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Reviews and Testimonials

"It's Not Always Depression" should be a foundational and mandatory piece of the curriculum of every school district in our country.  Teachers, coaches, and administrators are simply not equipped to address the necessary emotional regulation of students, and at no point in their education are students ever armed with the skills to recognize, be with, and manage their own emotions with curiosity and compassion.  So many of society's ills at large (as well as our own internal conflicts) could be safely and productively addressed if this book were on every bookshelf in America.  I cannot more strongly recommend this book for anyone and everyone.  In the words of Dr. Diana Fosha, "The bottom line is this: if you're a human, I recommend that you read this book."

- Damon Parker, High School teacher and coach, Kansas

"If you were raised in a family where certain core emotions - like anger or sadness - were discouraged or shamed - then you are prone to have other emotional and psychological issues, like depression. This book clearly explains the connection and provides the invaluable tool of the Change Triangle, whose corners include defenses, inhibitory emotions and core emotions. The book teaches you how to identify where you are and how to accept and work with the various emotions, particularly in their physical manifestation. I have already used some of the techniques with success to address anxiety. A key book that deserves attention." 

-Amazon Reviewer, Vine Voice, Bronx Book Nerd, Bronx, NY, 10/19/21


“Your work has transformed the way I conduct psychotherapy. The Change Triangle generates such clarity and coherence within the overwhelming process of regulating emotions. Also, I’m grateful to have a model that conceptualizes emotions as wisdom- so important. Thank you for your work! I lead all my clients to your book and the language of your work is a golden thread in our therapy. Not to mention the impact it’s had on my own life. Grateful!”

-Whitney Dyer, LCSW Dallas


"Your book is excellent! One of the best psychology/self-help books I have ever read and has already helped me a lot. I can tell it speaks from effective experience and authority on the subject." -Jeffrey Li, Business Man


"This book is one of those life-changing books that I believe every human on the planet should read. I loved it so much, after I read the book, I bought the digital version and the audiobook . This book needs to be read and reread a second and third time until the content is digested and settled into your consciousness. I can’t rave enough about this book and I urge you to go out and get yourself a copy. Easily one of my top three books I’ve ever read! I strongly believe it is essential reading for everyone and anyone who wants to live an emotionally healthy and fulfilling life. I can’t thank the author @hilaryjacobshendel enough for writing this book"

-Larry @lavidamango via Instagram


"Since I discovered the Change Triangle a few months ago, I often use it in my therapeutic work and supervisory. The schema of the Triangle with two corners on the top, which represent defense behavior and/or inhibitory emotions, and the third corner on the bottom, which represents our core emotions, is very clear, understandable and useful. Particularly strong invitation to change is the state of openheartedness, to which one can come with touch with him/herself, his/her deepest feelings and compassion for him/herself. I also use the Change Triangle model in supervisions - to get a better insight into the dynamics of the client, to help the supervisee to gain a better insight into him/herself or within our interpersonal dynamic, or to get a clearer insight in my intrapsychic dynamic as a supervisor. Learning about where I am in the triangle opens the better way of self-disclosure, real connection with my supervisee and mutual affect regulation. In the training of novice supervisors I encourage the use and different ways of applying the tool  of the Change Triangle to their practice."-Tatjana Rozic, PhD, social worker, relational family therapist and supervisor; The Family Study and Research Centre, Ljubljana, Slovenia.


"Congratulations on your book ‘It’s Not Always Depression’. For me it transcends the genre of ’self help’ books.

I had some prior insight into AEDP but was skeptical it may be helpful for me. The intense emotions and memories that arose during my initial reading after years of therapy have led me to believe I am wrong. I now have hope that with the right support I can heal emotionally and alleviate the continual exhausting analysis and attempted intellectual appreciation of my emotions, thoughts and behaviors in an effort to manage better day to day. Complimenting an author is a first for me, as is reading a self help book from cover to cover, let alone picking it up to reread. I am profoundly affected by the knowledge you have shared with such compassion and in an approachable manner. Thank you." - Anonymous in Australia

“Your book is incredibly insightful as a road map for beginning to pinpoint and understand emotions and their source.  How common it is for most of us to ruminate or push forward without understanding the source of one's feelings or actions.  This book is particularly powerful as you offer a visual map, the change triangle, to organize the diagnosis and source of feelings and corresponding actions.” -Tom


“It’s Not Always Depression…” delivers a very important and substantial contribution to self-help books on dealing with life challenges that I am confident will be of great help to so many people, both in therapy communities and, most especially, outside of them. I’ve had the good fortune of previewing an advanced copy of this book and I can vouch for it being an especially clear, coherent, accessible and relatable primer on the value of getting to know and getting more comfortable with our emotions. Using the Change Triangle in day to day life really is a passport to wellbeing and life satisfaction. The author's writing style is approachable, engaging, fun and motivating. For all these reasons, this book is going to be a top, go-to recommendation for my clients, colleagues, friends and family." -Benjamin Lipton, LCSW


"This gets two thumbs up from me. It is incredibly well-organized which is helpful. The key thing about this book, for me, is that this is about working with yourself. This isn't a book to get to learn how to help a friend. It's about how to help yourself. Now once you've done the work, it would be a great book to tell a friend about." -Arwen in N.M.

"This practical and clearly written self-help book written by a gifted therapist helps the reader learn the incredible importance of understanding and accepting our core emotions and the variety of ways we use defenses and other emotions (anxiety, guilt, and shame) to protect us (even though they cause us pain as well).

It is filled with examples from her personal life and her work with patients to help you understand the importance of discovering and accepting your emotional responses and how to use that knowledge to better navigate your life."

-Lawrence Drell, M.D.

“It’s not Always Depression is the most innovative and well-grounded self-help title on depression and beyond I’ve read in years.The Change Triangle may prove an efficient therapeutic tool for both patients and psychotherapists to combat psychological problems by reconnecting the self to its core emotions and basic physical reactions. Moreover, Hilary Jacobs Hendel’s writing is lucid and accessible, which makes her method as clear and practical as you can get in self-help titles.”- Mateusz Chaberski, Acquisitions Editor at Jagiellonian University Press in Poland

The way you talk about the change triangle has made a real difference for me and a lot of my clients and colleagues. Your clarity takes the sting out of the way we (people) get stuck in defensive feelings and/or frustration with feeling parts that carry negative feelings. Through your eyes, one can begin to see one's relationship with the many characters (parts and people in one's life) with more compassion." - Doris Wolz-Cohen, MFT

"Through empathetic, refreshingly honest and visceral patient studies, a thorough breakdown of HJH’s work with AEDP and a collection of quizzes, tests, experiments and thought exercises, HJH implores us to rediscover our core emotions using the simple method in the form of the Change Triangle. I too was slightly dubious about this subject at the start of reading It’s Not Always Depression but as HJH hits her stride and begins to impart some much needed wisdom about our emotional needs and how to work towards restoring the flow of our core emotions, I became seriously impressed. Yeah it is not the neuroscience treat that I envisioned but it is only a step away from it. The Change Triangle is made up of defensive behaviour, inhibitory emotions and core emotions. Each step leads to deeper acknowledgements of our emotional brain and how it affects our bodies." - Review by Always Trust in Books

"Your book is phenomenal. I have started a new program called Life Renewal to overcome substance abuse and other addictions. It is all emotion based and about changing belief systems and feeling awareness! Love to discuss with you."

-Scott Steindorff, Film and Television Producer and Recovery Advocate

"I’ve just started reading your book, and I have to say I have really struggled to find any extensive reading material that has really resonated with me like your work has done thus far. I have tried to find a lot of books and online sources on emotional psychology and majority all run from the purely opposite perspective of emotional intelligence and learning to manage emotions when they are too overwhelming and begin to interfere with your life. This concept of The Change Triangle has been the first to feel relevant to me and even the first activity of identifying my defences has had me reflecting on interactions recently where I struggled to process my emotions and to actually help me recognise the anxiety behind these defences that I don’t even quite allow myself to experience. It’s been amazing to then just look at these recent interactions and emotional defences I have enforced and trying to ask myself questions about the emotions I was feeling and acknowledging them. 

Like I said earlier, I have barely scraped the surface of your book just yet but I did watch your talk early last year at the Strand bookstore with Dr Courtney Rennicke on the release of your book and I felt obliged to write this and express how comforting it is to find something that relates so well and to praise you in what you aimed to achieve in an accessible and relatable display of this theory of the Change triangle. I look forward to see what work comes from you in the future and wish you all the best."
-Harriet, Australia

“This is a handbook for being human. You would be hard pressed to find anyone who wouldn’t benefit from reading this book. An easy and insightful read on acknowledging, honouring and processing emotions in a healthy way that helps heal depression, anxiety and shame. It changed my life from the very first chapter.”
Amazon review, Nancy, Australia

"OMG, after only listening to the first few hours, it has changed my practice…I have a new excitement about my work and my ability to really help people. The change triangle makes so much sense and puts into words brilliantly what I have been trying to do with my clients for years.  This is so helpful to me as a tool to pass on to my clients and to help me as a therapist to explain the process in a way that takes the mystery out of therapy.  It feels like the perfect blend of theory to me and it has reinvigorated me in my work.  Thank you so much for this." -Michelle Dawson, PsyD

“As you move toward vitality and authenticity your ability to tolerate challenges will grow. Pain, anxiety, and fear will still arise, but emotions won’t be as debilitating or scary as they were before. We are not powerless to change or at the mercy of our minds,” writes Hendel.

Through powerful examples of her work with patients, highly relatable language, and erudite clinical wisdom, Hendel encourages readers to look beyond what we think is depression to uncover our true, openhearted and authentic selves." -Psych Central 

To read the full review, click here.

"The author’s unrestrained conviction aside, the congenial voice, sound advice, and self-help/textbook approach to the subject are engaging." -Publishers Weekly

"I loved it ... I have drawn my own picture of the change triangle. Fascinating and useful."
-Cathy Rentzenbrink, author of The Last Act of Love and A Manual for Heartache

"Hendel reveals herself to be a passionate and effective healer by relevant clear case examples that give a most enlightening portrait of this therapeutic method. Equally disarmingly she is able to translate the method in ways that individuals can use for themselves. This is achieved by the case examples and exercises that readers can practice using the Change Triangle. The Change Triangle embodies many complex psychotherapeutic ideas that Hendel has distilled into an easily understood self-help approach. This is the genius of this book, converting formal psychotherapeutic strategies into a self-help toolbox. I learned a lot from this book. It deepened my appreciation for AEDP and I enjoyed and learned from Hendel's canny grasp of this method. I also found the book therapeutic by working through some of the exercises. In particular I found the section dealing with the inhibitory emotions of shame and guilt outstanding. Shame is very common and often a very toxic inhibitory emotion that can be really difficult to deal with and overcome. Hendel's discussion and demonstration of working with shame in therapy is powerful and healing.
This book is not only an excellent self-help resource for anyone dealing with powerful emotions such as grief, sadness, fear, anger, guilt, shame, and anxiety, it is of great value in educating new and experienced therapists in the application of emotion focused experiential therapies."

Alan Eppel Professor of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy Supervisor
Department of Psychiatry & Behavioural Neurosciences,
McMaster University, Hamilton ,Ontario


“The Change Triangle has had a positive impact on me and my patients. Just the other day I was doing a session with a mother and her son. I had already reviewed the Change Triangle with the son. While I was helping the mom get in touch with her underlying sadness, she shifted back into anger. I pointed out the shift and then explained The Change Triangle to her. At one point, her son interrupted since he knows the triangle, and she shushed him with, 'Be quiet, I want to hear this, I like this Change Triangle.’ The Change Triangle is something we all need to learn.- Carline Napolitano, LCSW

"I have read your 'It’s not always depression.'
Your "The Change Triangle " helped me so much.
That made me much easier to teach doctors or patients.
Above all, the love and passion you showed me in your book touched me. As you realize, I am not good at English, but it was worth to read. I am going to learn more from your web site. I would like to express my greatest gratitude for your contribution to Japanese people who suffer for psychological problems and who are going to help them. I am quite sure that so many people will be solved by your dedication. The Change Triangle technology has great power to make revolutional
change for the doctors who see the patient's mind.
I have proved it already by teaching your technology to the doctors who work at my clinic.

-Hiroyuki Ide, Japan

"Hilary, Thank you for your hard work. I have been listening to you every second I can this weekend bouncing off ideas for my group. I was given info about you Friday. I work with adolescent addiction and mental health and this will revolutionize my weekly group. I am an OT so use a lot of body techniques but this is perfect for the true academic lefties we see. I have such difficulty shifting them out of left brain when in outpatient at that age. This is a perfect tool which i will introduce tomorrow night. Thank you!!!!" -Lou, Canada

"I am currently listening to your audiobook and it’s definitely in my top most influential and helpful books."

-Maria Spiotta Dentino, CAI, Promoting Change and Inspiration since 1979.

"Hilary's book is such a great explanation of how to deal with your emotions in healthy ways and in doing so, we can become more integrated, authentic and whole. Her description of "The Change Triangle" is a concise takeaway that I think about almost daily--how letting ourselves feel emotions is healthy rather than moving away from emotions, illustrated as living in the bottom point of a triangle rather than moving toward a defensive corner or a shame/anxiety corner. Emotional education is sorely needed and I am so grateful for all the education Hilary provided in such an accessible way!!"

-Anna Schmonzie

"I have been reading your book – LIFE changing.  Thank you for writing it and sharing these concepts with the world. As I was reading your work, I realized how beneficial the concept of the change triangle would be to help our society have better conversations in this polarized world and thus would help the readers of my book. I am hoping you would be open to an interview to be part of my book which is being published next year by Random House Penguin. The book is called Persuasion – and is focused on helping to have better conversations in a polarized world.  A big focus of the book is on empathy – and how we need to understand the others perspectives and emotions if we are going to be able o change hearts and minds.  It seems to me that the change triangle would be a great way to help understand how to have a better conversation when emotions run high."

-Lee Carter, NYC, President, Maslansky + Partners

"It is such an honor for me to “officially” intro my partner Kylie, to you Hilary. The irony of course being that I would not have discovered your work when I did without the lovely heart and mind of my partner, who absolutely raves about your book and, as I’ve shared with you Hilary, considers one of the best books she consumed in some time… and let me tell you, that means a lot as she consumes more books than a library. :)"

-Mark Groves, relationship coach, creator of Create the Love workshops, and the Mark Groves Podcast

"This book has improved my work, relationships and my internal world. What a tremendous relief to be provided an understandable framework for recognizing core emotions and moving into the openhearted state.
Forever grateful to the author and researchers."
-HatsWayne, Amazon review

"My most helpful self-help book. Great for anyone looking for expression of their True Self. I'm 54 yo and all my life, SOMETHING has always held me back from being my true self. I could never figure out what that was until I read this book. CHANGED MY LIFE and by osmosis, everyone I come in contact with. If I were taught this in high school, not only my life but also the lives of everyone I've ever had any kind of relationship with would have benefited from it. There is no greater gift then the gift of true, honest self expression and acceptance. This book is helping me get there. Thank you." -Sammy

"One of the best self-help/psychology books I have ever read!! I'm shocked it's not more popular. Maybe the title / marketing is subpar. The book is full of good information that actually works in real life." -Lily, Amazon Review

"I liked it the first time but loved it the second time. It takes complex issues and simplifies for most people to understand. It can also be very deep when you really apply it. I think everyone should read/listen to it! Schools need to teach it in HS too!" -Doublemom, Amazon Review

"First of all, thank you for writing It’s Not Always Depression!  Your book changed the way I live, it changed the way my husband lives, and it has changed the way I work with my patients.  So many people are so grateful for your work Hilary" -Jacob, San Diego, CA

"Recognizing from experience, both personally and professionally, and the compelling nature of the literature on the power of working with emotion, I boldly left a successful leadership coaching business recently to start the Accelerated Relational Performance Group.  This group (ARPG) is designed for leaders who want to take their relational and business performance to the next level. We meet once a month for a full day over the course of six months. Hilary's Change Triangle is one of the cornerstone's on which the program has been developed. It has been pure gold. Leaders in the ARPG program are experiencing more meaningful interactions, not only in the group as they learn about their emotions and the Change Triangle, but they are taking their new skills to their business, families, and other important relationships including their intimate relationships with their spouses and partners.  I am seeing businesses, families and relationships  growing and being transformed.  I am grateful for Hilary's vision to develop the Change Triangle for everyone to use. Learning about emotions benefits everyone."

-Bobbi Blain, MS, LCPC, Billings, Montana

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