We are so much nicer to other people than we are to ourselves. Research shows we don’t need more self discipline in life to meet our goals. We need more self compassion. Self compassion helps us to sleep better, it decreases anxiety, increases emotional and physical well being, leads to a greater sense of optimism. It’s not about being happy all the time or having every life circumstance work out in your favor. Life happens. The idea is to thrive rather than just survive. One way is to develop self-compassion.
Dr. Kristin Neff of the University of Texas, Austin is the leading authority on self-compassion. In case you think self-compassion will see you happily eating chips and ice cream on the couch all day, her findings show research makes it clear that self-compassion actually enhances our lives in practical ways as well, including greater personal responsibility, decrease in procrastination, greater progress toward goals.
So, what do we do when the drill-sergeant (our critical self) begins it’s diatribe? Start by calling it out. I am being hard on myself over or because… Next, talk to yourself as you would a good friend who is having difficulty. Use the kind, wise and warm manner you would use for that friend. Understand, you are not alone. People everywhere go through rough times, even suffering. It is all a part of life. Decide you will be kind to yourself in those moments and give yourself the compassion you need.
“Kind words are like honey, sweet to the soul and healthy for the body.” –Proverbs 16:24.
Comments are welcomed.