David Earl Johnson, LICSW

2 minute read

Book Review: The Emotional Toolkit – Seven Power-Skills to Nail Your Bad Feelings, by Darlene Mininni, Ph.D., St. Martin’s Press.

Managing emotion has never been a part of school curriculum, nor has it been a regular part of parenting. Parents learn about managing emotion from their parents in a disorganized anecdotal fashion teased out by trial and error. A particularly adverturous child may have many opportunities for learning, while a child that is shy and/or particularly compliant has relatively few. The family style of emotion management is based on a coping method passed on informally from generation to generation by word of mouth. Our modern culture lacks the traditional rites of passage that help ensure we learn the skills of adulthood. Yet emotion management is the single most important skill that determines our social and economic success and ability to maintain our mental health. As a psychotherapist over the past 28 years, I have found that a major part of what I do is educating people on what their emotions mean and how to cope with them.

I recently had the good fortune of obtaining a copy of Dr. Darlene Mininni’s book, The Emotional Tookit. This book is well organized and chock full of most every tool I can think of that will prepare the average person for managing the emotional rollercoaster of adulthood in a complicated world. Although written particularly for women using many real life examples from the author’s clinical experience, the skills are just as applicable to men and simple enough to be incorporated in a pre-teen training curriculum. The skills are described in an easy to understand way with many examples of how they can be applied in situations we are all familar with. I greatly appreciate this book and will recommend it to my clients.

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