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Stop Overreacting: Effective Strategies for Calming Your Emotions

Stop Overreacting: Effective Strategies for Calming Your Emotions - Judith P. Siegel This brief, little book attempts to explain the differences between people who explode and people who implode, between people who use the left thinking side of the brain and the people who use the right emotional side of their brain, governed by the frontal lobe and amygdala.

It then attempts to help the reader to find a better way to solve problems, without letting one side or the other rule, without striking out, without retreating inside oneself, and instead, it tries to help the reader find out the underlying cause of these overreactions so there will be a more sensible response, neither implosion or explosion, since both of these reactions do not lead to viable solutions. Using just the right amount of each side of the brain to reach a solution, coupled with the knowledge of why we react to different stimuli in different ways and what in our past triggers these reactions, we are able to think more clearly and make better judgments in troubling situations.

Unlike many other self help books I have read, this one gives examples that the reader can really identify with, since they don’t seem plucked from a tree of anecdotes. Also there are a series of exercises at the end of the chapter to help the reader work through issues and distinguish which behavior is caused by certain memories of the past so that the reactions can be controlled in a better way and the problems can be worked through using healthier behavior.

This book can really assist the reader because the examples given are easily identified with and feelings are easily processed with the exercises provided. One can even skim the book to find the areas of most concern. If one can learn what triggers the distorted reactions, and then stop the immediate knee-jerk response, the consequences after the confrontation will be neutral.
Why are we envious, jealous, angry? What sets off our fight or flight reaction? If we can figure that out, we can lead a happier more centered life. Who wouldn't want that?