Shadow Syndromes

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 1998-11-01
  • Publisher: Random House Value Pub
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The millions of people who attribute their daily life problems to bad parents, low self-esteem, or lack of will power may, in fact, be struggling with shadow syndromes. Chronic sadness, obsessiveness, outbursts of anger, inability to finish tasks, disabling discomfort in social situations -- these and other problems are all mild forms of serious mental disorders that can affect the very courses of our lives. They are shadow syndromes. Drs. John J. Ratey and Catherine Johnson challenge the prevalent idea that problems like these are brought on by aberrations in a person's upbringing and relationships, and then prolonged by his or her willful resistance to change. Instead, they assert that these behavior patterns originate in the inherent structure and chemistry of the individual brain, that they are distinctly identifiable, and that they respond to a range of approaches: from medication and psychotherapy to diet, meditation, and exercise. Elucidating for the first time the biology behind personality,Shadow Syndromesprovides the knowledge and learning we need to understand the real causes of the treacherous mood swings and behavior patterns that can hold us back from what we need to achieve. It provides the guidance we need to emerge from the shadows that often determine the courses of our lives, enabling us to effect positive and lasting change in ourselves and those we love.

Author Biography

<b>John J. Ratey, M.D</b>. is an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and Executive Director of Research at Medfield State Hospital in Medfield, MA. He is the co-author of <b>Driven to Distraction</b> and <b>Answers to Distraction</b>. He lives in Wellesley, MA.<br><br><b>Catherine Johnson, Ph.D.</b>, is a contributing editor at <b>New Woman</b> magazine, and the author of <b>When to Say Goodbye to Your Therapist</b> and <b>Lucky In Love</b>. She lives in Los Angeles.


Mild Autism: A computer whiz who is brilliant at math but clueless with people. Mild autistics are biologically lacking what is now called emotional intelligence.

Hypomania: A politician who intoxicates others with his energy and vision, but whose hyper sex drive threatens his downfall. The hypomaniac moves from high to high despite serious risks.

Mild Obsessive-Compulsive Behavior: A social scanner who ruminates endlessly over the meaning of a passing remark. The obsessive-compulsive can overlook everything else in life to concentrate on meaningless details.

Intermittent Rage Disorder: A highly successful sports figure, cool under pressure one minute, throwing a tantrum the next. The rages of those suffering from this disorder can be triggered by almost anything and then race out of proportion to the cause.

Mild Depression: The friend who sees not only his glass as half empty but yours as well. Depressives suffer from a variety of symptoms including sadness, self-loathing, the inability to communicate, and withdrawal.

Mild Attention Deficit Disorder: The high energy organizer who seems to think faster than she can talk; she's got all the ideas but not enough patience to carry them out. Those with mild ADD leave a trail of unfinished projects, sentences, thoughts, and even relationships behind them.

Excerpted from Shadow Syndromes by John J. Ratey, C. Johnson
All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

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