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Handbook of Self-Compassion

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  • © 2023


  • Describes advances in conceptualization and measurement of self-compassion
  • Addresses relationship of self-compassion to self-esteem and mindfulness
  • Examines developmental origins of self-compassion and its relevance across the lifespan

Part of the book series: Mindfulness in Behavioral Health (MIBH)

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About this book

This handbook examines contemporary issues in self-compassion science and practice. It describes advances in the conceptualization and measurement of self-compassion as well as current evidence from cross-sectional and experimental research. The volume addresses the foundational issues of self-compassion, including its relationship to self-esteem and mindfulness. In addition, it considers the developmental origins of self-compassion and its relevance across the life course, including among adolescents and older adults. The handbook explores the role of self-compassion in promoting well-being and resilience and addresses new frontiers in self-compassion research, such as the neural underpinnings and psychophysiology of compassionate self-regulation

Key areas of coverage include:
  • The meaning of self-compassion for gender and sexuality minority groups.
  • The cultivation of self-compassion among young people.
  • The use of interventions to promote self-compassion.
  • The role of compassion-based interventions in clinical contexts.
  • Important insights for using self-compassion-based interventions in practice.

The Handbook of Self Compassion is a must-have resource for researchers, professors, and graduate students as well as clinicians, therapists, and other practitioners in psychology, complementary and alternative medicine, and social work as well as all interrelated research disciplines and clinical practices.

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Table of contents (24 chapters)

Editors and Affiliations

  • Telethon Kids Institute, Nedlands, Australia

    Amy Finlay-Jones

  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, USA

    Karen Bluth

  • University of Texas at Austin, Austin, USA

    Kristin Neff

About the editors

Amy Finlay-Jones, BPsych (Hons), MClinPsych, MHealthEcon, Ph.D., is the Head of the Early Neurodevelopment and Mental Health team at the Telethon Kids Institute. After completing training in clinical psychology, Dr. Finlay-Jones undertook further postgraduate training in health economics. Her research reflects the continuum of clinical to through implementation science, with a focus on translating evidence into policy and practice to improve mental health outcomes for children and families. Dr. Finlay-Jones’s personal connection to self-compassion practice came at a young age when she was diagnosed with a chronic illness. Since that time, she has undertaken academic study of self-compassion, including developing the world’s first online self-compassion training program during her doctoral studies. Dr. Finlay-Jones is interested in the development of self-compassion in children and adolescence, its application within clinical contexts, and its intersection with self-regulation. She is a trained teacher of the Compassion Cultivation Training Program, the Mindful Self-Compassion Program, the Mindfulness-Based Compassionate Living Program, and the Mindful Self-Compassion for Teens program. She has a strong interest in co-designing accessible approaches to self-compassion training with underrepresented groups.

Karen Bluth, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, a fellow at Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute, and a certified instructor of Mindful Self-Compassion, an internationally acclaimed 8-week course created by Dr. Kristin Neff and Dr. Chris Germer. She is co-creator of the curriculum  Mindful Self-Compassion Program for Teens, the teen adaptation of Mindful Self-Compassion for adults, and author of the books, The Self-Compassion Workbook for Teens: Mindfulness and Compassion Skills to Overcome Self-Criticism and Embrace Who You Are (New Harbinger), The Self-Compassionate Teen: Mindfulness and Compassion Skills to Conquer Your Critical Inner Voice (New Harbinger), and co-author of  Mindfulness and Self-Compassion for Teen ADHD: Build Executive Functioning Skills, Increase Motivation, and Improve Self-Confidence (New Harbinger).

Kristin Neff, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor of Educational Psychology at the University of Texas at Austin. She is a pioneer in the field of self-compassion research, publishing the first papers to define and measure self-compassion in 2003. She has been named by Clarivate as one of the most influential scholars in psychology worldwide. In addition to writing numerous academic articles and book chapters on self-compassion, she is author of the books, Self-Compassion: The Proven Power of Being Kind to Yourself (William Morrow) and Fierce Self-Compassion: How Women Can Harness Kindness to Speak Up, Claim Their Power and Thrive (Harper Wave). In conjunction with her colleague Dr. Chris Germer, she has developed an empirically supported training program called Mindful Self-Compassion that is taught by thousands of teachers worldwide. They have coauthored the Mindful Self-Compassion Workbook (Guilford) and Teaching the Mindful Self-Compassion Program: A Guide for Professionals (Guilford).

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