The Panic Button Book: Press Now!

Tammi Kirkness

         We’ve all been there. A deadline looming and your computer decides to go rogue. You call about a wrong charge on an account, our rooted around the world and back, repeating your story to four or five different people and then after waiting on hold for an hour are cut off. You run into a high school frenemy and find out s/he just signed a multi-million deal to a book about those high school days and how mean everyone was—giving you a knowing look.

         And that’s just the small stuff. But Tammi Kirkness has you covered when you’re hit with high stress situations. An Australian based life coach and wellness consultant as well as an international speaker, specializes in working with people who grapple with high functioning anxiety. That typically refers to those who seem to function well but are often overwhelmed with feelings of inadequacy, are sure something bad is going to happen, compare themselves negatively to others, and tend to be workaholics and perfectionists. 

To overcome anxieties, Kirkness incorporates well-researched and proven psychological treatments and Eastern techniques of reducing anxious states such as meditation and breathing from our core, sharing her insights in her extremely easy to use book, “The Panic Button Book: Relieve Stress and Anxiety Whenever They Strike” (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt 2020; $15.99).

         Kirkness has many characteristics of someone with high-functioning anxiety.

         “A big part of my journey was working way too hard, being a perfectionist and putting way too much pressure on myself,” she says.

         Not only wasn’t it good in the short time nor could she keep it up for a long time.

         “There are things that we can do to help calm down our nervous system and still create success with sustainability,” says Kirkness. “I think taking time to pause and do some soul searching is generally the first step.”

         Other components include learning to take deep breaths which are calming and relaxing. Journaling—putting your thoughts down on paper—and meditating (there are free online apps for that) also make a difference. But what I found most useful about the book were the Decision Trees Kirkness developed.

         Dividing the book into sections, she covers Living and Working, Socializing, Relationships, and Parenting. Each has related scenarios such as “Do you have a difficult conversation coming up,” “Do you feel your partner is taking more than giving?” and “Are you not reaching your own expectations?” Then on the opposite page are the techniques you can take to help.

         As an example, one decision tree starts with the question “Are you trying to make something perfect?” Her two-step activity to counteract the need for get something done is to remind yourself that done is better than perfect. The second is to establish a clear timeline on finishing such as I’m giving this another 40 minutes and then I’m sending it in.

         Not all are simple two-steps like the above, but all are designed to provide relief from the immediate anxiety of situations and produce feelings of being more in charge of your emotions.

Jen Lancaster Set to Launch New Book with an Anderson’s Bookshop Online Event

Anderson’s Bookshop is proud to welcome back New York Times bestselling author and Chicago-area native Jen Lancaster to celebrate her newest book, The United States of Anxiety: Observations from a Reforming Neurotic.  Lancaster has visited Anderson’s Bookshop half a dozen times, and each event is special, including this launch program on Thursday, October 1 at 7 pm. Participating fans will be the first to get their hands on her latest title.

Register here and you will receive the Zoom link in your confirmation email. https://www.eventcombo.com/e/virtual-event-with-jen-lancasterthe-united-states-of-anxiety-40870

Anderson’s realizes that this is a challenging time for many families.  We are offering a variety of ticket options so that customers may choose what is the best fit.  Every book ticket will include a signed copy of The United States of Anxiety, and all contributions will go towards supporting our independent small business and our employees.

About the Book: New York Times bestselling author Jen Lancaster is here to help you chill the hell out.

When did USA become shorthand for the United States of Anxiety? From the moment Americans wake up, we’re bombarded with all-new terrifying news about crime, the environment, politics, and stroke-inducing foods we’ve been enjoying for years. We’re judged by social media’s faceless masses, pressured into maintaining a Pinterest-perfect home, and expected to base our self-worth on retweets, faves, likes, and followers. Our collective FOMO, and the disparity between the ideal and reality, is leading us to spend more and feel worse. No wonder we’re getting twitchy. Save for an Independence Day–style alien invasion, how do we begin to escape from the stressors that make up our days?

Jen takes a hard look at our elevating anxieties, and with self-deprecating wit and levelheaded wisdom, she charts a path out of the quagmire that keeps us frightened of the future and ashamed of our imperfectly perfect human lives. Take a deep breath, and her advice, and you just might get through a holiday dinner without wanting to disown your uncle–or even worse.

About the Author: Author Jen Lancaster has sold well over a million books, with over a dozen New York Times bestsellers. From Bitter Is the New Black to The Tao of Martha, Lancaster has made a career out of documenting her attempts to shape up, grow up, and have it all – sometimes with disastrous results. Her New York TImes bestselling novel Here I Go Again received three starred reviews (Kirkus, Booklist, Publishers Weekly). She loves bad TV, terrible wine, and will die before she gives up her Oxford comma.

Lancaster can often be seen on The Today Show, as well as CBS This Morning, Fox News and NPR’s All Things Considered, among others. She lives in the Chicago suburbs with her husband and her many ill-behaved dogs and cats. Visit her website: jenlancaster.com, Twitter: @altgeldshrugged, Instagram: @jennsylvania, or Facebook.com/authorjenlancaster.

Hear the stories behind Lancaster’s books on The Stories We’d Tell in Bars podcast, available on iTunes, Podbean, Spreaker, GooglePlay, and iHeartRadio, among other entities.

About Anderson’s Bookshop: Anderson’s Bookshop is a 6-generation family-run neighborhood independent business with locations in Chicago’s western suburbs. The company includes a toyshop and school bookfair division. Recipients of dozens of honors, Anderson’s Bookshops share a passion and knowledge of books and of building community through great reads. Anderson’s Bookshops are located in downtown Naperville at 123 W. Jefferson Ave. and in Downers Grove at 5112 Main St. For additional questions and information, visit AndersonsBookshop.com.

Embrace Your Weird: Face Your Fears and Unleash Creativity

I wasted a lot of time early in my career trying to conform to what I thought Hollywood would approve of,” says Day, who has five million social media fans. “It wasn’t until I abandoned that mindset and started creating things based on my unique point of view, that I finally found success.

          For those who were totally uncool in high school, not to worry. Neither was Felicia Day, actress (Supernatural, The Magicians), producer and bestselling writer.

          “I wasted a lot of time early in my career trying to conform to what I thought Hollywood would approve of,” says Day, who has five million social media fans. “It wasn’t until I abandoned that mindset and started creating things based on my unique point of view, that I finally found success. The things that make us different are our creative superpowers. I truly believe that.”

In her latest book Embrace Your Weird: Face Your Fears and Unleash Creativity, Day shows how to tap into our inner weirdness.    The book functions as a journal, a guide and a workbook that not only helps with personal growth but also in overcoming the anxiety, uncertainty and fear many of us experience. Day, who loves self-help books sees it as a hands-on follow up to her memoir, You’re Never Weird on the Internet (Almost): A Memoir.

          “I heard a lot of feedback after I wrote my memoir, that my story inspired people to start creating, and/or get help around anxiety and depression,” says Day. “Hearing that motivated me to write a book where the focus is more on the reader and not myself. I wanted to make the process of self-improvement funny, interactive, and just a touch geeky.”

          Her book is full of advice and techniques she’s cobbled together over the years as she worked towards getting to the core of who she is as a creator. The process of refining those techniques was a long one though and she constantly asked herself if the reader would be discovering something new about themselves when reading this section or doing this exercise? If it didn’t pass that sniff test, Day threw it out and started all over again.

          When asked if she had any advice for readers in how to begin the process of getting weird, Day recommended everyone put down their phones when they can and instead carry a little notebook to for writing down their thoughts, dreams and observations.

          “You’d be amazed at all the creative ideas we let pass us by just because we don’t give ourselves the mental space to come up with them in the first place,” she says.  “I am just excited for people to dive in and learn how to start incorporating more creativity in their lives in a fun and funny way. Being able to show the world who you truly are through your creativity is, in my opinion, the ultimate freedom.”

Visit Felicia at @feliciaday on Twitter and Instagram, or at FeliciaDayBook.com.

 Ifyougo:

What: Felicia Day presentation.

When: October 5 at 4pm 

Where: Sponsored by Anderson’s Bookshop but the event is being held at the Community Christian Church, 1635 Emerson Lane, Naperville, IL.

Cost: Ticket for one person is $20.00 ($21.99 w/service fee) admits one person and includes one copy of the new book, pre-signed; ticket package for two is $30.00 ($32.49 w/service fee) admits two people and includes one copy of the new book. Each ticket holder gets a photo with the author.       

FYI: For more information or to buy a ticket, visit feliciaday2andersons.brownpapertickets.com/ or call (630) 355-2665.

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