Stop comparing yourself to others—you’re special just as you are! In this fun, practical guide, you’ll learn how to silence your nit-picky inner critic, cultivate self-compassion, and discover what really matters to you.
If you’re like many teens, you probably feel pressured to live up to the impossible standards set by our culture, the media, and even by your peers. After all, everyone wants perfect hair, a perfect body, cool friends, and good grades. But while it’s okay to strive to be your best, it’s also easy to get caught up in a never-ending comparison game that can feed your inner critic and rob you of your happiness. So, how can you break free from negative self-criticism and learn to appreciate your strengths?
In Just As You Are, psychologist Michelle Skeen and her daughter, Kelly Skeen, offer simple tips to help you overcome feelings of inadequacy and unworthiness, stop comparing yourself to others, and be more open and accepting of all aspects of who you are. You’ll also learn how to be more aware of your thoughts and feelings in the moment using powerful mindfulness tools, and build a plan of action for the future based on your values.
Sometimes it’s hard to see yourself with clarity and kindness. With this important guide, you’ll learn to move past your faults, celebrate your true strengths, and discover what really matters in your life. What are you waiting for?
Michelle Skeen, PsyD, has a doctorate in clinical psychology. She is author of seven books, all designed to enhance relationships by emphasizing the importance of identifying core values and valued intentions, limited thinking, mindfulness, self-compassion, empathy, and effective communication and conflict resolution skills. Her passion is coaching individuals in creating and maintaining healthy relationships by bringing awareness to obstacles (fears and beliefs), which often work unconsciously to limit connections with others. Michelle believes that an early introduction and education in core values and healthy communication are essential life skills for success. To that end, Michelle and her daughter, Kelly, coauthored Communication Skills for Teens and Just As You Are.
Skeen completed her postdoctoral work at the University of California, San Francisco. She codeveloped an empirically validated protocol for the treatment of interpersonal problems that resulted in two books: Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for Interpersonal Problems and The Interpersonal Problems Workbook. Michelle’s work has appeared in more than thirty publications around the world. She hosts a weekly radio show called Relationships 2.0 with Dr. Michelle Skeen that airs nationally. To find out more, visit her website at www.michelleskeen.com.
Kelly Skeen is a recent graduate of Georgetown University in Washington, DC. As an American studies major, she concentrated in art and museum studies, and plans to pursue a career expanding access to the visual arts. She is also coauthor of Communication Skills for Teens with her mother, Michelle Skeen. Skeen strives every day for greater self-acceptance and to embrace who she really is! To learn more, visit her website at www.kellyskeen.com.
“This book provides effective tools for combatting feelings of inadequacy, unworthiness, and low self-esteem that are so common among teens. Readers will learn strategies for self-acceptance, changing negative thinking patterns, and communicating effectively. The book is clear, easy to read, and filled with practical exercises. Highly recommended!” —Martin M. Antony, PhD, ABPP, professor of psychology at Ryerson University in Toronto, ON, Canada, and coauthor of The Shyness and Social Anxiety Workbook and The Anti-Anxiety Workbook
~Martin M. Antony, PhD, ABPP
“Just As You Are helps young people examine their negative self-stories from a place of compassion and value. The personal stories and exercises will resonate with a broad range of readers. Such a helpful book.” —Ben Sedley, PhD, clinical psychologist and author of Stuff That Sucks
~Ben Sedley, PhD
“We all struggle with parts of ourselves and feel at some level not okay. But this common need to appear like you have it all together, is not only exhausting and disconfirming, it’s lonely as well. As you read others’ stories of this same struggle, work through exercises, and challenge your inner critic, you learn to accept yourself Just As You Are with the same care and warmth that you would your best friend.” —Janetti Marotta, PhD, author of 50 Mindful Steps to Self-Esteem
~Janetti Marotta, PhD
“So many young people struggle with feeling ‘not good enough,’ or believing that something is fundamentally wrong with them. Just As You Are is a step-by-step guide to undo those negative core beliefs. Michelle and Kelly Skeen offer tools for understanding yourself, identifying strengths, and changing unhealthy habits. They teach mindfulness and self-compassion in down-to-earth language that will appeal to everyone, even those who are skeptical of self-help books.” —Ann Marie Dobosz, MA, MFT, author of The Perfectionism Workbook for Teens
~Ann Marie Dobosz, MA, MFT
“Michelle Skeen has written yet another elegant, reassuring, and, most importantly, useful book. As with her other books, her hand reaches out from the pages with a powerful yet gentle message of guidance and encouragement. At a time when young people are feeling estranged, isolated, and not heard, Michelle offers her unique and reassuring voice; a lifeline from that dark place of self-aversion and unrelenting self-criticism to which many young people wake up each morning. In addition to Michelle’s wise counsel, is the voice from her daughter Kelly. Too often young folks feel talked to and left not knowing where to begin in their journey of healing. Kelly, from her youthful wisdom, beautifully offers a ‘Hey! Here’s how this all works! See, it’s not so hard!’ What powerful encouragement!” —Thomas Roberts, LCSW, psychotherapist, clinical hypnotherapist, mindfulness and meditation teacher and retreat leader, and author of The Mindfulness Workbook
~Thomas Roberts, LCSW
“Michelle and Kelly Skeen have written a powerful tool to help teens navigate the tricky world of self-acceptance. Their words are thought-provoking, genuine, and kind. Teens will relate to the heartfelt stories and learn to embrace and appreciate their authentic self.” —Julia V. Taylor, PhD, counselor educator at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, VA; author of The Body Image Workbook for Teens; and coauthor of The Bullying Workbook for Teens
~Julia V. Taylor, PhD
“Just As You Are speaks in a caring and thoughtful voice to the many teens who feel uncomfortable in their own skins. Filled with carefully crafted exercises that rest on a foundation of self-acceptance and self-compassion, teens will experience the power that comes with truly being themselves.” —Michael A. Tompkins, PhD, ABPP, coauthor of The Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook for Teens, and codirector of the San Francisco Bay Area Center for Cognitive Therapy
~Michael A. Tompkins, PhD, ABPP
“A beautiful guide to self-acceptance in the face of the relentless inner critic. The feeling that one isn’t good enough, that one is unworthy, is a huge source of pain and paralysis. This book is a game changer, a healing breath of kindness and self-compassion.” —Matthew McKay, PhD, coauthor of Self-Esteem