Growing Up Brave


This book is an essential resource for parents and professionals wanting to understand and reduce childhood anxiety. Dr. Pincus does a wonderful job breaking down the issues into laymen’s terms for understanding the underlying causes behind some basic childhood fears and anxieties. She also lays out some suggested methods to help combat these issues using Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) to actively change the thought processes behind the anxious feelings and actions.


The connections and examples laid out are clear, and the suggested CBT methods seem easy to implement. There are plenty of activities to try at home between parent and child to work through anxiety to keep it at a functioning level. Dr. Pincus points out that avoidance of the stressor only exacerbates its existence – the goal is to accept that some situations create fear and stress, and the resulting feelings in our bodies are sensations with which we can live. The goal is to change our thinking around them to less of a flight behavior and more of “I feel anxiety, and I can do this anyway.”

I would have welcomed this knowledge for myself as a child! I’ll look forward to updating this review with feedback about the effectiveness of her methods.

Instead of worrying about a setback, point out…”You just had a hard day. Everyone has them. It’s perfectly normal. We’re going to start again tomorrow. I know you can do it.

— Donna B. Pincus

Growing Up Brave: Expert Strategies for Helping Your Child Overcome Fear, Stress, and Anxiety
by Donna B. Pincus
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published August 28th 2012 by Little, Brown Spark (first published January 1st 2012)

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