As a psychologist I have had the privilege of listening and supporting people facing challenges and crises in their lives. They share their life stories with me. But there is a common theme. Often they are the main character in their stories and they hammer themselves. They blame themselves for everything. They ordain themselves as useless or worthless. They explain to me how they brought their problems upon themselves. They describe themselves as unlucky, hapless and powerless. They tell me how weak and vulnerable that they have always been throughout their lives. Often, they compare themselves to other family members or friends who are stronger.
Here are some tips for loving ourselves more and letting the light into the darker periods of our lives.
Tips for more self-compassion:
- How we translate failure is critical. Start seeing your failures as temporary setbacks.
- Embrace your imperfection as something you share with every human being on the planet.
- Accept the reality that none of us have total control over everything.
- Consider what you have in common with your fellow human beings – vulnerability.
- Remind yourself how you’d treat a good friend after failing or being rejected. Give yourself some of the same sympathy.
- Have some compassionate phrases ready for the tough times i.e This is a moment of suffering. Suffering is part of life. I need to mind myself.
- Learn how to meditate. Learn how to calm yourself down.
- Step outside your circle. Remove yourself from the noise of life even for an hour and do something that will lift your spirits or soothe you. You are entitled to do things that you love doing despite the challenges that you encounter
- Accept the love and support offered by others as a gift not an intrusion .
- Remind yourself that life is precious and time is passing. Whatever crisis you are experiencing now will become something that you will look back on. (c) Shane Martin