When I first began this blog (in 2017), my goal was to provide expert techniques for – well, the name of the blog says it all – helping yourself.
Things have moved along since then and my vision has come to include all sorts of modalities and ideas.
But sometimes, ya jus’ havta go back ta basics.
This book will help you to do that!
The Art of Self-Therapy by Nick Trenton is not Trenton’s first book and will likely not be his last. He’s a bit of a prolific writer. This book is included in his “The Path to Calm” series, which includes twelve books. Make no mistake though… this one can stand alone!
As I began reading, I quickly realized that this would be a keeper book. Not something that would just sit on the shelf. No! This would be a “grab when ya need it” review book. As such, I felt okay turning corners and making notes. If you get it (and I hope you will!) plan on doing the same. There is SO MUCH to mine here!
In my opinion, it’s a PERFECT first-time self-help book for someone who is genuinely interested in helping themselves by doing the work.
Which reminds me…
Time and time again (as I read) I was reminded of Byron Katie’s The Work <<< AND the story I told in that post about it. I have DONE The Work. It’s simple to understand – just 4-steps. Not easy though. Difficult, actually. In fact, it can be excruciating. At least, it was for me. But oh so necessary. I mean, if you want to understand yourself (with the added benefit of also understanding others).
But I digress.
Trenton also goes there, and a whole whack of other places.
The book is set up in four parts:
- Getting to Know Your Deeper Self
- So, How Did You Get Here?
- Thoughts Are the Code That Programs Your Life
- Build the Life You Want One Action at a Time
Within those parts are chapters on different psychological models (Self-Exploration, Internal Family Systems, Shadow Work, Attachment, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, etc… don’t want to give it all away!).
I especially appreciated two chapters that I feel are VERY important and NOT talked about enough.
- Rewriting YOUR story
- Knowing and working within YOUR core beliefs
I agree with Trenton who says, “A self-narrative is exactly like a movie script, telling us the role we play and what kind of story we’re living.” In short, he says, we typecast ourselves. And, it’s an automatic and ingrained response.
“I’m so shy; I could never do something like that.”
“I’m not a math person.”
“I’m pretty unlucky”
Do you believe and/or say these kinds of things to yourself?
TIME TO REWRITE YOUR STORY! Trenton gives you the step-by-step guide to DO IT.
The second thing I really appreciate (as mentioned above) is the chapter on identifying and (changing if necessary) core beliefs.
Core beliefs are underlying assumptions we have about ourselves, others, and the world in general. (pg. 101)
In my experience, most folks don’t even think about core beliefs. I DO, but that’s only because I had the unique experience of being a part of “The Village” – an online group – many years ago.
Gosh, I think it was officially called something else but I’ve always thought of it as The Village. Maybe it’s because I was a Village Elder (and Crone, as one of the older members).
The creators of the site respected all humanity and embraced diversity. They expected nothing less from their members.
Core beliefs were studied and discussed until it we knew ourselves and each other inside out.
One thing I must mention here is that in order to do this kind of work, we must be HONEST with ourselves, which is also mentioned by Trenton (very early in the book, actually).
Have you ever thought about it? What are your core beliefs?
While you will be DOING THINGS all throughout the book, the final chapters are where you’ll put what you’ve learned into ACTION. <<< This is the really important part! You can *know things* and do nothing about them. What would be the use?
This is a great resource for getting to know yourself! I know I said it would be perfect for those new to self-help … still totally true! … but I would also say that even if you’re an oldster like me, there’s always something new to learn! Or review.
I give this one a million stars. Best of the best for ease of use and great info!