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The Truth About Stress Paperback – 1 Jan 2009

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Paperback, 1 Jan 2009
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Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Atlantic Books; Reprint edition (1 Jan 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1843542366
  • ISBN-13: 978-1843542360
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 3.3 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 497,370 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author


Angela Patmore is a former international Fulbright Scholar with a first class honours degree in English and an MA from the College of William and Mary in Virginia. As a UEA environmental sciences research fellow she analysed the clinical literature on 'stress' and later served on Sir John Stevens' Metropolitan Police Stress Experts' Advisory Group. Her exposé of the stress concept and its industry, The Truth About Stress, was shortlisted for the 2007 MIND Book of the Year Award.

Patmore writes fiction and non-fiction, drama and poetry. Her most recent books are CHALLENGING DEPRESSION AND DESPAIR (How To Books 2010), a series of graduated challenges designed to conquer depressive illness, and DOGGEREL (Springhill 2010), a collection of verse character sketches of fifty rescue dogs, with mugshots, sold in aid of the Association of Dogs' and Cats' Homes. Her new full-length play FARDELS BEAR is about a modern production of Hamlet terrorised by the spirit of regency tragedian Edmund Kean. Her previous books have included Sportsmen Under Stress (one of the first UK sports psychology books and a 1986 Times Sports Book of the Year) and Marje: The Guilt and the Gingerbread, a biography of agony aunt Marje Proops that caused a serialisation war between the Sun and the Mirror.

From 2003 to 2006, with the small company Mojo Associates, Patmore worked as a life skills trainer within the Employment Service, rehabilitating the long-term unemployed in Colchester. Some of her trainees had never worked since they left school or came out of prison. Others had serious social and mental health issues. Yet during her tenure the company had not only the best outcomes record in the region but a better record than all of the other training providers combined.

AP is a former Guardian columnist on sports psychology and a regular contributor to press and television features on 'stress'. She is a member of the Royal Society for Literature, Friends of Coleridge and the Society of Authors. She lives with a Parson Jack Russell in a small village in Essex and has produced several books on dogs including Sex Tips for Dogs, the canine Kama Sutra banned by bookshops in 1988 for being in paw taste.

website: www.angelapatmore.co.uk
Email: ebooks@angelapatmore.co.uk

Product Description


"'Rest in peace stress.' Scotsman * 'An intelligent book that cuts through the jargon put about by drug companies and the media alike.' - Rise * 'Patmore's erudition and industry are impressive, as is her range of reference - from Aristotle to T. S. Eliot' - Sunday Telegraph * 'Patmore's book is a welcome antidote... It is time to accept that stress theory has gone too far.' - Daily Telegraph * 'The more Patmore writes, the more I like her...Her writing is full of fire and her examples of stress accountrements are wonderfully wry.' - New Statesman"

About the Author

Angela Patmore is a former University of East Anglia research fellow and International Fulbright Scholar. Her analysis of competitive pressure, Sportsmen Under Stress (1986), was a Times' sports book of the year. A former Guardian columnist on the psychology of sport, she writes extensively for newspapers and magazines and has contributed to many television and radio programmes on stress.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Mr. N. Moffatt on 23 Jun 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It is a shame that the splendid message in the book loses credibility because of the biassed stance of the author, and from focus because of the sheer volume of overly detailed writing.

In a nut shell, as derived from her own interesting personal experience, she advocates the mantra that 'what does not kill you will strengthen you'. And this really is a message to be given a better status as alternative to the overly protective anti-stress/relaxation industry mantras.

But she takes over 300 pages to damn the current stress concepts and management as if everyone can sooner or later deal with any amount of stress. But nervous breakdowns and the overloads that drive parents to shout at children are too readily dismissed as simply variations on the theme of a failure to hang in there. For many, they are very real.

And she fails, even in the final 50 pages where she offers advice rather than damns, simply because she talks of the all powerful panacea of hanging in there with stress, and never mentions the reality of how to handle the intermediate ailments of failing to cope with overload/stress or whatever you might call it. She seems to legitimise a dismissal of stress simply because there is no one fixed definition.

By way of example, after 30 years or so not fearing dogs, I got bitten by one and subsequently feared each dog would do the same. I knew that this was irrational, but it has taken a few years facing these dogs to actually see my instinctive reaction of fear to calm down - and this is with concerted effort to relax and face the fear.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Alan T on 4 Jan 2010
Format: Paperback
I would recommend this book to everyone. It explains why many people (the majority?) are very sceptical about stress, stress absences, the benefits of wholesale stress counselling and is very thought provoking. Many times I start a book and leave it halfway through-this one I couldn't put down-it was easily readable and complex issues were explained to the layman with clarity and without being patronising.
I felt however that there was one major disappointment but perhaps I was missing the point. At times I felt the author was dealing in semantics i.e. that all the conditions do exist but because they couldn't be lumped together as "stress" they were criticised but not addressed. The author is clearly a highly intelligent, qualified, experienced and knowledgable person and therefore it was a pity that although the book was over 400 pages, less than 50 addressed how to deal with "stress" conditions whether or not they should properly be classed as anxiety, phobias etc. I would have loved to have heard from the author what she thought were beneficial, effective methods of treatment for conditions which do exist even though they cannot be lumped into "stress".
But I repeat, an excellent, readable book.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By cookie on 4 Dec 2009
Format: Paperback
I found this book to be an extremely interesting read, although at times I had to reread elements several times to get the point of what the writer was implying; perhaps due to her writing style. This book opens up "a can of worms" within the stress management industry as it highlights the term that stress is now (more than ever before),used common place in everyday language and has been medicalized, which has helped develop the concept of stress phobia globally. And that there are millions of stress management websites offering stress management, with the primary concern being that unqualified people are capitalizing on this phenomenon (and possibly doing more harm than good). Whilst I did not agree with all information and criticism of past and present research, I did however, agree with most of the contents and main points made (as above and more). A final point was that during a resent holiday abroad, I left my (half read), book on a coach trip and the very first thing I did on arrival back to the UK was to buy another; I just had to finish it. Its one of those books you have to read again; packed with research literature and great debate/argument, which has galvanised my present thoughts on the subject in view of reappraisal; I thoroughly enjoyed it!!
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This book is a gem for therapists and people suffering from “stress”, anxiety and depression. In very precise and clear detail, it gives meaning to those proverbs as “You need not fear anything, but fear it self”. It is a relief to read, but can be very provoking.

As a anxiety therapist, this has helped me a lot. It has helped me, help my clients. It has raised the discussions above the object level, and given new meaning to the feelings of fear and discomfort.

The book could have been a bit shorter, and not all chapters a required reading. As I live in Norway, some of the stats are interesting, but different from where I work. All in all, I highly recommend it for all people with an interesst in mental health
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 1 review
2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Well written and full of uncommon sense 29 Mar 2006
By CK - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have only read about 100 pages of this substantial book and feel compelled to write and add my endoresment of the ideas presented in this book.

Reducing stress has become a mantra without thought. As it says in the book, stress has become the cause of itself, is the result of itself and is root of all else that ails the western soul. Without knowing what it is, we follow the mantra in a dogmatic fashion. Reduce stress, relax this, aroma that, yoga do, and so on while we live in a most benign of times. At no point in the history of humankind have we as a species have had it so easy.
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