How to talk to yourself so you will listen
How to practice ‘self compassion”
If we talked to other people the way we talk to OURSELVES, we wouldn’t have any friends! We’re so hard on ourselves – but there’s a new movement centered around so-called “self compassion”.
Kristin Neff is an educational psychologist and her research shows that people who practice self-compassion have less stress and depression, and more self-confidence. Being kind to yourself also leads to stronger immune function and lower risk for heart disease.
And this concept behind self-compassion is simple: Treat yourself with as much love and kindness as you treat your friends.
But for a lot of us, that’s easier said than done. If we make a mistake at work, we might tell ourselves, “I’m so lame! No wonder I haven’t been promoted!” But we’d NEVER say that to a friend.
Professor Neff says a lot of people think being kind to themselves is a weakness. But research proves that the exact opposite is true. Studies show self-compassionate people are more resilient and better able to cope with difficult situations like relationship issues, chronic pain or any type of trauma.
The best way to practice self-compassion is to simply talk to yourself the way you’d talk to your best friend. You’d be supportive and understanding, and you’d look for solutions, right? Well we should do the same for ourselves.