From The Critics
Unexamined and taken as quality when frequently superficial, personal relationships and community ties in the United States are a sad commentary on modern life. Nonverbal social skills impart most of the messages we send out, but becoming keenly aware of what we say and how we say it matters, too. Brehony, a psychotherapist and personal coach, believes that taking this awareness into how we view ourselves empowers us to forge meaningful connections. Along the way, she looks at mobility, lack of time, and technology as factors that impact this process; the importance of small talk; and the development of stronger social skills through better listening, careful self-disclosure, and clarity when speaking. More a sociological review of expert findings on the subject of connection than a psychological how-to, this book nevertheless has a few good exercises, most notably one by which looking at old family photos helps to recall how the family of origin interacted within and outside itself. The author argues cogently that we may need to shift our feelings about how lovable we are into higher gear to build a rich, authentic life. Recommended for sociology and psychology collections of larger academic and public libraries.
-- Lisa Liquori, M.L.S., Syracuse, NY Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.