Anxiety (A Very Short Introduction) ★★★★☆

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Title: Anxiety
Series: A Very Short Introduction
Author: Daniel & Jason Freeman
Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Genre: Non-Fiction
Pages: 142
Words: 44K



Are we born with our fears or do we learn them? Why do our fears persist? What purpose does anxiety serve? How common are anxiety disorders, and which treatments are most effective? What’s happening in our brain when we feel fear? And what are Colombian worry dolls? This Very Short Introduction draws on the best scientific research to offer a highly accessible explanation of what anxiety is, why it is such a normal and vital part of our emotional life, and the key factors that cause it. Insights are drawn from psychology, neuroscience, genetics, epidemiology, and clinical trials. Providing a fascinating illustration of the discussion are two interviews conducted specifically for the book, with the actor, writer, director, and television presenter Michael Palin and former England football manager Graham Taylor. The book covers in detail the six major anxiety disorders: phobias; panic disorder and agoraphobia; social anxiety; generalised anxiety disorder; obsessive compulsive disorder; and post-traumatic stress disorder. With a chapter devoted to each disorder, Daniel and Jason Freeman take you through the symptoms, prevalence, and causes of each one. A final chapter describes the treatments available for dealing with anxiety problems.

My Thoughts:

THIS was how this series should have been. THIS was everything that I could have asked for in a series entitled A Very Short Introduction. Oh, it is almost worse that this was this good because now all the sucky ones are going to suck even worse in comparison.

Daniel and Jason Freeman write to lay people. They explain technical terms and try not to use them. For example, one of the definitions for a medical term is a word that nobody but crazy doctors would use and these guys write “and that means ‘clinically insane’”. How hard is it to do that? Not very.

I was also impressed with how on target they stayed in regards to looking at the big picture of Anxiety. While they wrote about various forms of Anxiety and everything, they never lost sight of the fact they WERE writing about anxiety and they always tied the subject firmly back.

Basically, they did a fantastic job of giving an overview with just enough specifics to satisfy me. I don’t know if these 2 are medical doctors, but they definitely know how to talk to people who are not at their level, like me (unlike some of the other scumbag authors in this series). This was a weird read because I loved so much how the authors did things and it was totally mixed with hatred for all the other writers who were abject, abysmal and complete failures at their attempts to communicate their subjects.

Now I’m going to go have a good cry and feel anxious about the other books in the series 😉

Rating: 4 out of 5.

31 thoughts on “Anxiety (A Very Short Introduction) ★★★★☆

    1. I do! I am now one little ball of anxiety and I’m not sure I can function any more.

      Nahhhh, I’m going to save that for some of the really sucky books I’m sure will crop up in this series 😀

      Liked by 1 person

                    1. There’s more to football than just hard kicking. I’ve just found out he’s been dead for four years, so I retract my comment and yield the remainder of my three minutes to the distinuished gentleman.

                      Liked by 1 person

    1. I was surprised as the next guy, let me tell you.

      I found this useful for how “anxiety” has been split into so many different areas so “experts” can focus on that one particular field.


  1. Well, now at least you can be your own psychologist! 🙄

    We were talking today about why there are so many anxious and depressed people and came to the conclusion that people/children are too coddled nowadays. The lady i was speaking with is in her late 70’s and doesn’t remember anyone anxious or depressed when she was growing up. Perhaps it’s not a popular theory, but there you go.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I would buy partially into that theory. Having experienced no real hardships, kids never toughened up psychologically and so they’re the mess we see today.
      I would go further though and say it is the lack of real Christianity and Christian principles being lived out in society. Even if someone wasn’t a Christian in the 1940’s, they still lived the principles because of society. God made things work a certain way and even if you don’t believe in Him, if you live according to how He set things up, well, things work better (surprise!). It has taken a couple of generations but we’re seeing the inevitable consequences of a world without God.

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Apparently, writing like this is much harder than anyone knew! I mean, there are only a baillion authors (even if a lot of them have bad grammar, etc) so it seems like “anyone” should be able to do this. I guess living in Ivorytowerland has some downsides for all those others who wrote in this series 😦

      Liked by 1 person

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