What is selfcompassion?

There’s a fresh way to look at self-compassion, which is how we experience it:

Self-compassion is the opposite of self-hate; it’s a resolve to be as kind to our self as we would to a good friend.

Self-compassion is hearing and responding to our own cry in the dark.

Self-compassion is a journey to free our heart from its dungeon, so we can live from our true self.

Self-compassion is the opposite of self-hate; it’s a resolve to be as kind to our self as we would to a good friend

Part of us may recoil at the phrase “self-hate,” thinking it doesn’t apply to us. However, if we stop and listen to our critical inner voice, and hear its constant judgments and put-downs, we can recognize a muted shade of loathing. When we judge our self, we are being unkind. We may shrug and think there’s no harm in it, but as one psychologist observed, “The effects of self-loathing are worse than cancer.”

Our judgments are like weapons. How many spears do we throw at ourselves within the space of an hour, or a day? Self-criticism has become a habitual pattern that locks our heart, our basic warmth and goodness, in a dark dungeon, and then guards the door.

Self-compassion is hearing and responding to our own cry in the dark.

Empathy is being aware of and resonating with another person’s experience. But, since it is passive, empathy alone isn’t enough. Compassion begins with empathy, but includes a response.

Similarly, self-compassion is something we do. And that’s because compassion is active.

Compassion is our ability to really see someone’s suffering and be moved to respond however we can. Imagine you’re a parent waking up in the middle of the night on hearing the anguished cry of your child. Compassion is being aware of and touched by the cry of pain, so that you naturally want to go there and relieve your child’s suffering by removing the cause, or at the very least, offering comfort.

But for many of us, the “cry in the darkness” we fail to hear is our own. Part of us has been hurting with old injuries, shame, sorrow, or anguish. And we’ve been ignoring our inner cry of pain.

So, self-compassion is:

        being aware of our suffering, so that it touches us, and

        responding with kindness and care.

Self-compassion is meeting your suffering with kindness, and, frankly, that’s the most courageous thing you can do.

No one else can do it for you.

Self-compassion is a heroic journey to free your heart.

You feel like you’ve come home: home to your true self.

 

Are you inspired to take the first steps?

Read more on Self-Compassion.

Download and practice the free meditation: “Making Friends with Your Difficult Aspects.” 

Find an explanation of the guided meditation here.   

Sign up for the online course, or host a seminar, or attend an upcoming event.

When it becomes available, you’ll be able to become part of the self-compassion community. 

Photo: ©istock

© istock.com

“A theme from the course that stayed with me was gentleness. I don’t approach my life and myself with gentleness, and I find I am cruelest to myself. This is something I now try to be conscious of every day. I am learning to be my own biggest supporter, and to go gently when I am suffering, in the same way that I would be gentle with someone else who is in pain.”  –  Claire 

 

 

Newsletter & Free Gift


%d bloggers like this: