Self-Compassion for Teenagers

heart in hand

Self-Compassion for Teenagers

Adolescent mental health issues have become increasingly prominent over the last decade or so. I become very aware of this during almost a decade of working with 16-19 year old students. For my final year dissertation when studying for my MSc Studies in Mindfulness at Aberdeen University, I explored a 'captive audience' of adolescents' perceptions of self-compassion practice (14-15 years old), after being introduced to self-compassion practice during form classes over a 3-week period.

self-compassion hands

What is Self-Compassion?

Self-compassion practice has emerged as an important extension of mindfulness practice. Self-compassion practice can be understood as when one first open's up to one's suffering/difficulties, without judging oneself for perceived inadequacies or failures; and second, generates a deep desire to alleviate one's suffering/difficulty, whilst recognising that it is a normal part of being human to suffer - for more see www.self-compassion.org.

Self-compassion - train your brain

Outcome of Research

The outcome of the research I conducted was that after the very brief introduction to self-compassion practice, a number of participants perceived self-compassion practice as useful, or potentially useful, for alleviating stress, maintaining measures of personal wellbeing, dealing with academic pressure, and managing difficulties when self-esteem could be low. To read more about this research, you can download a copy of my dissertation here . The 3-week protocol used in this research is also evaluated in my dissertation.