How often are you kind to yourself? My bet is not all that often. You might purchase a special item, have a sweet treat like chocolate, or indulge in a glass of wine. But you need more kindness than that. It’s time to think much bigger about kindness.
The biggest act of kindness you can offer yourself is noticing and shifting your own internal chatter. Really pay attention to how you speak to yourself in the privacy of your mind. Observe the harsh and biting comments that you would never say to anyone else or utter aloud.
Why do you do that to yourself? If you want to create peace and experience more joy, start by being kind to yourself.
Are You Too Hard on Yourself?
People are harder on themselves than anyone else. Why is that the natural way? Here’s an example of how this normally sounds in your head.
Say you forgot to cook a package of chicken and now it’s expired. The internal conversation might sound like this:
“Now you’ve wasted $10, not to mention the food. What an idiot! How could you be so wasteful and foolish? You never do anything right. What a loser.”
That’s how the unkind thoughts might go. You start with a small mistake and rocket into telling yourself you are worthless piece of trash in less than 30 seconds.
Stop Beating Yourself Up
What is the truth regarding these horrible thoughts? Are these comments about yourself accurate? Of course not!
Yes, you forgot to cook the chicken. But that does not make you a loser. However, it sure does make you human. Humans make mistakes. It’s a normal part of life and learning. And the big news is, beating yourself up will never improve your life. It’s a bad habit that minimizes your self-esteem and happiness.
Kindness Enhances Your Health & Mindset
That’s why the practice of kindness is vital for your mental, emotional, and physical well-being. According to the world renown Mayo Clinic, kindness is “a quality of being you can cultivate…” that is “simple, free and health enhancing.”
Being kind to yourself or others actually raises your self-esteem. It also builds empathy and compassion and is a known mood elevator.
Kindness reduces your blood pressure and the stress hormone, cortisol. People who are kind tend to live longer because they move through life with a greater sense of connectivity and balance.
When you are kind to yourself or others, this boosts serotonin and dopamine levels which are neurotransmitters that produce feelings of satisfaction and well-being. What would it be like to feel more satisfied?
Even better, being kind to yourself leads to lighting up the pleasure and reward centers of your brain. That makes practicing self-kindness highly worthwhile and 100% productive.
It’s Harder to Be Nice to Yourself
Begin by focusing on being kind to yourself because for whatever reason, that is often harder. You might tend to over-give and extend yourself with other people regularly. But with yourself? Not so much.
Do you put off getting a massage or other self-care activities because you are too busy taking care of your family or other important people in your life? This is something women in particular are known for – taking care of everyone else first.
This is why it’s so important to begin a practice of being kind to yourself. Just for today, if that’s all you can manage, be aware of your inner dialog. When you catch that cruel inner conversation – STOP!
Notice what you are saying and shift into kindness. So what if you didn’t cook the chicken, pay the bill on time, or said something in anger? You likely did the best you could in the moment and can always improve later. This is especially true about being kind to yourself when you make a mistake.
Imagine a World with More Kindness
Imagine what the world would be like if everyone could simply be kind to themselves. The world would be happier and people would feel a lot less stressed. That alone could lead to a greater degree of peace in the world!
There would be less aggressive behavior and anger towards others as people felt better about themselves. For example, road rage could dramatically decrease as stress levels decline.
People might take better care of the planet and reverse some of the damage to Mother Earth. There might be more tree-planting and less harmful strip-mining. Communities might treat the water supply with the true reverence it deserves.
Kindness Is Powerful
Your kindness to yourself and others is so much more powerful than you can begin to imagine. And it all starts with you right here, right now, in this very moment.
Today, start your kindness practice. Be kind to yourself first, and then find tiny ways to share kindness with others. Start small because the little things often matter more than the big ones on the path to feeling happier and inner peace.
10 Ways to Be Kind to Yourself
- Tell yourself that you are wonderful first thing in the morning.
- Forgive yourself for a small mistake or a big one.
- When you catch yourself being internally mean, ask how you can be kind instead.
- Acknowledge yourself for a quality you like about yourself.
- Praise yourself for doing a good job on something.
- Look in the mirror and blow yourself a kiss.
- Cross your arms in front of you, put each hand on the opposite shoulder and send your body love.
- Thank your body for the hard work it does to keep you vibrant and alive.
- Say this affirmation – “I am worthy of the same kindness I offer others”.
- Remind yourself that you can be kinder to others, when you are kind to yourself first.
Author: Ronnie Ann Ryan MBA, CCC, an Intuitive Coach and Wise Woman who quickly zeros in on the heart of the matter. She offers practical solutions to business and life issues using her intuition, as well as talking with her guides and yours. Also a Past Life Reader, Soul Intelligence Energy Healer, and Bestselling Author with six books, Ronnie hosts the popular podcast Breathe Love & Magic which made it to the top 5% globally! If you want the intuitive edge to find the magic in your business and life, visit https://IntuitiveEdge.biz
Originally published here: https://intuitiveedge.biz/practice-kindness-for-yourself-first-then-for-others/