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Introduction to the Online Self-Help Book

Mark Dombeck, Ph.D.

a pathway over sand dunesThe first "noble truth" of Buddhism states a fact that is obvious to many people who will be reading this center: life involves suffering. At various times in life, most people will be faced with one or more mental health, wellness or life issues that will cause them pain in one form or another and which they will want to rid themselves of. People faced with such issues and illnesses have three basic options for getting help. They can seek help from medical or mental health professionals (or people who hold themselves out as teachers of one sort or another); they can choose to work on their problems themselves through a process of self-help; or they can combine professional/teacher and self-help approaches. There are many benefits to be had from professional helpers. In some cases and for some problems, the only real benefits that can be had are had through professional helpers. This is certainly the case with serious mental illnesses such as Bipolar Disorder or Schizophrenia. Nevertheless, professional helpers are expensive, seldom available as much as you might like, and limited in terms of what they can offer. For these and other reasons which we'll outline below, it is a very good idea for people dealing with painful issues and illnesses to learn methods for helping themselves.

This center is directly concerned with helping people learn methods for helping themselves manage and even overcome various troubling mental health, wellness and life issues. Self-help for mental health and wellness issues consists of learning about the nature of distressing issues, learning how to measure or assess those issues and how they can be resolved, and then choosing and following a course of action that will help you to resolve those issues.

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