Self-compassion is the ability to extend kindness and understanding to oneself in the face of perceived failures, inadequacies, or in instances of general personal suffering. This doesn’t mean feeling sorry for yourself, or being self-indulgent or weak, but simply that instead of beating yourself up for failing, you treat yourself as you would treat a friend who was facing a similar situation. In this way, self-compassion goes beyond a basic acceptance of one’s experiences to embracing oneself with warmth and understanding in the face of difficulty or distress. There is now empirical evidence that self-compassion, practiced regularly, helps train the brain away from shame and toward feelings of happiness and joy.
When we experience frustrations in daily life, many of us hold ourselves to blame. Self-criticism is often our default setting. But we can have a more gracious posture toward ourselves. We can practice disciplines of self-kindness.
Much like gratitude, Angela contends we need a kindness practice. A practice in which we learn to see with our hearts and act from a place of compassion. As the Dalai Lama says, “Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.
The information offered here is not a substitute for professional advice. Please proceed with care and caution.