From grapefruit diets to indoor rock climbing, yoga to the analyst's couch, health is an American obsession. We're willing to spend millions of dollars each year to ensure our physical and emotional well-being. But, Stanton argues, we ignore "the moral realm." Without a healthy, well-functioning conscience, a flourishing sense of right and wrong, we will be unhappy and "morally unhealthy."

The book includes discussions of empathy, guilt, and self-esteem, looking at each in terms of developing a virtuous conscience.

For a psychologist, there is something rather unreflective and glib about Shelton's scolding to just be good. But there are clearly some important lessons here as well, about throwing out the Nikes and looking inward a little more. Shelton's message that we should give our consciences the same workout that we do our abdomens, biceps, and quadrilaterals is well taken.

Think of it as Pilates for the conscience.

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