COPING SKILLS: TOOLS TO FEEL BETTER WITHOUT FUCKING AROUND, $3, 4” x 5½”, 19 pgs.

Dr. Faith G. Harper has a slew of these lil’ self-help buddy zines. I’ve read three of them and they’re good. She avoids jargon and talks clearly about ways to, uh, deal with, in this case, stress and anxiety. Harper starts by noting some of the science behind stress. Our bodies release “the stress hormone cortisol” when we’re anxious, and cortisol helps in moderation, but the body won’t pump us that juicy full-cort juice long-term. Without it, our chronic stress leads to “exhaustion, body aches, weird skin discolorations” and other quiet miseries. Noooooo. And so, the rest of the zine is a collection of coping strategies that Harper has gathered from other smart people. Here’s a line I liked: “treat yourself like you would your best friend.” That’s profound and easy to apply. Then again, I’m partial to stuff like this because I’m an anxious Jimbo. If you are, too, and you don’t have a therapist like me, maybe you can spend three dollars on this here zine. –Jim Joyce (Microcosm, 2752 N Williams Ave., Portland, OR 97227)

 

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