Wednesday, April 6, 2016

How Self Compassion Helps us

During stressful and challenging times how do you talk to yourself? How does your body react to stress? What is your interaction like with others? Is it easier to be compassionate towards others, children, pets, a stranger than it is to feel this towards yourself?

If you notice that your self talk is loaded with criticism and judgment when life gets challenging, you're not alone. When we make mistakes or life doesn't go according to plan we tend to become judgmental, harsh, critical towards ourselves when we make a mistake. Behind this painful reaction, is a desire to stop ourselves from making future mistakes! However, mistakes are a part of being human. So, if we are prone to make mistakes does it make sense to beat ourselves up for making them? Not! So why do we do it? And how we can learn to shift from self criticism and judgment to self compassion? 

Turning towards the pain and softening defenses

Self compassion is a way of accepting ourselves and also accepting that in moments of frustration, or emotional turmoil there is pain. In that moment of acknowledging the pain, we can tap into wisdom and choose what is is the most healing way to meet this.  It is a moment where we can reconnecting with what helps us flow through the pain and also to see what needs to happen, or how to proceed so that we can take action based on what helps rather than what keeps us locked in the need to be right. And there is so much more to how this practice helps and why it's essential to our emotional well being and our need to stay open hearted and open minded.

I'd like to share with you a beautiful video by Kristin Neff, a top researcher on this subject and author of Self Compassion, The Proven Power of Being Kind to Yourself. Please give yourself this gift of learning how to be kind and compassionate with yourself. It is truly a gift to you and to everyone and every living being you come into contact with.  

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