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Publisher's Summary

From the New York Times best-selling author of Chasing the Scream, a radically new way of thinking about depression and anxiety.

What really causes depression and anxiety - and how can we really solve them? Award-winning journalist Johann Hari suffered from depression since he was a child and started taking antidepressants when he was a teenager. He was told that his problems were caused by a chemical imbalance in his brain. As an adult, trained in the social sciences, he began to investigate whether this was true - and he learned that almost everything we have been told about depression and anxiety is wrong.

Across the world, Hari found social scientists who were uncovering evidence that depression and anxiety are not caused by a chemical imbalance in our brains. In fact, they are largely caused by key problems with the way we live today. Hari's journey took him from a mind-blowing series of experiments in Baltimore, to an Amish community in Indiana, to an uprising in Berlin.

Once he had uncovered nine real causes of depression and anxiety, they led him to scientists who are discovering seven very different solutions - ones that work. It is an epic journey that will change how we think about one of the biggest crises in our culture today.

©2018 Johann Hari (P)2017 Audible, Ltd

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Must read

For those of us who have experienced depression as a personal crisis, and for all of us who need to recognize it as a public health crisis. Hari is a brilliant investigative journalist (see Chasing the Scream, about addiction) who brings his personal experience, taut and engaging research style, and profound empathy to this widespread but yet hidden malady. The medical and pharmaceutical model of depression is just not supported by the research, and Hari discusses 9 other causes/contexts for understanding depression that are backed by scientific evidence. From the treatment perspective, not much mention of CBT, DBT or mindfulness practice might be a flaw in the book to some. Current practices in psychiatry and psychology are not quite as drug reliant as Hari suggests. But almost. For a book about such a weighty and, yes, depressing topic, it trips along like an adventure story as research findings are tracked down and humane and personable scientists are interviewed. The narration is pleasant, earnest but never harping. Well worth the credit on all counts.

13 of 13 people found this review helpful

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Enlightening/fascinating

Listened to it in a weekend. I’m a single mom with a four-year-old so that’s a very rare occurrence. Some of the information wasn’t new to me but I like the way that was put together. I think it was important for him to stress that SRI’s are not just a placebo, they’re a hurtful one with terrible side affects.

Nicely done Mr. Hari

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • aaron
  • los angeles, CA, United States
  • 01-30-18

A Magnificent Book by a Magnificent Author

This book and Hari's other work, "Chasing the Scream", are tremendous. They are highly compelling, a sheer joy to listen to, and totally unlike any other book in their respective genre/subject. While I wasn't necessarily interested in depression going in to this, Hari's storytelling ability and the fascinating research made this one for the ages.

I highly recommend it.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Best book on anxiety and depression

Why is everyone I know depressed and anxious?! This book spells it out, and makes sense!!!!!!
Tell the world!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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I cried

What did you love best about Lost Connections?

How personally familiar I felt with the Author's story. In so many ways we are all the same.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Lost Connections?

When Johann Hari walks us through his experience with losing a child. I've lost twin boys who were very premature and my wife and I three years later still weep on occasion. Hari goes on to ensure us that pain is our connection to their life. We don't want to lose that connection. We don't want to forget their names and their faces. It's human nature to feel sadness after experiencing loss many years after the occurrence despite what DSM thinks.

What about Johann Hari’s performance did you like?

When Johann shares his experience with loss you can almost hear the pain in his voice. It helped me connect with him. Also his narrating voice is spot on and he speaks clearly.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

Human Nature-A closer look into the human experience

Any additional comments?

Incredible. The words can't describe how thankful I am for Johann to share his story. To share insight. To ask questions and show his findings. And thank you for your podcast with Joe Rogan. Very informative. Thank you.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Life changing

Validating, well researched and compassionate. This is so important for those of us struggling in today’s disconnected world.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Incredible journey into mental health

Johann Hari has an intriguing style in presenting ideas through his own story, research and stories that ground the research. I wish I had been able to access this book in my training as a psychologist... I recommend it for everyone... it speaks to and about all of us.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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A Book Full of Truths that Resonate

To me, this book was the inspirational speech a leader gives to his troops before heading into battle. It fills me with fire and drive to make change in our world. Near the end when he talks about all the times big societal changes were derided as utopian, I wept. He’s so right. I wish everyone could read this book and feel so moved.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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Lost Connections

This was, hands down, the best, most enlightening book I have read in a very long time. I recommend it to everyone!

8 of 10 people found this review helpful

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Most important book I've ever read/listened to

If you deal with or have dealt with depression I can't recommend this book enough!

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 02-12-18

life changing

After struggling with depression for 30 years I feel I can dare to change.
Thank you. I have mild bipolar disorder and simply put the two together. I have a doctor's appointment and a positive attitude.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Jason
  • 02-08-18

this could and should change the world

thank you Johann for your diligence in putting together such comprehensible picture of the society surrounding depression and anxiety. this book is something everyone should read regardless of how your feel about your life and mental health. there are so many lessons to be learnt from so many of the beautiful stories within it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Annie crabtree
  • 02-04-18

Highly recommended.

I was wary of listening to this book as I am always wary of simplistic “answers” to depression and anxiety. But this was not that. It is a beautifully put together, well researched, considerate and open minded look at anxiety and depression. I found it interesting from an intellectual perspective, enlightening and reassuring from a personal perspective. Highly recommended.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Libby Davis
  • 01-29-18

Brilliant

Well worth a read / listen if you suffer from or have suffered with anxiety and or depression. At some points I felt somewhat despondent because my parameters to change are narrow but I'm glad I perservered. This book gives you hope, a new perspective and something to work with. Fantastic work.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Cliente Amazon
  • 01-27-18

fantastic book.

superb again from Johan Hari. well researched, absorbing and eye opening. would recommend to all people, even those who do not suffer with mental illness.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • miss elizabeth m oldham
  • 01-24-18

A must read!

As a mental health nurse who also experiences depression this has really made me think about both my personal and professional life. A huge eye opener!

7 of 13 people found this review helpful

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  • Rianna
  • 02-20-18

Brilliant!

I’ve not actually finished listening to this book yet, but wanted to say it’s brilliant! Really interesting, great narration as well (always prefer it when it’s read by the author). This is helping me get through my working day 😊

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  • Giffy B
  • 02-12-18

very insightful

This book is written with passion, insight and sensitivity. I read someone attacking the premise of this book, saying it's the equivalent to telling people to just pull themselves together. I can understand someone having a knee jerk reaction to having the way we understand our own and others depression, but this book doesn't simplify or disrespect those dealing with depression and anxiety.
I found this book to be uplifting and hopeful. It's well researched, and takes a unique look at these issues. I would recommend for anyone with anxiety and or depression and for anyone who loves someone with these conditions.

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  • nina
  • 02-11-18

A life-changing experience

This is simply the best book I’ve ever read. It asks all the right questions and it also provides many possible answers. I hope this will be a book that ultimately will change our society and the way we think about mental illness. Working as a psychologist myself, it felt like somebody finally provided solutions that will work for us.

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  • Valda Strause
  • 02-09-18

A great job has been done...

Thank you so much for the book. A superb job has been done. At some point in my life I had a thought and question at the same time.. is really a depression as it has been presented and perceived. I had a secong lasting idea that somehow it is not a chemical/ biochemical issue only... I am so grateful that there is some proves that my single a second long thought has not been a just an idea...
Thank you

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  • Anonymous User
  • 02-19-18

Fantastic concepts

I loved it, a great overview of the research and literature investigating depression and anxiety. As someone who has suffered from multiple mental health issues over time this was refreshing to hear. Highly recommend.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 02-13-18

Great stuff

Eye-opening look at depression and anxiety, easily as enthralling and well-researched as his last book.

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  • Sharon
  • 02-08-18

Amazing insight into depression and anxiety

Amazing insight to how we can help people with depression. Lots of info about studies done in this area. We need the whole community to help. Thanks Johann for looking into this area with much thought and research.
I couldn't stop listening this this book.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 02-07-18

One of those books that might change a life!

Searching for answers, this book articulates an accessible avenue in our reality of perceptions. Anyone looking within, has something to gain from this book. Our answers are looking out, at all of those around us.

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  • aleaf
  • 02-06-18

Wow!

Every chapter had a moment that actually gave me chills. This is SUCH an important book. I cannot more highly recommend it.

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  • Mike
  • 01-25-18

Johann Does it again

Love the book so much that i will buy it as a paperback too. The content is awesome, great stories. Johanns voice is way too soothing and hard to pay attention to specially when in a noisy environment. sorry johann, i loved your ted talk and interviews but your narration was a bit quiet. That is the only critique i have. Otherwise another masterpiece.