Bryony Gordon’s Crisis Comforts

April 11, 2024. Series 7. Episode 85

As regular listeners and viewers will know, at the end of all our conversations we ask our guests for their three crisis comforts; their go-tos for inspiration and strength during the challenging times. Short but perfectly formed advice for getting you through the tough moments.

Over the years we have heard some incredibly interesting and more importantly, useful tips for anyone who might be feeling the weight of their own problems.

In this short episode – Bryony Gordon – a woman with an abundance of accomplishments, yet who talks about her struggles with astonishing candour – shares her three crisis comforts.


Full episode



Mental Health Mates



Mad Woman (Bryony’s new book)

The Wrong Knickers: A decade of chaos

Mad Girl

Bryony’s book of choice – Louise Hay – You Can Heal Your Life


Stream/buy ‘Allies’ by Some Velvet Morning:

Some Velvet Morning Website:

Your Daily Practice: Sleep by Myndstream:

Photo Copyright: Laurie Fletcher


Host – Andy Coulson

CWC team: Jane Sankey, Louise Difford, Zach Ellis and Mabel Pickering

With special thanks to Ioana Barbu and the brilliant people at Global

For all PR and guest approaches please contact – [email protected]


Full transcript:

Andy Coulson:              Hello, I’m Andy Coulson and welcome back to Crisis What Crisis? and another Crisis Comforts episode. Short but perfectly formed advice for getting you through the tough times.

As regular listeners will know, at the end of our conversations we ask all our guests for their three crisis comforts; their go-tos for inspiration and strength during the challenging times.

And over the years we have accumulated some incredibly interesting, much more importantly, useful tips for anyone who might be feeling the weight of their own problems.

I’ve just had a conversation with author and Telegraph columnist Bryony Gordon about the mental health challenges which have dominated her life, from OCD and Bulimia to alcohol and drug abuse – it really is powerful conversation and I would urge you to listen to her full episode – you can find links below in the notes as well as information on how you can support Bryony, and please do, on her charity runs in aid of Mental Health Mates.  In the meantime, if you’re short on time you can listen now to Bryony’s three crisis comforts in this quick taster.

And remember you can also listen to all our conversations in full wherever you get your podcasts – you can follow us on Instagram and TikTok – just go to the top of our homepage at for links.  Many thanks for listening.

Andy Coulson:              Before you go, I’m going to ask you for you three Crisis Comforts.

Bryony Gordon:            Okay. I tried to kind of think these up.

Andy Coulson:              Brilliant, good. Fire away.

Bryony Gordon:            Okay, so my first Crisis Comfort, I guess my old Crisis Comfort used to be alcohol and my new Crisis Comfort is other sober people. By which I mean twelve-step fellowships and stuff like that. So if I’m in a bad place I know that I need to get myself into the company of other alcoholics in recovery.

Andy Coulson:              And is that as much about the process that you’re inserting yourself into as it is the community that you’re inserting yourself into?

Bryony Gordon:            Yes, the kind of programme, just the right-sizing as well. Because you know, nothing is really a crisis is it? It all passes. That’s why I need to get myself into a community of people that will go, “Yes, this is bad Bryony, but is it as bad as the time you woke up with a stranger between your legs while your family slept inches away?” You know, it’s not as bad as all of that.

A lot of the problems I have now are really privileged problems I feel lucky to be able to get to, and I can only get to them because I’m sober.

Andy Coulson:              Yes, very good. That’s the first one.

Bryony Gordon:            Second one would be, this is really woo woo, but there’s this book I read every time I go into my sort of head, and that book is called You Can Heal Your Life by Louise Hay. And she was this kind of self-help guru who- I mean, she was out there. But this book has been read by millions of people, and she’s sort of all about affirmations and about telling you that your point of power is in the present moment. So it doesn’t really matter what’s gone before, you can just take control now and change the outcome. And everything that we’re experiencing now is the sort of outcome of negative thoughts.

She sort of believes that you have to diet from- the only diet you need to go on is a diet from negativity.

Andy Coulson:              You’re laughing as you tell me this.

Bryony Gordon:            Because it’s so woo woo. Okay, you’ll get this Andy, right? Sometimes I think I’m in recovery from being an alcoholic, but also sometimes I think I’m in recovery from being a national newspaper journalist, right? Because obviously being a journalist requires a certain amount of cynicism.

Andy Coulson:              That’s a community that won’t get a lot of sympathy, I’ve got to tell you.

Bryony Gordon:            I know, no one is. They’re sort of throwing rotten vegetables at us. But as a hack you’re so fucking cynical, right? That’s your job. And since I’ve got sober I’ve had to become less- it’s about being more and more open-minded, and giving other people the benefit of the doubt. You can’t do that working in a newsroom.

Andy Coulson:              Journalists Anonymous, it starts here. Right, the third thing?

Bryony Gordon:            Cornwall.

Andy Coulson:              Very specific.

Bryony Gordon:            It’s Cornwall.

Andy Coulson:              A particular town? A particular beach?

Bryony Gordon:            I mean, I love a bit of St Mawes and I love a bit of Daymer Bay, which are opposite sides of Cornwall.

Andy Coulson:              So it’s your childhood holidays, right?

Bryony Gordon:            Yes, well no, but this is more about right-sizing. So when I’m in my own head and I’m at home in London and I’m thinking, “Ugh, everything is so important and the world’s going to end,” and then I go away for a week and I stand on some cliffs in Cornwall or get in the sea and I’m like, “You’re just a speck, babes. You’re a speck in the grand scheme of things,” and that’s exactly as it should be. That’s perfect.

Andy Coulson:              Yes, very good. Bryony, amazing. Thanks so much.

Bryony Gordon:            Thanks for having me, Andy.

Andy Coulson:              If you’ve enjoyed this conversation with Bryony, please do give us a rating and a review, it does help enormously. And if you hit ‘subscribe’ wherever you download your podcasts from you will find a lot more useful Crisis conversations. You can follow us on Instagram and TikTok, and you can watch the full episodes on YouTube. Just search for Crisis What Crisis podcast. You can also find full transcripts of this and every episode we’ve recorded on our website,  Thanks so much for joining us.