Unhooked: How to Quit Anything

Unhooked: How to Quit Anything

by Frederick Woolverton, Susan Shapiro
     
 

Is smoking, alcohol, drugs, food, gambling, the Internet, or sex addiction holding you back from getting what you want most—in work and in love? We’re all addicted to something—but when the crutch gets in the way of living a happy and productive life, it must stop. Over the past twenty-five years, renowned addiction therapist Dr. Frederick

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Overview

Is smoking, alcohol, drugs, food, gambling, the Internet, or sex addiction holding you back from getting what you want most—in work and in love? We’re all addicted to something—but when the crutch gets in the way of living a happy and productive life, it must stop. Over the past twenty-five years, renowned addiction therapist Dr. Frederick Woolverton has used his dynamic, empathetic approach to help thousands of addicts achieve long-term recovery—including himself. He sees the specific habit as less important than the underlying chaos and fear that motivate the urge to sooth ourselves with bad habits. The solution, he has found, requires only a better understanding of yourself and a change in attitude. Unhooked: How To Quit Anything is an intelligent, readable, and actionable guide to conquering any addictive habit. Using real patient examples as well as research and his own experience, Dr. Woolverton and coauthor (and former patient) Susan Shapiro show how to thrive without self-medicating. The approach involves an unorthodox blend of straightforward changes to behavior and open and honest conversation with another person. Woolverton’s specific instructions do not require an expensive therapist, rehab, 12-step program, or a higher power (but he does make readers aware of those viable options). Let him help you kick your addiction and find what’s missing in your world. When you conquer a toxic habit, you are leaving room for something more beautiful to take its place.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Doctor and former patient join forces in this guide to kicking addiction, from heroin to shopping. Woolverton, founder and director of the Village Institute for Psychotherapy, has worked with addicts for 25 years. Even as a successful and self-aware professional, it was when he quit smoking that he gained crucial insight: “I had to let myself suffer, figure out where it was coming from, and figure out what that pain was trying to tell me.” The importance of taking those steps in that order is emphasized throughout; Woolverton bolsters his argument by noting that’s why 12-step programs work. Addicts “need to be told to stop right now or they might die”; afterward, self-exploration supports lasting recovery. Former patient and coauthor Shapiro can attest to this: 10 years ago, Woolverton helped her quit alcohol, marijuana, and cigarettes. She’s since discovered a passion for writing and published seven books. Her example and other case studies illustrate how Woolverton’s approach has worked for real people—and Woolverton’s willingness to share his own personal struggles add authenticity. Those stories and their positive message, combined with the authors’ concrete steps for identifying destructive behaviors and seeking help, make for a valuable, hopeful read. Agent: Ryan Harbage. (Jan.)
Kirkus Reviews
A self-help therapy book aimed at stopping addictive behavior. When people think of addictions, the first things that come to mind are smoking, alcohol and drugs. But according to therapist Woolverton and New School and NYU instructor Shapiro (Speed Shrinking, 2009, etc.), anything can become an addiction if it interferes with a person living an emotionally rich, full life. The authors identify an addiction as "something that provides an escape, takes you out of yourself and your day-to-day life, and allows you to get further away from the painful feelings and emotions we would all prefer to avoid." Using examples from his practice, Woolverton explores the multitude of habits that can easily slide into addictions--e.g., gambling, pornography, exercise and food (Woolverton discusses his own addictive behavior toward ice cream). By working through a series of tests and checklists, readers can characterize their own behaviors and determine if they are becoming addicts. The authors offer numerous solutions to each situation, ending each chapter with a numerical list of prescriptions to help readers stay on the right path. Woolverton and Shapiro pull no punches in stating that overcoming addiction is a difficult, usually lifetime commitment; the person must overcome not only the addictive behavior but also the pain behind the addiction in order for the therapy to be successful. Using the authors' many examples of patients who have moved beyond their pain, readers will see that conquering an addiction is possible with determination and perseverance. A solid multistep system for overcoming addiction.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781616084189
Publisher:
Skyhorse Publishing
Publication date:
01/01/2012
Pages:
224
Sales rank:
599,332
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 8.10(h) x 0.90(d)

Meet the Author

Susan Shapiro became addicted to her shrink—Dr. Woolverton—when he helped her quit twenty-seven-year smoking and drinking habits and start writing successfully. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Newsweek, and People, and on Salon.com. She is the author of seven books, including Five Men Who Broke My Heart, Speed Shrinking (currently optioned for films), and the memoir, Lighting Up, about her successful addiction therapy. She is a journalism professor who teaches the popular “instant gratification takes too long” writing method at the New School, New York University, and in private workshops and seminars. Visit her at www.susanshapiro.net.

Dr. Frederick Woolverton is a clinical psychologist who has specialized in treating addiction patients for the past twenty-five years. He is the founder and director of the acclaimed Village Institute for Psychotherapy in New York City and in Fayetteville, Arkansas. He was the former clinical director of the Baldwin Council Against Drug Abuse, has published numerous papers on substance abuse, and has created nationally adopted courses on the treatment of addictive disorders. His works have recently appeared in the New York Times and Psychology Today, and on AOL. Visit him at www.villageinstitute.com.

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