I love it when I’m sent a book to review and I, literally, have trouble putting it down. 13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do by Amy Morin is the latest book to fit this description.
I’ll tell you what reading it reminded me of: Sitting in a Baptist Church in the South on a Sunday morning as the Man of God in front of the congregation was on FIRE! He paces and preaches and preaches and paces – the whole time leaving you thinking things like, “That’s right!,” “That’s SO GOOD!,” and “AMEN!”
I’ve had the supreme privilege and honor of sitting in many Sunday morning services just like that. They’re downright tingly to your body, mind, and spirit because they serve as wonderful wake up calls.
13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do is a wake up call in its own right. I can’t say that it stirs the Spirit necessarily, but that’s not what it’s setting out to do. THIS particular wake-up call stirs your mind and even your heart.
And does so with aplomb.
Expanding on her viral post that has become an international phenomenon, a psychotherapist offers simple yet effective solutions for increasing mental strength and finding happiness and success in life.
As a licensed clinical social worker, college psychology instructor, and psychotherapist, Amy Morin has seen countless people choose to succeed despite facing enormous challenges. That resilience inspired her to write 13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do, a web post that instantly went viral, and was picked up by the Forbes website.
Morin’s post focused on the concept of mental strength, how mentally strong people avoid negative behaviors—feeling sorry for themselves, resenting other people’s success, and dwelling on the past. Instead, they focus on the positive to help them overcome challenges and become their best.
In this inspirational, affirmative book, Morin expands upon her original message, providing practical strategies to help readers avoid the thirteen common habits that can hold them back from success. Combining compelling anecdotal stories with the latest psychological research, she offers strategies for avoiding destructive thoughts, emotions, and behaviors common to everyone.
Like physical strength, mental strength requires healthy habits, exercise, and hard work. Morin teaches you how to embrace a happier outlook and arms you to emotionally deal with life’s inevitable hardships, setbacks, and heartbreaks—sharing for the first time her own poignant story of tragedy, and how she summoned the mental strength to move on. As she makes clear, mental strength isn’t about acting tough; it’s about feeling empowered to overcome life’s challenges.
Each chapter goes into great (eye-opening) detail about the pitfalls of the 13 things successful people do not do. As you read through the book, you will (given the fact that you look human to me) recognize yourself in a few scenarios.
This is a good thing! WHEN you realize bad habits or choices, THEN you’re able to give yourself a good old-fashioned kick in the seat of the pants and vow never to go down that dead end road again.
That’s why I call these moments wake up calls. They sound off alarms that help you shake out of a deep sleep and get moving in the right direction.
Amy Morin has put together an absolutely wonderful book that reads fast but leaves a lasting impression. Since I read it (a few weeks ago), I’ve often thought of her words.
Chapter 4: They Don’t Focus on Things They Can’t Control
“You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them.” – Maya Angelou
One of my favorite chapters in the book addresses the fact that Successful People Don’t Focus on Things They Can’t Control. Not only would it be a colossal waste of time and energy to focus on things you cannot control – it sucks time and energy AWAY that could actually be productive.
“It feels so safe to have everything under control, but thinking we have the power to always pull the strings can become problematic.” (Page 74)
The chapter includes examples and “symptoms” of this type of thinking.
“We can’t possibly make all of our circumstances and all the people in our lives fit into the way we think things should be. When you learn to let go of the details you can’t control, the amount of time and energy you’ll be able to devote to the things you can control will give you the ability to accomplish incredible feats.” (Page 75)
How great is that?!
This one chapter, alone, should be required reading for everyone in the world. If you cannot control it… let it go. Not only will everyone else around you be happier, you’ll be freer.
As I read through this chapter, I thought of a few modern-day illustrations of this bad habit.
- Women who call or text their boyfriends/husbands again and again and again while he is on the golf course, fishing, watching a game, etc. If the truth came out…. they don’t want them THERE! They want them where they want them and yet, somehow, lost control of the situation. He wandered away! What’s a gal to do? She can retain a little bit of control by keeping tabs on him. Personally, I think a trip to Target would be a lot funner, but that’s just me.
- This one’s timely – how about holiday get-togethers? Tension often runs high because every family has that one person who acts as though no one EVER does enough for them. They’re sour and resentful because they’re unable to control what everyone else says and does.
- Anyone with co-workers knows how maddening control freaks can be. They aren’t the least bit interested in being a team player because they want to be the puppet master. They want to tell everyone else what “their job” is while refusing to let any “job descriptions” stick to them!
The list goes on, of course. This is one of the most powerful chapters in the book -but each chapter is profoundly powerful.
I know that 13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do is a book you’ll love. Even more importantly, I know it’s a book you’ll get A LOT out of. One of the first things I thought after I finished the book was, “The phrase game changer is woefully overused… heck, I overuse it on a gruesome level… THIS book truly is a game changer and could help SO MANY PEOPLE!”
I thought it then and I think it now. You need this book. Period.
On December 23, you’ll be able to buy 13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do on Amazon. Click through and pre-order it now!
From the Inside Cover
The Ultimate Guide to Mastering Your Mental Strength
Everyone knows that regular exercise and weight training lead to physical strength. But how do we strengthen ourselves mentally for the truly tough times? And what should we do when we face these challenges? Or as psychotherapist Amy Morin asks, what should we avoid when we encounter adversity? Through her years counseling others and her own experiences navigating personal loss, Morin realized it is often the habits we cannot break that are holding us back from true success and happiness. Indulging in self-pity, agonizing over things beyond our control, obsessing over past events, resenting the achievements of others, or expecting immediate positive results holds us back. This list of things mentally strong people don’t do resonated so much with readers that when it was picked up by Forbes.com it received ten million views.
Now, for the first time, Morin expands upon the thirteen things from her viral post and shares her tried-and-true practices for increasing mental strength. Morin writes with searing honesty, incorporating anecdotes from her work as a college psychology instructor and psychotherapist as well as personal stories about how she bolstered her own mental strength when tragedy threatened to consume her.
Increasing your mental strength can change your entire attitude. It takes practice and hard work, but with Morin’s specific tips, exercises, and troubleshooting advice, it is possible to not only fortify your mental muscle but also drastically improve the quality of your life.
About the Author
Amy Morin is a licensed clinical social worker, college psychology instructor, and psychotherapist. She is the only person in the psychology industry who is talking about mental strength on a global level. She lives in Enfield, Maine.