cover image Friendly Reminders: Lessons from a Self-Care Savage

Friendly Reminders: Lessons from a Self-Care Savage

Scott Tatum. Rock Point, $18 (192p) ISBN 978-1-631-06933-8

Mental health advocate Tatum sets out a road map to self-forgiveness, discipline, and positivity in his upbeat debut. Physically and emotionally abused as a kid, the author relied on childhood “survival skills” (”not showing my true emotions, always trying to please others”) that rendered him ill-equipped to form relationships or meet goals in adulthood. By spending time in nature, his own “form of therapy,” he began to confront his trauma and became a “self-care savage”: someone unafraid to “take bold and assertive action” to prioritize their physical, mental, and emotional well-being. Tatum dispenses lessons to readers wishing to undergo similar transformations, emphasizing personal initiative (“You and only you can do the work to heal”), the need for honesty with oneself (“Only when you get tired of your own shit will you be able to make positive changes”), and the benefits of mindfulness (through hiking, walking, or other physical acitvity that engages with nature). While Tatum sometimes goes heavy on platitudes (“Worrying does not take away tomorrow’s trouble, it takes away today’s peace”), his path from trauma to healing is inspiring and readers will find his advice approachable and easy to pick and choose from. Those seeking motivation will find it here. (Sept.)