We know that overcoming anxiety is not easy, that we need to go a long way to learn to manage that anxiety that prevents us from being happy. But along the way we find a multitude of resources that can help us achieve it. However, not all resources work the same. What is right for some people may not work for others. And one of those more controversial anxiety aids is self-help books.
Are self-help books for anxiety effective?
In the market we find countless titles that make it seem very easy to overcome anxiety. This is the first criticism of those self-help books that shout at us from the bookstores that we ourselves, with the help of that book, can free ourselves from anxiety. And it turns out that anxiety is not overcome by reading a book.
Among these self-help manuals, there are books that are more suitable than others, but everything will depend on how the book is understood. In other words, each person can interpret what is said in the book in a different way and, since we do not have a therapist by our side to indicate if we are on the right track, we will be able to do little if we misinterpret the message.
This does not mean that we should rule out self-help books as a support method in the treatment of anxiety, but rather that what we should not rule out in any case is psychological therapy. Self-help books can help us with anxiety, but they would help us much more if the book we choose is recommended by our therapist, who is, after all, the one who knows the most about our anxiety problem.
What are self-help books for anxiety for?
If self-help books continue to raise suspicions among certain medical sectors and among those themselves affected by anxiety, it is for two reasons. The main reason is that, very frequently, we find books that are true scams, that play with the emotional balance of people and whose sole objective is for the author to make a profit. That is why it is convenient that the self-help book that will support us in our recovery be recommended by a professional.
The second reason for suspicion is the little utility that is seen in most cases. But here we must break a spear in favor of these self-help books. Its ineffectiveness is due to the misconception we have of these books. A self-help book is not a psychologist, nor is it a treatment for anxiety, nor a remedy to calm the nerves. A self-help book on a reflection tool.
The most we are going to get out of a self-help book is if we take it as a guide to help us identify the keys to our anxiety problem. In addition, we can also find words of encouragement in self-help books to lean on when we believe that all is lost. For that reason alone, it is worth taking refuge in self-help books, yes, without ever thinking that therein lays the secret of our recovery.