Top positive review
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Review of Rainy Brain Sunny Brain
on 3 September 2012
To be in a positive state of mind and to be hopeful are essential to our well-being, but it can sometimes feel difficult to achieve these states especially when confronted with challenging and unfortunate life events that need our immediate attention. In this book, Elaine Fox argues that by getting involved in rewarding activities (no matter how small or big) that impact our lives in personally meaningful ways, we can boost and encourage an optimistic outlook on life that can in turn enable us to achieve our goals more efficiently. Elaine discusses classical as well as state of the art evidence from psychology and neuroscience research that has taken us further in understanding how our brains interact with the environment, and how these interactions are influenced by evolutionary pressures, our personality traits, genetic make-up, and past life events. Most remarkably the book discusses new and exciting evidence on how our brains have the most amazing capacity to be retrained, through new and healthy experiences, to deal more effectively with anxiety and depression, and enhance our well-being and resilience to stress. The book explains how our brains are constantly changing and responding to positive experiences and information, no matter how young or old we are, and it is this remarkable plasticity that can shape and strengthen the neural pathways of our sunny brains in coping with distressing thoughts and feelings.
Once you start reading this book you will find it difficult to stop. The book takes you through an adventurous and exciting journey that you will find yourselves wanting to know more with every new chapter. The author's style is contagiously engaging and the research evidence is discussed in a most accessible and approachable manner without reverting to simplification.
By far, the most selling aspect of this book is in its impact. The book is written in such a way that it can benefit and target a wide audience, for scientists and non-scientists alike. Having spent many years conducting research on anxiety and depression myself, I was pleasantly surprised to see the extent to which I was personally affected by the book, and how I found myself practicing the many ways that helped shape an optimistic outlook in my own life. This book is a triumph of an implicit but forgotten legacy of the power of the human mind and the heights of what it can remarkably achieve in the most challenging situations.
Nazanin Derakhshan, PhD
Department of Psychological Sciences, Birkbeck University of London, UK