The Tools

The Tools

Transform your Problems Into Courage, Confidence, and Creativity

Book - 2012
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Random House, Inc.

A groundbreaking book about personal growth that presents a uniquely effective set of four tools that bring about dynamic change in the present and impart a greater understanding of the depth and complexity of the human condition over the longterm.
The Tools addresses the most common complaint patients have about psychotherapy: the interminable wait for change to begin. Barry Michels, an LA-based therapist, was frustrated by his inability to bring his patients faster relief from the issues that plagued them. He found a mentor in Phil Stutz, a psychiatrist who years before devised a methodology that arose from a similar disenchantment. The traditional therapeutic model sets its sights on the past, but Stutz and Michels employ an arsenal of tools--exercises that access the power of the unconscious and effectively meet the most persistent problems people face--and the results are electrifying. Stutz and Michels are much sought-after--a recent profile in The New Yorker touted them as an "open secret" in Hollywood--and treat a high-powered and creative clientele. Their first work, The Tools transcends the typical self-help genre because of its paradigm-changing material, the credibility of its authors, and the instant appeal and empowerment of its message.

Publisher: Toronto : Random House Canada, c2012
ISBN: 9780307360922
Branch Call Number: 158 STU
Characteristics: 271 p. :,ill. ;,22 cm.
Additional Contributors: Michels, Barry


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Sep 14, 2018

Very useful, meaningful tools, explained in an engaging way and with good examples. The writing was well-paced; I didn't get bored. I tried using one of the tools immediately and it worked well for me. The book doesn't try to sell you on the power of positive thinking. It does give you some tangible ways to improve your present and your future. I loved it.

Feb 29, 2016

Absolutely wonderful book. Changed my life. Very practical solutions. Those dissing it didn't read it!

Nov 02, 2015

While the strategies in the book may have a way of working, the overtones of their infallibility were troublesome. The authors seemed so enamored with their creation that they suggested that everyone use them for the rest of their natural lives. Through the FAQ sections they have at the end of each chapter, they tried to cover their tracks in how they couched the "forces" responsible for personal change. It was troubling how they seemed to want to create a religious experience around them. I left the book feeling like the authors either wanted to hide their own religious beliefs to make these tools more palatable to people from other religions, or they wanted to create their own religion based around them. Neither option is a particularly good one.

They clearly believe that something happened while the tools were being discovered, and therein lies the problem. They didn't create the tools, they were slowly "unveiled" by some unknowable force. They believe that the tools were given to them by forces outside of the human experience, but they are never clear what exactly that means.

They genuinely seem to care, but what they have created seems like a cult of personality. They have no data save for the people who felt the system worked. Anyone that the system did not work simply was not committed to the tools.

I can't deny that these tools might help someone. They are powerful in their ability to use facets of positive psychology and habit formation to empower you to change. However, if you have some of the problems that are covered in the book, you would be better served by finding a Cognitive/ Behavioral therapy group or specialist in your area. At the very least CBT is backed by real data and peer review.

Jul 28, 2014

This book seemed simple but the tools were revelations. They have helped me in stressful and anxious times.

Billymellow Mar 05, 2013

If you actually want to change your life read this book. So many self help books just tell you what success looks like, but leave you without the tools to get there. This book is very simple and easily accessible. There is also a smart phone app that acts as a work book to help keep yourself accountable.

Dec 20, 2012

I wonder if the vitriolic comments here are from atheists? because the book goes quite spiritual. Made sense to me, and I got huge results when I started trying to use the tools. I bought the book so I could refer to it in the future and to remind me of how to use the tools. People want easy, quick fixes these days. The Tools isn't an easy quick fix - it's a way to live one's life ongoingly, to be at peace with oneself. Forget The Happiness Project - this is how to do it for real. Sure, some of the anecdotes may make a reader queasy - a couple did that to me - but the suggestions within the book as a whole are valuable and affirming, for people who read closely and with acuity.

Nov 04, 2012

Self-help mumbo jumbo ... can't for the life of me figure out why this got so much coverage in the media. Repetitive and boring in the extreme. Avoid unless you are a masochist.

Oct 22, 2012

I enjoyed this book and feel I can make use of the tools it teaches.

brucebondy Oct 18, 2012

One of the most life changing books I've ever read. Not to be read quickly...this material requires active participation by the reader and working with the five tools. You wouldn't expect to read a book on marathon running and expect to go out the day you finish reading and run 26.2 miles. The reader will find the tools to be emotionally and spiritually challenging and, if you do the work, immensely rewarding.

Oct 15, 2012

Psychobabble at its finest! Any credible therapists who quote Dr. Phil leave much to bedesired. To say that there are far more superior books to allow you to make sense of the human experience is an understatement.
Not worth the paper it's written on.

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