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Shadow Syndromes

Millions of people who attribute their daily life problems to bad parents or low self-esteem or lack of will power are in fact struggling with a shadow syndrome. Chronic sadness, obsessiveness, outbursts of anger, the 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 course of our lives. They are shadow syndromes. Drs. John J. Ratey and Catherine Johnson explode the idea that these problems are brought on by aberrations in upbringing or relationships, and that they are prolonged by a willful refusal to change. They make it clear that, on the contrary, these patterns of behavior have their origins in the inherent structure and chemistry of the individual brain, that they are distinctly identifiable, and that for all of us, understanding our own unique biological makeup is the key to freeing ourselves from biology's bonds. Knowing who we are biologically as well as psychologically is the key to living a free and full life. Ratey and Johnson describe methods for tempering shadow syndromes and their traces.
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About the Author

John J. Ratey, M.D. 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 Driven to Distraction and Answers to Distraction. He lives in Wellesley, MA. Catherine Johnson, Ph.D., is a contributing editor at New Woman magazine, and the author of When to Say Goodbye to Your Therapist and Lucky In Love. She lives in Los Angeles. From the Hardcover edition.


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