Do you have an inner voice that works as your biggest critic? Are you constantly talking negatively to yourself? Do you constantly judge your actions, thoughts, and behaviors? Or maybe you make yourself feel terrible about the mistakes you have made in the past. Right?
If yes, you are not alone.
Almost all of us have been taught to be kind toward others and treat others with compassion and love. Yet, all these golden rules cease to exist when it comes to ourselves.
We talk a lot about the importance of self-compassion. But if we were to be truly honest, learning how to develop self-compassion is challenging, especially if life’s not going your way and you feel like a failure. So when the going gets tough, by default, we become our own worst critics.
But it turns out this mean and rude little voice in our heads is definitely not a well-wisher. It restricts our growth and intrudes positive changes. When this voice gets louder, it tunes out the wiser and more confident version of yourself.
Learning how to develop self-compassion by avoiding the mean voice and listening to a compassionate one is complicated. But there are some things you can do to be a little kinder to yourself.
In this post, we will dive deeper into these little ways to help you figure out how to be kinder to yourself. Let’s get started.
Practical Tips On How To Develop Self-Compassion
1. Confront the mean voice in your head.
All of us have an inner critic. But not all recognize the exact moment when it starts infiltrating and consuming our thoughts. Therefore, the first step toward learning how to develop self-compassion is to acknowledge and confront this inner critic.
So, the next time you start getting rude to yourself over messing up something, fighting with a friend, or just about anything else – stop for a second and think, why were you exactly doing this to yourself? Simply by acknowledging this inner bully and confronting it on different occasions, you can learn how to silence it eventually.
2. Celebrate your achievements, no matter how little they are.
Most of us think we only deserve our kindness and compassion when we do something worthy. This way, we are so caught up in the idea of hitting that significant milestone that we lose out on so many small victories to celebrate.
Therefore, another way to learn how to develop self-compassion is to accept that not just big life goals but your everyday achievements deserve to be celebrated too.
So on some days, you get to celebrate getting out of bed and reaching the office on time. On others, you could celebrate being there for a friend in need or taking a neighbour’s dog out for a walk. Every small thing counts.
3. Learn to forgive yourself.
Maybe you messed up a big date or job interview, made a fool out of yourself in front of your friends, or missed an important work or academic deadline – whatever the reason be, know that you are allowed to forgive yourself at the end of the day.
Think about it: would you hold a grudge against a friend or loved one who made a similar mistake? Odds are you wouldn’t, right? So learn to treat yourself after a mistake like you would treat a loved one. Don’t be any harder on yourself than you wouldn’t on others.
4. Remember that having self-compassion and being kinder to yourself does not make you selfish.
Learning how to develop self-compassion means learning how to make yourself a priority. And no, that does not make you selfish. Not even a bit. Most of us believe that we are supposed to be there for others, even before ourselves. However, in reality, taking care of yourself mentally and emotionally will only make it easier to be there for others.
Therefore, the more you practice kindness on yourself, the more you will be able to give it out to the world. That said, you do not need to have a reason to be kinder to yourself (even if it is as noble as being kinder to others). You deserve kindness as much as anyone else, pal.
Read more: 11 Reasons Why Kindness Is Important
All of us have an inner critic that complicates learning how to develop self-compassion. However, it is important to tune out this inner critic to uptick your personal growth and development. There are practical ways to develop self-compassion, including treating yourself like a friend, forgiving yourself, confronting your inner critic, and much more.
Kindness is a pillar that holds communities and societies together. World Kindness Day is celebrated annually and promotes kindness in different countries worldwide. To learn more about the day, click here.
To continue learning about kindness and mental health, subscribe to Your Mental Health Pal.