Self-compassionate is something we all should be for ourselves. It’s a key difference between being hard on ourselves and treating ourselves with the same kindness we would others.
However, it’s a lot easier to be kind to others compared to ourselves.
For many people suffering with the likes of anxiety, depression and addiction, self-compassion can be incredibly tough to find. It’s why during many sessions in a rehabilitation centre, those going through treatment will be taught how to find it.
But how exactly can you find and embrace self-compassion, to aid you at every turn in your life? Here are five top tips…
Practise Mindful Self-Awareness
The journey of self-compassion begins with cultivating mindful self-awareness.
Tune into your thoughts, emotions, and physical sensations without judgement. Observe them with curiosity and kindness, allowing yourself to experience these moments without criticism.
This practice helps you acknowledge your feelings and needs, laying the foundation for self-compassion.
Being mindful could be a train you already have when it comes to other people, but that doesn’t mean you should ignore your own thoughts and emotions.
Challenge Your Inner Critic
The inner critic is often quick to judge, criticise, and magnify our perceived shortcomings.
To embrace self-compassion, challenge this critical voice by questioning its validity. It’s effectively the devil and angel on the shoulder situation.
Ask yourself if you would speak to a friend in the same way you speak to yourself. Replace self-criticism with words of understanding and encouragement, fostering a more nurturing inner dialogue.
We all make mistakes; it’s an inherent part of being human. We all wish we hadn’t said or done something and spend hours, days, months or even years dwelling on it.
Instead of dwelling on those past errors, practise self-forgiveness.
Recognise that making mistakes doesn’t define your worth. Treat yourself with the same understanding you would offer to a friend who’s made a mistake. By forgiving yourself, you create space for growth and positive change.
Extend acts of kindness towards yourself as you would towards others.
Nurture your body, mind, and spirit by engaging in activities that bring you joy and well-being.
Whether it’s taking a leisurely walk, enjoying a warm bath, or indulging in a favourite book, these gestures of self-kindness affirm your value and worthiness of care.
Practice Common Humanity
Recognize that you’re not alone in facing challenges and difficulties. Embrace the concept of common humanity, understanding that all humans experience pain, struggle, and imperfections.
Rather than isolating yourself, connect with the shared human experience. This perspective fosters empathy towards yourself and others, reinforcing the idea that you’re not alone on your journey.
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