with Lindsey Kolb, RYT-500
Compassion often brings to mind acts of service towards other people. Offering compassion towards yourself is
no different than extending it to others. Self-compassion can be defined as having three components. First, mindfulness, or recognizing that suffering is happening in the moment. Second, common humanity, or acknowledging that all beings suffer and you are not alone in your suffering. Third, self kindness, be kind, warm and
understanding towards yourself when you are suffering. For many people, criticism comes more easily to mind than
compassionate statements. Fortunately, there are many ways to practice self compassion. Here are come examples.
Try this journaling exercise from Kristin Neff.
Please take out a sheet of paper and answer the following questions:
• First, think about times when a close friend feels really bad about him or herself or is really struggling in some way. How would you respond to your friend in this situation (especially when you’re at your best)? Please write down what you typically do, what you say, and note the tone in which you typically talk to your friends.
• Now think about times when you feel bad about yourself or are struggling. How do you typically respond to yourself in these situations? Please write down what you typically do, what you say, and note the tone in which you talk to yourself.
• Did you notice a difference? If so, ask yourself why. What factors or fears come into play that lead you to treat yourself and others so differently?
• Please write down how you think things might change if you responded to yourself in the same way you typically
respond to a close friend when you’re suffering.
If a guided practice is preferred, here is a link to some self-compassion guided practices. Enjoy!