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“Forgive yourself for the way you treated yourself in the past, for the way you vilified the way your mind works, for the way you did not show up for yourself, for settling for less because you didn’t think you deserved it”. 

These are the words I saw on my TikTok fyp from the Thought Catalog account,  and it made me think about how easy it is to show empathy and compassion for others. But for most people, showing compassion to themselves can be seen as childish, foolish, selfish and even a sign of weakness.

I personally think the reason we find it hard to be kinder to ourselves is we see ourselves as better than others and hold ourselves to an unhealthy self-esteem without allowing any room for empathy, kindness or care. That’s why we can call ourselves derogatory terms we would not say to someone we cared about or even someone we disliked.

There are numerous resources for one to practice self-compassion from. Turn towards yourself with kindness instead of always criticizing yourself. Motivate yourself with love and kindness while boosting confidence. Recognize and acknowledge your achievements, no matter how little you deem them. Know what good support looks like, and implement that within yourself and others. There are also self compassion exercises on selfcompassion.org and great TED talks with Kristin Neff. 

Self-compassion is not a linear journey. It is a journey with zigzags and ups-and-downs. Your feelings may not always be logical, but they are valid. In order to fulfill self-compassion, you have to give yourself permission to feel what you feel. Your feelings are yours, not your friends, family’s or partner’s. Do not let anyone diminish them, not even you.

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