“The greatest weapon against stress is our ability to choose one thought over another.”

~ William James, philosopher and physician.

It’s been a pretty stressful year for me on multiple fronts, and although I have seen a fair amount of middle-of-the-night (or really early, depending on your point of view) wakefulness with some low points, I feel I have managed quite well. While I acknowledge stress is there, it hasn’t harmed or consumed me.

“Who do you want making decisions for you in your life – your anxiety, depression, anger or you?”

~ Kirk Strosahl,  Psychologist and co-founder of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy

But everyone can improve, which is why I was interested to read DK Books Stress The Psychology of Managing Pressure, Practical strategies to turn pressure into positive energy ($25.95).

The book is divided into four sections: Stress in Perspective, A Constant Companion; Stress in the Moment; De-Stressing Your Life; and Resilience and Resolution. Each chapter offers a host of information from stressed by nature (personality and pressure) to A Good Night’s sleep, beating insomnia (I am a lark. I join the 10 per cent of people who are at their best in the early morning) and How Stressed? Between discomfort and danger.

“To achieve great things, two things are needed: A plan and not quite enough time.”

~ Leonard Bernstein, composer and conductor.

There is lots of information written in short, easy-to-read and understand bits; quizzes, which I always love; surveys presented in various infograph forms; and quotes about stress and surviving it:

“I’m going to cry about it, I’m going to dry my eyes and then I’m going back to work.”

~ Fred Johnson, Hurricane Katrina Survivor interviewed by psychologist Gary Stix.

There is information on stress and children, stress during loss – death and divorce – and getting older.

I found myself reading sections at a time, flipping ahead and coming back.

Stress is a book you pull out in time of trouble to give you the advice and solutions you need. It also reminds us that everyone is facing a battle of some sort in their lives, but each person handles it differently.

“Our imperfections are what make us card-carrying members of the human race.”

~ Kristin Neff, American psychologist and compassion expert.

A copy of this book was provided by DK Books for an honest review. The opinions are my own