Dian G. Smith & Robie Rogge
The title of this little journal is based on a quote from Eleanor Roosevelt, who in her younger years was very shy and timid and who became one of the most outspoken and inspirational persons—male or female-- of her time—a time in which the very future of the course of the entire world was at stake.
The journal is comprised of 365 undated pages, so it can be used sequentially over the course of a year or in any order. Most pages include a quote relating to the journal’s title, such as “A ship in port is safe, but that is not what ships are built for” (Rear Admiral Grace Murray Hopper), “Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly” (Robert F. Kennedy), and “He has not learned the lesson of life who does not every day surmount a fear” (Ralph Waldo Emerson). These encouraging quotes are consistent with messages that the therapists at AATC often say to clients, such as “Feel the fear and do it anyway.”
The journal also includes many brief thought- and action-provoking questions and space for the reader to record his or her choices and actions relating to the theme of this book—what did you do today that scared you (and how did it go)? For example, a famous line from the poet Robert Frost;
“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.”
Road not taken:
I like this little journal. It is not preachy. The quotes and mini exercises may remind us that no one is free of fear or anxiety and that courage is not the absence of fear, it involves acknowledging and accepting the fear or anxiety, and doing the best that can be done under sometimes difficult circumstances.
Reviewed by Gerald T. O’Brien, Ph.D.