Teaching Self-Compassion to Teens
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Grounded in knowledge about the unique developmental challenges of adolescence, this book presents an innovative 8-week group program for teaching self-compassion to teens and young adults in clinical, educational, or community settings. Lorraine Gonzales Hobbs and Niina Tamura provide guided practices, creative exercises, and teaching strategies adapted from Kristin Neff and Christopher Germer’s widely disseminated Mindful Self-Compassion program for adults. Case examples, sample dialogues, and scripts illustrate how to set up and run successful groups that address teen concerns such as self-criticism, self-esteem, social comparison, and strong emotions. The book offers guidelines for cultivating a personal practice and working with parents. Tips for providing a safe, effective learning environment are woven throughout; a special chapter covers trauma-sensitive teaching.
Lorraine Hobbs, MA, is Founding Director of the Youth, Family, and Education Programs at the Center for Mindfulness at the University of California, San Diego. Formerly a family therapist, Ms. Hobbs has combined her clinical experience with her mindfulness and self-compassion expertise to coauthor curricula including Making Friends with Yourself: A Mindful Self-Compassion Program for Teens and Young Adults, an adaptation of the Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) program for adults. She is codeveloper of the Making Friends with Yourself teacher training program, and provides trainings internationally. Ms. Hobbs is a certified teacher of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction, MSC, and Compassion Cultivation Training.
Niina Tamura, PhD, is a psychologist at the Psychological Institute of the University of Heidelberg, Germany, where she specializes in child and adolescent psychotherapy. She combines mindfulness- and compassion-based approaches with cognitive-behavioral therapy. Before turning to clinical practice, Dr. Tamura was a researcher in developmental psychology at the University of Oxford, United Kingdom. She is a trained teacher of Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) and of Making Friends with Yourself, the MSC adaptation for teens.
“This is an invaluable book for anyone who works with teens and wants to help them become more emotionally intelligent and resilient. Drawing on abundant research showing that self-compassion is essential to healthy development, the authors provide a detailed blueprint for how to help teens learn the life-changing skill of being kind and supportive to yourself.”--Kristin Neff, PhD, Department of Educational Psychology, The University of Texas at Austin
“It’s tough being a teen, and research shows it is getting harder. What can therapists, teachers, and parents do to counter the current epidemic of adolescent depression and anxiety? This excellent and informative book shows how teaching self-compassion can help teens cope with the challenges they face. It is a wonderful resource for all who care about teens and want to learn more about the art and science of self-compassion.”--Susan M. Pollak, MTS, EdD, Cofounder, Center for Mindfulness and Compassion, Harvard Medical School/Cambridge Health Alliance
"Detailed descriptions of the practices offer instructors clear guidance for implementing this teaching in the real world. The numerous insights into how to help participants feel safe, including those who have experienced trauma, are especially informative. As an organization dedicated to teaching mindful self-compassion to teens, we will incorporate this book into our core resources."--Cynthia Osterman, Board Chair, The Benji Project, Jefferson County, Washington
"This book is a detailed guide for those who want to support teens in developing the essential life skill of self-compassion. When teens learn to treat themselves with kindness, it is truly life changing, perhaps even life saving."--Amy Saltzman, MD, Director, Association for Mindfulness in Education; author of A Still Quiet Place for Teens
"What an incredible gift to adolescents and those who work with them! This book is chock-full of practices that cultivate not only self-compassion, but also connection, creativity, and fun. Teens (and adults) will go back to these lessons again and again."--Christopher Willard, PsyD, Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School/Cambridge Health Alliance
"For those of us who see self-compassion as inherent to mindfulness, and want to teach that to teens, this is the book we have been waiting for! This book is a master class from experienced and innovative authors. It is imbued with wisdom, warmth, and appreciation for teens in all of their suffering, creativity, and strength."--Dzung X. Vo, MD, Director, BC Children's Hospital Center for Mindfulness, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada-