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Book Review: The Anxiety & Phobia Workbook

While a bit dated (the fourth edition was last published in 2005, but the original book was published in 1990), The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook remains a helpful and practical guide to working on issues of anxiety and phobias, for anyone who’s ready to take their treatment to the next level. It provides step-by-step exercises, helping you learn about relaxation, exposure techniques, visualization, and how to overcome the negative, largely unconscious self-talk that helps reinforce feelings of fear and hopelessness.

The author also provides in-depth discussions about virtually every kind of treatment option available to someone working on anxiety or a phobia, such as exercise, working with a therapist, and the medications commonly prescribed. Well-written and fairly comprehensive, you may not need to buy another book on anxiety or phobias.

The book offers simple yet powerful exercises that engage the reader into not simply learning about anxiety, but more importantly, learning how to change their reaction to anxiety and phobia feelings. The exercises are what are most important about this book, and make it a hands-on, “how to” book in learning to cope with anxiety and phobias.

While the author does a great job with the material, he is not a medical doctor. So some will find his discussions of medication options a bit lacking and providing as much opinion as fact. In the reviews on Amazon.com of the book, for instance, one reviewer takes the author to task for making medication recommendations that are against the prescribing mainstream for anxiety disorders: “What he fails to mention is that the Xanax family (benzodiazepines) is far-and-away the most prescribed and effective psychoactive set of medications for anxiety disorders.”

This much is true, and so you should take the author’s medication recommendations with a grain of salt. Always talk to your doctor before making any medication changes.

But when the author sticks to the good stuff — the exercises that make up the bulk of this workbook — this is still one of the best hands-on books to get for learning how to better cope with a phobia or an anxiety disorder. Also, it’s recommended you get the actual paper version of this book (not an e-reader or Kindle version), since many of the exercises will require a pencil to fill out.

Softcover, 445 pages.

Book Review: The Anxiety & Phobia Workbook

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John M. Grohol, Psy.D.

Dr. John Grohol is the founder & CEO of Psych Central. He is an author, researcher and expert in mental health online, and has been writing about online behavior, mental health and psychology issues -- as well as the intersection of technology and human behavior -- since 1992. Dr. Grohol sits on the editorial board of the journal Computers in Human Behavior and is a founding board member and treasurer of the Society for Participatory Medicine. He writes regularly and extensively on mental health concerns, the intersection of technology and psychology, and advocating for greater acceptance of the importance and value of mental health in today's society. You can learn more about Dr. John Grohol here.

APA Reference
Grohol, J. (2016). Book Review: The Anxiety & Phobia Workbook. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 14, 2019, from https://psychcentralreviews.com/2016/the-anxiety-phobia-workbook/
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 17 May 2016
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 17 May 2016
Published on Psych Central.com. All rights reserved.