An image showing the First Aid for Feelings Manual on a tablet, mobile phone and paperback

Over the years, we’ve been asked when the First Aid for Feelings Manual will be published. Well, with everything going on these last few years it’s taken longer to get to this point. And, now the time has come to share more about the long promised manual.

On Sunday, November 19th which also marked the end of National Self Care Week we completed the crowdfunding campaign raising 103% or £8000. The purpose: to bring the First Aid for Feelings Manual into print and to your device.

This was a huge collective effort and only made possible because of all those who help amplify the ripple by pledging, donating, sharing on social media and contributing both directly and indirectly to making this happen.

You can see the crowdfunding campaign, read the updates and all the comments from supporters on the Crowdfunder page.

What is the First Aid for Feelings Manual?

The First Aid for Feelings Manual, much like a traditional First Aid Manual, gives practical advice on how to respond to different situations. However, rather than relating to medical situations, the information and advice it provides focuses on helpful ways to respond to feelings.

And, in addition to your feelings about what’s going on in your own life, there’s so much  going on in wider society that we all need to know how to read and respond to our feelings. Escalating war and conflict, climate anxiety, and the cost of living crisis affect all of us in one way or another. The impact of unprocessed feelings about what’s going on is, for many, causing stress as well as amplifying pain, fatigue and anxiety.

Given the scope of  what you’re likely to be feeling, knowing how to read and respond to your feelings makes a difference. The difference between feeling like you’re going under or feeling strong and buoyant.  This ability to read and respond to your feelings is called emotional and health literacy. It is a key building block for self-care, which is the fundamental skill all of us need to sustain the best health possible for ourselves.

What do you notice about the impact of your ability to read and respond to your own feelings? How does it affect your ability to do self-care? What about your ability to care for your health?

In January 2020 we held a one day event (referred to as Impactathon) about how to get people talking about feelings and why that’s important. The unanimous conclusion of everyone present was that when you’re not able to read and respond to your feelings you suffer.

Cost of not being able read and respond to your feelings

  • Symptoms get worse and your health deteriorates
  • Feelings and behaviours get worse and your health deteriorates
  • You’re more likely to fall out with family, friends, and colleagues
  • Money can become an issue

People recounted stories of relationships lost, careers faltering and ending, and health deteriorating. Many talked about finances spiralling out of control. Some felt they were limping along OK enough but feeling the burden of regret. One participant talked about regretting not really living. They described feeling like they were sleep-walking through life, with the occasional experience of joy to make it bearable. Many nodded in recognition.

Who’s written it?

Thor and Nicki have written the First Aid for Feelings Manual together, with Thor taking the lead.

Thor was inspired by medical First Aid and used that framework to develop the First Aid for Feelings method complete with an ABC technique and First Aid Kit for Feelings.

Nicki has contributed to various books about health and well-being and, having supported Thor with creating content before, was the obvious co-author to help Thor make this happen.

You can find out more about Thor and Nicki on the team page and you can find out about why Thor developed First Aid for Feelings in the first place here.


What does the First Aid for Feelings Manual teach?

The First Aid for Feelings Manual, as the name suggests teaches you the basics of First Aid for Feelings. Each chapter shares a story of someone who has used the techniques about to be explored, an explanation of the philosophy and science behind the technique. Each chapter also has practical exercises to help you apply the what you’re learning to your circumstances.

You will learn:

  • How understanding the purpose of feelings means you no longer get stuck
  • How to know if you are struggling with your feelings
  • Your ABC for Feelings, a new technique which is just as important as the ABC (Airway, Breathing, Circulation) for medical first aid. It’ll help you respond helpfully to your feelings
  • Why your brain is like a three-scoop ice-cream and how understanding this will help you when you are struggling with feelings
  • How the practise of breathing mindfully helps to release stress and improves your ability to think more clearly
  • How taking time to learn what your feelings mean gives you the clues to respond constructively
  • Why, if you feel that you don’t have any choice, you are “crocodiling”
  • How soothing your crocodile helps you make better choices
  • Why curiosity makes it easier to respond to intense feelings and take helpful action
  • How being kinder to yourself helps you be more skilful and successful with yourself and others
  • How to start building a First Aid Kit for Feelings and set yourself up well for whatever comes your way.

How to get your copy of the First Aid for Feelings Manual

You can now pre-order your copy through online bookshops and retailers. You can also ask your local independent bookshop to order your copy. You can also buy it direct from us. Please contact us to place your order.

You can still support to the project as we’re now using donations to create an audiobook so you’ll be able to listen to the First Aid for Feelings Manual. To make a donation, click the link ‘donation‘ knowing that you’re contributing to making this knowledge and skills more accessible.

There’s a blog with more information

Do you want to find out more about the cost of not knowing how to read and respond to your feelings? Are you curious about why I developed the First Aid for Feelings in the first place? Are you aware of the benefit to the wider society of you knowing your First Aid for Feelings? Read the blog that accompanies the launch of the crowdfunding here.