Practicing Self-Compassion

So often I hear clients say, "I would never talk to a friend like I take to myself," maybe that is where the term you are your own worst critic comes from?  So badgering yourself all day is motivation, or so we are taught.  What if there is another way.  What if we were compassionate towards ourselves as opposed to critical.  When we are compassionate to loved ones, or even strangers, it seems to be uplifting and help to them, and yet we fail to see how this can be helpful for us!

We go about our day on auto pilot, which is similar to how our thoughts work.  We call this automatic critical thoughts because we think without noticing.  Most of the time we are not even fully aware how critical we are of ourselves.  Step back and think about your own inner dialogue, maybe even write some thoughts down.  Think about how many times you have an automatic thought like, "I should have... or I am so lazy, I can't get anything done."  Would you say that to a friend?  Most likely that's not very helpful or encouraging.  It's a good reminder to think about how your automatic self critical thoughts impact you on a day to day.  

When you can't seem to understand why you are feeling down or angry, take an inventory of your critical thoughts.  What you might notice is how critical thought impact your mood.  Practicing self-compassion is not something you can change overnight.  It takes practice and persistence, but once you are able to implement it you will be amazed at how much more effective you can be.