Identify it. Discover the truth you’ve been hiding from yourself, probably most of your life.
Own it. Admit your part in the problems that are holding you back from your goals.
Eliminate it. Free yourself from your self-destructive past with innovative techniques that will change your life.
TAYLOR JONES SAYS: Dysfunction by Dennis C. Lewis, PhD is a short but powerful book that I believe every one of us needs to read at least once. Whether or not you come from a dysfunction family or are part of a dysfunctional relationship, you undoubtedly know someone who does or is. The great thing about this book is that it tells you how to fix the problems in yourself, but it also gives you some insight so you have a better understanding of how to deal with the problem in others. I found the book to be informative, entertaining, and just downright helpful. It gave me a good foundation for understanding the problem in lay terms that I could understand. It also gave me a greater appreciation for those people I know who are not dysfunctional. The ones I had previously taken for granted.
The book is short enough that I could read it in one sitting, but interesting and entertaining enough that I actually wanted to read it more than once. It is good hands-on guide for those of us who didn’t take psychology in college.
REGAN MURPHY SAYS: Dysfunction by Dr. Dennis C. Lewis is an interesting little book. It is short, concise, and very helpful. I particularly appreciated the fact that Lewis didn’t talk down to us, but presented his arguments straightforwardly, in terms that a person of average intelligence and education could understand without a dictionary close at hand.
I enjoyed the case studies he presented and thought it was an excellent way to make his points. I personally found the information to be extremely helpful and informative. Sort of like a “Dysfunctional Personalities for Dummies” book. It’s a handy little guide to dysfunctional hang-ups in yourself or others. It gives a good explanation of what the problems are, how to recognize them in yourself and others, and how to deal with them.
First Steps to Healing
“Do or do not. There is no try.” – Yoda
This book is about dysfunction. More important, it is about healing. If you’re a member of the human race, you’ve probably been involved in a dysfunctional relationship or two. Welcome to the club. The nature of dysfunction produces a repetitive behavior pattern, and if you don’t own it and eliminate it, you will end up repeating history. The majority of people have.
You know that if you have a broken leg, you have to get it fixed. Otherwise, it won’t heal properly. You might still be able to walk, but you’ll have a limp or an uneven gait, along with the possibility of injuring other parts of your body. The same applies to your emotional life. If you don’t change dysfunctional behavior, you impede your ability to reach your goals and feel comfortable with yourself. Your problems will continue into the future and will affect your choices, your relationships, and your health.
Healing requires that you face what’s wrong in order to change it. You can no longer ignore the emptiness in your life. Each day that you pretend everything is fine, you prevent the healing from starting. Perhaps you’re afraid to admit to anyone how much trouble you are having keeping up appearances. You dread being exposed.
Emotional healing happens every day. It is marked by growth and development as you live your life. Healing requires you to identify a unifying theme within yourself that anchors you and gives you purpose. You are meant to become a fully functional person. Dysfunction is only a temporary stop on the path to healing. You don’t need to stay there. You can move on.
Dysfunction affects everyone. The trap you feel holding you back could be due to childhood abuse, trauma, or neglect. Your parent might have been absent or smothering. You may have experienced unavoidable trauma. Deciding who’s responsible only leads you closer to righteous indignation, which cements your identity as a victim. Assigning blame doesn’t help you heal. Your way out is in the other direction.
The goal of this book is to help you identify the hole in your life that prevents you from moving forward.