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I'm Ok, You're Ok by Thomas Harris

I'm Ok, You're Ok (original 1970; edition 2012)

by Thomas Harris

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1,331145,832 (3.49)8
Title:I'm Ok, You're Ok
Authors:Thomas Harris
Info:Arrow (2012), Paperback, 288 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:personal development

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I'm OK, you're OK; a practical guide to transactional analysis by Thomas A. Harris (1970)



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Showing 1-5 of 13 (next | show all)
Another good book about how it is possible for couples to have a reasonable set of rules for negotiating with each other. It was some help for me and showed me of the bad techniques employed by ex-wife number two. ( )
1 vote DinadansFriend | Dec 21, 2016 |
A National Bestseller focusing on self-esteem issues and reciprocal acceptance of individuals with others. The first step in loving someone is loving yourself!
  mcmlsbookbutler | Dec 7, 2016 |
The main criticism of the book lies in the fact that it misrepresents by oversimplifying transactional analysis. It was my introduction to the subject and managed to get me thinking about many of the roles we choose. ( )
  dbsovereign | Jan 26, 2016 |
I just can't take this book seriously. The comparisons of personality to math equations is just too much. If my husband were to read this book (he's working on a PhD in math) he'd throw this book across the room. ( )
  pussreboots | Sep 25, 2014 |
About fourteen billion years ago when I was a young child, I remember my mother had this book on my parents’ bookshelf. I remember three things about it. Firstly, it was one of the few titles on that memorable shelf that I could understand at that age. I also remember the strong vivid colours of the cover, so redolent of the 70s. The final thing I remember is that it was definitely my mother’s book and not my father’s. I think in later years, although my memory is scratched from my furious efforts to erase it, in one of her many drunken rages, she actually claimed that, for her, it was her Bible.

I avoided the book for decades not because of what it held inside it – I had no real idea – but rather because of who recommended it. If my mother claimed to live by it, I reasoned, then I might well end up something like the relational mess she represented to me.

That I did not read this book until my 43rd year is one of many tragic things about my childhood – albeit a minor tragedy in comparison to the ones that almost prevented me entering adulthood. I should have read this book very many years ago. In fact, along with Of Human Bondage by Somerset Maugham, it’s a book I will be buying for the next youth I know that reaches the age of 18.

Not that I think any of us will really understand it then. Anyone who understands it at that tender age is hardly in need of it, in fact. But it’s a book that should accompany you as you make your way through life, form relationships, meet people, encounter those you cannot fathom, those who fascinate and those who you really wish hadn’t been born. This book goes a long way to explaining why people behave as they do. Now that I’ve made it to my 5th decade, a lot of it makes sense.

This book is probably the most successful self-help book in history. It presents a very simple relational model and exemplifies it both through author created dialogue and illustrations from the author’s own patients.

The model is based on assuming that we can take one of three positions vis a vis another: Parent, Adult or Child. Ideally, we’d all be Adults. But, mainly because of our upbringing, we tend to default to either Parent or Child when we deal with others. And, because they are also defaulting to one of those, this can trigger certain responses in us too.

The Child tends to be paranoid, insecure, uncertain and emotionally volatile as it falls victim to circumstance and the manipulation of others. The Parent tends to be domineering, authoritative, holier than thou and an emotionally sealed box impervious to the situation of others.

Whenever someone is responding in the Adult position, they are communicating I’M OK – YOU’RE OK. There are no hidden messages, people act genuinely and there is no fear either generated or perceived. Whenever someone responds from the Child position, they assume the position of I’M NOT OK – YOU’RE OK. From the Parent position, the message is I’M OK – YOU’RE NOT OK.

Suffice to say that if you find someone hard to get on with and/or others find you hard to get on with, Harris’ book is for you. Pick it up and, shortly into the descriptive sections of each state, you’ll be calling the wife over and saying, ‘Listen. Who does this sound like?’ Just make sure it doesn’t sound like her or you’ll regret it!

There are sections that were less useful to me. I don’t have kids and so the two chapters that dealt with that were a bit pointless for me. And at the very end, he decides that his theories might hold the secret to solving all the world’s woes. Seemed a bit far-fetched to me but then it was the 1970s and even guitarists in skin-tight lycra were okay then.

Overall, I’m very glad I read this. I wish I’d read it about 20 years ago. Now that I have done, I feel OK though! ( )
1 vote arukiyomi | Nov 26, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 13 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (6 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Harris, Thomas A.primary authorall editionsconfirmed
Brender, IrmelaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kober, HainerTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Swildens, ElisabethTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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In recent years there have been many reports of a growing impatience with psychiatry .....
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Book description

"Happy childhood" notwithstanding, most of us are living out the NOT OK feelings of a defenseless CHILD wholly dependent on others for stroking and care. By the third year of life, says Dr. Harris, most of us have made the unconscious decision I'M NOT OK - YOU'RE OK. This negative Lire Position, shared by successful and unsuccessful people alike, contaminates our rational ADULT potential - leaving us vulnerable to the inappropriate, emotional reactions of our CHILD and the uncritically learned behavior programmed into our PARENT.

In personal Transactions, NOT OK people resort to harmful withdrawal, rituals, activities, pastimes, and games for getting needed strokes while avoiding painful intimacy with people they see as OK.

Dr. Thomas A Harris' pioneering work in Transactional Analysis has had a fundamental impact on our understanding of interpersonal behavior. IN showing us how to make the conscious decision I'M OK - YOU'RE OK, he has helped millions of despairing people find the freedom to change, to liberate their ADULT effectiveness, and to achieve joyful intimacy with the people in their lives.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0060724277, Paperback)

Transactional Analysis delineates three observable ego-states (Parent, Adult, and Child) as the basis for the content and quality of interpersonal communication. "Happy childhood" notwithstanding, says Harris, most of us are living out the Not ok feelings of a defenseless child, dependent on ok others (parents) for stroking and caring. At some stage early in our lives we adopt a "position" about ourselves and others that determines how we feel about everything we do. And for a huge portion of the population, that position is "I'm Not OK -- You're OK." This negative "life position," shared by successful and unsuccessful people alike, contaminates our rational Adult capabilities, leaving us vulnerable to inappropriate emotional reactions of our Child and uncritically learned behavior programmed into our Parent. By exploring the structure of our personalities and understanding old decisions, Harris believes we can find the freedom to change our lives.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:11:01 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

An introduction to transactional analysis discusses the theoretical basis and applied methodology of a unique system of psychiatry, designed to effect positive behavioral change through effective group therapy and an enhancement of one's positive self-image and self- esteem.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 3 descriptions

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