Archive for the ‘Emotional Regulation’ Category

Worry, Anxiety, Fear? Keep Calm and Carry On – Interview with Dr. Mark A. Reinecke, Ph.D.

Do you worry a lot? Do you find yourself experiencing increasing anxiety? Are you fearful? Do you have negative worry thoughts that create anxiety and fear in your life? Please join Life Coach, A.J. Mahari, on Monday October 25th, at 7pm EST, for an interview with Dr. Mark A. Reinecke, Ph.D., author of the book, “Little Ways to Keep Calm and Carry On – Twenty Lessons for Managing Worry, Anxiety, and Fear” on the Psyche Whisperer Radio Show

This interview is now available in our archives on and you can listen to it right here on this page now.

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Dr. Reinecke, author of “Litte Ways To Keep Calm and Carry On – Twenty Lessons for Managing worry, anxiety, and Fear” is Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and Chief of the Division of Psychology at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine. His research and clinical interests center on understanding and treating depression and suicide among children and adolescents. He is widely published, and has authored or edited eight books including Cognitive Therapy Across the Lifespan, Comparative Treatments of Depression, Cognitive Therapy with Children and Adolescents, Personality Disorders in Children and Adolescents. 

Dr. Mark Reinecke is a clinical psychologist at Northwestern Memorial Hospital. His clinical interests include cognitive-behavioral therapy, as well as anxiety, panic and obsessive-compulsive disorders. Dr. Reinecke earned his doctorate from Purdue University, and he is board-certified in clinical psychology.

He is a distinguished fellow and past president of the Academy of Cognitive Therapy, a diplomat of the American Board of Professional Psychology, and a fellow of the American Psychological Association and the Association for Psychological Science. He lives in Chicago, IL.


This is a very useful, practical, and non-stigmatizing helpful book about keeping calm versus being in a state of anxiety, worry, and/or fear. The lesson in this book and how they are conveyed in layman’s terms not only normalize the experience of anxiety, worry, and fear, but also give you understandable information about how you can change your way of thinking and your way or perceiving and experiencing your thoughts and life so that you can “Keep Calm and Carry On”. I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to more effectively manage the challenges of worry, anxiety, and/or fear. We live in stressful times and worry is increasingly becoming a part of everyday life but it doesn’t have to be as Dr. Mark A Reinecke points out in this book that delivers much-needed information in a way that won’t overwhelm you. – Life and Mental Health Coach,  A.J. Mahari



Table of Contents


About the title


Lesson 1 Anxiety: It Works

Lesson 2 The Big “A”

Lesson 3 We Overestimate Risk When We’re Afraid

Lesson 4 The Future Is Uncertain

Lesson 5 Influence and Control

Lesson 6 You Have the Power to Control Your Anxiety

Lesson 7 Perfect Solutions Don’t Exist

Lesson 8 Sometimes You Can Take Control of Bad Situations—but Sometimes Not

Lesson 9 Recurring, Intrusive Thoughts Are Normal; It’s the Meaning We Attach to Them That Counts

Lesson 10 Dwelling on Problems Impairs Your Ability to Cope

Lesson 11 Worrying Is Highly Overrated

Lesson 12 Don’t Magnify the Importance of Your Physical Sensations

Lesson 13 It’s Time to Relax

Lesson 14 Evaluate Your Thoughts and Make Them Account for Themselves

Lesson 15 Changing Your Thoughts

Lesson 16 When You’re Worried or Anxious, Avoiding Problems Is Among the Worst Things You Can Do

Lesson 17 Social Anxiety: Worrying Too Much About What Others Think

Lesson 18 What’s Really on Your Mind?

Lesson 19 Flow with the Current of Life

Lesson 20 Live Wisely

Epilogue: A Final Note

Resources for Readers




Worrying is a national epidemic, so if you feel anxious and uncertain, you’re not alone. But there’s good news! Thanks to researchers and clinicians, this subject is well understood. Here it is: a quick, compact read that tells you what you need to know to understand anxiety and deal with it constructively. This little book presents the most important findings from empirical research in cognitive behavioral therapy and affective neuroscience in a concise way that’s easy to grasp. It tells you what you need to know and do. Based on recent work in empirically supported anxiety treatments, this easy-to-read guide will help you deal with an emotion that can completely unravel your day. 

Think of this book as a tool that teaches you how to filter your thoughts in ways that will change both how you feel and how you behave. Despite the simplicity of the techniques, they produce powerful results. 

Read each lesson in sequence. Some will resonate with you more than others, but each lesson allows you to build your own customized “anxiety management toolbox.” 

As you read this book, consider taking some time to write your thoughts. Put pen to paper and note how you might apply the various lessons in your life. This is your own personal journey—an opportunity to learn to think, feel, and behave differently. You might think of your notes as a personal journal or a private blog. Keeping a journal is entirely optional, but writing notes and reflecting on new information will not only aid your retention but also help you organize the material in your mind and integrate it with your existing knowledge. It may make for a richer and more useful experience, and it should only take a few minutes. Give it a try. 

Many of the lessons conclude with recommendations for action, under the headings “Now Ask Yourself…” and “What You Need to Do.” For these activities, you’ll need a notebook or at least a few blank sheets of paper. Though brief, these exercises can be quite powerful. Applying daily what you’ve learned can accelerate the process, increasing your likelihood of making progress and maintaining your gains. These are the tools that will help you master your worry, anxiety, and fear. Clinicians often refer to them as “homework,” but this isn’t homework in the academic sense. Rather, it’s the notion that though insight alone—what we learn—may not bring about changes in emotions or behavior, we can introduce change by acting on our knowledge and insight. You’ll want to apply this insight in your day-to-day life, and these exercises are an opportunity to do just that. 

Know this: these approaches work. I’ve seen them work with my clients. More importantly, dozens of controlled studies completed at clinics and research centers around the world support the approaches described in this book. The result? Using them can help you have a better day—one where you are more productive, have a greater sense of control, and manage whatever life throws your way by using solutions rather than letting worry take your brain hostage. A small book is no substitute for professional care, of course. If you are experiencing more severe anxiety, or thoughts of death or suicide, you’ll want to work with an experienced mental health specialist; you’ll find Internet resources at the end of the book. 

Don’t underestimate the power of worry, anxiety, and fear. When appropriate, they can play a positive, even essential, role in your life. However, they can also be disruptive and disabling. The bottom line is that you don’t have to be a victim of these unpleasant emotions. You can control how you live your day and what role anxiety plays, and this little guide will show you how. 

Let’s get on with it.” 

Source: New Harbinger Publications Inc.



“He’s a Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Northwestern University and an expert on anxiety. He’s managed to put all of his expertise into a cute, handy little guidebook for everyday life. Who doesn’t need a little extra help to keep calm in these stress-filled times?


‘No worries.’ It’s the new catch phrase. 

As if. 

Everybody worries. It doesn’t mean you need a shrink. But every once in awhile, when the stress level gets a bit too high, you might wish you had a little coach sitting on your shoulder to give you some tips on how to calm yourself down.” 

Source: Just The Bookstore 


“First featured on a British poster produced during World War II, ‘Keep calm and carry on’ has become the mantra of millions—but exactly how to keep calm remains a difficult question for most of us. 

The next time you are stressed by pressures at work, overwhelmed by life’s challenges, or panicked by problems that seem unsolvable, reach for this book. In Little Ways to Keep Calm and Carry On, you’ll find twenty short yet powerful lessons and anxiety-reducing techniques that will help you move past stressful moments with grace. Each lesson is so simple to learn and practice, you’ll find that this pocket guide is all you really need whenever you need a little help keeping calm. 

A gem of a resource for anyone who struggles with anxiety or worry.”

<—Denise D. Davis, Ph.D., clinical psychologist and assistant director of clinical training at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN – from the New Harbinger Publications Inc. 


Stop Overreacting – Effective Strategies For Calming Your Emotions

On Wednesday September 1, 2010, Life Coach, A.J. Mahari interviewed Dr. Judith Siegel, Ph.D., LCSW, who has a new book out called, Stop Overreacting – Effective Strategies For Calming Your Emotions, on her Psyche Whisperer Radio Show.

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Dr. Siegel’s book offers important skills for coping with intense and overwhelming emotions without overreacting, withdrawing, lashing out or raging. Stop Overreacting – Effective Strategies For Calming Your Emotions, addresses topics such as Learning to Talk about Feelings, Envy, Criticism and Sharing Control will be offered. There will also be quizzes about areas related to overeacting such as splitting and narcissism. A.J. Mahari offers her opinion to perspective show listeners and future readers of Dr. Siegel’s book – “It is an amazing book chalk full of helpful information. Information on how to more effectively manage your emotions in situations in your life whether you have been diagnosed with mental illness or not. Many don’t agree with some of the “brain science” or “brain studies” and how they are represented as solid science in what many consider to be a lack of sound scientific evidence. However, that said, whether you agree or not with the brain/biology forwarded explanations of many of our thoughts and emotions, some of which this author uses as a framework of some of her points, there is much more to this book than a few places of such references and said context for explaining human emotions. Everyone, absolutely everyone can benefit from reading this book. There is so much information that is explained very clearly and is not laden with psychological jargon. I highly recommend this book to and for everyone.”

Dr Siegel’s new book is title Stop Overreacting is now available. Her earlier book What Children Learn From Their Parents Marriage has been published in five languages.

Dr. Judith P. Siegel, Ph.D., LCSW

Dr Siegel has trained social workers and family therapists for the past twenty five years.  Her scholarship draws from Object Relations and Family Systems theories as well as the recent developments in Neurobiology.  She has written books and journal articles for the general public as well as Graduate Professionals and believes that people can find inspiration to improve their relationships from many sources.  

Dr. Siegel is a tenured Associate Professor at the New York University Silver School of Social Work and is Co-Director of the Post Graduate Certificate Program in Child and Family Therapy. She has appeared on Good Morning America and The Today Show, and has spoken to professional audiences and parenting groups throughout the United States. or Stop Overreating

Stop Overreacting – Effective Strategies for Calming Your Emotions, Dr. Judith Siegel, Ph.D., LCSW, presents some of the most effective methods to curb overreactions within the everyday realms of family, relationships and the workplace.

Tips To Curb Emotional Overreactions

Be confident.

Confidence propels us to seek control while self-doubt leads us to defer control to others. On the other hand, when we believe no one is in control we may feel a sense of panic, which can often trigger overreactions.
Give your emotions a name.

The process of naming emotions can stimulate the circuits connecting the left and right-brain, which allow us to see situations in terms of both what we know and what we feel.

Don’t Detach.

While self-confidence helps us establish control, taking a passive stance and relying on the capabilities of others can instill a feeling of powerlessness. This perceived lack of influence over a situation’s outcome sets the stage for overreaction triggered by rage and/or defeat.

Develop mind-body awareness.

Be aware of subtle physical responses that occur during emotional experiences. Focusing on physical sensations can alert you to an impending storm if you know how to read your radar map.

Consider the consequences.
Searching stored memory for lessons we may have learned activates the higher areas of the brain which we use to be calculative in our actions. Take a stroll down memory lane. The personal values we acquire during childhood play a key role in what can trigger our emotions as adults. By taking time to think about the qualities that you observed and reacted to growing up, you’ll be aware when these values are challenged and why it bothers you.

Practice what you preach: Share.

When we never let others take over we make life more stressful than it needs to be. As a part of a family unit or partnership, difficulty sharing can inspire us to use force or questionable tactics to maintain full control, leading to mistrust and jealousy; both known to trigger overreaction.

Not all emotional reactions are overreactions. Stop Overreacting offers some questions to ask yourself to determine if they are:

What is Overreaction?

  • • Do you regret things you say or do in the heat of emotion?
    • Do you lash out at loved ones?
    • Do you have to apologize to others for your actions or words?
    • Do you feel surprised at your seemingly uncontrollable
    • Do you assume the worst about situations or people?
    • Do you find yourself in conflict without knowing how you got

3 Factors of Overreaction

  • Schemas, or stories we attach to our relationships, ourselves and events which help us to understand the world, but can also lead to biases, distorted understanding, and knee-jerk reactions to situations.
  • Splitting, or the oversimplification of situations as either ‘all good’ or ‘all bad’.
  • Flooding, or a re-experiencing of raw emotion (stored in our memory from initial experiences that encoded the schema) triggered by particularly resonant schemas and resultant splitting.

© Dr. Judith Siegel 2010 – All rights reserved.

You can find Dr. Siegel on the web at: