Increasing numbers of clients coming to her with anxiety issues prompted Birr psychotherapist, Stella O'Malley to write her new book on the subject.
Last week, the Tribune featured Stella in our Tribune People before her book 'Fragile: Why we feel more anxious, stressed and overwhelmed than ever (And what we can do do about it)' was launched on Tuesday, April 9 last by local musician and singer, Mundy in Woodfield Cafe, Birr.
Already the best selling author of 'Cotton-Wool Kids' and 'Bully-Proof Kids', Stella was prompted to write her latest book because as a psychotherapist she had clients coming in to her, who were very anxious. “It was coming up so often, not alone with children but with parents, who were saying, I'm anxious and my child is anxious'”.
The book is being lauded as one of the “most effective approaches to combat anxiety and stress” as well as pointing how the media, society and the world in general “misguidedly promote the worst possible strategies for managing anxiety”. The new book will benefit people, who recognise that they have a difficulty with anxiety as well as those who are feeling “a bit overwhelmed” because of commitments they've taken on and the busy nature of their lives.
The book is published by Gill Books and speaking at the recent launch, Sarah Liddy, Commissioning Editor with the company outlined how in “many ways, this book is a progression from the other two books that we have worked on”. 'Cotton-Wool Kids' and 'Bully-Proof Kids' touched on issues of anxiety but in this book, Stella has “really addressed it head on and taken a closer look at what has happened to our society that has created this atmosphere that's driving people to the kind of fear of just doing ordinary things like making a phone call or going to parties.”
Continuing, Sarah commented how Stella as an author is “full of common sense, practical advice and also full of a lot of compassion. I think that this is very important in this book. There's a real sense of helping people and bringing them along a journey that ultimately leads them to an easier way of life,” she said.
Mundy said he was “absolutely delighted” to be back in his hometown to launch Stella's third book. The well known singer and songwriter then honestly recalled how he himself was forced to cancel a gig a number of years back because he became overwhelmed. “My mind took over and it was the first and only time I cancelled a gig,” he explained.
His point was that everyone “suffers from sort of anxiety and it's getting worse and worse in this digital age, which is absolutely crazy stuff. We survived without it and we have to know when to turn things off.” Wishing Stella the very best of luck with her new book, the musician said we all need to “rule it [anxiety]” and don't let the outside stuff to take us over.
Addressing the crowd, Stella first thanked Mundy for his “very touching speech” before pointing out what he said was “exactly where I am with this book. Every single one of us knows that feeling of being overwhelmed. And, it's often when we are in good form and when we have actually taken on too much good stuff that we end up, a little bit stressed and irritable.”
The author went on to say that “anxiety creeps up on you. I hope this book, more than any other book, gets out there. I think too many people, who are living stressy lives, are going to look back in ten years time and say actually I wasn't there for any of that because I was too narky and distracted, tensed and hassled. I hope we thought instead that we enjoyed it and it was nice being on this earth. Rather then saying, I missed it because I was stressed and distracted, trying to get everything done.”
The Birr author then spoke about how some people are naturally anxious and then, there are those who have become anxious because of their lifestyle. “I want to reach out to them and remind them that just by saying no we can start to enjoy things again. By saying, no, we can enjoy tomorrow that little bit more,” she concluded.
Meanwhile, Stella's book is available, priced €16.99 for all good local bookstores or from Amazon.ie