contentheading-icoFeedback – Starting A Career in Mental Health?


I asked an assortment of folks for feedback about this book — for general comments, likes and dislikes, and a quote for a potential publisher if they chose. The following were typical of the responses I received including the following treasured review graciously offered by a therapist/writer colleague.

Laura Mette LCSW, BCD Family Therapist – Private Practice
Not since Joy of Cooking have I been introduced to such panoply of resource. The informal presentation of recent ideas layered with the sage refreshers of common sense and established wisdom, draws the reader to feel delightfully confused about whether she is a voyeur, enjoying an intimate personal journey or reading a testimonial to a profession that has come a long way. “Everything but the Kitchen Sink” introduces many ideas never considered in the fairly dark ages of mental health education. Interestingly, it is the newer data (evolution, biology, neuropsychiatry, genetics,. . . ) that serves as a bridge across all study of human behavior in a field broader than most, and an art form missing it’s underpinning.
Polly Hart does a fine job of synthesizing a gargantuan number of issues. The book serves to enlighten, inspire and cause many a chuckle. An index of the “tools” would be very nice as, while perusing, one inevitably ends up ‘poking around’ other-wise. The often ‘bullet’ presentation suits my current reading style.
The drawings are fun and reflect the author’s sheer bias for the four legged. The journey documented is rich, and thoughtful, — an unusually inviting manual not only for the new, but the broken in.

Non Mental Health

Jill P. Beebe – Paralegal

A very interesting read even for the layperson. Would that we all could learn IF to speak, WHEN to speak and HOW to speak. This was very interesting!

Lucienne Bond Simon, PhD – Artist/ Art Educator, Calligrapher

This is a hugely helpful compilation of insights into the complexities of human behavior. Of tremendous interest to anyone who works with young people especially.
Christine M. Bird, Ph.D. – College English Instructor, Financial Planner
You’ve got more than one book here. Actually, this is not too bad a problem.
You already have enough material for the next seven or eight!
Gary Bodner MD – Seasoned Ob-Gyn — no doubt experienced in mental health
Enjoyed it. Should be required reading for all MDs, new parents, and couples!

Jane Beck – A Favorite Book Person
In this book Polly shares insights gained through her years of experience using humor and straightforward, easily accessible language. She writes as she speaks, and I can’t imagine a book that could provide more practical reassurance for newcomers to the field.

Mental Health Practitioners
Karen Tantillo, LCSW, Editor, “Clinical Page” E-newsletter for the GA Society of Clinical Social Work, Family Therapist – Private Practice
. . . an incredible resource not only for professionals entering the field, but for those wanting a comprehensive refresher course ! Loaded with up-to-date and practical information. . . full of personal stories and honestly shared anecdotes gathered from a lifetime career. It’s a must read!
Alisa Hamilton LCSW – Intake Unit, VA Hospital
I LOVE THE BOOK, it’s awesome how much thought you have put into new practitioners. It is material lacking in the field…. There is SO much information in the book. I Love the Best 100 – I see myself casually looking at it often to keep important things in mind. And I love the tone of the book. It’s very casual, but full of information—makes it fun to read. . . I love the pictures, quotes and stories and I love the part about slippage—one of those pieces of reality you remind us of. Thanks for the reference materials like the Tarasoff Case—and the stories at the end will provide comfort to those of us just starting out.
Sarah Penna, LCSW – University Hospital, Inpatient Neurology Unit
Congratulations ! What amazing work ! I began going through your book. — it is really wonderful. I would think that it would be an amazing tool for those undergoing supervision with you. I would have loved owning it and doing readings from it prior to my supervision sessions.
After completing school and internships, where learning is frequently in a vacuum, mental health practitioners find themselves needing more information. Everything But the Kitchen Sink meets that need. Conveying years of experience, thinking, and learning, Polly Hart has written a companion for all new mental health workers and a standby resource for seasoned practitioners.
Sarah Bonham LMSW – Rehab Hospital, Special PTSD/TBI Program
I am loving the book. It is just wonderful and also so useful. I love the content and I can hear Polly speaking through every word. Even with beginning capabilities and limitations, it has given me confidence that I can already provide a service and help someone even before completely having mastered my field.
Bill MacKinnon M.Ed. – Business Consultant, Human Resources, Former Private Practice LPC Mental Health Practitioner
The idea of the book is absolutely terrific ! It is practical, generalizes to other settings. Gives guidelines for professional development in experiential terms, in “stages”. Uses a foundation that gives moral/ethical direction. Acknowledges limits both professional & individual. Speaks of and legitimizes a broad practitioner base other than the traditional “How I grew up . . . understandings of psychiatry, psychology & social work.”
A Serious work in a light-hearted manner.

Educators/ Clinical Practice Supervisors
Betsy Gard PhD – Clinical Psychologist Adjunct Instructor, Medical School International Red Cross Disaster Consultant, Private Practice
Fabulous !
This book is chock-a-block full of wonderful recommendations, ideas, suggestions, commentaries, that are unique, intriguing, and valuable for the new as well as the mature mental health worker!
Jerry Brinegar PhD MFT – College Instructor, Private Practice
I loved it ! As you know I am very critical of most therapy related books. This book of yours has potential . . .I think you have a gem here. The flow is somewhat scattered but very thorough wherever it takes me in the reading. It also could be a Continuing Education Course.
The strength of this book is that it can function as a textbook (non-traditional) and/or a valuable resource for the practicing clinician. It is really well done . . I wish I could have written it myself ! ! ! !
Linda Weiskoff LCSW – Director and Clinical Supervisor , Heartwork Counseling Center Program for Psychotherapy Postgraduate Training
Polly Hart has helped us look at psychotherapy through a wide lens, allowing us to catch a glimpse of the breadth of our field. The result is a book replete with information that is interesting and useful to any therapist, novice or experienced. There are many jewels in this book that I’ll be sharing with my supervisees.
Jamie Bray LCSW – Master’s Program Adjunct Faculty
I think new graduates and current students will eat it up. First 5 – 10 year students will read it as well. Loved the mice and color pictures and the way the frivolity of them add a lighthearted quality to the book. Very useful information but not overly serious.
I liked it.

Geneva Wiggs LMSW – Mental Health Consultant, Adult Detention Center
As a supervisee of Polly, this book is filled with all of the things that I come to expect from Polly — humor, knowledge, great real life examples, and ideas that challenge my assumptions. This is a book I can return to time and again, learning a little something every time.
Anna Stephenson LMSW – Director, Guidance Dept. Charter Middle School (Immigrant and Spanish Speaking Students)
The tone is the best part of the book. The book is hilarious at some points and over-all does a great job of making mental health professionals feel better about what they don’t know and hopeful about their careers. There is a lot of really useful stuff in the book. The book feels very personal, and the best parts are the ones telling stories of the dilemmas of clients and their therapists.
Kristi Jones LMSW – Outpatient Substance Abuse
When I have a few minutes, I like to open the notebook and randomly read a “chunk” of something. Often, I then try to use what I read the same day. Overall I loved how you used little quotes, pictures, cartoons, website excerpts, evaluation tools, journal articles, and personal stories to pull the book together into a very interesting resource tool.
Michelle Panzarella LMSW – In-Home Family Therapist
One of my favorite sections was Mental Health Professionals – Taking Care of Yourself. No one told me or taught me these things when I first started out and I had to learn them on my own. . . . and it may seem silly but also a favorite were the pictures, cartoons, etc. They all had a point and are the types of things I remember. I also loved the essays in MORE THINGS CONSIDERED. I know I’ll be using this book.