Verdict: CBT WORKSHEETS FOR TEENAGE SOCIAL ANXIETY shows young adults they are not alone in their fears of social situations, and provides useful exercises to stimulate new ways of thinking and behaving.
Although CBT WORKSHEETS FOR TEENAGE SOCIAL ANXIETY is a workbook intended for teens to use in conjunction with one-on-one counseling with a cognitive behavior therapist, highly motivated young adults with some exposure to psychology may be able to use the book on its own.
To better understand the concepts of cognitive behavior therapy discussed in counseling sessions and apply the knowledge to their daily lives, readers are encouraged to write in this book and make extra photocopies of pages, if necessary. An appendix and list of references are included as back matter. British authors Dr. James Manning and Dr. Nicola Ridgeway, both clinical psychologists, work as Managing Director and Clinical Director (respectively) of the West Suffolk CBT Service Ltd. in England and have created this helpful tool for young adults battling social anxiety.
Divided into 20 short chapters (which makes the material seem less intimidating), the book begins by explaining that social anxiety creates anxious thoughts and feelings before, during, and after nearly every social situation. Common physical symptoms include sweating, shaking, dizziness, and loss of appetite. Fearful thoughts include avoiding the situation and seeking safety.
Exercises at the end of most chapters address specific issues brought up in that chapter. For example, in Chapter 6 “Safety behaviours and social anxiety,” the authors list nearly two dozen safety behaviors and avoidance patterns, followed by a page for readers to write in safety behaviors they have used in the past. The book progresses logically with other important concepts necessary for healing, including cognitive distortions—anxiety’s ability to alter our view of the world—and limiting beliefs—deeply held fears about ourselves—and concludes with ways in which readers can challenge themselves to get past their safety behaviors.
The information in this workbook is excellent overall and explained clearly and appropriately for the target audience, despite some distracting typos. The presentation of material also includes helpful characters stretched to various heights and widths to accommodate the layout of each particular page, which can lead to distorted figures with noticeably odd proportions. Even so, this is an important work that has the potential to alleviate pain for countless teens.
CBT WORKSHEETS FOR TEENAGE SOCIAL ANXIETY shows young adults they are not alone in fearing social situations and provides useful exercises to stimulate new ways of thinking and behaving.
~Carol Michaels for IndieReader