One very exciting book was Feeling Good by David Burns, M.D. The full name of the book is “Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy”1
Although Feeling Good is not specific to panic attacks, the ramifications for sufferers of anxiety, panic attacks and depression became very clear to me. It was very exciting and I’ll tell you why.
Broadly speaking Feeling Good opened up a whole new world of relief for panic and anxiety sufferers. At the time, I knew my thoughts related to panic attacks were racing and often circular, but like many people who suffer from anxiety, I couldn’t get free from these thoughts.
More specifically Feeling Good by David Burns, M.D. literally shows you how to examine your thoughts and consequently feel much better. For myself and many others Feeling Good was an introduction to Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT).
CBT allows you to examine your own thoughts to locate “cognitive distortions” when feeling anxious or depressed. This is a huge benefit for people, because by reviewing their thoughts, people can usually uncover the distortion(s) without too much effort. Once the distortions have been pin pointed, a new thought or series of thoughts can then be substituted in their place. The perspective of Feeling Good is that cognitive distortions cause depression and anxiety.
Feeling Good includes many actual examples that occurred in Dr. Burns’ clinical practice, including the outcomes. The patient outcomes were very positive. It was really interesting to see the theory behind the book actually put into practice. I’m not suggesting that positive outcomes were always easily achieved. However, it’s very motivating to see how consistent efforts can pay off. This is important for sufferers to be able to see.
Feeling Good also discusses what are called global beliefs. That is, over the course our lives we each have much wider ranging beliefs that can lead to depression and anxiety. Dr. Burns provides instructions so you too can discover them. Finding these global beliefs can allow you to tackle the underlying cause of your depression and anxiety. Sufferers of panic attacks often struggle with the question of what causes their attacks. Well why not zap them?!
I can honestly say that I was able to change my thoughts and overall beliefs because of Feeling Good. Others too have reported that after integrating the techniques discussed in Feeling Good, they feel more confident, more assertive, and much less shy in many settings where they would have struggled previously. Once people can overcome their inhibitions, they can then move on their true path and pursue their true passion in an unrestricted fashion.
“Feeling Good is the book most frequently ‘prescribed’ by psychologists for patients undergoing Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). Clinical studies have shown patient improvement by just reading the book – a treatment known as bibliotherapy.”1.
You can obtain more information about the techniques shared in Feeling Good by David Burns, M.D and a breadth of CBT techniques through my free newsletter (below). After you sign up to the free newsletter, you should check out the page entitled Sudden Panic Attacks. Don’t worry about losing your place – you can easily perform a search in the search box at the site’s home page using the phrase “sudden panic attacks” and you will be back on track.
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1. Feeling Good. Retrieved October 28, 2010 from Facing the Facts / BPDFamily.com website