This week, we’re looking at ways in which you can amp up your self compassion with self care AND your self care with self compassion (ie more appropriate self care goals depending on how you’re feeling)…
One of my acts of self compassion this week has been to change my blogging day to Monday.
By assessing how we’re doing, being curious around what’s working and what isn’t working, we can better adjust to be more effective and more relaxed.
Sounds simple but it is likely to make my life way easier AND it makes more sense for you.
How does self care link with self compassion?
Unlike many things (eg, eating at least five portions of fruit and veg a day) self care acts vary, sometimes wildly, depending on different factors.
Some days, a sea swim can be delicious, others almost punitive. Sometime a nap can be indulgent self care, other days, a strong workout is far better.
I hope that, as you’ve been treating your feelings as information and simply being curious about what works and doesn’t (for YOU) you’re getting better at trusting what feels right for you on any given day.
In any given hour.
This exercise might help
This is adapted from the delightful Mindful Compassion by Paul Gilbert and Choden.
I went into it in more detail with the Feel Better Every Day online membership programme group in today’s live self care coaching call (with a self-compassion focused Yoga Nidra for this week) but you can get a lot out of it yourself:
Take three pieces of paper and a pen.
On the first, write STRESS and jot down some of the things that stress you out.
On the second, write MOTIVATION and list some of the things that energise you.
On the third, write RELAX and note some of the things that help calm you down.
What do you notice?
You might realise that when you’re very stressed, the idea of doing something calming and relaxing feels as impossible as skipping to the moon.
This will hopefully help you go easier on yourself next time you have trouble with your sleep (as well as encouraging you to put better supports in place so you’re not aiming to go from 100km per hour to zero.
You’ll also hopefully be able to discern the enormous range of options you have (and which you can continue to add to) to support you when you want to take better care of yourself by lifting your nervous system and when you want to calm it.
If you have 365 Ways to Feel Better: Self-care Ideas for Embodied Wellbeing, you might want to categorise some of your favourite strategies accordingly too – which ones will help calm you? Which will motivate you, help you feel more empowered and more confident?
When I started putting this week’s theme together, I was feeling pretty smug thinking of HOW far I have come from such self-loathing as my default setting to feeling happier than ever before.
I attributed much of this not only to my move to Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way but also to my vastly improved self-talk thanks to Rainbow MagnifiCat
And then I swore at myself for the first time in AGES (I’d broken so many things with a kind and gentle, ‘Evie Cat…’ but this was a full on, ‘Bo****. FFS’ and then I laughed.
My point is that even though this is my WORK and I’ve made so much progress (over DECADES of trauma recovery and general healing) it’s still very much a matter of progress not perfection.
I hope you’ll be able to find some compassion for yourself even in those moments when you DIDN’T find compassion for yourself…
When are you able to show yourself mercy? Self compassion? When do you struggle more?
Feel free to email email@example.com with any questions or comments.
And feel free to share this post on your social media etc so others who may find it helpful can read it.
*that highest, wisest, truest, wildest, most miraculous part of your Self
If you’re enjoying the features, columns, podcasts, TV and radio clips, book bonus videos, mind body practices and other free Be Your Own Self Care Coach resources throughout the site, you might want to check out the Feel Better Every Day online membership programme and, if it appeals, apply to join the waiting list.
Membership reopens at the end of the year.
Each week, members have the option to dive deeper into their self care with a special email filled with simple suggestions around the week’s theme. There’s something for everyone (it’s designed to work with different energy levels).
Membership includes a weekly live self care coaching call and unique, relaxing Yoga Nidras to harness the power of the unconscious mind while working with each theme. There are also energy cleanses, other mind body practices and individual support for all who want it. APPLY HERE