Book Review “13 Things mentally strong people don’t do” by Amy Morin

Amy Morin’s expertise in mental strength has attracted international attention. Her book “13 Things mentally strong people don’t do” is now available in more than 20 languages! Amy Morin is a licensed clinical social worker and psychotherapist. She is an adjunct psychology instructor and has been counseling children, teens, and adults since 2002.

She is also theDotdash’s Parenting Teens Expert and Child Discipline Expert and writes on a regular basis for Psychology Today and Forbes. She has been featured by several media, including: Fast Company, Time, Elle, Parenting, Cosmopolitan,, Fitness, Nutrition, Tools, News, Health Magazine, Fox News, NBC, ABC, MSN, Lifetime Moms, We TV and Success. Amy Morin was also a regular guest on various radio shows and gave several video interviews for The Blaze TV, Forbes and Fox Business. She is a sought-after speaker who loves to share the latest research findings on resilience and smart strategies for building mental muscle and overcoming adversity. Check out her website at follow her onTwitter @AmyMorinLCSW.

Her book “13 Things mentally strong people don’t do” is the ultimate guide to mastering your mental strength, with revolutionary new strategies that work for everyone from housewives to teachers to CEOs.

10 Things I love about the book “13 Things mentally strong people don’t do”

# 1 — The structure of the book.

Every chapter follows a consistent similar pattern (quotes, case studies of real life examples, self-assessing checklists, useful advice on how to cope with a certain problem, other peoples’ stories, tips on what is helpful and what is not helpful).

# 2 — People’s personal dilemmas and the solution

This book would certainly not have been the same without sharing other peoples’ dilemmas and the solution offered to it. It made me realise one more time that everyone has at some stage in their own (or a relative’s) life some problems of health, finances, jobs, relationships or whatsoever. No matter how successful, happy, wealthy or confident people might look, act and sound, the real story might often be a very different one than what it looks like.

Amy Morin shared some really interesting real life examples from her daily life as a psychotherapist. She describes in a detailed way the patients’ problems and reveals her strategies on how she was able to help many of them. I found this particularly enriching. Some examples are:

A mother who is unable to cope with an in-obedient daughter, a police officer who was a victim of a violent incident, a boy who had an accident and had to be taught how not to feel self-pity, a woman’s problems of dealing with her mother-in-law, the fear of public speaking (of the book author herself), a mother who regretted the way she parented her daughter, a girl who was abused in various ways by relatives, a husband struggling with keeping up with their neighbours wealth, a lady who wanted to realise her dream of becoming a teacher and had a lack of self-confidence, a woman who had sleeping problems and was never able to switch her mind off, a person who had a habit of spending too much money, a woman recovering from a severe car accident, a dad who had a custody battle over his daughter and needed to overcome his anxiety, a woman trying to be a people pleaser all the time, a person diagnosed with brain tumor, a man who wanted to show off at his workplace but having to face many adversities, a person who was diagnosed with diabetes and needed to lose weight, a man who wants to realise his dream of running finally his own business and last but not least also the book author’s own experience of coping with the loss of three close relatives within a short period of time.

There are also many other examples of famous people mentioned who were able to achieve great accomplishments under difficult circumstances. All these stories make this book very special.

# 3 — The analysis of certain behaviours

It was interesting to find out the symptoms, the benefits or the negative consequences of various types of behaviour. For example: the health benefits of forgiveness, the benefits of meditation and doing some exercises, the positive consequences of being alone (that it can lead to a spark of creativity, increasing empathy and productivity). The author suggests very good strategies as to how certain problems can be tackled and situations considerably improved.

# 4 — The section “Troubleshooting and common traps — What’s helpful/What’s not helpful”

At the end of each chapter there was a list of points that summarised “What’s helpful” and “What’s not helpful” when trying to deal with a certain problem. I found this part really good because it summarized the key points very effectively and it was presented in form of bullet points.

# 5 — It motivated me to take action instantly

The lessons that I learnt from the book “13 Things mentally strong people don’t do” were not all completely new to me.

However, I experienced that even if we know certain things, it doesn’t mean that we automatically apply certain behaviours. Often we need to hear them from someone else one more time (presented to us in a different way) to really make us change our own behaviour. For example, you don’t need to be a people-pleaser all the time! If you realise that “Every time you say YES to someone’s request you actually say NO to yourself, to your own precious time or even to your family’s time.” You need to ask yourself twice “Is this really what I want to do? How does it make me feel? Is there anything I can also gain from it?” If not, then have the courage to decline peoples’ requests. Particularly, if you get so stressed that it will directly impact your own health. Remember, it’s not worth it!

# 6 — The checklists

Every chapter of offered some important questions for self-assessment in order to find out whether we can identify ourselves with a certain behaviour or not.

# 7 — The quotes

Every chapter starts with a great quote. My favourite quote was by Lao Tzu “Care about what other people think and you will always be their prisoner.”

# 8 — Statistical figures

The advice given is often backed up with highly interesting studies by revealing statistical facts which make it even more credible. For example, did you know that people who feel gratitude don’t get sick as often as others?

# 9 — The author’s writing style

When I was reading the book “13 Things mentally strong people don’t do” I personally felt as if a friend would give me all these insights. It was a very pleasant read.

# 10 — The final chapter

The book ends with great self-coaching advice and an impressive story from which we can all learn relevant things mentally strong people don’t do.

Last but not least…

“If I would have to choose the Top 10 life-enhancing books I ever read in my life and pass them on to my daughter this book would definitely be one of them! I would love to see schools starting to give lessons on “How to gain mental strength” too in order to master daily’s challenges with ease and confidence! It does not surprise me that this book has been translated into so many different languages! I can’t recommend this book highly enough! Even if you think you are one of the lucky people with no problems at all, I would advise you to buy and read it. In life you never know what might happen to you or to your close relatives…. This book will definitely teach you on how you can deal with problems in a more effective and confident way, no matter what life throws at you. I promise!” Karin Schrock-Singh