I recently arrived at the conclusion that I needed more self-compassion. I had heard this so many times I figured it must be true. Only I didn’t really know what self-compassion meant. So I started studying up on it.
See, at first I had self-compassion confused with self-PITY. I didn’t want to sit around feeling sorry for myself all the time. Or, maybe it’s because I DID sit around feeling sorry for myself sometimes and didn’t want to admit it. I didn’t want to be associated with someone who feels a lot of self-pity, so I stayed away from self-compassion for fear of going too far.
But I finally discovered Kristen Neff and her book, ‘Self-Compassion: The Proven Power of Being Kind to Yourself‘ and her website at self-compassion.org. This was a great start. To say the least. And it helped me understand the difference between pity and compassion (more on that in Friday’s post).
Not that we want to give 100% of the credit for the idea of self-compassion to one person, but Dr. Neff has become the name and the face behind a movement to be kind to ourselves.
So self-compassion is pretty self explanatory. It’s compassion toward yourself. It’s sort of that whole, ‘treat yourself like you would a friend’ thing. It just makes sense.
And it’s the opposite of beating ourselves up – which we all know is a bad thing.
For me, I now try to fill the gap in the pause I have created with the thought that I can choose to not beat myself up – I can choose to be compassionate toward myself instead.
I can’t wait to share this episode with you this Friday.