This year marks the 70th iteration of recognizing May as Mental Health Awareness Month. Started in 1949 by Mental Health America, the month marks an opportunity for education, outreach and for us to have honest conversations about something that affects approximately 1 in 5 adults in a given year in the U.S.  Furthermore, approximately 1 in 25 adults in the U.S. experiences a serious mental illness in a given year that substantially interferes with or limits one or more major life activities. That said, mental health is a big deal that impacts so many of us and also affects situations my practice focuses on, like how people structure their estate plans.

In recognition of Mental Health Awareness Month, I’m adding First, We Make the Beast Beautiful: A New Journey Through Anxiety, by Sarah Wilson to the GoFisch Book Club bookshelf.

May book club

Wilson pulls the book from the years she devoted to researching anxiety and her own personal experience with it. From her own exploration into the topic she crafted a new outlook on life that actually involves embracing anxiety, not trying to suppress it or run from it. It’s not so much a memoir or self-help book, it’s a bit more like a guide from a friend who has been there before. Fortunately, the author doesn’t forego attractive rhetoric for practical tips. I also liked that she pulls in the knowledge from a range of voices from philosophers, to mental health experts, to famous people with anxiety.

I would love to hear your thoughts on this book and take your recommendations for future titles. Shoot me an email at or give me a call at 515-371-6077.