20 Days to Better Relationships is designed to take readers on a journey to better relationships. It is divided into two parts. The first section includes daily readings on different relationship challenge and skills. Each reading ends with a space for the reader to “Dig Deeper” and journal their response. The second half of the book is full of worksheets and activities that clients can use to put their new skills into practice.
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About the author:
Madiseida Hood is a licensed clinical social worker who practices at From the Heart Counseling in St Charles, IL. She also runs a Facebook community called The Tribe and gives workshops to groups in Illinois. You can learn more about Seida at her website here.
What we love:
20 Days to Better Relationships is full of practical steps that clients can take in their journey to healthier relationships. The readings are helpful but by far my favorite thing in this book is the activities she includes. It is full of dozens of worksheets that would be helpful for clients to complete on their as they work through the book or with you in your office. These worksheets are beautifully designed to help clients gain insight and create change.
I also liked the idea of only a 20 day commitment. That feels like a manageable time to focus on relationships but is long enough to create some new, healthier habits.
What we didn’t:
The book approaches relationships in a broad sense. There are sections on marriage, parenting and friends. Many clients come in focused on specific relationships or don’t identify with some of the categories so they might not think this book fits them. At the same time, there are sections in the first half of the book that address very specific topics like absentee parents or previous experiences with violence. These could be triggering for some readers and not applicable to others.
As a clinician, I especially love this book for the worksheets. There are several that I can see being very useful in session. It’s also a useful tool for clients who want to focus on improving their relationships across many different areas of their lives.
Just a note: The book is not an overtly Christian book but there are a few places where Ms. Hood discusses her Christian faith and how that has impacted her. That may impact its usefulness with some clients.
Many therapists enjoy recommending books to their clients to supplement the work they are doing together. We also use books to help ourselves grow as people and practitioners. Remember though that books are never a replacement for real human connection or for therapy when it’s needed. If you find yourself needing a therapist, a great place to start is Psychology Today. If you are having thoughts of hurting yourself or someone else, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Hotline.