Wellness at startGBC: Self-Compassion

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Self-Compassion Break

Self-compassion involves acting the same way towards yourself when you are having a difficult time, fail, or notice something you don’t like about yourself. Instead of just ignoring your pain with a “stiff upper lip” mentality, you stop to tell yourself, “this is really difficult right now,” how can I comfort and care for myself at this moment? With self-compassion, we give ourselves the same kindness and care we’d give to a good friend.

Think of a situation in your life that is difficult that is causing you stress. Call the situation to mind, and see if you can actually feel the stress and emotional discomfort in your body.

Now, say to yourself:

This is a moment of suffering

That’s mindfulness. Other options include:
This hurts.
This is stressful.

Suffering is a part of life

That’s common humanity. Other options include:

Other people feel this way.

I’m not alone.

We all struggle in our lives.

May I be kind to myself

You can also ask yourself, “What do I need to hear right myself?”
Is there a kind phrase that speaks to you in your particular situation, such as:

May I give myself the compassion that I need.
May I learn to accept myself as I am.
May I be patient with myself.

To provide even more structure, you can listen to audio guiding you through this practice.

Content courtesy: Self-compassion researcher Kristin Neff provides this and other guided practices on her website.

More Self-Compassion Exercises from Center for Mindful Self-Compassion

(Right-click the links below to download – then choose “Save File As” or click to listen to the meditations)