…someone that is always with you, someone you can rely on at your darkest times. Someone that knows you more than anyone else. Have you guess who could be that friend? It’s you!
When I first read about self-compassion it came as quite a shock.
I could be nice to myself?
I could give myself the encouragement and support I needed during my darkest hours?
Growing up, this was never something I was taught. I was always told to be kind and compassionate to others, have good manners and think about how my actions effected the people around me. However, I can now see that maybe I had been putting others feelings ahead of my own too much.
It felt selfish to put myself first. I always wanted to give to others but I’m learning that it can actually be generous to let others give to you.
There are obviously times when your caring and compassion for others is needed. However, I’ve learnt that when you’re in need, you can use those skills on yourself. Getting the balance right is the key.
How would you talk to or treat a friend who was suffering with depression? I’d talk kindly and thoughtfully do things that I knew would help cheer them up. I realised that during my depression I was the friend in need and I need to be compassionate to myself. Caring and kind. Generous and loving.
I know from experience that when you need self-compassion the most, it seems so desperatly hard. There’s only one cure I can think of and that’s to take small steps and practise. Try and remember if you are breaking a habit of a lifetime – you can’t expect to change overnight.
Start being kind to yourself today. You can try by allowing yourself to take timeout for you – read my post on Me Time. Another thing to do is notice the language you use to yourself – are you using kind words or always beating yourself up? Remember, how would you talk to a friend, be your own best friend.