Books and Ghostwriting

Ghostwriting and Co-Author

Dr. Kolakowski works with Gotham Ghostwriters, an agency for ghostwriting memoirs, non-fiction, speeches, and co-author projects with public figures. When collaborating for a book, she works to build a strong partnership, to ask the right questions, and to put into words your vision for the book.

Personal Books

Shannon Kolakowski’s When Depression Hurts Your Relationship helps readers who struggle with depression recognize the ways depression can affect their relationship and teaches the skills needed to foster a strong, loving relationship with their partner.

Single, Shy, and Looking for Love presents mindfulness, acceptance, and values-based techniques from acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) to help shy singles explore what they want in a romantic partner, cope with the anxiety and fear that can arise on a date, and develop the skills needed to create a long-lasting, intimate relationship.

The books are available wherever books are sold, and online at Amazon, Barnes and NobleiTunesTarget, and Walmart.  

Reader reviews at



About When Depression Hurts Your Relationship

When you are feeling depressed, having a loving, supportive relationship with your partner can help you in your path towards healing and creating a happier life. But often depression interferes with your relationship, distancing you from your partner during your time of need.

If you are in the midst of depression, you may worry that you aren’t good enough for your partner, or become irritable around them. You may even push them away when you feel like your emotions are beyond your control. In addition, your sense of intimacy may diminish, and your sex life may fizzle as a result of fatigue, medications and feeling disconnected from your partner. The hard truth is that feelings of isolation, worthlessness, and tiredness can all take a hefty toll on your love life. But you don’t have to let depression be the demise of your relationship. Using an integrative approach based in mindfulness, interpersonal psychotherapy (IPT), acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), and cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), When Depression Hurts Your Relationship offers practical skills to help readers with depression reignite intimacy with their partners.If you suffer from depression, this book is a must-read to help keep your romantic relationship healthy, exciting, and rewarding for you both.

Begin your relationship transformation right now. Use this excerpt and downloadable exercise from the book to help you foster self-compassion, overcome perfectionism, and learn to seek growth and challenge within yourself and your relationship.


When Depression Hurts Your Relationship is an outstanding book, packed with easy to read information and strategies that will help couples navigate the stormy waters of depression. Shannon Kolakowski comprehensively tackles how depression negatively roots itself in the bonds of a partnership and offers solutions that are gentle, frank, and straightforward. One of the most wonderful things about Kolakowski’s writing is that she delicately weaves science and research in such a way that it doesn’t overwhelm the reader. Instead, When Depression Hurts Your Relationship empowers, informs, and inspires with hope and encouragement.”

Deborah Serani, PsyD, psychologist and award-winning author of Living with Depression


“Kolakowski has written a wonderfully practical book to help people dealing with depression and struggling to preserve their relationships. She integrates her psychology expertise in very simple and easy-to-follow ways. From attachment to coping styles Kolakowski addresses the psychological aspects that contribute to hurting the relationship when depression comes in and offers practical and easy exercises to break away from the hurting pattern. The book is a great resource not only for people dealing with depression in their relationship, but also for any couple wanting to improve their communication style, add mindfulness in the relationship, and gain sexual intimacy. As a professor and psychologist working with couples, I intend to recommend this book to my psychology students and couples as an easy read and addendum to clinical work.”

Dinelia Rosa, PhD, president-elect of the New York State Psychological Association, director of the Dean Hope Center for Educational & Psychological Services at Columbia University, and adjunct associate professor at the clinical psychology program at Teachers College, Columbia University


“Depression is one of the greatest obstacles in relating to others or yourself. When Depression Hurts Your Relationship is a wonderful remedy for making sure that this doesn’t happen to you or your relationship. It is the right book at the right time, and will help millions of people prevent depression from getting in the way of living happily ever after.”

Mark Goulston, MD, author of Just Listen: Discover the Secret to Getting Through to Absolutely Anyone


“If you are depressed, new hope and new life awaits, thanks to the book When Depression Hurts Your Relationship. In it, you’ll find a clear, compassionate, and comprehensive guide, filled with hands-on activities and exercises to steer you through the morass of depression and stagnation that’s separating you from your partner. Thanks to Kolakowski’s invaluable resource, you can rebuild your connection with your partner to be stronger than ever, and find comfort in each other’s arms once again.”

Sheri Meyers, PsyD, licensed marriage and family therapist and author of Chatting or Cheating: How to Detect Infidelity, Rebuild Love and Affair-Proof Your Relationship


“In this new book, Dr. Shannon Kolakowski shows a deep and compassionate understanding of the ways in which depression shows up in our most cherished relationships. Based on research and Dr. Kolakowski’s clinical experience, this book is accessible to real people with real relationship goals. Packed with reflective exercises and concrete tools, When Depression Hurts Your Relationship will empower you (and your partner) to create a healthy and loving bond.”

Heidi Reeder, PhD, author of Commit to Win, and associate professor of communication at Boise State University


“When Depression Hurts Your Relationship’ provides readers with scientifically-grounded yet accessible knowledge that they can practically apply in their lives. It’s a valuable contribution to the genre of science-help, and I have no doubt that it will help readers improve their relationships and live more fulfilling lives.”
David DiSalvo, author of “Brain Changer: How Harnessing Your Brain’s Power to Adapt Can Change Your Life”


About the Foreword Writer: When Depression Hurts Your Relationship foreword writer Craig Malkin, PhD, is a clinical psychologist, author, and instructor of psychology for Harvard Medical School. His articles and insights have frequently been featured in publications like Psychology Today,’s Happen Magazine and Women’s Health, and he’s made numerous TV and radio appearances, including NPR and Fox news. Preview the foreword at


Extras: For Audio Downloads and Materials from the book, visit and click on Accessories.

PRESS KIT (downloadable version) 




About Single, Shy, and Looking for Love

Single Shy and Looking for Love - 3DWhat if he thinks I’m not good looking enough? What if she thinks I’m boring? What if I can’t think of anything
 to talk about?  When it comes to dating, most people have had these thoughts and fears at some point. The truth is that going on a date can be downright nerve-wracking—and if you suffer from shyness or social anxiety, it is especially so. So how can you stay calm, cool, and collected as you set out on the search for the perfect mate?

Single, Shy, and Looking for Love presents mindfulness, acceptance, and values-based techniques from acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) to help shy singles like you get “in the game,” cope with the anxiety and fear that can arise on a date, and go on to create long-lasting, intimate relationships. By learning to stay focused in the present moment, you’ll arm yourself against the catastrophic thoughts that cause you to buckle under pressure. And by connecting with your own core values, you’ll gain a greater understanding of yourself and what you ultimately want in a romantic partner.

Confidence is often considered one of the most attractive qualities a man or woman can have, and social confidence will take you far—not only in love, but in life as well. If you’re ready to stop being a wallflower and start putting yourself out there, this book will give you the skills you need to get back in the dating game and find the love you deserve.

Order Single, Shy, and Looking for Love: A Dating Guide for the Shy and Socially Anxious

Extras: Audio downloads and Printouts from the book are available. Visit and click on Accessories to access downloadable materials from the book.


“With Shannon Kolakowski’s empathic guidance you will learn to accept and love yourself—including your anxiety and shyness. Furthermore, you will develop new skills that will help you find love. If you are shy or socially anxious and want a loving relationship this is the book for you.”

Michelle Skeen, PsyD, author of Love Me Don’t Leave Me

“Dating is a process of deliberate exploration. At one level we are exploring human relationships, but at another level dating opens us up to the world within. It opens us up to our hopes, aspirations, and values, but it also opens us up to our fears, anxieties, and judgments. In the normal mode of mind we often suppose that the difficult material in that second territory is merely something to be gotten rid of so we can get back to dating. This book takes a much different approach: that territory is worthy of attention and exploration. It is part of the very fabric of our emotional lives that we bring to relationships themselves. If you are interested in exploring human relationships, consider the possibility that you have a much larger territory to explore as part of that very process. This gentle and wise book will show you how.” Steven C. Hayes, PhD, Foundation Professor and Director of Clinical Training at the University of Nevada and author of Get Out of Your Mind and Into Your Life

“Shannon Kolakowski’s book will be the first book I recommend to people who are single, shy, and looking for love. She really understands the fears of socially anxious people and how terrifying dating can be for them. Each chapter is filled with illustrative stories, questionnaires, and exercises that bring readers to a compassionate view of their dating fears and concerns and arms them with everything they need to start the dating process. It was a pleasure reviewing Kolakowski’s new book. She is a very talented psychologist and a great writer.”

—Deborah Khoshaba, PsyD, clinical psychologist specializing in resilience, personal growth, and health; director of program development and training for the Hardiness Institute; author of several books on the hardiness approach to stress management and resilience; founder of the popular blog Psychology in Everyday Life; and writer for

“Take charge of your dating life. Single, Shy, and Looking for Love explains, in easy-to-understand language, how to approach shyness and social anxiety from a new and empowering perspective. Learn how to build the skills and confidence essential to dating success. Get ready to take those important first steps toward finding love.”

—Leah Klungness, Ph.D, psychologist and coauthor of The Complete Single Mother

“In Single, Shy, and Looking for Love, psychologist Shannon Kolakowski offers a thoughtful, evidence-based, readable, and practical book for those seeking love and partnered relationships who tend to be anxious and shy. She effectively uses best practices and the latest thinking about anxiety management to help those who are looking for love. Her book is full of practical suggestions, exercises, and wisdom to help those who may struggle with dating and finding the right mate. Kudos to Kolakowski for an excellent book that is bound to help many.”

—Thomas Plante, PhD, ABPP, Augustin Cardinal Bea, S.J. University Professor, director of the Spirituality and Health Institute at Santa Clara University, and author of Religion, Spirituality, and Positive Psychology: Understanding the Psychological Fruits of FaithSexual Abuse in the Catholic Church: A Decade of Crisis, 2002-2012, and Spiritual Practices in Psychotherapy: Thirteen Tools for Enhancing Psychological Health

“Shannon Kolakowski demonstrates that there’s no need to feel powerless in dating. Single, Shy, and Looking for Love will help both women and men identify the source of dating anxiety, and it offers real strategies for getting out there and finding love. This excellent book contains powerful techniques for mastering shyness and focusing instead on dating strategies that work. If anxiety is keeping you from finding the love of your life, please read this book. It might just change your life.”

—Shawn T. Smith, PsyD, clinical psychologist and author of The User’s Guide to the Human Mind and The Woman’s Guide to How Men Think


Dr. Shannon’s interview on Single, Shy and Looking for Love

What led you to start writing a book on dating for the shy and socially anxious?

shannon-kolakowski-influences “I think that being in love and having a life partner is one of the most fulfilling and best parts of life. But I’ve seen dating anxiety get in the way of people finding love so frequently – I wanted to help people find the love that they deserve. Dating anxiety limits the amount of people you meet, can keep you stuck in an bad relationship, and can sabotage your chances of showing who you really are to potential partners. Anxiety can be so paralyzing and overwhelming that people often don’t realize how much better things can be.

In my book, I talk about how successful relationships are based on being authentic – it’s not about trying to act a certain way, follow rules, or be someone your not-that only adds more anxiety to the equation. Instead, my book helps you embrace your physical, emotional and sexual self– moving away from defining yourself as someone who isn’t able to have good relationships, and instead knowing that you can have the type of relationship you desire. Using the acceptance and commitment therapy framework, you identify what you want from a relationship, and what steps to take to get it. It gives you a clear guide for how to navigate the most anxiety-provoking aspects of dating, like initiating dates, showing you’re interested in someone, connecting with your date, handling embarrassing or awkward dating situations, handling rejection, addressing fear of intimacy, handling self-doubt and insecurity, addressing fears or worries about sex, and taking your relationship to the next level.” -Shannon Kolakowski

Read the entire interview here.