Be your own friend, practice self – compassion

Celebrate the elegance of being a real you- kind, caring, compassionate, ambitious, humorous, thoughtful and so much more on this international women’s day!
Believe in yourself!
Life is like a rollercoaster ride. The modern living is full of ups and downs. We all face challenges of day to day living. From mounting work pressures, unpredictable commutes, finances, health worries, raising kids to trying to strike a balance between family and work life. The ups and downs of daily living can bring one down or be the cause of feeling overwhelmed, unable to cope. Have faith in yourself and your abilities.
You have done wonderful things in the past, and you will continue to excel in the future. It’s ok to stumble occasionally. It’s ok to feel disappointments. Do not let the setbacks question your self- worth or leave you feeling devalued.
Be gentle on yourself and let your inner strength and resilience grow. Treat yourself with the same degree of compassion you would treat a loved one or a dear friend. Many of us struggle with the idea of being kind to ourselves. They find it difficult to extend the same loving kindness to themselves as they would bestow upon their parent, child or a partner in need. Even when we are struggling and we need compassion the most. Instead, when things go wrong, we can be overtly critical and  blaming of ourselves. This self-judgement leads to negative ruminative thinking, resulting in –
Lack of Happiness
Low Self – esteem
Low Confidence &
Low Resilience

Furthermore, research shows when we become our own friend and extend the kindly attitude to ourselves, we can cope better and bounce back early when faced with adversities. And the good news is that we can cultivate the skill of self-compassion! A skill of building an intentional relationship of respect, kindness and compassion with oneself. It helps achieve sustained positive emotions. And it is essential for the greater self development as it makes us more confident and emotionally resilient.

We can learn to practice self-compassion, by seeing ourselves worthy of kindness and care and by being our own friend! When things are not going well, we need compassion the most and not self-criticism.
The inner critic gets stronger when outcomes do not meet our expectations. We tend to be harsh on ourselves, generating all sorts of unhelpful thoughts and worries. Feelings of hopelessness and worthlessness follow leading to lower self-esteem. This makes us feel increasingly helpless throwing further into a downward spiral of guilt and hopelessness.
Learn to silence the inner critic by practicing mindfulness meditation – living in the moment, here and now. Practicing mindfulness leads to awareness of the moment and everything that rises in the moment – thoughts, emotions and feelings, including developing awareness of our inner critic generating unhelpful thoughts and worries. Once you develop the awareness of your inner voice, and all of the unhelpful thoughts and worries, you will also know how to ‘respond’ to adversity rather than ‘react’. Mindful people can cope better with difficulties without getting overwhelmed or emotionally shut down. In practicing mindfulness, they develop clarity of thoughts and feelings and when combined with self-compassion, reap additional benefits of increased resilience and inner strength.

Take a 5 minute mindful walk outdoors or indoor. Be aware of your posture, stand tall, hold head high, look people in the eye with smile on your face. Enhance your sensory perception. Notice objects, people, pets, sounds, aromas around you.
Secondly, indulge in self-care by simply being nice to yourself. Spending time doing something or treating yourself to indulgence that will give you a sense of satisfaction without feeling guilty.
Thirdly, practice gratitude. Write down three things you are grateful for. No matter how big or small. Really feeling the emotions when you are being thankful, while expressing in words. Experiencing the warmth of the heart or a sense of pride or even tingling down the spine.
Once you start journaling the things you appreciate, you will find more and more things you are grateful for. Be it family, friends, health, pets or even nature! It’s the same feeling of warmth each and every time  you show kindness to a loved one or hold the door to a stranger.  Also by doing an act of random kindness, you can shift the focus away from your own self. One small act of kindness can make a big difference in someone else’s life. An act of random kindness may be helping a neighbour with groceries, checking on an elderly relative, calling a friend, or leaving lunch for a homeless or anything you can think of.

The act of random kindness will be valued more in the world today where kindness shown to family or friends is considered a favour, thus obviating the need for ‘returning the favour’.

Be gentle on yourself. Be your own best friend and treat yourself with the same degree of respect and kindness you would treat a loved one. Believe in yourself and stay amazing!

6 thoughts on “Be your own friend, practice self – compassion

  1. Excellent article. Tips that can be applied to daily life. Felt very positive and uplifted after reading.

    Like

  2. This is an inspiring post! Thanks for reminding us to practice self-compassion…this is rejuvenating!

    Like

  3. It’s pure simplicity; ” Peace in Oneself, Peace in the World “( quoted by a Buddhist Monk). This article is a true reflection of this statement . It teaches people to be at peace with themselves, so there can be an internal sense of security and freedom.
    Very inspiring article with lots of useful tips!!

    Like

  4. Nicely written about enlightening oneself to be u r own friend..
    Its really necessary to put it in practice to achieve inner peace..very inspiring article..

    Like

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