Cheeky Worries
Cart 0
illustration © Anne Wilson

illustration © Anne Wilson


A gentle picture book to help children (4-7yrs) talk about and Manage their everyday worries.

Co-authored by dr patrick davey (psychiatrist) and Dr Anna Smith (psychologist)


‘I just had to write to thank you for your wonderful book. It is absolutely BRILLIANT, and I’m buying copies for the kid’s nursery and school as well as for several friends (in fact I already lent our copy to a friend just today). 

Sam our eldest particularly suffers from what he calls ‘scary thoughts’ - irrational,  intrusive ideas that upset and worry him and stop him, like Finn in your lovely book, from doing things he really wants to do. We read it together last night and had very happy conversations about the kind of ‘cheeky worries’ we all have and what we can say to them to make them go away...

You have so brilliantly tapped into the psyche of a small person and told Finn’s story in a way and using examples, that little people can relate to, and all complemented by gorgeous illustrations. I think it made Sam feel so much calmer knowing that we all have cheeky worries and he has the power to do something about them.

Thank you again from a much happier, already feeling braver little boy!’


Professor David Veale, lead consultant, anxiety disorder services, maudsley hospital, london;

‘A fantastic book and essential reading for parents and children to find a common language to share their everyday worries’. 


Naomi from wells, mother of 3 little ones;

‘It’s a fantastic book! Every home should have one!’

Gareth from cardiff, father of jack;

‘Jack read it three times in a row! He asked me if I had any Cheeky Worries and then told me one of his. We were talking about feelings! Thank you for this book, you’ve already helped one wee lad!’


Betty from Brighton, mother of sam and finn ;

‘I’m in tears reading this. your heart and soul has gone into it. such a gorgeous book with such a beautiful message, thank you.’


What’s the story?

Cheeky Worries is the story of one boy’s journey to accept and understand his worries so that he can express what he is feeling and keep doing the things he loves.

He is not alone on this journey and is aided by the wise owl who helps Finn recognise a worry, label it, verbalise it and manage it himself. Finn learns it is normal to have worries but we can choose how we respond to them. As the owl takes off to support another little worrier she helps Finn realise that no matter how big or small we are, we all have cheeky worries.

illustration © Anne Wilson

illustration © Anne Wilson


Who we are and how it all began?

Dr Patrick Davey and Dr Anna Smith work in the NHS in South London as a psychiatrist and psychologist respectively. Between them they have 20 years experience of working in front-line NHS mental health services. They feel passionately about helping children learn how to make sense of their emotional worlds. The inspiration to write this book came from a 4 year old’s tearful refusal to get on the bus.

Like all great stories It started with a tantrum…


how the book helps children manage worries?

Cheeky Worries introduces 4-7 year old children to fundamental skills to allow them to develop their own 'mentally healthy tool kit' and start to learn how to manage worries so they can keep doing the things they want to. Worries are normal to experience. However, there are strategies that can be employed to help manage them.

The story is founded on psychological principles taken from compassion focused therapy, mindfulness, lessons in kindness and cognitive behavioural therapy. A free PDF guide for grown-ups provides explanations of how these principles have been woven into the story and more importantly how they can become a framework for parents and children to build a common language to share and understand worries. There are some suggested exercises and games to develop these further.  They are the foundation for school workshops but they can be used just as easily by parents at home. 

Cheeky Worries

Age 4-7 years

32 pages, full colour, 210 x 280mm portrait

When cheeky worries stop Finn enjoying the things he loves, the wise owl knows just what to do. This gentle story uses psychological principles to help children learn how to manage their worries.

Published by Survival of the Nurtured Ltd.

Add to Cart

All paper used in Cheeky Worries is FSC® certified