Sunday, 24 November 2013

Book reviews and a feeling of vindication

Vindication is quite a powerful word, so I looked it up in a dictionary before using it.

Vindicate - to show or prove to be right, reasonable or justified.

Yes, I feel vindicated. The introduction to the blog in September explains why the reviews below have made me experience that feeling. I also feel humbled.

(As I look out of the window, there is a full arc of a rainbow, with one end in the field opposite the house. True!)

If I don't read another good review or when I receive poor reviews, the kind (genuine) words in print and by phone from old friends and new friends have helped me know that I was right to publish. 

Thank you. Spread the word and if you are being reticent about something that feels right, but fear the criticism...Read Chapter 14 and go for it!


Accessible and for everyone

November 21, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
This is a really readable and accessible book looking at how and why we behave like children sometimes. One can find people they know in the examples, I have found myself pointedly leaving chapters bookmarked for my 'other half' to read. At first I thought he might be offended, but in fact he read it and we have discussed some of the case studies and ideas. It's a big job, but we are communicating a bit better because of it! Emotional maturity has a ripple effect in so many other areas of your life, relationships, addictive behaviours and being content with your lot, to name but a few - I am suggesting a few more of my friends dip into this book too.


Format:Paperback|Amazon Verified Purchase
I have titled my review the way that I have because it is a hope that Alison expresses in her summary at the end of the book for those readers who have read the whole book. When I read a self help book I do so in the hope that I might take away one thing from it that I did not know before. This book surpasses that hope with an abundance of priceless nuggets. The only book I can compare it to is Your Path In Life by the peerless late Dr Dylan Morgan. Alison writes with a clarity from the heart and took me on a kaleidoscopic journey; I came out at the other side feeling energised, refreshed and ready to go. This is a book I will read again and again.

A Must Read For All Adults!!18 Nov 2013
Deborah (in the North) Amazon Verified Purchase

This review is from: Are You Chasing Rainbows? (Paperback)
An excellent book that is so easy to read straight through or keep just dipping in when you have a moment to reflect on life! Most of us will recognise our own behaviour patterns and life circumstances. We may want to respond to a challenge in our own lives that we read others have come through? It is a book that will appeal to men and women alike and crosses all social and economic divides. Leaving childhood patterns behind and achieving the adult life we aspire to is easier said than done. This book will help practically to inspire and encourage us. If you want a gift this Christmas that will last a life time; put this title on your list! It could be life-changing even?

Helpful and insightful17 Nov 2013
Amazon Verified Purchase
This review is from: Are You Chasing Rainbows? (Paperback)
I read this book as soon as it arrived...very easy to follow unlike some similar books I have tried. I recognised my own failings on occasion and importantly I was able to realise why some of my nearest and dearest behave as they do. I would thoroughly recommend this book to anyone .

Insightful, relevant and thought-provoking14 Nov 2013
Katie Kelly "blossom" (Belfast, UK) 
I found this book very easy to read, either as a coffee table sort of book you dip in and out of or as one you read cover to cover. It has obviously been written by someone who is passionate about good mental health, has experienced the problem themselves and in a clinical setting and has thought deeply about how to present it to the reader in a manner which neither accuses or alienates. The quotes are thought-provoking, the exercises practical and the illustrations relevant. Great read.

Brilliant11 Nov 2013
Luke (United Kingdom) Amazon Verified Purchase(What is this?)
A must read for everyone. Understand other people's moods and your own. A really interesting easy to read book, that doesn't confuse the reader with psychobabble.

Help for All4 Nov 2013

If there really were an end to the rainbow - this book is the pot of gold that would be found at the end of it. It is one of the few books of which it can be said that the target readership is genuinely "Everyone". We are all keen to know what makes others 'tick', and understand why they react to us in the way they do. And knowing that means we can often catch ourselves about to indulge in some childish behaviour, and stop before damage is done to our friends and loved ones. Highly recommended as a practical and useful guide to our emotional reactions.

Excellent17 Oct 2013
J. E. Murray-playfair "Samet" (UK)

This review is from: Are You Chasing Rainbows? (Paperback)

An excellent book, very insightful. It really should be read by everyone. I look forward to more from this author.

From a friend:

The book itself is absolutely bang on: just what the world needs. 
I am not exaggerating, are there plans to translate it into other languages? 
If not why not (she asked bossily!)? It is essential reading for just about 
everyone, the truth and clarity of what you write about will be ringing
bells for many, many people. I recognise all sorts of things and have 
found a lot of your advice so sensible and relevant. I like the format 
of personal experience/examples/illustrations it is frank and human 
without being me!me!me! – a difficult balance to strike.


Sunday, 3 November 2013

Karma or just life?

There is irony in the following situation.

Writing a book for consumption by the general public about emotional maturity, containing suggestions on how to manage the challenging events in life and then life deciding to test the author, at the same moment as publication.

It almost feels as if life is saying, "Ha! Not so easy is it? Na, na, na, na, na!

October was not a great month. It should have been. On September 28th, life was okay, with the promise of a busy, but fun October ahead. A first book publication, two book launches with family, friends and colleagues, four birthdays to celebrate, a big family weekend and finishing with a conference to attend.

John Lennon was  right: "Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans."

Sunday, September 29th started normally. Then my husband developed a stomach ache. We thought he had a bug. Twelve hours later he had been taken to hospital in an ambulance. Twenty-fours hours later he was having a major operation and the doctors and nurses were saving his life.

October 1st was spent by my husband's bedside on an Intensive Care Unit. I was in shock.

I experienced the emotional arousal of a major life event, in two ways. One as the participant and another as the observer and analyser.  So while I was initially moving and thinking in a state of shock, I was also fascinated by what it was doing to my mind and body and how I was reacting. After the initial shock comes post shock and the consequences.

It's now the beginning of November and I can report the good news that my husband is on the road to recovery, but it's a day by day lifestyle at the moment. There are few plans being made.

So what are my conclusions? Do I retract anything in the book? No, I don't. Does the recent experience confirm some of the contents in the book? It does.

We can only reflect on any given situation if we have a level of self-awareness. A sort of internal CCTV camera. Chapter 19.

In shock we are unable to think rationally, although we often think we are. Chapter 10. 

The support of friends in good times is great, in difficult times it is priceless. Chapter 6.

Though we need to have times of privacy too. Chapter 20.

Using food and alcohol as comforters is normal. Chapter 20

Knowing when to stop is crucial. Introduction. Chapter 12. Chapter 


Knowing how to deal with anger and frustration is helpful. Chapter 4.

Managing thwarted expectations takes effort. Chapter 4. Chapter 13.

The specialist nurse was correct in saying that attitude plays a large part in healing and recovery from major, life-changing surgery.
Chapter 2. Chapter 13. Chapter 17.

Our personal needs changes according to the circumstances. Chapter 1.

Small steps can make big differences. Chapter 13.

The imagination can run riot and be badly misused. Perspective is helpful. Chapter 15.

The book is now at the distributors and should only take a few days to be delivered, despite what the websites are saying at the moment.

The Kindle version can be downloaded immediately.

The audiobook will be available later this month.