20 Sep 2018
Compassion Practice: Intentions & The Best You.
Practicing self compassion isn’t a new idea, but it is as important as checking your emails when you get to work. So it’s sad that while we automatically check our inbox we rarely check in on ourselves.
But before we find out how to practice, it’s important to understand what self-compassion actually is.
For the short version: self-compassion is the act of extending compassion to one’s self. This is especially important when you’re feeling inadequate, when you believe you have failed or when you are suffering. It may be easy to dismiss, but when was the last time you were really actually gentle and forgiving with yourself immediately after you did something embarrassing, or didn’t meet you own expectations?
Self Compassion has three main components they are:– self-kindness, common humanity, and mindfulness.
- Self-kindness: Is being warm towards yourself in times of pain and failure, rather than being critical. This is highly important for your ongoing mental health.
- Common humanity: Is about coming to the realisation that suffering and personal failure is part of the human experience and something that we all have in common.
- Mindfulness: Is the balanced approach to negative emotions, any negative thoughts are observed with openness, and a mindful awareness so that they are not suppressed or exaggerated. It’s about being non-judgmental. – Read more about mindfulness here.
So now that you know what self-compassion is, whats the best way to put this into practice?
Well we have a mindfulness & gratitude meditation how to guide here.
This is great for the moments of suffering and to put an immediate stop to the negative thoughts and emotions. If you’re feeling any of those now, click that link and start your practice there.
But if you have a handle on mindfulness and you’re ready for a different healthy mind activity we have an exercise in self-compassion that will put you on the emotional and thoughtful path of healing and breakthrough!
Compassion Practice: Intention setting to picture the best you.
What do you need:
- Keep an open mind and retreat to a quiet spot.
Imagine your life five years from now. One where you are living, as you would like to be, according to your values. What will you be doing? Who will be in your life? Where will you be living? Don’t worry about money or logistics. Just write you life as you want it to be.
Write this letter from the future to someone important to you (living or dead, known or unknown) describing your life, as it is at that time, in exquisite detail. Take as long as you need to do this, making it as concrete as possible.(I write to my grandma, she was my biggest supporter and I strive daily to make her proud)
- Read over the letter and extract three values that are important to you.
- How close on a scale from 1 to 100 (with a 100 being completely) are you to this life you would like to be living?
- What is a small, concrete thing you could do in the next 48 hours to bring you five points closer to that life? Write it down, and make sure that the task is stated in positive and behavioural terms. Make sure it is achievable!
Exercises like this bring awareness and intention to how we are living and our mental health. They can help us focus on cultivating who we want to be from a place of kindness and self-care. Focusing on one small activity that is achievable stops the risk of the failure thoughts, and as each achievement adds up you will soon find yourself heading in the direction of your own defined life success. Before you know it a fresh mindset and life transformation have taken place with moments of peace and happiness as a part of the journey.
Want more goal setting tips? Click here for our mid-year resolution reboot and although it’s no longer the middle of the year these tips are great to put into practice whenever you need to.
Need a reset and a quiet place to set your intentions? It may be the perfect time to try one of our women’s health and yoga retreats. Click here to view our specials.