Are you your mom?
Some of us had caring mothers or other care-givers who consistently provided kindness and support. Some of us had more difficult experiences.
Our natural ability to be gentle and kind to ourselves has been shaped by those early voices of safety and nurture, or lack thereof. Good news! According to one of my all-time favorite teachers, Kristin Neff, even if you did not feel secure with your parents or care-givers as a little one, you can still learn to feel secure by practicing self-compassion regularly.
Providing yourself with compassion is a lot like becoming that ideal mom to yourself. When you learn to notice, value, and meet your own needs consistently you grow yourself up into a warm and encouraging person. Over time, you start to feel that you're worthy of the love and care that is your birthright.
Kristin Neff describes three ways to show yourself compassion:
- Kindness: shows up as love, gentleness and warmth
- Common humanity: provides a sense of connection and equality with others
- Mindfulness: allows you to be with yourself in hard times, without stuffing things down or getting overwhelmed
You're such a wonderful person, and it's good to treat yourself that way.
How would you like to show yourself some tenderness? Is it through kind words, through recognizing yourself as a part of a bigger community, or by taking some time to connect with yourself? What will be different for you when you offer yourself the kind of care that every person deserves?
With great love,