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Learn to Improve Your Mood

Learn to Improve Your Mood

imageby Blinkist

Bad days happen. A bombed job interview, a broken coffee machine (when you really need coffee), stepping in dog poop on the way to a date—we know, life can sometimes suck. We can’t get rid of a terrible commute or an intolerable co-worker (sorry), but this great list by Blinkist might help you with some tips and tricks to get back to happy face.

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13 Things Mentally Strong People Don't Do: Take Back Your Power, Embrace Change, Face Your Fears, and Train Your Brain for Happiness and Success

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2014 | Amy Morin

Expanding on her viral post that has become an international phenomenon, a psychotherapist offers simple yet effective solutions for increasing mental strength and finding happiness and success in life. As a licensed clinical social worker, college psychology instructor, and psychotherapist, Amy Morin has seen countless people choose to succeed despite facing enormous challenges. That resilience inspired her to write 13 Things Mentally Strong People Don't Do, a web post that instantly went viral, and was picked up by the Forbes website. Morin's post focused on the concept of mental strength, how mentally strong people avoid negative behaviors--feeling sorry for themselves, resenting other people's success, and dwelling on the past. Instead, they focus on the positive to help them overcome challenges and become their best. In this inspirational, affirmative book, Morin expands upon her original message, providing practical strategies to help readers avoid the thirteen common habits that can hold them back from success. Combining compelling anecdotal stories with the latest psychological research, she offers strategies for avoiding destructive thoughts, emotions, and behaviors common to everyone. Like physical strength, mental strength requires healthy habits, exercise, and hard work. Morin teaches you how to embrace a happier outlook and arms you to emotionally deal with life's inevitable hardships, setbacks, and heartbreaks--sharing for the first time her own poignant story of tragedy, and how she summoned the mental strength to move on. As she makes clear, mental strength isn't about acting tough; it's about feeling empowered to overcome life's challenges.

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It Didn't Start with You: How Inherited Family Trauma Shapes Who We Are and How to End the Cycle

2016 | Mark Wolynn

A groundbreaking approach to transforming traumatic legacies passed down in families over generations, by an acclaimed expert in the field   Depression. Anxiety. Chronic Pain. Phobias. Obsessive thoughts. The evidence is compelling: the roots of these difficulties may not reside in our immediate life experience or in chemical imbalances in our brains—but in the lives of our parents, grandparents, and even great-grandparents. The latest scientific research, now making headlines, supports what many have long intuited—that traumatic experience can be passed down through generations. It Didn’t Start with You builds on the work of leading experts in post-traumatic stress, including Mount Sinai School of Medicine neuroscientist Rachel Yehuda and psychiatrist Bessel van der Kolk, author of The Body Keeps the Score. Even if the person who suffered the original trauma has died, or the story has been forgotten or silenced, memory and feelings can live on. These emotional legacies are often hidden, encoded in everything from gene expression to everyday language, and they play a far greater role in our emotional and physical health than has ever before been understood.   As a pioneer in the field of inherited family trauma, Mark Wolynn has worked with individuals and groups on a therapeutic level for over twenty years. It Didn’t Start with You offers a pragmatic and prescriptive guide to his method, the Core Language Approach. Diagnostic self-inventories provide a way to uncover the fears and anxieties conveyed through everyday words, behaviors, and physical symptoms. Techniques for developing a genogram or extended family tree create a map of experiences going back through the generations. And visualization, active imagination, and direct dialogue create pathways to reconnection, integration, and reclaiming life and health. It Didn’t Start With You is a transformative approach to resolving longstanding difficulties that in many cases, traditional therapy, drugs, or other interventions have not had the capacity to touch.

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How to Have a Good Day: Harness the Power of Behavioral Science to Transform Your Working Life

2016 | Caroline Webb

In How to Have a Good Day, Caroline Webb, business consultant and former partner at powerhouse McKinsey and Co., brings together the findings on behavioral economics and neuroscience--subjects that have led to dozens of bestselling books over the last decade--to show us how we can use these revolutionary new findings to improve how we work. Organized around seven factors that determine whether we have a good day at work, Webb offers us specific tools that we can use based on what we now know about how our brains work, and she shows us how we can incorporate them into our conversations, meetings, and projects in a way that will increase productivity, confidence, and enjoyment. Filled with stories of people who have used the insights Webb reveals to improve the quality of their decision-making and work lives, and drawing on cutting-edge ideas from the latest research in neuroscience and psychology, How to Have a Good Day is the book people wanted to read when they finished Blink and Thinking Fast and Slow, and were looking for practical ways to apply the new insights they had learned to their own lives and careers. From the time we wake up, Webb reveals the tools and practices that will help us to set our direction and priorities, organize our time, do our best work, adapt to uncertainty, make better decisions, improve our conversations, unleash productivity, and sustain our energy. In essence, she offers us a Good Day playbook, showing us how to sharpen our minds and increase our confidence so that we make sustained progress, resist our tendency to procrastinate, resolve conflict, and maintain control of our day and bounce back from the inevitable setbacks.

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Maybe You Should Talk to Someone: A Therapist, Her Therapist, and Our Lives Revealed

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2019 | Lori Gottlieb

From a New York Times best-selling author, psychotherapist, and national advice columnist, a hilarious, thought-provoking, and surprising new book that takes us behind the scenes of a therapist's world -- where her patients are looking for answers (and so is she). One day, Lori Gottlieb is a therapist who helps patients in her Los Angeles practice. The next, a crisis causes her world to come crashing down. Enter Wendell, the quirky but seasoned therapist in whose office she suddenly lands. With his balding head, cardigan, and khakis, he seems to have come straight from Therapist Central Casting. Yet he will turn out to be anything but. As Gottlieb explores the inner chambers of her patients' lives -- a self-absorbed Hollywood producer, a young newlywed diagnosed with a terminal illness, a senior citizen threatening to end her life on her birthday if nothing gets better, and a twenty-something who can't stop hooking up with the wrong guys -- she finds that the questions they are struggling with are the very ones she is now bringing to Wendell. With startling wisdom and humor, Gottlieb invites us into her world as both clinician and patient, examining the truths and fictions we tell ourselves and others as we teeter on the tightrope between love and desire, meaning and mortality, guilt and redemption, terror and courage, hope and change. Maybe You Should Talk to Someone is revolutionary in its candor, offering a deeply personal yet universal tour of our hearts and minds and providing the rarest of gifts: a boldly revealing portrait of what it means to be human, and a disarmingly funny and illuminating account of our own mysterious lives and our power to transform them.

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Meditation for Fidgety Skeptics: A 10% Happier How-To Book

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2017 | Dan Harris, Jeff Warren, Carlye Adler

ABC News anchor Dan Harris used to think that meditation was for people who collect crystals, play Ultimate Frisbee, and use the word “namaste” without irony. After he had a panic attack on live television, he went on a strange and circuitous journey that ultimately led him to become one of meditation’s most vocal public proponents. Here’s what he’s fixated on now: Science suggests that meditation can lower blood pressure, mitigate depression and anxiety, and literally rewire key parts of the brain, among numerous other benefits. And yet there are millions of people who want to meditate but aren’t actually practicing. What’s holding them back? In this guide to mindfulness and meditation for beginners and experienced meditators alike, Harris and his friend Jeff Warren, a masterful teacher and “Meditation MacGyver,” embark on a cross-country quest to tackle the myths, misconceptions, and self-deceptions that stop people from meditating. They rent a rock-star tour bus (whose previous occupants were Parliament Funkadelic) and travel across eighteen states, talking to scores of would-be meditators—including parents, military cadets, police officers, and even a few celebrities. They create a taxonomy of the most common issues (“I suck at this,” “I don’t have the time,” etc.) and offer up science-based life hacks to help people overcome them. The book is filled with game-changing and deeply practical meditation instructions. Amid it all unspools the strange and hilarious story of what happens when a congenitally sarcastic, type-A journalist and a groovy Canadian mystic embark on an epic road trip into America’s neurotic underbelly, as well as their own.

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Can You Learn to Be Lucky?: Why Some People Seem to Win More Often Than Others

2018 | Karla Starr

"I don't know when I've been so wowed by a new author" -Chip Health, co-author of The Power of Moments and Switch A talented journalist reveals the hidden patterns behind what we call "luck" -- and shows us how we can all improve outcomes despite life's inevitable randomness. "Do you believe in luck?" is a polarizing question, one you might ask on a first date. Some of us believe that we make our own luck. Others see inequality everywhere and think that everyone's fate is at the whim of the cosmos. Karla Starr has a third answer: unlucky, "random" outcomes have predictable effects on our behavior that often make us act in self-defeating ways without even realizing it. In this groundbreaking book, Starr traces wealth, health, and happiness back to subconscious neurological processes, blind cultural assumptions, and tiny details you're in the habit of overlooking. Each chapter reveals how we can cultivate personal strengths to overcome life's unlucky patterns. For instance: - Everyone has free access to that magic productivity app--motivation. The problem? It isn't evenly distributed. What lucky accidents of history explain patterns behind why certain groups of people are more motivated in some situations than others? - If you look like an underperforming employee, your resume can't override the gut-level assumptions that a potential boss will make from your LinkedIn photo. How can we make sure that someone's first impression is favorable? - Just as people use irrelevant traits to make assumptions about your intelligence, kindness, and trustworthiness, we also make inaccurate snap judgments. How do these judgments affect our interactions, and what should we assume about others to maximize our odds of having lucky encounters? We don't always realize when the world's invisible biases work to our advantage or recognize how much of a role we play in our own lack of luck. By ending the guessing game about how luck works, Starr allows you to improve your fortunes while expending minimal effort.

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