Fire Your Shrink!: Do-It-Yourself Strategies for Changing Your Life and Everyone in It Hardcover – Jan 1995
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From Publishers Weekly
Putting the "self back in self-help" is the stated goal of this exuberant explication of a different therapy approach-solution-oriented brief therapy (SBT), "enabling most people to resolve their problems in three to six sessions." Therapist Weiner-Davis (Divorce Busting) eschews the whys of problems and instead identifies possible solutions that allow some people to feel better about their lives without undergoing extended therapy, and often without the intervention of a therapist. Unorthodox in its approach, SBT uncovers creative solutions shown to work in the vignettes of counseling sessions presented here. Replete with practical problem-solving ideas, this presentation demonstrates an empowering technique that is the polar opposite of the "inner-child" scenario. Illustrations. First serial to Cosmopolitan and Ladies' Home Journal; author tour.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Weiner-Davis explains her title, "When I say `fire your shrink,' what I am really urging you to do is to fire antiquated, ineffectual ways of thinking about problems and how to solve them." She contends that getting to the root of why you have problems does not solve them. The author, a professional therapist, is spitting in the face of contemporary practices and calling for SBT, Solution-Oriented Brief Therapy, which focuses on positive self-affirmation and the pursuit of resolutions. Through anecdotal case studies, she demonstrates how to look for solutions to marital problems, family conflicts, and other personal and relationship crises. Denise Perry Donavin
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
The problem here is that Weiner-Davis swings way -- way way over -- to the other side of the pendulum. She portrays virtually all personal problems, from addiction to failing marriages, as solvable by the individual. Some of her suggestions are just absurdly overdrawn -- like her mention of the depressed person who decided to go shopping and met someone at the mall who helped her out of her depression. Just change your patterns, Weiner-Davis, suggests, and the solution will appear as if by magic.
This book might be useful for those who can stand a little more personal control over their own lives. I have nothing against that goal. What does concern me, though, is that the overly simplistic, "quick fix" mentality which prevades throughout this book can raise false hopes for people who really do need help from sources outside themselves. In these cases, "Fire Your Shrink" may be setting up certain people for a very, very hard fall after tottering briefly at a precipice of false hope.
...and no, I am NOT a psychologist or therapist of any sort... just someone who likes to see more realistic suggestions!
Based on positive-seeking, solution-focused therapy, the author offers techniques and exercises to discover, ignite, and grow the positive potential in yourself and - by extension - others. Change yourself, and everyone who interacts with you will change too, as they react in new ways to your new choices and actions.
Most people are used to a habit of noticing what's wrong and complaining about it. To the author, this is the first step - noticing. But besides noticing what's wrong, you also need to start practicing noticing what's right, and then encourage and reward that - nurturing more desired behavior. (This is a lot like training animals - rewarding or praising good behavior). You can always delve into the "why's" later, but first, an improved daily interaction helps create a setting where why's can later be explored in a calmer way.
The author also has a website with a free message board, where you can safely vent or ask advice, away from your immediate situation. I highly recommend both this book and her message board.
Using this book and her techniques has empowered me to deal with very difficult people and situations, and made it easier for me to steer these situations into more positive and cheerful realities.
I like her ideas and have used a few of them myself successfully. However, the beginning of this audiocassette is WAY too long. It's basically a commercial for her method of helping people - which sounds great - but I didn't buy this book-on-tape to hear a commercial! I wanted her to get to the point and tell me how to do this stuff.
I suggest saving your money and not buying the audiocassette since you will have to listen again and again to the commercial. Having the book is better because you can flip thru to just the information you want/need at the time.
The book has a 'commercial' in the beginning too, but you don't have to read that part any more than just the first time. With an audiocassette, if you want to listen to the ideas again, you have to listen to the commercial again.
Books-on-tape are GREAT, but in this case, she takes too long to get to the point. The book with pages to flip thru is much better.
I was so annoyed that I was duped, that I can't really give this a good review. The re-publication of this was titled "Change Your Life and Everyone In It"