Does the word self-compassion make you cringe? To many, it sounds a bit icky, touchy-feely, self-indulgent. However, it’s none of these things. In fact, many people find practising self-compassion to be very hard work. My latest column explains why it's important to make the effort and to treat yourself as you would treat a friend.
Do you operate on a double standard in your daily life? That is, are you supportive and generous towards other people but often harsh and self-critical towards yourself? My latest columns looks at the double-standard technique, a simple but powerful cognitive therapy strategy which is especially useful if you have perfectionist tendencies or are prone to self-criticism.
Excessive checking, excessive preparation, organising and planning, writing long to-do lists, spending excessive time editing short emails, ruminating on things you could have done better – my third column in a three-part series on perfectionism offers advice on how to tackle perfectionist behaviours.
Perfectionism is sometimes seen as a positive trait, but the reality is the psychological downsides to perfectionism can be very grave indeed. In the first of a three-part series, I explain what underpins perfectionism and why it drives and maintains unhappiness and pain.
My most recent Southern Star column explored what's known as impostor syndrome – a sense that you are a fake, someone not nearly as competent as others seem to think, a fraud who has achieved things by fooling others or through luck. The column is reproduced below. ‘I always had this thing where I thought, “What am I doing here? I'm about to get found out. Everybody in the stadium is going to find out I've been getting lucky for years. Everybody in the stadium is going to find out I've...