Overcoming Your Difficult Family
Eric Maisel’s latest from New World Library
Many of the difficult people you encounter in daily life can be avoided. But what if they’re family members? What if the difficult person is a parent, sibling, one of your children, or your mate?
What are the best strategies for dealing with the people you’re connected to for life?
Author Eric Maisel, retired family therapist and active life coach, tackles this challenging question in his new book Overcoming Your Difficult Family, providing answers gleaned from his family therapy practice and coaching practice and from his interviews with experts from around the world.
The first half of the book describes eight vital strategies for dealing with difficult relatives. The second half serves as a unique “field guide” to common types of dysfunctional families — authoritarian families, anxious families, addicted families, and more.
By following Maisel’s battle-tested advice, you’ll learn to maintain inner peace in the midst of family chaos and even create a better life for your whole family.
What People Are Saying
Praise for Overcoming Your Difficult Family
“This may be the most important book you will ever read. If you want to have a more joyful life and a relationship full of real, lasting love, this book is for you. It is practical and powerful. It will teach you how to be smart, strong, calm, clear, aware, brave, present, and resilient — qualities that too many of us lack living in this stressed-out world of ours. It also challenges the current paradigm that we are all susceptible to ‘mental illness’ and the only way to heal is to take drugs or pay the big bucks for long-term psychotherapy. There is a better way, and Eric Maisel offers it in this groundbreaking book. Get a copy for yourself and one for everyone in your family. It will change your life.” — Jed Diamond, PhD, author of The Enlightened Marriage: The 5 Transformative Stages of Relationships and Why the Best Is Still to Come
“Overcoming Your Difficult Family is an effective and compassionate road map to hope and healing for anyone who has suffered the scars of a fractured family. Eric Maisel masterfully provides essential survival skills that can be applied immediately, along with insightful real-life stories and easy-to-grasp descriptions of family styles. This accessible book shines a liberating light on past family pain and patterns as it offers new skills and hope for creating the healthy, supportive family you’ve always dreamed of — right here, right now. Highly recommended!” — Donald Altman, LPC, bestselling author of The Mindfulness Toolbox, Clearing Emotional Clutter, and One-Minute Mindfulness
“Spoiler alert: after you read Overcoming Your Difficult Family, you will feel less distress and be more able to utilize your personal power to create the life you want! Dr. Maisel eloquently offers practical tools on every page, teaching you how to stay calm and effective in even the most challenging family environment. You will be equipped with the knowledge of what family type you are from, and you will learn eight essential skills to overcome lingering family-of-origin problems that have, consciously or unconsciously, caused you upset for years. In short, this book will set you free.” — Dr. Lee Jampolsky, author of Healing the Addictive Personality and founder of Inspirational Psychology
“With gentle humor and compassion, Eric Maisel acts as a wise friend in this clear and practical guide that offers specific tools for navigating the roughest of family seas. It even helps you calm the waters! Overcoming Your Difficult Family is a wonderfully useful, unique, and comforting book.” — Judith Schlesinger, PhD, author of The Insanity Hoax: Exposing the Myth of the Mad Genius
“Eric Maisel rejects diagnostic labels in this insightful, practical, and extremely helpful book. Anyone should find his no-nonsense approach and practical tips useful. Whether or not you’re currently in a difficult family situation, Overcoming Your Difficult Family is well worth the read.” — James B. Gottstein, Esq., President of the Law Project for Psychiatric Rights
“Overcoming Your Difficult Family is a treasure trove of ideas and strategies. Eric Maisel has a gift for making complicated ideas easy to understand. I’m sure anyone who is struggling with family relationships of any sort will find something in this book that they can identify with and that’s bound to help them!” — Sami Timimi, Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist, Director of Medical Education, Lincolnshire Partnership Foundation NHS Trust; Training Programme Director, Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Health Education England, East Midlands; and author of Naughty Boys: Anti-Social Behaviour, ADHD and the Role of Culture and A Straight Talking Introduction to Children’s Mental Health Problems
“Eric Maisel, prolific author and one of America’s foremost creativity coaches, has written an uber-pragmatic how-to guide on overcoming not just your difficult family but your own internal demons. Through powerful examples, exercises, and tips, Maisel masterfully guides you to cultivate eight pillars of inner strength. This book is thoughtful, empowering, and practical. It will help you overcome whatever family pattern may still be holding you back in your life and your relationships!” — Anna Yusim, MD, psychiatrist and author of Fulfilled: The Science of Spirituality and How It Can Help You Live a Happier, More Meaningful Life
“With characteristic clarity, Dr. Eric Maisel lays out an approach to family difficulties that cuts through the surface tension to reach the compassionate core of human relationships. An accessible guide grounded in current research and the author’s own clinical experience.”— Dr. Dale McGowan, author of Raising Freethinkers
“In his insightful and practical new book Overcoming Your Difficult Family, Dr. Maisel draws upon his many years as a family therapist as well as theory and research to help people who are members of difficult families (often the result of only one or two difficult members) to both understand the origins of those difficulties and how there own reactions to difficult family members might be making the difficult even more difficult. But Dr. Maisel offers more than just understanding; he also offers hope by way of a number of practical suggestions for dealing with difficult family members that can provide hope and relief for those who have for years been beleaguered by hard-to-deal-with parents, siblings, in-laws, and others. . I recommend this book not only to individual, couples, and family therapists but also to the clients with whom they work.”—James E. Maddux, Ph.D., University Professor Emeritus – Department of Psychology, Senior Scholar – Center for the Advancement of Well-Being, George Mason University
“Throughout this book, Dr. Maisel maintains a non-medical and non-pathology theme, describing family problems as natural human phenomena rather than mental disorders. His 8 skills are introduced and applied step by step within the context of several unique family cultures whose members unwittingly develop problematic ways of coping. Practical tips and symbolic ‘ceremonies’ are offered to help each person create a personalized repertoire of skills that can be applied to any relationship: family, marital, work, and friendships. He explains otherwise esoteric concepts of existential psychology, eastern philosophy, and cognitive-behavioral practices in common everyday language, easy to understand. The book is a refreshing example of overcoming interpersonal conflict with respect for personal diversity, coexistence, and cooperation. It is invigorating to those of us who struggle to re-humanize the mental health industry!”—Chuck Ruby, Ph.D., Executive Director, International Society for Ethical Psychology and Psychiatry