Give Yourself a Break – Turning Your Inner Critic into a Compassionate Friend

Licensed marriage and family therapist Kim Fredrickson advises readers to stop beating themselves up and to give themselves a break. She encourages us to offer compassion to ourselves. “Self-compassion is not self-pity” explains Fredrickson. “It is tough enough to go through a difficult situation, especially when we think we had a part in creating it. It is another kind of torture to never be able to let go of self-criticism and blame.” Basing her advice in the Bible, she offers practical steps, specific exercises, and compassionate words to say in order to build a loving relationship with ourselves.

Many people are used to showing compassion to others. What many of us have trouble with is showing that same compassion to ourselves. Too often we say things to ourselves that we would never say to a friend. All this negative self-talk can have a devastating effect on our lives.

Through inspiring stories of transformation, she helps us learn to show ourselves the kind of grace and understanding we offer to others—and to change our relationships, our outlook on life, and our view of ourselves in the process. Offering encouragement and hope, Fredrickson explains “Being able to forgive ourselves for our weaknesses, mistakes and sins is part of having a compassionate relationship with ourselves.”

Kim Fredrickson, MFT

About Kim Fredrickson, MFT (Sacramento, California Author)

Kim Fredrickson, MFT

Kim Fredrickson is a licensed marriage and family therapist of thirty-plus years. She loves to teach others about the power of self-compassion from a faith perspective. She is the author of Give Yourself a Break: Turning Your Inner Critic into a Compassionate Friend and Give Your Kids a Break: Parenting with Compassion for You and Your Children. She recently retired from her counseling practice when diagnosed with pulmonary fibrosis, a terminal lung disease that developed as a rare complication from the chemotherapy and radiation she received for breast cancer.

After being diagnosed with a terminal illness, she decided to write this book as a way to have a positive influence in the lives of her adult children and their future grandchildren. Kim wanted to help them with the challenges of parenting, when the time came. She knew she wouldn’t be around to hold her grandbabies, and help her children raise them in person. Originally it was only going to be for them. As Kim wrote, she thought others might benefit as well, so decided to self-publish it.

Kim has been married to her husband, Dave for thirty-nine years and they have two grown children. Learn more and read her blog at She also writes a weekly patient column for Pulmonary Fibrosis News, Just Breathe…Compassionate Help for the PF Journey. Thousands of patients and their loved ones read her column all over the world.

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