The Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook

The Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook

NOOK BookSixth Edition (eBook - Sixth Edition)

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The Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook broke new ground when it was first published in 1980, detailing easy, step-by-step techniques for calming the body and mind in an increasingly overstimulated world. Now in its sixth edition, this workbook, highly regarded by therapists and their clients, remains the go-to source for stress reduction strategies that can be incorporated into even the busiest lives.

This new edition is updated with powerful relaxation techniques based on the latest research, and draws from a variety of proven treatment methods, including progressive relaxation, autogenics, self-hypnosis, visualization, and mindfulness and acceptance therapy.

In the first chapter, you'll explore your own stress triggers and symptoms, and learn how to create a personal plan for stress reduction. Each chapter features a different method for relaxation and stress reduction, explains why the method works, and provides on-the-spot exercises you can do to apply that method when you feel stressed. The result is a comprehensive yet accessible workbook that will help you to curb stress and cultivate a more peaceful life.

This book has been awarded The Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies Self-Help Seal of Merit — an award bestowed on outstanding self-help books that are consistent with cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) principles and that incorporate scientifically tested strategies for overcoming mental health difficulties. Used alone or in conjunction with therapy, our books offer powerful tools readers can use to jump-start changes in their lives.

Find more help online at Self-Help Therapy offers web-based treatment for stress reduction based on the book The Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook. Other modules in Self-Help Therapy offer treatment for anxiety, depression, borderline personality disorder and anger.

A Reading Well Books on Prescription title.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781608820702
Publisher: New Harbinger Publications
Publication date: 05/03/2008
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 392
Sales rank: 335,389
File size: 7 MB

About the Author

Martha Davis, PhD, was a psychologist in the department of psychiatry at Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Santa Clara, CA, where she practiced individual, couple, and group psychotherapy for more than thirty years prior to her retirement. She is coauthor of Thoughts and Feelings and The Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook.
Elizabeth Robbins Eshelman, MSW, is a licensed clinical social worker who worked as a staff operations consultant for the marketing and internet services group of the Kaiser Foundation Health Plan. She is now retired and lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. She is preparing to become a certified coach for executives and other individuals and plans to use skills and techniques from this book in her practice.
Matthew McKay, PhD, is a professor at the Wright Institute in Berkeley, CA. He has authored and coauthored numerous books, including The Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook, Self-Esteem, Thoughts and Feelings, When Anger Hurts, and ACT on Life Not on Anger. McKay received his PhD in clinical psychology from the California School of Professional Psychology, and specializes in the cognitive behavioral treatment of anxiety and depression. He lives and works in the greater San Francisco Bay Area.

Table of Contents

Preface to the Seventh Edition xi

Acknowledgments xiii

How to Get the Most Out of This Workbook xv

1 How You React to Stress 1

Sources of Stress 1

Fight-or-Flight Response 2

Chronic Stress and Disease 3

Impact of Recent Experience 4

Prevention 8

Symptom Relief 8

Tactics for Coping with Stress 11

Knowing Your Goal 13

Symptom-Relief Effectiveness 14

Further Reading 15

2 Body Scan 19

Background 19

Body Inventory 20

Stress-Awareness Diary 21

Releasing Tension 24

Further Reading 27

3 Breathing 29

Background 29

Symptom-Relief Effectiveness 30

Time to Master 32

Instructions 32

Preparing to Do Breathing Exercises 32

Breathing Basics 33

Special Considerations 34

Breathing for Tension Release and Increased Awareness 36

Breathing for Symptom Control or Release 39

Final Thoughts 42

Further Reading 42

Recordings 42

4 Progressive Relaxation 43

Background 43

Symptom-Relief Effectiveness 44

Time to Master 44

Instructions 44

Special Considerations 48

Further Reading 48

Recording 48

5 Meditation 49

Background 49

Symptom-Relief Effectiveness 51

Time to Master 51

Instructions 51

Exercises 54

Special Considerations 65

Further Reading 66

Recordings 66

6 Visualization 67

Background 67

Symptom-Relief Effectiveness 68

Time to Master 68

Instructions 68

Special Considerations 74

Further Reading 75

Recordings 75

7 Applied Relaxation Training 77

Background 77

Symptom-Relief Effectiveness 78

Time to Master 78

Instructions 78

Special Considerations 84

Further Reading 84

Recording 84

8 Self-Hypnosis 85

Background 85

Symptom-Relief Effectiveness 86

Contraindications 86

Time to Master 86

Instructions 86

Special Considerations 98

Further Reading 99

9 Autogenics 101

Background 101

Symptom-Relief Effectiveness 102

Contraindications 103

Time to Master 103

Instructions 104

Special Considerations 108

Further Reading 109

Recording 110

10 Brief Combination Techniques 111

Background 111

Symptom-Relief Effectiveness 112

Time to Master 112

Instructions 112

Further Reading 117

Recordings 117

11 Self-Compassion 119

Background 119

Symptom-Relief Effectiveness 120

Time to Master 120

Building Self-Compassion 120

Final Thoughts 126

Further Reading 126

12 Refuting Irrational Ideas 127

Background 127

Symptom-Relief Effectiveness 129

Time to Master 130

Instructions 130

Refuting Irrational Ideas 139

Special Considerations 144

Rational Emotive Imagery 145

Further Reading 148

13 Relieving Worry and Anxiety 149

Background 149

Symptom-Relief Effectiveness 151

Time to Master 151

Instructions 151

Thought Defusion 154

Change Your Safety Behaviors 157

Turn Worry into Problem Solving 166

Final Thoughts 170

Further Reading 170

14 Facing Fear and Avoidance 171

Background 171

Symptom-Relief Effectiveness 173

Time to Master 173

Instructions 173

Special Considerations 187

Further Reading 187

15 Anger Inoculation 189

Background 189

Symptom-Relief Effectiveness 190

Time to Master 190

Instructions 190

Special Considerations 205

Further Reading 205

6 Goal Setting and Time Management 207

Background 207

Limits of Multitasking 208

Symptom-Relief Effectiveness 210

Time to Master 210

Instructions 210

Clarifying Your Values 211

Setting Goals 213

Developing an Action Plan 217

Evaluating How You Spend Your Time 220

Combating Procrastination 227

Organizing Your Time 228

Further Reading 231

17 Assertiveness Training 233

Background 233

Symptom-Relief Effectiveness 237

Time to Master 238

Instructions 238

Further Reading 261

18 Work-Stress Management 263

Background 263

What Causes Work Burnout? 263

Symptom-Relief Effectiveness 265

Time to Master 265

Five Steps Toward Managing Your Work Stress 265

Final Thoughts 278

Further Reading 278

Recording 278

19 Nutrition and Stress 279

Background 279

Symptom-Relief Effectiveness 280

Time to Master 280

Twelve Steps to Healthy Eating 280

Self-Assessment 295

Taking Charge of Your Nutritional Well-Being 301

Final Thoughts 303

Further Reading 303

Websites and Other Resources 304

20 Exercise 305

Background 305

Symptom-Relief Effectiveness 305

Time to Master 306

Instructions 306

Types of Exercise 312

Setting Goals and Developing a Successful Program 314

Special Considerations 319

Sticking with It 322

Further Reading 324

Other Resources 325

21 When It Doesn't Come Easy-Getting Unstuck 327

Taking Responsibility for Your Decisions 328

Confront Your Excuses 328

Confronting Roadblocks to Stress Management and Relaxation 329

When Symptoms Persist 330

Persistence Pays 332

Index 335

Customer Reviews

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Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 23 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Sure we're all stressed a little now and then, but when the stress REALLY starts to build up and becomes too much, consider this little helper. An oversized volume (making it much easier to read), this book contains not one, but MANY different ways of reducing your stress- that's why its called a workbook. And this is precisely what makes this book such a gem- there's virtually something in it for everyone. If you don't like one technique, no problem, just go to the next chapter and try another one until you find one that suits you.

A handy book that should help de-stress a lot of people, I give it 5 stars easy. Can also recommend The Sixty-Second Motivator for readers who have trouble getting motivated to do healthy things regularly- like practice relaxation techniques!
jj12 More than 1 year ago
This not a good book for your nook. You can't read the charts that are in it. It is a waste of MONEY!!!!
EmilyVT More than 1 year ago
This book was recommended to me because of I have TBI (traumatic brain injury). This book is highly effective and densely packed with tools to measure stress, relaxation skills and most importantly, refuting irrational thoughts. This is an easy to read book, and each chapter is stand alone, so you can begin anywhere. I wish everyone could read this just for the chapter on refuting irrational thoughts. Here's an example of an irrational thought: "Happiness can be achieved by inaction, passivity and endless leisure." or "It is easier to avoid than face life's difficulties and responsibilities." This is a good guide for discovering the source of anxiety which may be purely physiological and not emotional at all, in other words, TBI damaged brain sends a signal to the body that creates anxiety when there is no other source of stress. For the person experiencing the anxiety there follows a hunt for the reason for this stress which leads to confusion and distress. This is a great handbook for discovering these signals and learning behavior modification without necessarily relying on medication, to intercept and take control again. Above all else, by God's grace, peace has been restored in my life.
DR-DR More than 1 year ago
As a psychologist I have found that loaning this book to clients who are very anxious or tense speeds therapy if they report that they read it. Some will want to discuss one of the chapters to gain better understanding, but most find it well written and self-explanatory. The book has a couple of general chapters about stress, and then many short chapters each discussing a different procedure for relaxation or stress management. It is written with the understanding that not all the procedures will work for everyone. It is organized to encourage browsing to find procedures you think will meet your own needs only students and professionals need to review every chapter. I have recommended it to clients since I started with the fourth edition. The new sixth edition is carefully revised with additional material, and elimination of some procedures that have had limited research support. While I don't agree with all that I have found in the book, It is the most generally helpful resource I have found.
CasualUnclutterer More than 1 year ago
This is pure serendipity. As I sit down to write this review of the sixth edition of The Relaxation & Stress Reduction Workbook, and pull the book up on Amazon just to check whether it's the most current, I learn that the seventh will be released on April 1, 2019. So mine is "good enough." I'm reviewing the Workbook because I hope those of my clients who suffer from anxiety might take a look. I know it's been worthwhile for me personally for relieving day-to-day tensions. I'll be telling friends and family about it. This hefty manuscript by Martha Davis, PhD, Elizabeth Robbins Eshelman, MSW and Matthew McKay, PhD is a comprehensive how-to guide to the most thoroughly researched, proven relaxation and stress reduction techniques developed from cultures and medical specialties around the world. It covers, among other methods, deep breathing, visualization, meditation, assertiveness training and exercise. It is powerful, but not a quick, simple or peaceful read. The exercises can be emotionally painful and/or physically uncomfortable at first. Learning these competencies is challenging: they require practice to build new habits. You could choose to learn them alone, or I believe this is a fantastic book for friends or family to share on an "accountability partner" basis. It could even be a foundation for efforts in coordination with a health coach. Lauren Williams, Certified Professional Organizer, Owner, Casual Uncluttering LLC, Woodinville, WA, USA
jendem72 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed the book it was well written and it had a lot of helpful ways on the subject of stress management it helped me alot
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Guest More than 1 year ago
I am a corporate stress management consultant, and teach relaxation classes nation-wide. If I were to write a book, it would be exactly like this one. If you are looking for a book that goes beyond the typical 10 relaxation techniques, and want to learn more about why certain types of stress reactions happen, and how to fix and prevent them, you will find this book to be beneficial. Don't get overwhelmed- take it one chapter at a time, and learn to reduce unneccessary stress from your life.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Nobody. That's why everybody needs to check this book out. It is literally a workbook of strategies that will help you relax and reduce stress- and if one treatment strategy doesn't work for you, just try another and another until you find the one that's right for you!