Counselling books


“I don’t know what your destiny will be, but one thing I do know: the only ones among you who will be really happy are those who have sought and found how to serve.”

Albert Schweitzer


Books for counsellors and psychotherapists

On this page you will find a few books for counsellors, psychotherapists and others who help people with their emotional and behavioural problems.

Processing Client Stories in Counselling and Psychotherapy:

How to think about and analyze client narratives

Cover of eBookDr Jim Byrne, Doctor of Counselling

The Institute for E-CENT Publications – 2019

Copyright © Jim Byrne, 2019. All rights reserved.

Of all the systems of counselling and therapy, the main ones that pay attention to the body of the client include Gestalt Therapy, and my own system of Emotive-Cognitive Embodied Narrative Therapy (or E-CENT for short).

In E-CENT counselling, when a client arrives to see us, we see a body-brain-mind-environment-whole enter our room.  We agree that this person will begin by telling us a story about their current difficulties; but we recognize that this story is affected, for better or worse, by the quality and duration of their recent sleep patterns; their diet (including caffeine, alcohol, sugary foods, and trans-fats in junk food); and whether or not they do regular physical exercise; and other bodily factors.

However, in this book, we will mainly focus upon the client’s story or narrative; and perhaps remind ourselves occasionally that this story is being told by a physical body-brain-mind which is dependent for optimal functioning upon such factors as diet, exercise, sleep, and so on. We will focus upon the question of the status of autobiographical narratives; and how to analyze the stories our clients tell us.

Available as an eBook only.***


Learn more about this book.***


Holistic Counselling in Practice:

An introduction to the theory and practice of Emotive-Cognitive Embodied-Narrative Therapy

Front cover Holistic Couns reissuedBy Jim Byrne DCoun FISPC

With Renata Taylor-Byrne BSc (Hons) Psychol

This book was the original introduction to Emotive-Cognitive Embodied Narrative Therapy (E-CENT), which was created by Dr Jim Byrne in the period 2009-2014, building upon earlier work from 2003.  It is of historic importance, but it has been superseded by Lifestyle Counselling and Coaching for the Whole Person, below.

Prices from: £5.83p GBP (Kindle) and £15.18p (Paperback)

Paperback and eBook versions


Learn more.***

Lifestyle Counselling and Coaching for the Whole Person:

Or how to integrate nutritional insights, exercise and sleep coaching into talk therapy.

Front cover, Lifestyle Counselling, 2020By Dr Jim Byrne, with Renata Taylor-Byrne

Because diet, exercise and sleep are increasingly seen to be important determinants of mental health and emotional well-being, it is now necessary to rethink our models of counselling and therapy. This book will show counsellors how to incorporate lifestyle coaching and counselling into their system of talk therapy.  It will also help self-help enthusiasts to take better care of their own mental and physical health, and emotional well-being.

Prices: from £4.26 GBP (Kindle) to £12.64 (paperback)

Paperback and eBook versions.


Learn more.***

A counsellor reflects upon models of mind

Integrating the psychological models of Plato, Freud, Berne and Ellis

Prices from: £5.99 (Kindle) and £14.99 GBP (Paperback)

Every counsellor needs to think long and hard about their perceptions of their clients.  Are they based on ‘common sense’, or have they been subjected to the discipline of considering the theories of great minds that preceded us, like Plato, Freud, Berne and Ellis. (Ellis, of course, oversimplified the SOR model of mind into the simple ABC model, but he is still important because of his impact on the whole CBT theory, which currently dominates the field of counselling and therapy in the US, UK and elsewhere).

Paperback and eBook versions available


Learn more.***


Recovery from childhood Trauma:

How I Healed my Heart and Mind
And how you can heal yourself

Jim Byrne, Doctor of Counselling

Front cover,1Dr Jim Byrne reveals how he explored and processed (and completed!) his Story of origins – (as a rejected outsider) – and his Story of relationship – (in which he was not actively loved by his damaged parents [resulting in many years of isolation and incapacity to operate from love in his own adult relationships]).

In this personal-development book, he mostly focuses upon how he addressed the major problems in his personal history – his early traumas – as ‘kinks in his narrative self’, which could be straightened out with writing therapy. (Although, in his Story of Relationship, he does describe other processes that he used [including judo practice, and music therapy]).

The traumas which he experienced are often thought of as ‘complex trauma’, or ‘developmental trauma’, which are about ongoing abusive or neglectful relationships within the family of origin, ion the early years of childhood.

To balance the importance of the ‘narrative (or storied) self’ and the ‘somatic (or bodily) self’, Dr Byrne has added an appendix on his somatic (or bodily) self, and how it was healed; and also one on his social self, and how that was re-positioned for healing. Plus some brief thoughts on his ‘spiritual self’.

For more information, please click this link.*** 

How to recover from childhood trauma…a case study and strategies


A Major Critique of REBT:

Revealing the many errors in the foundations of Rational Emotive Behaviour Therapy

Also, we have added a reference to the research which shows that emotional pain and physical pain are both mediated and processed through significantly overlapping neural networks, which contradicts Dr Ellis’s claim that nobody could hurt you, except with a baseball bat.

This is a comprehensive critique of all of the main propositions of Rational Emotive Behaviour Therapy – which is characterized by the author as excessively-extreme-Stoicism. And some of Dr Ellis’s key arguments are shown to be unfounded, in precise argument reconstructions!

Available in paperback and eBook formats.


Learn more.***


If you want to know the essence of our critique of REBT, but you don’t want to have to read 500+ pages, then this 150 page summary should appeal to you:

Discounting Our Bodies:

A brief, critical review of REBT’s flaws

This book is a brief, summary critique of the main errors contained in the foundations of Rational Emotive Behaviour Therapy (REBT) theory. And especially the invalidity of the ABC model, which asserts that nothing other than beliefs intervenes between a negative experience and an emotional-behavioural reaction. (The body is ignored!)  It is based on material from the major critique, above.

Paperback only (at the moment). Price £9.50 GBP

Learn more.***


Discounting our Bodies.***


The Amoralism of Rational Emotive Behaviour Therapy (REBT):

The mishandling of self-acceptance and unfairness issues by Albert Ellis

This book is an extensive, detailed critique of two of the central ideas of REBT:

(1) The concept of ‘unconditional self-acceptance’; and

(2) The idea of life as being fundamentally unfair, and that it should be accepted as such, and never complained about.

In the process we also deal with Albert Ellis’s idea that people should never be blamed for anything; that praise and blame are bad; that guilt and shame are to be eliminated, and never taken to be indicators that we’ve done something wrong. Along the way we have a debate with Dr Michael Edelstein about the role of fairness in couple relationships.  (This material is also based on chapters from the major critique above).

Learn more.***


Albert Ellis and the Unhappy Golfer:

A critique of the simplistic ABC model of REBT

By Dr Jim Byrne


Front cover, Ellis and the GolferThe unhappy golfer is in Dr Albert Ellis’s office, in New York City, somewhere around the end of the 1950’s.  He tells Dr Ellis that he feels terribly unhappy about being rejected by his golfing peers, and Dr Ellis tells him: This is something you are doing to yourself!

Ellis uses the unhappy golfer to introduce his readers to his simple ABC model of REBT, which claims that a person cannot be upset emotionally in any way other than by their own beliefs!

This book sets out to refute this simplistic idea.

For more.***


Albert Ellis and the Unhappy Golfer.***


The Bamboo Paradox:

The limits of human flexibility in a cruel world – and how to protect, defend and strengthen yourself

Finding the Golden Mean that leads to strength and viable flexibility, in order to be happy, healthy and realistically successful

By Dr Jim Byrne, with contributed chapters by Renata Taylor-Byrne


A, Front cover-2We are living through very difficult times, in which individuals are expected increasingly to work like slaves in jobs that never end, even as you get home and have to deal with emails, Zoom meetings, and so on. But we are not machines, and all this stress will damage your health, unless you learn about the Bamboo Paradox: (Humans are not as flexible as bamboo; and bamboo is not human. And so on…)

This book will teach you a new philosophy of life – Moderate Stoicism – as opposed to Extreme Stoicism; which will keep you reasonably strong, and prevent you killing yourself by assuming you have the flexibility of bamboo, or unlimited staying-power, when you do not!

Malign forces in “the world of influencing” have been tricking and fooling us into believing that we can and should work like mechanical robots, and survive with the flexibility of bamboo.  But check the wards of your local hospitals to find the people who took this misleading information most seriously! Take control of your work life before you become a burnt-out husk!

For more information, please click this link: You are not a bamboo, and you are entitled to have a balanced life.***      

The bamboo paradox, a book of wisdom for success