Monday, May 27, 2013

Review: The Book of Maybe: Finding Hope and Possibility In Your Life

I've been reading Allison Carmen's blog for a while now, and her insights into handling emotions ( and parenting ) have frequently touched me with their simple, usable truths. When Allison sent me her book, I was hopeful that it would be full of the same kind of gentle guidance, and I was happy to find that it is.

Allison works as a life coach and uses many examples from that coaching in this short, brimming book. No matter how many times I read a story of a person finding the way to a more peaceful, happy life through that alchemy of acceptance and faith in better things, it never fails to inspire me.

The concept of the book is to diffuse the power of anxiety and fear through the power of maybe. Being that I struggle with ongoing anxiety that has at times veered into full blown panic attacks, I am always hungry for more guidance away from struggling in fear, closer toward accepting the fear and moving through it and away from it organically. This means not to pretend you don't feel afraid, or to ignore it, but to pursue other ways your brain can view the world and change the roller coaster of emotions and chemicals that create anxiety.

Mrs. Carmen herself used to struggle with debilitating anxiety, and her own personal transformation reminded me of the one that begins the famous book The Power of Now. Eckhart Tolle's beloved book of spiritual freedom echoes Allison's own realization and following freedom from fear. Mrs. Carmen's realization hinged on one concept- maybe. Maybe things will be as bad as you imagine, and maybe they will not. We can't know. Accepting that we cannot know, and that it is possible that there will be light where we imagine only darkness, it is possible that there will be solutions we think don't exist, it is possible that maybe, even if something bad happens, we will find beautiful connections and life afterward, or maybe, the bad thing won't happen at all. Maybe.

Reading through this book, I was struck with the way each chapter lulled me into a deep relaxation. Mrs. Carmen's writing voice is comforting in the way of all great teachers, even as she confronts painful truths, you feel the strength and clarity behind the words.

My own anxiety, PTSD, panic attacks- it is all deeply entrenched and a part of me I"ve worked my entire adult life to heal. I know that this book was another step in that healing journey. I highly recommend The Book of Maybe.


The Book of Maybe: Finding Hope and Possibility in Your Life

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