Self-Compassion by Dr. Kristin Neff

January 30, 2024

Improve everything by being kind to yourself.

Hopefully this is all obvious to you, but it wasn’t for me! I needed to read this.

It felt long and started getting redundant toward the end—or maybe my interest waned—but the message was clear and convincing.

Neff’s choice to share personal stories was generous and lent relatable humanity to philosophy and studies. (She also has some amazing stories that are apparently their own books!)

I did some of the exercises and was rewarded with useful new perspective.

Self-compassion and self-acceptance aren’t internal stress reduction exercises for mindlessly convincing yourself you’re special. It’s actually the opposite: see everyone’s suffering with clarity—yours included—and insist on acting with kindness.

This doesn’t prevent or dampen suffering, it just clears away a lot of the bullshit that makes it worse, and it connects us as people with a shared experience.

If you operate with manufactured stress and self-judgment, I highly recommend considering this book.