EXCESS BAGGAGE: Getting Out of Your Own Way by Judith Sills

EXCESS BAGGAGE: Getting Out of Your Own Way

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A smartly observant book that argues for modest personality changes. Using a familiar image for undesirable personality traits, clinical psychologist Sills (A Fine Romance, 1987) suggests that ""excess baggage"" not only interferes with success and satisfaction but also makes one harder to love. This baggage is disposable, she insists, and she urges readers to follow a simple three-step process: Change what you see; change what you think; change what you do. Sills identifies troublesome qualities (fear of rejection, need for drama) and examines the clusters of behaviors associated with them, pointing out important insights in every case: how super-efficient people turn life into work; why taking risks can help a fearful person feel more secure; when forgiveness is something you do for yourself. Moreover, she suggests specific exercises for improvement, including a unique new strategy for worriers (set aside half an hour a day for concentrating on anxieties) and some telephone tactics for those in high-intensity relationships. Drawing on classical therapists (Karen Horney, Otto F. Kernberg, Abraham Maslow) as well as recent popular theorists (Daniel Goleman, Christopher Lasch, Lawrence LeShan), Sills skillfully mixes ideas with examples and avoids professional jargon. You don't have to be the most or the best anything, she concludes, ""You just have to be enough."" Catchy, focused advice for those looking to lighten their loads.

Pub Date: Jan. 1st, 1993
ISBN: 0142004197
Page count: 304pp
Publisher: Viking