March 15, 2023 0 Comments self-compassion

How Self-Compassionate Are You?

If you’ve been following me for a while you will have read something about self-compassion. Ever since I discovered the concept of self-compassion it has been something that I really want to share with others because I think it is one of the most helpful things you can do for yourself and is really empowering.

Can you imagine instead of relying on others or material things to make you feel loved, accepted and secure in an unconditional way – you can provide these feelings for yourself? This is the superpower of self-compassion, we have within us the ability to make ourselves feel loved and supported.

What is self-compassion?
Quite simply, self-compassion is treating ourselves the way we would a good friend. So that means showing ourselves the same kindness, concern, warmth, support and love that we do for those closest to us, especially when going through a time of suffering. It has been proved that self-compassion is a great coping strategy and helps build resilience and strength.

The amazing thing about self-compassion is that it’s always there, both in the good and bad times, whereas it’s hard to have high self-esteem when you are suffering and something has knocked you off course. Life is unpredictable and imperfect and it’s amazing to have a source of support that you know is always there within you.

How self-compassionate are you?
The good news is the way we talk to ourselves and treat ourselves is strongly habitual, which means the more we start to make changes in our daily routines, the easier it will be. Change is a process and takes time, however the differences are usually seen pretty quickly.

The first step is becoming aware of our critical self-talk and how differently we tend to speak to ourselves than to those we care about. As a society we tend to find it a lot easier to be compassionate to others than ourselves.

Try this exercise:
1. Think about a time when you’ve had a close friend who was struggling in some way.

How do you respond to your friend?
What sort of things do you say?
What’s your tone of voice like, your posture?

Write these down.

2. Now think about a time where you struggled in some way.

How did you act towards yourself?
What things did you say to yourself?
What’s your tone of voice like, your posture?

Write these down.

3. Now think about the difference between how you treat those close to you that are struggling and how you treat yourself.

Is there a pattern? What differences do you see?

(Adapted from The Mindful Self-Compassion Workbook, Neff & Germer, 2018).

How did you find this exercise?

Many are shocked to discover how badly they treat themselves, especially when there is a direct comparison. If you are one of these, don’t worry you are not alone and it is really a celebratory moment. Once you are aware of something, you can start to make positive changes that influence your thoughts and behaviours for the better.

You can also click here to take a test to see how self-compassionate you are.

I hope you found this helpful, as a mindfulness teacher and life coach I can help you to increase your self-compassion, self-kindness and self-love, please get in touch and book a free call to see how we could work together.

Much love x