counselors, Jean lives in Pella, Iowa.

As a Christian who deals with anxiety and panic disorder, I must admit I'm always a little hesitant to pick up Christian books on the topic of anxiety. I know--- that doesn't sound quite right, does it? But it's absolutely true. You see, often in the Christian community mental health can have the tendency to be glossed over. The Bible tells us 'do not worry' and many who do not actively deal with this issues they have the idea that we can simply have more faith and just get over it. Oh, if only it were that easy. Not only is that assumption incorrect, it can also be dangerous for those of us feeling like we are not good enough Christians because we are still struggling with mental illness. Anxiety is a real pain in the behind that way. With that said, you can understand why I'm apprehensive. Still, seeing that this was written by a therapist, I decided to give it a chance... and I am so glad I did!

This book isn't a guide on how to cure or get over anxiety... but rather walks us through what anxiety is, the causes, etc. Yes, it offers some practical tips to deal too, but it is also much more than that. It really gives us a greater understanding about what it is we are really dealing with. I love the combination of both faith and professional insight to really get a better overall picture. It even talks about medication for anxiety which again I think is fantastic and so needed in a world where so many (Christian and non-Christian alike) see medication for anxiety as a crutch and a weakness. I feel like Christians who are perhaps struggling with that self doubt and misconception will really benefit from this unique book.

Overall, it was an interesting read. Perhaps not what I would consider a pleasure read by any means, but one that I feel is great to have in my home library to reference.


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