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Overcoming Unwanted Intrusive Thoughts: A CBT-Based Guide to Getting Over Frightening, Obsessive, or Disturbing Thoughts

4.39  ·  Rating details ·  793 ratings  ·  103 reviews

You are not your thoughts! In this powerful book, two anxiety experts offer proven-effective cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) skills to help you get unstuck from disturbing thoughts, overcome the shame these thoughts can bring, and reduce your anxiety.

If you suffer from unwanted, intrusive, frightening, or even disturbing thoughts, you might worry about wha

Kindle Edition, 192 pages
Published March 1st 2017 by New Harbinger Publications
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Average rating 4.39  · 
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Apr 16, 2019 rated it liked it
I think this book is excellent for an individual that is suffering from unwanted intrusive thoughts. There isn't a jargon overload, and it is written so that it may be understood by anyone. This book is also an aid to a person with an anxiety disorder. Anxiety is sometimes shrugged off, or even tittered about, but it is not something to be taken lightly. Without the correct help, anxiety can be allowed to grow into something that is essentially, life debilitating.
The psychologists that wrote thi
Paulo Henrique
This book was able to solve my problems with intrusive thoughts in the first hour of reading. It is amazing how the autors avoid common sense alternatives and focus only in scientific CBT techniques. I highly recommend it.
Scottsdale Public Library
I'll preface this review by "outing" myself as someone who has long enjoyed a good self-help book that elicits at least one "Ah HAH!" moment from me! After discovering this title in the library and flipping through it, I soon found I couldn't put it down. It outlines wonderful tools for dealing with intrusive thoughts many/most of us have, be they very dark, shocking and frightening (and the authors deal with these quite a bit in this book), or simply nagging anxieties that we can't seem to shak ...more
Jan 02, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: self-help
This book is really helpful, clear, easy to read, and affirming. More time is spent assuring the reader that the thoughts are okay, and talking about where they are coming from versus solutions for the thoughts. However, the solutions are there and they seem like they will be really helpful. I think this book is good for people who are taking additional mental health steps, and want to do some self work before bringing this up in therapy. But yeah, overall I recommend.
Andrea Yezek
Mar 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Struggled for years until this book

I finally understand how to LET IT GO. I suffer from unwanted intrusive thoughts daily and I have finally learned to let them go thanks to this book. I’m constantly a work in progress. I haven’t read a single other book that’s helped with calming anxious thoughts down. I plan to continue to practice these methods outlined in the book. Overall, so incredibly well written. As someone who suffers from anxiety I could feel my anxiety lessening every single page. Th
Brittany Wilson
Feb 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book is absolutely life changing for those with "scary" intrusive thoughts. The two psychiatrists break the stereo type that if you have a uncomfortable thought, it doesn't define you as a person. This book helped me put my anxiety in perspective, but there is lots of work to be done with me and my anxiety.

Sally M. Winston & Martin N. Seif go through exercises that could change your life and could help free your mind. Most therapists don't specialise in this type of psychology of the brain
Kathleen Duffy
Feb 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
NetGalley provided this book in exchange for an honest review.

* Great examples trickled throughout the advice and research to really hammer home the point.
* Information is outlined and organized well.
* Jargon isn't too complicated.
* Could help shift your perspective toward yourself.
* Highly recommend to anyone with anxiety or similar disorders!
Dec 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: self-help, nonfiction
This book is a godsend. Unwanted intrusive thoughts are something I've struggled with my entire life. This book is great at explaining the causes of these thoughts, why some people are more susceptible to them than others, and providing a plan for how to deal with them. Highly recommended if this is something you struggle with. ...more
Jan 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
this book completely reshaped the way i think about anxiety and obsessive thinking and—i mean this—honestly changed my life.

i'm not 100% all the time, but reading this book gave me a pathway to move on from a time when i felt mentally exhausted, and i'm saying this publicly so that someone else will hopefully see this and understand that the $9 i spent on this ebook was beyond worth it. i am very thankful for it and i reference it often.
Jun 04, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Whilst the aim of the book is well intended with a detailed understanding on intrusive thoughts and how the mind responds to them, the execution of these ideas is quite simply stupid. The tips in here to combat such thoughts are borderline psychotic. For instance, it suggests that we shouldn't avoid negative surroundings but rather force ourselves to live within these thoughts until they become meaningless instead of cutting down anxiety inducing spaces. I find it counterintuitive to bombard our ...more
Breanna Thurman
Jun 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have never read a book on this topic. I could not put it down!! So insightful.
Julia Jones - Theideaofbooks
I love this book. It has helped me manage my intrusive thoughts. A few months ago I experienced what I think was my first unwanted intrusive though, a thought that just took over my life completely. The thought made me have panic attacks and I ended up taking anti depressants and seeing a therapist for a few months just because this random thought popped into my head and I thought it said something about my character. What a single that can cause a person if the person (me in this instance) does ...more
L.A. Jacob
This short book was long on symptoms, short on resolutions. It made me comfortable that I'm not alone, but did not put my mind at ease. I felt so short-changed at the end that I ended up tossing it. The "recovery" is so simple, yet so very, very hard. ...more
Victoria Berry
Aug 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing

Fantastic and informative book , I could really relate to the examples of intrusive thoughts and could see how I was tackling them in the wrong way.
Shane Murphy
May 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Are you or someone close to you struggling with a sticky, obsessive, unwanted intrusive thought? Are you desperately seeking answers on how to effectively cope with that thought? You must be wondering, as I did, if this book will help you. I’m here to tell you it will. This book outlines exactly the steps you need to take in order to effectively overcome the thoughts. If you’re a Christian, an obedient follower of Jesus Christ, then this book will supplement your journey through recovery. Notice ...more
Graziano Pagliarulo
For all those struggling with this annoyances, it can really help
Stina Aava
Jan 24, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A very good semi-popsci overview for both psychology enthusiasts and obsessive minds. Covers introduction to amygdala feat. pre-frontal cortex communication, common myths, why many therapies fail in that field, explains predisposition and how brain works. Moreover, it is very practical with its instructions on paradoxical effort, fear-diminishing cycle and somatosensory intrusions. Actually a book which in no way engages in reassurances and instead brings examples of thought processes (not so mu ...more
Jinger Moore
Apr 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Such a helpful book for anyone struggling with anxiety, particularly OCD. I read this while undergoing Exposure and Response Prevention treatment and found it to be great to use as reinforcement of the work being done. It also helped to understand some of the concepts being used in therapy. It was a quick and easy read and I wish I would’ve learned of it sooner as it would’ve prevented a lot of pain.
Silvia Munguia
Oct 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I’ve struggled with intrusive thoughts for many years; mainly because I didn’t quite understand what I was going through. This book perfectly nails what I’ve been struggling with, and it provides a clear solution: face the the threat, and don’t give power to thoughts that have no importance. Thanks to this book and to my dear therapist, I’m now doing much better. Although I still struggle at times, it’s not what it used to be anymore. And one day I hope to say that I’ve been able to completely o ...more
Feb 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
One of the best books on the topic.

Great for people with Pure O. This book offered the help that 22 therapy sessions couldn't. I Highly recommend it.
Briana Johnson
Sep 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: real-books
I’d say this book gave me tools to improve and it is working!! Worth a read.
Dec 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, own
one of the best self help books I have ever read.
Jul 05, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Winston and Seif introduce their book with a “think about anything but the forbidden fruit/vegetable carrots” exercise (my mind acquiesced by manipulating the assignment to indulging in karats instead!). They proceed to explain that “Intrusive thoughts are not indications of character...they are your rich imagination at work.” “There is no place for issues of character when there is no chance for choice.” Thoughts are a train on which we are merely passengers; character is a choice we make throu ...more
Darrell McCauley
Personal Commentary

The best lies have just enough beef to hold the baloney together (paraphrased quote from my friend Steve Mielke).

Several years ago I learned about dialectic behavioral therapy (DBT) for a family member in crisis. With an open mind, some parts made sense while others, mainly the Buddhist parts, violated my faith. My first impression of this book on cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) leaves me feeling much the same way. While validation is important, condoning aberrant, sinful beh
Feb 26, 2021 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: psychology
Unfortunately this book wasn't for me, but I am clearly in the minority given the number of 5 star reviews this book has here. I felt that there wasn't really enough material here for a book, the format would have been better as a short workbook with exercises. The authors reassure the reader that everyone has intrusive thoughts and that they are normal, but then spend probably a third of the book going through various scenarios. The scenarios introduce 'Worried Voice', the voice that dwells on ...more
Mar 28, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A must-read for any other thinker. This book is a clear and sensitive guide to help you step back from reoccurring and triggering thoughts. There is a great structure to the book and particular chapters stand out as ones to revisit, should you want to return to the book for further support. You are first introduced to the structure of thought patterns as they are broken down into three main inner voices; worried voice, false comfort voice, and wise voice. You are then lead through some examples ...more
Jan 28, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The introduction to ‘Overcoming Unwanted Intrusive Thoughts,’ won me over in the Introduction with a phrase I often use myself, ‘Remember that knowledge is power.’ To understand something is to take away a little of the uncertainty, the fear that not knowing brings.

I began to read this book initially with my son in mind. He has Asperger’s Syndrome and unwanted and intrusive thoughts are a feature of his high anxiety when it is at its peak. I wanted to be able to help him. As I began to read tho
Abbey Erwin
Apr 11, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
9x out of 10, thoughts are sticking because you do absolutely do not like them, you resist them, you fight them. It’s easy for them to than become more sticky, you become more entangled, and it can bring you a lot of suffering. The language and the concepts outlined in the book are helpful to be able to understand what happens in your brain, body, and mind and that understanding helps in stepping back to observe and give yourself space enough to grow.

This book lays things out very well - and has
Jan 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: on-bookshelf
I thought that Overcoming Unwanted Intrusive Thoughts was a good book that helps those who have excessive thoughts and are trying to figure out how to eliminate them by using Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) techniques.

Unfortunately, you cannot completely get rid of intrusive thoughts but you can reduce them. The process of reducing the thoughts is so simple and is the opposite of what people normally do when uncomfortable thoughts arise. The typical reaction is to fight the thoughts which doe
Lissa Ann
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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