Mindfulness Activity #107
Self-Acceptance Day 5
Good Morning. This week we are working on self-compassion. Researchers identify three components to self-compassion. The first is to recognize and tune into moments when you are in pain. These can be moments of suffering great or small. Instead of telling yourself to buck up, get moving…saying to yourself, “this sucks,” is actually an essential step if we are actually going to get moving. Failure to do so often renders us stuck, dejected, feeling incapable of improving. Failing to nonjudgmentally recognize our own suffering catapults most people into a place of shame wherein you feel unworthy, unlovable and incapable.
Ok, so you say to yourself, this is really hard or this sucks…then what? Well first of all, we are often afraid to go there, because we are afraid we will be stuck there and there will be no one to help us or get us out. But when we do get ourselves there, the next part is to actually accept that pain is a part of life. We need to see that all people experience pain and sadness and there is no way around it.
Once you accept pain, the way through it is to comfort yourself like you would a child who is upset. I say this without being dramatic. It simply means not beating yourself up. Being kind to yourself. Not needing to have a solution to a problem in order to feel better about it. So that’s it. Sitting with the unknown and allowing yourself the realization that it is hard to be in the middle of conflict, grief, and worry, and knowing that it is part of being human. Then– here is the key. Your response to yourself cannot be, “everyone has struggles, deal with it.” Your response must be kind. You are doing the best you can. You are ok. You can handle this. That is the essence of self-compassion.
When you cultivate self-compassion, you free yourself from shame which is paralyzing. More tomorrow about that. For now, just practice these three steps towards self-acceptance by engaging in the practice below
Then, throughout today, don’t try to focus on compassion for others (I am not saying to be mean or uncaring). But, what I’m saying is that for today, focus on self-compassion and then notice how it affects your treatment of others. I think you’ll be surprised.
FYI for a great article on self-compassion, click and read if you have time…
Have an easy weekend!