Many of us have a tendency to measure our self-worth by comparing ourselves to others. But when we fail to reach our own, families, communities or societies 'ideals' this often results in feelings of inadequacy, anxiety and low mood. We may become self-critical, experience shame and a sense of being different from others. Although an improvement in 'self-esteem' is what we may feel we want this is not necessarily what we need. This is because self-esteem is often associated with times when things are going well but can fail us when things do not go to plan. In contrast self-confidence, built from self-compassion, can help us when things are going well and make us more resilient when things are difficult. This book uses the ideas and practices of Compassion Focused Therapy to help build self-confidence. Attention is also paid to difficulties that often come hand in hand with lack of self-confidence such as anxiety, depression, substance use and anger.
Stress is an unavoidable part of life that we will all encounter at various times in our lives, be it due to a one-off event such as losing a job or the break-up of a relationship, or from facing long-term difficulties such as working in a stressful environment or caring for someone who is ill. How well we deal with stress will influence the extent to which it affects our lives. In this ground-breaking book, Maureen Cooper explains why we are designed to respond to stress in a certain way and why this can even be helpful at times. She goes on to explain, using practical examples and techniques, what we can do to change our stress response if it becomes overstimulated, thereby improving our sense of control and wellbeing. This self-help book is based on the Compassionate Mind Approach, which has been developed by Professor Paul Gilbert, a clinical psychologist who is internationally renowned for his research and clinical work on depression. The Compassionate Mind Approach combines proven, research-based Western therapy techniques such as CBT with Mindfulness, Tibetan Buddhist practices and recent research on human development and studies of the brain.
"In this beautifully written book, esteemed clinical psychologist and therapist Stan Steindl takes us on a personal journey into the ups and downs of what it is to be human and reveals both the challenges and the joys of building one’s compassionate mind.” — Professor Paul Gilbert OBE, Founder of Compassion Focused Therapy and bestselling author Life can be complicated. And sometimes, really very difficult. We may struggle with many common life challenges: in relationships, parenting, and work, just to name a few. We can end up suffering from stress, anxiety, and depression, or loneliness, isolation or shame. But did you know that a lot of that suffering comes from within? Rumination and self-criticism are uniquely human thought processes, developed over hundreds of thousands of years. Our brains evolved into an impressive and complex organ that helped us to survive a primitive world, and yet today may yell at us with harsh and hostile criticism, sometimes even over the smallest thing! In fact, critical self-talk is very common. And it flies just under the radar of our conscious mind — condemning and undermining us with its inner voice. This book will show you how to do better — to turn anguish into delight through the use of our Compassionate Self. Through a clear series of steps and practices, noted clinical psychologist Dr Stan Steindl explains how compassion evolved as a vital part of our nature and thought, and the way we look after one another, and even ourselves. He then shows how to use our compassion as a key to a healthier mental life. With personal vignettes illustrating the therapeutic benefits of compassion focused therapy, practical exercises that use mindfulness and imagery to help us develop attention to the present moment, and a wealth of guidance on self-criticism, shame and forgiveness, this book can change your life.
Don't be so hard on yourself – use compassion focused therapy as your guide It's often said that we're our own worst critics—and it's true. Compassion Focused Therapy For Dummies offers straightforward and practical advice that helps you view yourself through a more sympathetic lens. This motivating text covers the key principles of compassion focused therapy, which guide you in caring for your wellbeing, becoming sensitive to your needs, recognising when you are distressed, and extending warmth and understanding to yourself. This transformative resource provides you with metrics that you can use to monitor your progress, including sensitivity, sympathy, empathy, and overall wellbeing. Initially developed to assist people experiencing high levels of shame and self-criticism, compassion focused therapy increases your awareness of the automatic reactions that you experience—and motivates you to combat negative reactions with kindness and affection. Used on its own or in combination with other therapeutic approaches, the value of compassion focused therapy is supported by strong neuropsychological evidence. Understand how to handle difficult emotions with greater ease—and less stress Transform difficult, potentially damaging relationships into positive aspects of your life Encourage and motivate yourself to continually meet your goals, rather than criticise yourself for perceived failures Stop being so hard on yourself, and appreciate yourself for who you are Compassion Focused Therapy For Dummies is a wonderful resource if you are seeing—or thinking about seeing—a therapist who utilises compassion techniques, or if you would like to leverage the principles of compassion focused therapy to manage your own wellbeing.
Growing up is a juggling act. Our bodies and hormones change, usually at the same time as important decisions about our future need to be made. We often put extra pressure on ourselves, compare ourselves unfavourably to others and excessively worry about what other people think. Add in exams, interviews, relationships, social media, peer pressure, celebrity culture and everyday stressors, and it's no wonder our wellbeing can take a nosedive. The Kindness Workbook is a modern-day guide to help people navigate such complex times and combines amazing ideas and practices from a variety of therapies including: Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Compassion Focused Therapy, Counselling and Expressive Therapy. Using creative exercises, examples and prompts, The Kindness Workbook teaches the skills of problem-solving using guided imagery, mindfulness, mind maps, vision boards, letter-writing, music, physical activity, drama and art. It has a number of icons to help signpost different sections and has eye-catching illustrations and worksheets, all of which aim to give your wellbeing a boost. A must-have book for young people and anyone working with young people to enhance wellbeing. Your kindness journey starts right here. So, it's time to become your own best friend, instead of your own worst enemy.
Emotions bring purpose, pleasure and meaning to our lives. However, for many people, they are synonymous with distress, pain and suffering. Anger and rage can wreck relationships and cause problems at work; anxiety can prevent us from socialising or engaging in things we would like to; sadness can feel overwhelming and never ending. These types of difficulties are often referred to as emotion regulation problems, and can prevent us from developing stable and happy relationships, communicating our needs, and flourishing. This practical self-help book based on Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT) will help you to take a new approach to managing difficult emotions. It outlines why we experience emotions, how they can be helpful but also how and why we can get in to struggles with them. It outlines the Compassionate Mind model, and guides you through a series of exercises that will help you to develop your compassion mind, and use this to develop more helpful emotion regulation strategies, and bring greater balance to your emotions.
There is nothing wrong with being shy - it is a natural emotion that everyone can experience. But if shyness is negatively impacting your life, The Shyness Workbook can help you grow your confidence. Shyness has evolved as an emotion over thousands of years and can be helpful in some circumstances. However, it can become a problem when it interferes with life goals, develops into social anxiety disorder or leads to 'learned pessimism', mild depression and even 'learned helplessness'. In this way, shyness and shame often hold us back from realising our potential and from engaging with others wholeheartedly. This practical self-help workbook sets out the background to shyness - its evolutionary functions and why it becomes chronic in some people - and teaches skills and exercises to help you overcome problematic shyness. Using this workbook, readers will learn how to: · Cope with shy feelings and debunk anxious thoughts · Develop self-compassion · Practise new, confident behaviours Full of fresh insights and exercises, The Shyness Workbook will support your journey into developing social self-confidence. THE COMPASSIONATE MIND APPROACH The self-help books in this series are based on the Compassionate Mind Approach (developed by series editor Paul Gilbert). This brings together an understanding of how our mind can cause us difficulties but also provides us with a powerful solution in the shape of mindfulness and compassion. It teaches ways to stimulate the part of the brain connected with kindness, warmth, compassion and safeness, and to calm the part that makes us feel anxious, angry, sad or depressed.
It is well-known that having a baby can be a time of joy but also one of anxiety and even depression for new mothers. Indeed it is very common for new mothers to experience a short period of distress following childbirth, often referred to as 'baby blues'. Usually this passes quite quickly, however for more than 1 in 10 women, this distressing experience can be more prolonged. This practical self-help book based on Compassion Focused Therapy will help women to recognise some of the symptoms and, where appropriate, to normalise them, thereby alleviating their distress. It will also guide mothers-to-be and new mothers through the maze of confusing feelings that can arise. Not only will this book cover the basic experiences and symptoms associated with anxiety and depression and childbirth, an evolutionary model of why this occurs, and an outline of the basic Compassionate Mind model, it will guide the reader through a series of exercises that they can use for themselves to develop their compassionate mind and work on their difficulties.
'Wise and perceptive. [It] teaches self-compassion and the consolations of kindness. I recommend it.' SALLY BRAMPTON, author of Shoot the Damn Dog DEVELOP YOUR FEELINGS OF COMPASSION AND INCREASE YOUR SENSE OF WELL-BEING In societies that encourage us to compete with each other, compassion is often seen as a weakness. Striving to get ahead, self-criticism, fear, and hostility towards others seem to come more naturally to us. The Compassionate Mind explains the evolutionary and social reasons why our brains react so readily to threats - and reveals how our brains are also hardwired to respond to kindness and compassion. Research has found that developing kindness and compassion for ourselves and others builds our confidence, helps us create meaningful, caring relationships and promotes physical and mental health. Far from fostering emotional weakness, practical exercises focusing on developing compassion have been found to subdue our anger and increase our courage and resilience to depression and anxiety. 'As one of Britain's most insightful psychologists, Gilbert illuminates the power of compassion in our lives.' OLIVER JAMES, AUTHOR OF AFFLUENZA
Are you ready to transform your mind and emotions? To cultivate compassion, stability, self-confidence, and well-being? If so, get ready to change the way you experience your life with this highly-anticipated approach using mindfulness and compassion. Therapists have long been aware of mindfulness as a powerful attention skill that can help us live with greater clarity and awareness—but mindfulness alone is not enough to completely change the way a brain works. In order to fully thrive, we require motivation. Compassion, like anger or aggression, is an extremely powerful motivational force that can bring about real, lasting change. Written by the founder of compassion-focused therapy (CFT), Paul Gilbert and former Buddhist monk, Choden, Mindful Compassion is a unique blending of evolutionary and Buddhist psychology. In this breakthrough book, you’ll learn how traditional mindfulness and compassion can work in harmony to offer a new, effective, and practical approach to overcoming everyday emotional and psychological problems. If you are ready to end toxic self-criticism, heal trauma and shame, feel worthy and loveable, and be kinder to yourself and others, this book can show you the way.
Be calm, be present, be mindful. Mindfulness for Busy People 2/e will show you how to apply the transformative power of mindfulness to your busy life, helping you to de-stress, find your own unique space of calm, and ready yourself for whatever challenges you face. Helping you to cultivate and practice mindfulness straight away, you’ll discover: · A no-nonsense, light-hearted, and clear introduction to mindfulness and its benefits · Unique and clever ‘I-haven’t-got-time-for-this’ exercises that you can do anywhere, anytime · A fulfilling way to feel less stressed with immediate effect · A new found confidence, resilience and a greater sense of optimism · Improved focus, energy, efficiency and creativity Feel calm, confident and in control – whatever you’re doing, wherever you are. Endorsements MFBP 2e · “Mindfulness has probably become more popular in concept than in practice these days. So many of us could benefit from training our attention and our self-compassion, if we could just find practical ways to integrate mindfulness into our daily lives and busy schedules. These authors provide the practical tools that you need to actually put mindfulness into practice, and to benefit from transforming your mind, without having to pack up to live in the mountains. This book is fun, usable, and helpful.” Dennis Tirch, author of The Compassionate Mind Guide to Overcoming Anxiety · “Mindfulness can be elusive... The "I'm too busy" thoughts show up and get in the way. The trick is to bring brief respites of mindfulness into a multitude of simple tasks we do each day. In this second edition of their wonderful book the authors have added, updated and upgraded ideas for bringing the power of mindfulness into our busy worlds. Get it and reap the benefits of simple mindfulness.” Kevin Polk, Ph.D., Psychologist and ProSocial Matrix Trainer · “The great thing is, we can all be a lot more mindful, even if we’re way too busy to meditate. This little gem of a book gives you a wealth of simple strategies to easily bring mindfulness into everyday life - thereby making it a lot more satisfying and lot less stressful.” Russ Harris, author of The Happiness Trap · “One go-to question in mindfulness is: What did you notice? Going through this wonderful book, I noticed how simple and concrete it made the practice of mindfulness. I noticed thoughts about wishing I had come across this book when I first encountered mindfulness some 18 years ago. Then, I noticed warm feelings toward the compassionate humanity of Mike Sinclair, Josie Seydel and Emily Shaw that shines through each page. The next thing I noticed was loving how this new edition delves on self-compassion and offers more on how mindfulness can help us identify, choose and embody our deepest life values. Finally, I noticed the judgment that this book isn’t just for busy people, but for anyone interested in living more effectively and learning how to befriend the whole of their experience.” Benjamin Schoendorff, co-author of The Science of Compassion and The Essential Guide to the ACT Matrix. · “Fun, engaging and practical - this book is elegantly written by experts to help you learn the skills of mindfulness - and to apply them to this busy, stressful, modern world we live in.” Dr Joe Oliver, Director of Contextual Consulting and co-author of ACTivate Your Life. · “Accessible, actionable, insightful and user-friendly. This book will help even the busiest of people find more contentment, joy, calm and connection especially on the busiest of days.” Aisling Leonard-Curtin, Chartered Psychologist, Co-director ACT Now Purposeful Living & author of The Power of Small · “A lot of people would like to learn to live more mindfully, but feel they simply don't have the time. The second edition of Mindfulness for Busy People shows us how to bring the benefits of mindfulness into the busiest of lives." Russell Kolts, Ph.D. Professor of Psychology, Eastern Washington University, and co-author of Living with an Open Heart: How to Cultivate Compassion in Everyday Life · “Having read this new edition, I doubt I will ever again notice my mind telling me “I’d better watch the time” without recalling the “watch your watch” meditation - just one of a plethora of mini life practice suggestions in this accessible self-helper that contribute to busting through the self-inflicted aspect of the trance of ‘too busy’ness.” Marin Wilks, Chartered Psychologist, Mindfulness Teacher & Peer-Reviewed ACT Trainer · “Read, practice and feel the rewards - this accessible book has the power to change your life.” Dr Mary Welford, author of Compassionate Mind Approach to Building Self-Confidence and Compassion Focused Therapy for Dummies · "This book is an incredibly practical guide to reducing stress and boosting your effectiveness through mindfulness." Dr Rob Yeung, chartered psychologist and author of Confidence 2.0: The New Science of Self-Confidence.