I used this 6 cd set by Cheri Huber about 3 weeks ago. I could easily call this the most effective book/cd method I've ever used, no matter how often they proclaim otherwise. And if you looked thru my 4 bookshelves and innumerable boxes of books I've given away, you'd see that I'm no stranger to "improve me" land.
This set captures the essence that striving to improve is a lost cause. Cheri points directly to the fact that if you cannot see what's in front of your face, then paying attention to finding a better job or wife or dog or trying to think happy thoughts all the time will only lead to a continuation of looking everywhere but to your own mind. She guides you thru at least 6 meditations that get you in touch with that moment. Although that doesn't seem exciting, she asks you to get in touch with moments and watch how your body reacts when she mentions feelings- how do you feel when someone says "joy"? "sadness"? "loneliness"? She asks you to watch your physical and then emotional reactions, and then think back to a time when you felt that. Try and see if you can go back to the first time- the time you learned how to react in this pattern.
She goes right up to the line of using the analogy of "inner child" and "inner guide/ adult" but is very clear that these aren't a permanent fixture either. By the time I got to the fifth cd, I was starting to have my doubts as to where all this seemly unrelated messy inner exploration was going, but in the sixth cd she pulls it all together fabulously. I really got a deeper understanding of a situation that only served to make me anxious over and over again to the point where I couldn't see a way to form another response to it. I used this situation in my mediations and when I was done, I wrote pages and pages of insights about it AND the next time it happened, I could see CLEARLY what I was ACTUALLY reacting to and choose another option. Having insight into my nature simply from watching and observing my own mind- no one else's words to read or decipher, no 12 step program to happiness to follow. Just what comes from my own mind.
Note the ironic twist that by striving to purchase this set it will only lead to you ending the long circle of desire. So spring for it. Consider it the last self help/ self improvment/ meditation/ guided imagery set you'll ever purchase.