Kindness is part of creating and maintaining positive, supportive relationships. If that is the case, how is your relationship with yourself going?
When you see someone hurting, suffering or struggling do you ignore them, judge them, abuse them or feel for them? How would you treat a loved one going through a hard time? How do you treat yourself when you are hurting, suffering or struggling?
Self-compassion is offering ourselves the same kindness we would to others, especially when we are hurting, suffering or struggling. Think about how you speak to yourself when you make a mistake, when you fail, when things go wrong. Do you chastise yourself in ways that are unhelpful and sometimes even cruel? Perhaps you even choose the school kid strategy of name calling like calling yourself dumb or stupid. If this happens for you, you are not alone, a lot of us are learning to be more self-compassionate. A place for us to start is to check in and see how the judging, chastising and name calling makes us feel. I am betting that you don't feel better when you have been mean to yourself- me neither. So what could you do differently?
Here's a challenge: what might happen if next time you are about to start beating up on yourself, you press pause and turn the kindness on instead. Maybe talk to yourself like someone you love. See what happens? Do you stay in the shame storm or does it offer you some relief? Remember this is something that you will probably have to consciously do for a while, old habits are hard to break!
Click here to listen to the Teachers Matter Podcast on Self-Compassion with Karen and Meg.