Item description for Compelled to Control: Recovering Intimacy in Broken Relationships by J. Keith Miller...
Overview In broken business and personal relationships, the underlying cause is the "persistent, irresistible urge to control other people and situations". In this insightful, readable book, Miller identifies the origins of this control "disease", describes in detail how it infiltrates our lives, producing co-dependency and other dysfunctions, and makes specific suggestions on how to repair the problem and heal its emotional damage.
this exciting book breaks new ground in identifying the major cause of relationship failure as the need to control - in marriages and families, with friends and within organizations. "Compelled to Control" reflects Miller's sweeping knowledge as a thinker, a speakers and a writer. Going far beyond "how to control a controller," Miller speaks from the perspective of experience and personal change.
"When a controller has the sense of life being out of control," he says, "he or she reacts with an even stronger need to 'get things under control'...usually with the negative result of alienating the people who matter the most." Miller tackles this deeply denied, seemingly universal phenomenon with compassion and offers a way out of the dilemma. He tells who to approach broken relationships in new ways, leaving behind destructive patterns of perfectionism and self-justification.
Keith miller is one of those rare writers who can combine intellectual acuity with deeply felt insight born of his own struggle for authenticity."Compelled to Control" is an impressive contribution to the literature of recovery and personal change.
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J. Keith Miller, the author of A Hunger for Healing, is a popular speaker and conference leader, and author. Among his best-selling books are The Taste of New Wine and Hope in the Fast Lane. He is also the coauthor of Facing Codependence.
J. Keith Miller currently resides in Austin, in the state of Texas.
Reviews - What do customers think about Compelled to Control: Recovering Intimacy in Broken Relationships?
Wonderful and Disturbing At Once, Prepare To Be Changed Dec 20, 2008
I loved this book, although it was extremely tough to admit that I may have anything in common with addicts, since I am the closest thing to a teetotaler there is.
It was through this book I learned what I think is the key to most Western psychological problems. I have subsequently written about my personal discoveries on my website.
Yes, I read many other reviews complaining about the fact that it's written in 12 Step Language, and at first I felt this was a challenge too. I have since come to believe that Western culture in general and U.S. 'culture' specifically suffer from an absolute epidemic of Control Disease.
It's also made me realize that I would not have been able to create intimacy in my life without understanding my own controlling behaviors. This understanding has led me to be able to assist my lifecoaching clients more fully. Much appreciation to J. Keith Miller for writing this book.
Changed my life Apr 19, 2008
This is one of the best books that I have ever read - period. It changed my life. It's on my list of "Top 10" near the top.
If you're convinced that you're NOT a control freak then you really, really, really need to read this book. If you really aren't, no harm done and you'll be empowered to counter and help the control freaks in your life.
If you are and know it, you will have a new, better life if you will gain and apply the wisdom contained here.
Other books that you might consider in this vein:
Safe People: How to Find Relationships That Are Good for You and Avoid Those That Aren't
The Control Freak
Love the Life You Live: Three Secrets to Feeling Good Deep Down in Your Soul (Unabridged)
A Hunger for Healing: The Twelve Steps as a Classic Model for Christian Spiritual Growth
Nine Things You Simply Must Do: To Succeed in Love and Life
Changes That Heal: How to Understand the Past to Ensure a Healthier Future
Loving People: How to Love and Be Loved
Hiding from Love Workbook
Don't waste your time! Sep 27, 2007
I picked up the book from the library after I read the reviews on this page and started reading it during my lunch break. After 45 minutes reading I brought it back to the library. I wanted to quit after 10 minutes already but I decided to give it a chance and read about 40 pages. Here are the reasons why I finally gave it back without finishing it: 1. It is more an autobiography than a scientific book. The author is not able to generalize his own personal experience in order to make his statements more abstract and therefore applicable. This is, btw, true for a lot of those psychological advice books and I find it very annoying to get drawn into the author's personal life instead of reading a scientific study based on thorough research. 2. I agree with "Concerned Citizen". The references to God in almost each chapter are redundant. I almost found myself pushed into Church in order to get rid of my control issue. 3. It does not make sense to me to start that book with the 12 step program for alcoholics. There may be a connection between alcoholics and control freaks but I don't think you should reduce the control issue to comparing it to addiction. I am aware that my review reveals a good portion of the control freak in me but that's just evidence that the book is NOT "useful for everyone struggling with a spiritual malady" (as stated in one of the other eager reviews).
Catching up with Keith Miller and his Late thoughts on Spiritual Development Jul 9, 2007
Keith Miller became significant in my young adulthood when I encountered his book "A Taste of New Wine." My main recollection thirty years later is that I appreciated his willingness to talk about ideas that were pressing but neglected in my religious upbringing. His voice or tone or writing was comfortingly familiar even though his courage and insight were exceptional.
In the intervening years I qualified myself to be a participant in a 12-step recovery program. I'd not followed Miller's career, so was surprised when my sponsor recommended his later book, "Compelled to Control." In this book he generalizes from his own experience in 12-step recovery programs. As before, I liked his way of writing and his willingness to talk about matters that are mostly ignored in my community of faith. I was less than half way through "Compelled" before I was online to buy his earlier "A Hunger for Healing" and "Facing Codependence" which he co-authored with Pia Melody and his wife, Andrea Wells Miller.
These books will be useful to anyone struggling with an underlying spiritual malady that expresses itself in addiction, compulsive behaviors, a need to control everything and everyone, or a idolatrous usurpation of the place of God.
Those familiar with the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous will recall the fourth chapter titled "We Agnostics." I've often wished the book included a chapter titled "We Believers." Miller has satisfied my wish. His books are for people of faith like me who, contrary to our expectations, have experiences that bring us into 12-step recovery programs. But there's more.
Those who have studied the history of Alcoholics Anonymous will also recall the temptation the founders faced in the early days to expand the scope of their mission to apply the program of recovery far beyond the realm of alcoholism and chemical dependency. They could envision their ideas being the impetus for a general, worldwide spiritual awakening. With great discipline, the organization's leaders reaffirmed their commitment to a single purpose, achieving sobriety and helping others do the same. Miller is not so constrained. He takes up where the AA founders stopped. He endorses the 12-step program as a general spiritual discipline that is almost unique in it's suitability for modern people living in a secular world. In the way that he is uniquely gifted, he describes for all of us, not just the chemically dependent, how to put spiritual principles into concrete practice.
Miller earned his credentials to write with authority in this realm in the worst possible way, as he generously discloses in his books. "Compelled to Control" is a call to return to reality for all of us who have wandered off. The book has become an important tool in my own work of spiritual awakening.
12-step recovery program for controllers Dec 7, 2005
The author applies typical 12-Step recovery program methodology to getting over the compulsion to control people. I read this book to learn more about someone who I thought might have control issues and it gave me great insight into that person and myself. I am not planning on doing the 12-step program so the latter portion of the book was a tiresome read, but if you have a severe control problem, the entire book would be pertinent to recovering from the issue. The references to God are probably no different than any of the other 12-step recovery programs.