from New Jersey gives thumbs up!
"I enjoyed reading Secrets from the
Sofa and am impressed with the time, energy and thoughtfulness
that went into the book's preparation. I'm going to forward a copy of your
materials to the Department of Education and our policy team for review. I
appreciate the time you have taken to educate the public on this most important
Jon S. Conzine, Office of the
Governor, State of New Jersey.
Recommended by Psychologists & Social
"I'm a psychologist who has
given Secrets from the Sofa to my patients.
I've found that our sessions are more focused and their motivation for change
is heightened. I believe this book is a tool for change. Initially, I thought
the book was too short to have any impact but soon realized that it covers all
the basic issues to stimulate readers to focus on change. Dr. Herman's years of
experience and talent to communicate this with readers is evident."
Psychologist. New Jersey.
from the Sofa presents essential aspects of the human
condition amplified by lucid examples and equally lucid coping methods. I
particularly enjoyed Dr. Herman's person-to-person informality, his manner of
suggesting techniques for observing yourself and situations, and then applying
solutions. The book's straight forward presentation is loaded with good sense.
I have no doubt that this book will help many people."
Dr. Joseph Schenkel, Clinical Psychologist.
Cape Elizabeth, Maine.
"Secrets from the Sofa is a
practical read, with useful exercises. The book is useful for a number
of audiences: self-help, psycho-educational, practitioners, and even
graduate students. This book can help them with expanding their own
issues." Dr. Helene Laurenti,
Psychologist. North Carolina.
"Secrets from the Sofa makes it
possible for you to find answers... simply by reading
a chapter that addresses your concerns. This book is
well-organized, concise and reveals a depth of knowledge and
understanding. I recommend this book for anyone who is going thorugh a
difficult time and needs help."
Norma VanDyke, Social Worker.
Folks, it doesn't get any better
"Secrets from the
Sofa is an opportunity to sit
down with an experienced psychologist and learn his game plan for becoming
stronger, more confident and emotionally balanced. Folks, it doesn't get any
better than this! Secrets from the
Sofa is entertaining, eye-opening, and so compelling that it is
hard to put down. Don't read this book in bed; you'll get so fired up and
excited that you won't be able to sleep!
Dr Herman writes in a warm, understanding, and
empathetic manner. You'll feel like he is sitting by your side, talking to you as
you read. Dr. Herman writes from firsthand experience, having spent over 100,000
hours counseling people from all walks of life. What I liked best is Dr. Herman's
optimistic and upbeat perspective. You can't help but smile as you read the
doctor's case studies, real life illustrations and personal reflections. Dr Herman
always inspires us to believe in ourselves (in spite of our shortcomings and
challenges) as we set our sights on what we wish to accomplish.
Isn't the title of this book irresistible? It's a
throwback to the old practice of lying on a couch and divulging your deepest and
darkest secrets to a shrink. Of course, it's no longer standard practice. Perhaps,
the title is Dr Herman's way of laughing at himself, and encouraging the reader to
loosen up and not take ourselves too seriously. Yes, we can have fun analyzing
ourselves. Plus, we should never underestimate our ability to cope with problems
and come up with workable solutions.
Secrets from the
Sofais the best book I've read all year.
If you want to know Dr. Herman's secrets, get yourself a copy of this book! With
most psychologists charging $40 to $60 an hour, this book is a real bargain at $20.
Just think of the time, money and energy you'll save as you read this book. Plus,
the sheer enjoyment you'll receive from reading the book (as you allow it to
transform your life)... that's priceless! I highly recommend this book to anyone
who seeking personal balance and harmony in their
VanValkenburgh. Author of "Train
Your Brain, Transform Your Life: Conquer ADHD In 60 Days, Without
Nun turns to
"Secrets" for guidance & counsel
"Dr. Herman is a genius! He brings common sense to a
world that needs it badly. Dr Herman opens eyes to the possibility that we can
change and grow, despite failures and hard breaks in
life. Secrets from the
Sofa gives courage to all who find themselves locked in negativity and
failure. It is a book that speaks to all ages. Many people carry heavy (emotional)
baggage with them. More than one of our employees have relatives that committed
suicide, and children that are on drugs and alcohol. They often come to me for
comfort and help. Of course, I realize that God is our real helper in time of need.
While I turn to God for guidance and counsel, I can also offer people help
using Secrets from the
Sofa." Sister Mary
Vincent, Little Sisters of the Poor. Pittsburgh,
"Our Counseling Center at Ramapo
College bought a stack of Secrets from the Sofa to give to students
struggling with personal issues." Dr.
Pamela M. Bischoff, Vice President for Student Affairs. Ramapo College. Mahwah,
"People will find ways to improve their lives
by reading Secrets from the Sofa. Let me offer
congratulations on the book's publication and the national attention that it has
received. I am passing this book on to our Director of Counseling and
Psychological Services at Rutgers University." Richard L McCormick, President of Rutgers University. New
A+ for practicality,
simplicity & common sense!
"I give Secrets from the Sofa an A+ for practicality,
simplicity and common sense. It is a road map for personal transformation. In many
ways, the book reflects the basic tenets of AA and Alanon programs, where the
objective is to change yourself and focus on behaviors that lead to serenity, which
is their catch phrase for peace." Joan, English
"I love this book! I've ordered several
boxfulls from Barnes & Noble, so that I can give them out at my office. I enjoy
the insights, and the real life examples are quite direct, educational and easy to
understand. I also appreciate Dr. Herman's stories about actual patient
experiences-- especially the stories that deal with passivity, fear and
courage." James Corrigan.
"I finished reading the last chapter of
Secrets from the Sofa only minutes
ago, and want to thank you for the book's good advice, penetrating
analysis, and contagious positive outlook. Several of the suggestions began to take
root in my life. Now, I want to read the book again. I'm thrilled at the notion of
helping myself independently, armed only with this book." Gusatvo E. Godoy, JD.
from the Sofa is a step-by-step guide that will empower people to
look at their problems and create solutions. Any one looking for
emotional growth will greatly benefit from this powerful book."
Debbie Milam, Founder of "Best You
Can Be Foundation," www.bestyoucanbe.org
Thumbs up for Secrets
from the Sofa
"The heart of this book and Dr.
Herman's therapy is a form of psychotherapy called Cognitive Therapy which was
developed by Aaron Beck. The basic premise of cognitive therapy is that
negative thoughts and attitudes affect our moods. Negative thinking causes
depression. Cognitive therapy attempts to help people change their thought
Secrets from the
Sofa is organized into five parts:
(1) understanding why, (2) gearing up, (3) your Personal Peace process, (4) your
emotions and feelings, and (5) emerging stronger.
In addition, there are nine exercises: (1) childhood
log, (2) childhood misfortune checklist, (3) coping styles, (4) defense mechanisms,
(5) hopefulness gauge, (6) life areas, (7) self-image, (8) problem list, and (9)
Dr. Herman's principle of
change is (1) treat yourself with respect and care, (2) face problems and conflicts
directly, (3) identify, understand and let go of resistances. He states, "Each time
you act according to these principles, you are redefining yourself and becoming a
I love books from experienced psychologists, (and
I'm) always hoping for something innovative. This book did remind me that the
quality of our lives is largely the result of our thoughts. And, I think Abraham
Lincoln said it most succinctly, "People are as happy as they make up their minds
to be." I also appreciated being reminded that ... "Anger is a healthy emotion. If
someone violates our boundaries or threatens to take advantage of us, anger can
mobilize us to protect ourselves."
Secrets from the
Sofa is a well-written, well-edited
self-help workbook you may want to consider if you are thinking about making
changes in your life. Kaye Trout, Pagosa
Springs, Colorado From Kaye Trout's personal
"must-read" for if you wants to be all you can be!
the Sofa by Dr. Kenneth
Herman, a board-certified psychologist, is a book that will benefit adults of
all ages. Why? Although there are many reasons, allow me to emphasize five
very important ones:
1. Parents, in the
process of rearing their children, will better understand the impact that their
spoken words and display of emotions have on their sons and daughters. They are
creating parental tapes that will replay in the minds of their children for the
rest of their lives--whether the tapes are positive or negative. Dr. Herman offers
sound advice in regard to parenting skills, providing examples on how to handle
2. Adults who are
suffering from childhood wounds are given information and exercises to complete
that are emotionally challenging but necessary for healing. There are core effects
that must be identified and addressed; however, the author reassures readers that
what has happened to them in the past need not be a reflection of their future.
What was learned can be unlearned!
3. Coping styles. Dr.
Herman enables readers to identify their coping styles which are normally the
result of false perceptions due to poor self-images. Some need to be eliminated in
order for individuals to reach their full potential in life. Through the completion
of written exercises, readers will identify coping styles as well as defense
4. Power to change. Once problem areas are identified, individuals are
reassured that they have the power and courage to change. An exercise in which they
check words to describe their positive and negative characteristics helps with such
changes and enables these individuals to comprehend the importance of the cognitive
5. Peace Plan. The main purpose of this book, in my opinion, is to help
readers establish a peace plan-a plan of action that will help change their
thinking so they can lead fuller, happier lives. Using a goal worksheet, readers
are asked to rank their problems and set a time-frame for bringing about what they
believe are necessary changes and solutions. The author cautions them to be
realistic and offers advice on putting their individual plans into action while
avoiding common deviations. In order to bring about permanent changes, Dr. Herman's
reading audience of self-help patients will have to confront many emotions;
therefore, he devotes an entire section to help readers deal with their feelings of
depression, anxiety, etc. He offers self-control techniques that I personally found
Although the author modified names and facts, he used
actual case histories throughout the book, enabling readers to see themselves in
other people. This provides great insight into therapy and offers interesting
reading. Dr. Herman has successfully written and designed a book to assist people
who truly want to help themselves; however, he wisely points out that there are
times when professional help may be required, citing some questions to enable
individuals to make such determinations.
As a book reviewer who has some background in
psychology and someone who has successfully written a self-help book, I do not
hesitate to recommend Secrets from the Sofa as a "must read." If you want to become
all you can be--to achieve personal peace--buy this book, read it, do the exercises
and change your life." Bettie Corbin
Tucker, IP book reviewer, former
radio talkshow host & published
A "must-read" for if you wants to be all you can
"I confess. When I first started
reading this superb book I thought it might be better suited to someone with
more immediate problems. I began thinking of those other people, then of my
children and finally I took a better look at myself. Dr. Herman uses clear
exposition and dramatized case studies, but the author is of the cognitive
school that rationally espouses: 1) identifying what formed a problematic
attitude, 2) noting how it has affected you, 3) working through your anger,
sadness and grief, 4) and, as an adult, now engaging in a healthier mode of
It was about a third of the way through that I
realized this book was applying a bit of psychology to me, its reader. The author
examines defense mechanisms in a very non-threatening way and then asks us to do
some self-assessment now that we were aware of the methods we use for denial. How
could anyone who up to this point has agreed to his common sense approach decline?
The result--utilizing worksheets on eleven "life areas" and an extensive array of
positive and negative characteristics of self-image--is a useful plan of action
identifying problems, visions, short, medium and long-term goals. I found this
But, he is not done. The book identifies avoidance
strategies people use, describes what someone who wants to change can expect when
confronting his or her emotions and even presses us to clarify what we mean by
success. One intriguing aspect Herman mentions is that emotions may not be what
they seem (for some it is easier to feel anger than admit to hurt feelings that
leave them vulnerable). But in my opinion his best advice concerns relationships:
"Pick your relationships carefully and re-evaluate them often. Only maintain those
relationships that make you feel good about yourself. The people with whom you
associate should give you something of value in return. It can be trust, laughter,
or simply some effective communication; but it should be something beautiful,
relevant and meaningful to both parties." That's also great description of this
book. It is beautiful, relevant and meaningful. Do yourself and those you love a
favor. Buy it!
Everyone will identify
with this book & learn from it!
Dr. Herman has written a book to
bring happiness and peace to each and everyone of us. I will be recommending
this book to many of my own clients because it is down to earth and makes you
look at the simple things in life in a different way. An example of this is a
situation where a woman didn't receive a birthday card from her husband, but
he did take her out to dinner. She was hurt and when Dr. Herman asked a few
simple questions, she realized how she had not evaluated the situation
correctly. I cannot tell you how many times I have done this myself and I am
working on correcting my "quick judgements" of a situation when really they
were not meant to hurt anyone. Everyone will be able to identify with this
book and learn from it.
Yvonne Phillips. Feng Shui
Straight-forward, efficient &
Dr. Herman reveals the insights and
techniques developed during many years of counseling patients through the
whole spectrum of psychological and emotional issues. The author is quick to
note that there are no magic mantras or quick fixes. Instead, As he reminds
readers throughout, using these tools successfully takes time, work and will.
He begins by encouraging readers to examine their past to see how it impacts
Many behaviors that inhibit our growth and happiness
as adults are connected to some negative influence in childhood. Fear, anxiety and
anger are often coping strategies one adopts as a child to deal with situations out
of their control. But when carried forward into adulthood, these reactions can
become dysfunctional. By looking back and identifying the source of such feelings--
traumatic experiences, abusive or neglectful parents-- one can put them into proper
perspective and move on. Dr. Herman advocates making a step-by-step plan for
achieving one's goals and present ways to overcome the stumbling blocks that may be
encountered along the way-- internal defense mechanisms used to resist change,
painful feelings that must be confronted-- and illustrates points with stories
about patients he has treated in his practice. These examples demonstrate how
readers can apply analytical techniques to their own lives, using several exercises
in the book. Dr. Herman concludes with advice on how to deal with anxiety, guilt
and anger in healthier ways and make positive change permanent. This
straight-forward, efficient book enables readers to understand their personal
problems in a context conducive to change, and those considering therapy may find
it useful preparation to make sessions more productive. (This book is) an effective
tool to improving mental health. Kirkus Discoveries, Nielson Business
Secrets from a Sofa can lead you to a happier, more fulfilling
everyone really wants from life is happiness, success, and peace of mind,
then why do people stay at unrewarding jobs or in destructive
relationships? Why are people neglecting their physical and mental health?
Why do we sometimes have so much trouble just getting through the
Unfortunately, people feel
safe and secure with familiar emotions. Even misery is preferable to the
anticipated anxiety associated with change. Intellectually, we would like to
change; emotionally, we question if change is necessary—or even possible. As a
practicing clinical psychologist for over 45 years, Dr. Kenneth Herman shares
his “Secrets from the Sofa”—his proven step by step approach to helping people
change and achieve a greater sense of purpose, happiness and peace. He offers
readers the chance to be their own psychologist; to look at their problems, to
address where they are coming from, to make a plan to overcome the issues, and
then to execute that plan. With motivation and determination, you will find
that your personal peace plan can make a change for the better completely
possible. Secrets from a
Sofa can lead you to a happier,
more fulfilling life. And if you really put your mind to it, it
will. Book review from
logical, interesting and provocative!
his book reflects Dr. Herman's 45 years in practice
as a clinical psychologist, and it is intended to serve as the next best thing to a
series of personal sessions. The word "Secrets" in the title should not be
misinterpreted to mean that Dr. Herman is dishing about his patients. Rather, he is
presenting the tools and skills that he has found effective in his treatment plans.
Dr. Herman belongs to the cognitive behavioral school of psychotherapy, and his
emphasis is on change. How do persons with problems correct those thoughts,
perceptions, and habits that stand between them and happiness?
The organization of this book is clear and logical,
beginning with a section on understanding the etiology of one's difficulties,
followed by a section on preparing to correct them. The most crucial section of the
book is the third, "Your Personal Peace Process." This emphasizes embarking on a
new course in life, dealing with obstacles that arise, and maintaining changes
after they are implemented. The book includes a number of useful exercises, and it
also contains a thoughtful discussion on when to seek professional help.
Secrets from the Sofa embodies a comprehensive plan
that can be used to accomplish major changes in one's life. It is mercifully free
of jargon and oversimplification. However it does challenge the notion that a
person capable of undertaking its rigorous curriculum is probably the person who
needs it the least. Nevertheless, many individuals who fall somewhere between the
extremes of mental well-being will find Secrets interesting, even provocative, and
potentially helpful. F. M.
Lupinetti, US Review of
Swamy from India gives his
'Secrets from the Sofa' is an
attempt by a Board Certified Clinical Psychologist to share the lessons that he
learned from nearly 50 years of practice. In his long career, Dr. Kenneth
Herman had the opportunity to listen to the problems of many people and thus
gained a deep understanding of human nature and he shares with us the readers,
Change is difficult but is not impossible. That
is the message that this book gives. The blurb on the back cover says, "With
motivation and determination, you will find that your personal peace plan can
make a change for the better completely possible. Secrets from a Sofa can lead
you to a happier, more fulfilling life. And if you really put your mind to it,
it will." I agree with that statement.
The book has eighteen chapters spread over five
parts. Part One is titled, "Understanding Why", Part two is titled, "Gearing
Up", Part three is called, "Your Personal Peace Process", Part four deals with
"Your Emotions and Feelings" and the final part is "Emerging Stronger." Chapter
six has detailed checklists to help you understand yourself better.
The book has a number of case studies and the
style is easy and interesting. Names have been suitably changed to protect the
privacy of the individuals. It is easy to relate to many of the problems (lack
of confidence, indecisiveness, anger etc.) faced by the people in the
Additional resources are listed at the end of the
book to help you explore specific topics in more detail. The book is edited and
printed well. The book makes an useful addition to the many self-help books in
the field and is recommended.
Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India.
(Physicist, Metallurgist, Quality
Management & General Management expert,