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Customer Review

133 of 146 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Mmmm not sure....., 7 Mar. 2006
This review is from: How to lift depression ...Fast (The Human Givens Approach) (Paperback)
When I began reading this book I was really positive about it - the sleep stuff was new and interesting to me. Soon though, the ideas about retraining your thought processes and patterns of behaviour became like exhausting demands. When I'm really deep down in depression I already feel inadequate and extremely guilty and not being able to do the stuff the book suggests only served to reinforce that.
It's like I KNOW I SHOULD be trying to get out more, do more exercise, change thought patterns etc but if I can barely lift my head off the sofa I'm not sure how to do those things!!! And now I'm beating myself up even more for failing at that too.
I've found it vital to surviving depression to let go, listen to your body, be gentle with yourself and trust that the storm will pass. If you're absolutely at rock bottom I'd recommend Gwyneth Lewis' 'Sunbathing in the Rain'.
I'm going to re-read this book when I'm through this storm as I think the ideas are valid - just inappropriate at this time as I think a certain amount of strength, emotional and physical,is needed, which is not always a resource I have in my darkest times.
I would say, however, that different things work for different people. If solution based stuff helps you through depression then go for it. But if you're someone who's brain won't quieten, who needs to simply to begin to validate feelings that you've either not allowed yourself to have or have spent years undermining then there are better books than this for you.
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Showing 1-7 of 7 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 4 Aug 2008, 13:44:06 BST
Last edited by the author on 4 Aug 2008, 13:44:44 BST

I was a bit moved by your feedback on the book. I have been where you are and the way I got through it was by writing things down. sometimes, it used to be just scribbles bacause that was how I felt. When it started to lift, I would go on walks, sometimes, even lock myself in my room and talk to myself ( what I mean is, pretend that I am talking to the child me, what would I say to comfort her?), all this helped. Now I am not truly healed, but a lot less in pain than I was before. Good luck.

In reply to an earlier post on 9 Aug 2008, 22:58:53 BST

Thanks so much for taking the time to share with me the things that helped you through. I'm touched by your warmth and honesty. I've also found talking to the child me very helpful (if at times very hard!) I hope you're continuing to feel better and better. It's a long scary road huh? But knowing that I'm not the only one on that road is very comforting, so thank you once again.


Posted on 27 Dec 2008, 01:04:58 GMT
Hi There says:
I know how you feel because I have been in probably every stage of depression at some point. I made big progress this year, thanks to the self improvement and personal development material I have been taking in.

Sometimes after a program or book I have felt actually worse, but I have concluded that often getting better was preceded by feeling worse temporarily and that this was necessary for my own growth.

Posted on 23 Sep 2009, 09:19:55 BST
Hi Michelle

I just wanted to say I appreciate your review of this book, and I know exactly what you're going through. I was in an incredibly low, dark place last year and felt there was no way out. I was on the verge of doing something both extreme and permanant, but this book really helped me. It was difficult, but when I read it it felt like it was talking directly to me. It can be a long process, but you'll get there and you'll get through it. Also, I would listen to a hypnosis/meditation Paul McKenna CD that came with one of his books, 'Change Your Life in Seven Days.' I think it's the same CD that comes with all his books, so you wouldn't necessarily have to buy that particular book.
I'm happy to say my mental state is great and has been for a long time now, and this Human Givens approach has played a massive part. It's almost hard to believe I was actually that depressed last year, but I managed to get out the other side. I now I recognize the warning signs that lead to that heavy blanket of depression trying to sweep over me again, and I can get myself on track again before it gets a hold on me. I know what it's like to have the internal voice in your mind constantly putting you down, where you don't see the point of getting out of bed and just being awake seems like an ordeal. If I got through it, I know you can too.

In reply to an earlier post on 22 Mar 2010, 20:17:35 GMT
Daniel says:
I found Paul McKenna's "I Can Make You Sleep" book/CD to be helpful. Unlike his other CDs, he doesn't wake you up at the end, so it can be used last thing at night in bed. I found it gave me a good night's sleep and when I woke I felt rested and alert. I Can Make You Sleep (Book and CD)

Posted on 23 Oct 2010, 21:35:46 BST
Scotty13 says:
Michelle, you posted this more than four years ago and hopefully your life has moved on. Please don't assume that we can single-handedly find our own way out of depressive illness. Books can be enormously helpful and inspiring-but they cannot replace the assist from an experienced therapist who can perhaps help you appreciate the emotional impasses that you own without realising.

Posted on 17 Mar 2011, 03:13:18 GMT
Hubert says:
Good for you for writing this. There's a fairly powerful attempt going on now to push this 'Human Givens' ideology as being beyond any sort of valid criticism. Your point about its approach (a modified form of CBT) that it makes 'exhausting demands' is utterly valid and I'm very glad you took the time to make such a sincere response to this text.
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