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Cultivating Resilience Practice 2: Self-Compassion

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HEALTH & WELLNESS

Editor’s Note:

Bold Blind Beauty is thrilled to share with you snippets from Becky Andrews’ new book “Cultivating our Resilience Workbook/Journal.” Adversity strengthens and builds resilience; Becky will share weekly practices to help us become more resilient. ~Steph

Practice Two:  Self Compassion 

As we start week two of cultivating our resilience, let’s check in from last week. How was the experience of giving yourself permission to feel? Letting ourselves feel is an act of strength, courage, and authenticity.  Noticing, Naming, and Accepting our Feelings is Practice One.  

Now, take a pause. With these feelings, how are you talking to yourself? Is what you are saying to yourself helpful or hurtful? If you are beating up on yourself, this is hurtful and takes our pain/challenges to suffering. Notice your thoughts. If it is helpful and compassionate to yourself, you are practicing self-compassion our second practice in cultivating our resilience.  

What is self-compassion? 

It is bearing witness to your own pain and suffering and responding with love and kindness as you would to a friend.

~Kristen Neff

If your compassion does not include yourself, it is incomplete. 

~Jack Kornfield

May there be kindness in your gaze when you look within. 

~John O Donahue

Self-compassion could be offering a compassionate phrase to yourself when you are hurting. It can be a soothing touch and acknowledging your pain. Combining these two might look like: recognizing the hurt then acknowledging it with a touch, perhaps your hand to your heart, and a phrase: Oh that hurts – may I feel comfort at this time. 

This week take some time to notice how you are talking to yourself. Practice giving yourself permission to feel and then respond with encouraging words. What’s a compassionate phrase you might use when you find yourself in a difficult situation?  Some examples: 

  • May I feel safe May I accept myself
  • May I feel at ease May I find peace 
  • May I believe in myself May I feel love
  • May I be kind to myself May I feel enough 

A soothing touch might be your hand on your heart, on your shoulder, the butterfly gesture (hands crisscrossed across your heart and tapping on your shoulders), hands clasped together, or the yoga child post can be a calming meditative pose. See what feels right to you.  

Wisdom On Self-Compassion

We live in a time when science is validating what humans have known throughout the ages; that compassion is not a luxury; it is a necessity for our well-being, resilience, and survival. 

~Joan Halifax

“Some people worry that self-compassion will close them off from other people by making them selfish and self-centered. The reverse is actually the case – the more open-hearted we are with ourselves, the closer we feel toward the rest of life. Self-compassion is the foundation for kindness toward others. When we’re more accepting of our own, we become more accepting of others.  Full acceptance of courses, moment to moment makes it easier to adapt and change in the direction we’d like to go.“  

Christopher Germer, Self Compassion, and Mindfulness

To keep a lamp burning, we have to keep putting oil in it. 

~Mother Theresa

Self-Nourishment

Nurturing Ourselves in five areas: social, spiritual, emotional, physical, and mental. What nourishes you in each of these areas? Take note and intentionally practice nurturing. For me, a nurturing practice is tandem cycling both physically and emotionally. It fills me physically to be moving my body and connecting with my husband in this way emotionally is nourishing.   This week as you cultivate resilience:

  • Practice one: Continue to give yourself permission to feel
  • Practice two:  Practice self compassion and self-care

Resources for more study on this topic:

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Becky Andrews

Becky Andrews is a Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor, Small Business Owner – Resilient Solutions, Inc, and founder of the Daring to Own Your Story ™ Retreats. She is also the author of Look up, move forward – her memoir of Losing her eyesight and finding her vision.  

You can follow her at:

Workbook: 

Cultivating our Resilience Workbook/Journal will be out Fall 2020. Email Becky at becky.lpc@gmail.com to be on the waiting list or preorder.

Image Descriptions:

  • Header: Two hands are shaped like a heart are framing a golden sunset.
  • Becky is sitting on outdoor steps next to her guide dog, Georgie, a gorgeous yellow lab. 

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