Category: Others marketing book reviews

Looking back your childhood.

Looking back your childhood.

Nonfiction book review in Psychology

How to develop emotional Health. By Oliver James.
MacMillan, 2014. Pp. 141. £10.00. ISBN 978-0-230-77171-0

Nonfiction book review in Psychology
Childhood determines the degrees of emotional health

How can we face the complex process of adult life? How can we live the present and learn from our own actions? Or most importantly, how can we understand our emotions? Such questions could be sorted by reading Oliver James’ book: How to develop emotional health, useful tool to sort our vague “black box”.  Oliver James is a clinical psychologist and author of several titles related to his professional background.

Emotional health and the present. Emotional health has to do with living the present, the ability to get insights from our own individual actions, allowing us to get more information about ourselves. From time to time, we experience all kind of “negative emotions”, that is depression, rages, phobias and so on, but as matter of emotional health, we can overcome them and still have the “value of our existence” (p. 2). Most importantly, James states that nobody has a fully emotional health in this way. However, it doesn’t make impossible to achieve it.

The childhood matters. Achieving a decent level of emotional health is simple. It is just to look back your childhood story and watch how parental care was. Surprised? Yes, that is exactly what the book says. By using his own clinical experience to exemplify different degrees of emotional health, James pictures the features of a common emotionality – how we react in front of complex scenarios, it is proportional related to the circumstances we grew up when we were toddler. In simple terms, how our parents took care of us determine pretty much how our actual emotional health is. A starting point would be to understand our parental education. Yet, it is not about to criticize dad and mum, but to get a better picture of how our childhood was. This is the central point of the book, reason of which why another title would be much better. Readers cannot expect steps, or so much practical exercises, but a simple explanation about why our domestic development is important to picture deeply why we are in the emotional way we are.

Whatever the reason is, this book is a good starting point to understand the origins of our actual emotional health. This book will give the readers the theory and few exercises to make big changes in how we can see the world differently and be more joyful, but do not expect steps and recipes.

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Finding love, only for single marketers

Finding love, only for single marketers

Nonfiction book review in Psychology

How to find Love
By School of Life, 2017. Pp. 80. £10.00 ISBN 978-0-9955736-9-7

School of Life is a global organisation dedicated to develop emotional intelligence. The staff’s backgrounds are in Philosophy and Psychology. The organisation’s idea is simple: they use their knowledge in these fields to expose different ways to see the same world.

How to find love is a promising book for who is looking some guidance in this ‘forever mystery territory’. The book is eighty pages about what instincts are not the best counsellors and what thoughts we should hold while searching for the ‘right one’. Contrary to a self – help manual, the book is a psychological approach about how to choose the partner, with a little explanation about where the idea of love comes from.

The origin of love. It comes from: Romanticism. The book points out how Western societies have taught us about what love is and how to choose our partners. Explicitly, we choose using three instincts: completion – the missing qualities on us but present in our partners or potential lovers; endorsement – the ability of other to understand what it is happening inside us, and familiarity – the parental qualities we see in others or we reject.

The game of instincts. The second part of the book reveals how those three instincts impact on our relationships or our searching for love. Particular attention is given to the instinct of familiarity as it addresses the readers to two essential concepts: repetition dynamic and recoil dynamic. The first one point out how we have experienced the parental love, while  the second one point out the fact that we are in love with whom is different from our parents.

Here is the problem. The book reveals how these instincts play against the own self – improvement, self – knowledge of feelings, emotions and communication with our partners or potential lovers, troubling the opportunities of fulfilment. Also, it reveals how an instinct of familiarity makes us to choose the ‘wrong one’.

But there is a solution. No doubts that every issue has a simple solution. We can get the benefits from these instincts, instead to reject them. The tactics is not to go against them or changes the partner, or change the types or remove them from our complex nature. It is about how to use them in favour of us, to enhance our abilities, make the relationship more pleasurable and look at others as emotional opportunities to grow up.

The book does not pretend to be a self – help guide or manual to find love. The pretensions are more modest than that. It offers another perspective from which we can experience our ordinary lives. In particular for singletons, the book is a promise of mature love research, a “place” where the real cards are on the table. It explains to us the searching of love starts looking at our inner complex self, why we should give chances to others and allow them to show us their hilarious qualities. Moreover, how foolish we could, and must be, in front of our potential lovers.

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On the North of happiness, wealth and sauna

On the North of happiness, wealth and sauna

Nonfiction book review.

The Almost Nearly Perfect People: Behind the Myth of the Scandinavian Utopia
By Michael Booth / Vintage Publishing, February 2015. £7.99. ISBN: 9780099546078

Michael Booth is a British freelance Journalist and award – winning for his numerous non – fiction books. His field of interest: food and travel, Japan and France and most importantly, Nordic countries. Hi book ‘The almost nearly perfect people’ is the writer’s hit of uncovering what it is behind of the Nordic countries’ wealthy and happy global reputation, by using neologisms, euphemisms and sometimes, sarcasms.

Booth introduces the topic with an extraordinary sense of humour, preparing the readers for future pleasurable pages. His definition of ‘who Scandinavians are’ warns the readers about his confidence, in regards to the topic. How come he dare to add Finns and Icelanders in the exclusive circle of wealthy people with fancy furniture?

Hygge, happiness & Wealth. The Danish section is a compilation of good connections between Gini’s index and happiness as variable. Connecting hypothetically wealth with happiness, he tried to discover the complexity behind of those associations in a way that let the readers formulate questions and amuse by extension. Is it possible to live in a very expensive country and smile 24/7? The country is ranked as one of the best countries to live as per quality of life index. Sarcastically, to reach such a happiness, do we have to live as ordinary Danish? Maybe the happiness is a matter of personal definition, readers could think.

Jumping up to the Norwegian land. Booth’s tone and his sense humor, reflected on the nickname ‘Dubai of the North’, seems to be different. Starting with 17th of May parade seems to be the perfect strategy to relax the audience for what he will tell us soon. Booth drives the audience’s attention towards two main points: Norwegians and immigrants and Norwegians and oil. Booth highlights past episodes: the murder of a young foreigner by radicals and how the oil shaped the society and determined the protectionist, closedness and indifference Norwegian behaviors. By the end of this part, Booth claims a truce, when he ends the chapter by telling the public: “It would be suit the Norwegians so much better to show a little more openness and generosity of spirit.” (p. 215)

Having an enjoyable time at the sauna. Booth’s sense of humor seems not have bounder when the reflector is on Finland. He opened the chapter by using a comical neologism which makes the reading more pleasurable. Here a bite: “If you ask me, they should just change the word ‘fantastic’ to ‘Finntastic’. Helsinki? Heavensinki more like” (p. 221). The climax is reached when he described his own experience at the Fins sauna, through the controversy of the nakedness rule. It must be admitted that the historical connection between cultural factors and the obsession for alcohol is well structured and motivates the audience to understand taciturnity Finnishness.

As per Sweden and Iceland. The sense of humor as a speech device does not change. He used it to uncover Elves’ belief and the defects of the democracy. Unfortunately, this chapter of the book do not present a well informed and strong connections as presented before, even if he uses allegorical resources to picture the iconic of each country, for instance Bjork.

The book is just a perspective from which it is possible to understand these cultures. The book is just an enjoyable reading while commuting work or waiting for the hairdresser. The Booth’s unique selling point is his writing style, but it never must take as a guide to understand a whole culture.

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