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The Reality Slap: Finding Peace and Fulfillment When Life Hurts
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The Reality Slap: Finding Peace and Fulfillment When Life Hurts

4.2  ·  Rating Details ·  287 Ratings  ·  26 Reviews
The “reality slap” takes many different forms. Sometimes, it’s more like a punch: the death of a loved one, a serious illness, a divorce, the loss of a job, a freak accident, or a shocking betrayal. Sometimes it’s a little gentler. Envy, loneliness, resentment, failure, disappointment, and rejection can sting just as much. But whatever form your reality slap takes, one thi ...more
Paperback, 208 pages
Published March 1st 2012 by New Harbinger Publications (first published January 1st 2011)
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Jan 12, 2016 Joanne rated it really liked it
I cannot recommend 'The Reality Slap' highly enough. I was slightly concerned when I first started to read it but as I settled down and took proper notice it soon became obvious what a well observed and very helpful book this is. It has already made a difference to my way of life, and it will be kept close at hand for me to refer to often.
Mar 01, 2012 Munro rated it really liked it
I came across this book purely by accident when browsing the bookshop and I am really glad I found it. I don't usually buy 'self help' books as such, and the ones I have bought I never finished due to loss of interest. The thing I really liked about this book is that the author would regularly acknowledge that it isn't just the simple act of 'positive thinking' that allows us to find fulfillment in life. Rather, the book teaches us to find peace when we experience negative emotions instead of tr ...more
Tracey Allen at Carpe Librum
Nov 20, 2011 Tracey Allen at Carpe Librum rated it really liked it
I first came across the work of Dr Russ Harris when I started listening to his 'Mindfulness of the Breath' CD. I've had great success with his CD so I was looking forward to reading one of his many books, The Reality Slap.

A 'Reality Slap' can be something that happens in life like an illness, fire, bankruptcy, divorce or loss of a loved one. Dr Russ Harris is an Australian and I responded immediately to his down to earth writing style, and he gave me much food for thought.

I guess you could call
This book was fine, ok, though I didn't really have any epiphanies reading it and towards the end Thoth it a bit repetitive.
That might very well be because I'm well acquainted with the topic, the mindfuln, the cognitive and the external using approaches and while I think greatly of them, and use them in my own work, in the form it has here, there's just not much to peak my interest, not many new angles.

So an easy book, useful too, but probably more for a 'beginner' in the field :)
Jun 24, 2016 Jeremy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: work, autism, act


We can’t stop that voice in our head from telling us stories, but we can learn to catch it in the act. And we can learn to choose the way we respond: to let the helpful stories guide us and let the unhelpful ones come and go like leaves in the breeze.

What does this pain reveal about my heart? What does it show me that I care about? What would you have to not care about, in order to not have this pain?

What is the key to lasting fulfillment? What is the essence of human vitality? What is t
Donna Parker
Apr 21, 2012 Donna Parker rated it did not like it
Maybe I just wasn't in the right frame of mind for this, but it seemed all fairly trite, obvious or perhaps oblivious would be a better term and just old hat. I wanted to believe this wasn't just another attempt to cash in when people are hurting and vulnerable, but there seems to be a lot of that, the pain and the exploitation of said pain. I am going to give Harris a nod for at least reiterating help.
Oct 03, 2013 Ken rated it really liked it
Excellent book on how to deal with difficult situations using the principles of ACT. The book contains many useful exercises which I have personally found helpful. I've read "The happiness trap" by the same author - while some material was similar this book contained additional material and was definitely worth the read
Paul Sheppard
Aug 14, 2012 Paul Sheppard rated it really liked it
Shelves: life-changers
Realistic self help book without all the new age nonsense.
You can't get any more self-help book than this one. It's about how to get through difficult and hurtful parts of life using ACT.
The main idea is to not fight or ignore the hurt, but to let if come and go and find small happiness in other parts of life. This idea is repeated over and over again. It can be boring, but maybe that was the point - reading it so many times in different contexts makes you internalize it.
Mar 05, 2012 IrenesBookReviews rated it really liked it
The Reality Slap by Russ Harris is a book about how to handle incidents that come into our life that we are not ready for.

You have in your mind something that should happen. Whether it is someone showing up at a certain time or wanting your son to be good at sports. When these do not come to be you want to change the reality into what you were wishing would have happened.

This book helps you deal with the emotions that go along with the “reality slaps” you encounter. First you have to go through
Mary Karpel-Jergic
Mar 26, 2016 Mary Karpel-Jergic rated it it was ok
Shelves: self-help
The author is a ACT therapist and this book is an attempt to provide the reader with an understanding of it in order to help themselves. Acceptance Commitment Therapy looks like a therapy that applies mindfulness (what doesn't nowadays?) with working out personal values in order to bridge the gap between the reality that we find we have and the reality that we want.

The four step process is:
1. Hold yourself kindly
2. Drop the anchor
3. Take a stand
4. Find the Treasure

Maybe some readers will be able
Susan Dymock
Jun 18, 2016 Susan Dymock rated it it was amazing
It doesn't matter how smart, kind, talented, wealthy, attractive or successful you are, at some point in our lives, we will have to face something awful. Yes, sometimes life just sucks and bad things happen to good people. It could be the death of a loved one, a diagnosis of a serious illness, suffering a permanent disability, being the victim of a serious crime or a job loss. This book is all about how we respond and look after ourselves when an inevitable cr@ppy thing happens to us.
This isn't
Eva Musby
Aug 30, 2012 Eva Musby rated it really liked it
I read this from the point of a view of a parent of a child who's suffered from anorexia, and who's on the lookout for resources for other parents.
Life certainly hurts when your child has an eating disorder and you fear for her life, and many parents find themselves quite traumatized even after their child is well.
This book may help you to come to terms with the realities you are living, so that you can 'lead a life based on presence and purpose'in spite of the unpleasant feelings you may have.
Crystal Oros
Apr 07, 2015 Crystal Oros rated it really liked it
Shelves: self-help
When I started reading this book I was pretty skeptical about the mindfulness exercises & I expected them to be like the typical meditations about quieting the mind... But Dr Harris explains it all in a more practical way and I found myself giggling at the humor he attaches to his own experiences & I can't help but relate to his quote *Then moments later, my mind comes out with the big stick*. The reality slap for me is a practical guide to help with most kinds of pain & I would glad ...more
Oct 03, 2012 Nicole rated it liked it
Shelves: first-reads
I won this book in a first reads giveaway...

I don't think I'm in a place in my life where I need this book. ;) Or perhaps my personality doesn't mesh well with self-help books, since I admit I rarely read them.

That said, I did find there to be some practical advice given, and a wealth of scenarios to compare your life to, with ideas for how to deal with the unpleasant realities of life.

I think I'll send this book off to a friend in need, but I enjoyed spending some time being grateful for the f
Sep 01, 2015 Gisela rated it it was amazing
A well-written, well-structured, thoughtful and compassionate guide to mindfulness in its broadest sense as a way of helping us deal with those terrible discrepancies between where we would like to be and where we often/sometimes find ourselves physically, mentally and emotionally.

I'll be re-reading this and following all the suggested exercises.
May 04, 2012 Samantha rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
I was skeptical about reading a self help book, but it exceeded my expectations. With lots of useful exercises to ground ones-self and put negative thoughts into perspective, the book is a practical approach to dealing with situations when life doesn't meet your expectations. I would recommend this book for both those facing serious and relatively minor challenges in life as a way to manage.

Jenny Cooper
Feb 23, 2015 Jenny Cooper rated it really liked it
I loved this book. Russ Harris' style in sharing his pointers is casual and easy to absorb. The techniques seem to be a common sense approach to some other mindfulness techniques. For pure simplicity, it wins.
Lily Lamb
Jul 24, 2015 Lily Lamb rated it it was amazing
Shelves: psychotherapy
I have been using ACT model with my clients for the last few years. I personally think this is one of the most helpful model to help people to learn self acceptance and competition.
Capt'in Laurie
Jan 25, 2015 Capt'in Laurie rated it it was amazing
a thoughtful, enlightening introduction to acceptance and commitment therapy. Much better than I expected. highly recommended.
Jul 15, 2016 Adele rated it really liked it
Self help book with a difference. Thoroughly recommend to those who are going through a tough time. Inspired be to enrol for an ACT workshop as a clinician.
Feb 16, 2013 Julia rated it liked it
More of the same from Russ Harris, but a good read nevertheless with some good strategies to deal with the stuff life throws at you. Based on Mindfulness, and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy.
Maria Wheeler
Nice reminder of concepts that I believe we have all learned in some way, on some level...most helpful to me was remembering to let my feelings come and go instead of inviting them to stay.
Jul 28, 2012 Lisa rated it it was amazing
Just saw Russ talk about this book live at a conference. He is awesome, and all of his books are awesome. Start with "The Happiness Trap" and then this one. Great stuff.
Mary Jo
Mary Jo rated it liked it
Nov 16, 2012
Jordan rated it really liked it
Dec 13, 2016
Jessica rated it liked it
Nov 10, 2013
Rich rated it it was amazing
Jul 12, 2014
Joshua Feierman
Joshua Feierman rated it it was amazing
Sep 30, 2016
Kimberly rated it it was amazing
Jul 21, 2014
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Dr Russ Harris is a medically-qualified doctor, stress consultant, executive coach, trainer, author, and a leading authority in the powerful new paradigm of Psychological Flexibility. (This is a revolutionary new development in human psychology that enhances performance, reduces stress, and improves health and wellbeing.) Dr Russ regularly presents workshops on Psychological Flexibility at both na ...more
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“Who is the one human being in your life who can always be there for you, in any moment, no matter what happens? Who is the one human being who can understand, validate, and empathize with your pain better than anyone else on the planet? Who is the one human being who can truly know just how much you are suffering? You are.” 1 likes
“Most of us want pretty much the same thing. We want to know there is someone there for us: someone who truly cares about us, who takes the time to understand us, who recognizes our pain and appreciates how badly we are suffering, who makes the time to be with us and allows us to share our true feelings without expecting us to cheer up or pretend everything is okay, who will support us, who treats us kindly and offers to help, whose actions demonstrate that we are not alone.” 1 likes
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