Emotional First Aid: Healing Rejection, Guilt, Failure and Other Everyday Hurts – A Book Review

“Psychology is a young science and one in which new approaches and treatments are continually being discovered and updated”

GENRE: Self-Help/Psychology/Non-Fiction
AUTHOR: Dr. Guy Winch
PAGES: 263

Dr Guy Winch is considered to be the leading advocate for integrating the science of emotional health into our daily lives, workplaces and education systems. He received my Ph.D. in clinical psychology from New York University. He did post-doctoral work at NYU Medical Center, joined the American Psychological Association, and opened a full-time private practice. His first book “The Squeaky Wheel: Complaining the Right Way to Get Results, Improve Your Relationships, and Enhance Self-Esteem” came out in 2011 post which he has written two more books – “Emotional First Aid” and “How to fix a broken heart”.

This review is about his second book.

About the Book and Summary

The book is divided into 7 chapters each dedicated to a Negative emotion we face in our day to day lives and focuses upon what they are, their effects on human psyche and how to combat and treat them (get the emotional first aid, so to say). The chapters contain guidance in the form of practical methods that we can adopt to improve our psychological health.

The book focuses upon dealing with the following in its chapters:

  1. Rejection
  2. Loneliness
  3. Loss and Trauma
  4. Guilt
  5. Rumination
  6. Failure
  7. Low Self-Esteem

In each of the chapters, we are looking at the causes and effects each of the above deals to our psyche. The chapters go on to give us detailed steps and methods using which we can overcome these everyday hurts effectively. These are, however, methods to deal with what we encounter in our day-to-day lives and the writer explains that they are not as effective when dealing with something serious. For example, loneliness can be treated, we all feel lonely at certain points in our lives due to various reasons and we keep feeling lonely for some time. The same is with Failure, which we encounter almost every other week in some form or the other. But when these turn into depression and we start thinking about harming ourselves, only professional psychological help can heal us and the book highlights this at the end of every chapter.

The treatment methods and suggestions in this book are all based on the best scientific studies that have been subjected to peer review procedures and published in first-rate academic journals.


This book is recommended by Kurzgesagt – In a Nutshell. This is a book for those who are interested in understanding psychology and want to make themselves better at dealing with the above emotional hurts. This book acts as a guidebook and each chapter provides guidelines with practical methods on how best to deal with everyday emotional hurt. The chapters are short and precise, the explanations are to the point and the methods are easy to understand and follow. I will recommend this book to everyone who is looking to work on their personal growth. This book can be used to not only grow as a person but the lessons can be used effectively in our professional lives. A good book for everyone who is interested in psychology.

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