Subtitled "Uplifting Wisdom for Everyday Greatness," Recovering Me, Discovering Joy tells about the author's experience with depression, social anxiety and alcoholism and reveals what she has learned both from her personal challenges and the 12-step program of Alcoholics Anonymous.
What led you to pick up this book? I'm a sucker for anything that claims to be uplifting, inspirational or has the word "joy" in the title, somewhere. And, I like reading about how people have succeeded in spite of hefty challenges.
A little bit more about the book.
A little bit more about the book.The author grew up with social anxiety and mild depression (dysthymia) but was not diagnosed until she failed several times to succeed in recovering with the help of AA. Social anxiety and group therapy, she says, do not mix. It was only after she was finally diagnosed correctly and found the right medication that she was able to recover and find joy in life. Recovering Me, Discovering Joy describes the various conditions that she has dealt with, how they are linked and what she's learned from facing alcoholism and mental illness as well as her husband's stroke. I don't know a whole lot about how AA works, but acceptance of God and letting go of your worries is apparently a big part of the whole 12-step shebang, so she dedicates a portion of the book to her beliefs.
What did you like most about the book? I thought the author made some interesting comments about staying positive. I particularly like the chapter sub-heading, "Did I have a Bad Day or did I have a Bad Five Minutes that I Milked All Day?"
What did you didn't like about the book? I wouldn't say there's anything I disliked, but I guess because it didn't apply to me specifically in any way, I occasionally found myself zoning out. And, I thought it was a bit disjointed; there were times I thought her philosophy would have made more sense if she'd given it better context -- there was not enough detail about her own experience, in my opinion. There's some good advice, but it's probably a better fit for those who are struggling with the combination of conditions that the author has dealt with.
Recommended? I'd recommend it for alcoholics -- recovering or otherwise -- in need of support and encouragement. For me, this was an average read, well-written but not right for me.
Anything else worth mentioning? The author has a rather fascinating perspective on Christianity.
If nothing else, believe as a precaution. Pascal looked at believing in God very logically. He suggested that we place our bet that He exists. If He does, we win it all. If He doesn't, we don't lose a thing, but have gained a joyous way to live. Believe without hesitation, because if nothing else it's the smart thing to do.
The author of Grace for the Afflicted (which I'm currently reading) spoke of this kind of belief as "holding on to some kind of faith-based fire insurance." Since I'd marked the passage about placing bets on God's existence this morning and then moved on to Grace for the Afflicted in the afternoon, that little connection jumped out at me. Doesn't the idea of believing for the sake of making sure you don't burn in Hell sound like a great discussion topic?
Cover thoughts: I really, really, really dislike covers with just a photo of the author. So, it's not a favorite. But, it's a pretty common type of cover for self-help books and I think the whole self-help industry could stand to work on cover creativity.
Up next: A review of Never Say Diet by Chantel Hobbs and the next 100,000-hit drawing. I'm not sure what I'm giving away next, but hang in there. I'll get back to you. I've still got a good-sized pile in the hallway. I just haven't looked at them, lately.
I'm pretty sure this was the third day in a row that I haven't found time to look at my Google Reader and now I'm shivering with fright at the thought of the number of posts I've missed. Someone give me a pep talk.
Also, I wrote that today was cross-training day on my Runfoolery blog, posted a photo taken in the military park (my favorite place in Vicksburg) and then . . . didn't exercise. Uh. Oopsie. I meant well. I guess my "rest day" will be shifted, this week. Fortunately, I'm pretty sure it doesn't matter how strictly you hold to the schedule at this level, as long as you get in 6 days of exercise. I could be wrong about that, but we'll see if I'm the first to hit the wall when marathon time rolls around.
Confession: What I really long for is that sensation that I no longer have a butt that could squash Alaska. I'm not so sure I have an inner longing to run 26.2 miles. I was happy with my 10K experience.
I have not taken a single photo in two weeks. Can you believe that? I think next time I have a cross-training day, I'll dance through the living room and then grab my camera and go to the park. Nudge me if I forget. I'm sure you guys are in desperate need of a photo, right? Right? Am I making your life duller by not posting photos? Here, have an older photo:
See the little birdy living in the Rite-Aid letter "e"? Awww, how sweet. We'll call him a Wahoo Birdy. Okay, you may go back to your regularly scheduled reading. Happy Wednesday!