What is self-compassion?
Who is the only person available at all times to give yourself care and kindness no matter what?
Look in the mirror to find the answer.
What is Self-Compassion?
- The ideas of self-compassion emerged out of the Buddhist tradition.
- It first entered greater cultural awareness through Kristin Neff’s 2003 book, Self-Compassion: The Proven Power of Being Kind to Yourself.
- Self-compassion is still mostly limited to academic circles though the ideas have started to circulate in wellness and personal development spheres.
You should treat yourself just like you would treat a friend.
3 Foundational Parts of Self-Compassion
- Be gentle with yourself
- Common Humanity
- All humans share similar experiences – you are not alone in your mistakes and your feelings
- Be present and process your feelings in the moment so you can release them
Self-compassion is the best way to be the most complete version of yourself once you develop a daily practice.
Links and Resources Mentioned in this Episode:
Kristin Neff – Self-Compassion: The Proven Power of Being Kind to Yourself
Take a deeper look at self-compassion through the Imperfectly Perfect Self-Compassion Challenge at https://www.inspiringselfcompassion.com/challenge
Next Episode Sneak Peek
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Episode 1: What is Self-Compassion? Transcription
Sarah McLain 00:00
Hello, I’m going to open this episode with a question for you.
Sarah McLain 00:03
Who’s the only person available at all times to give yourself care and kindness no matter what else is going on?
Sarah McLain 00:10
All you have to do is look in the mirror to find the answer.
Sarah McLain 00:13
Sarah McLain 00:14
You’re the best person to deal with giving yourself the care and kindness that you deserve . . .and I mean the word deserve very, very literally.
Sarah McLain 00:24
This episode is sponsored by the Imperfectly Perfect 5 Day Self-Compassion Challenge, where you can discover self-compassion strategies that you can implement in less than 20 minutes a day. Find out more information at https://www.inspiringselfcompassion.com/challenge.
Sarah McLain 00:41
Are you sick and tired of all the negative self-criticism that creeps into your brain at the worst possible time? Stop me if you’ve ever said or thought this before . . . “I’m not good enough. I’m going to be a failure. This has to be perfect.”
Sarah McLain 00:57
All you really want is a proven way to quiet that tiny little voice you can move forward in your business. Easier said than done right?
Sarah McLain 01:05
Research has shown that there is one particular mindset shift that overcomes perfectionism, fear of failure and imposter syndrome, while increasing personal motivation, positivity and overall growth.
Sarah McLain 01:16
I’m speaking of the unlimited power of self compassion when it comes to your mindset, your self-confidence in your entrepreneurial path.
Sarah McLain 01:23
This is Inspiring Self-Compassion with Sarah McLain.
Sarah McLain 01:26
Let’s get into how self-compassion can change your life and your business.
Sarah McLain 01:31
Hi, and welcome to the inaugural weekly episode of Inspiring Self-Compassion.
Sarah McLain 01:36
I’m Sarah McLain and self compassion is absolutely my jam.
Sarah McLain 01:40
You can find the show notes for this episode at https://www.inspiringselfcompassion.com/episode1.
Sarah McLain 01:46
Today’s question that I’m answering is very, very basic.
Sarah McLain 01:50
What is self-compassion?
Sarah McLain 01:52
Before I get into the nitty gritty, I want to ask you . . . what do you think self-compassion is?
Sarah McLain 01:56
Do you think it’s self-care?
Sarah McLain 01:58
Do you think it’s self-pity?
Sarah McLain 02:01
Do you think it is self-love?
Sarah McLain 02:03
Well, the truth is, it’s actually not any of those things, though they are all part of it.
Sarah McLain 02:08
So actually out of the Buddhist tradition, self-compassion is something that is only very recently come out into a wider cultural awareness.
Sarah McLain 02:16
An academic researcher named Kristen Neff wrote a book in the early 2000s, right around 2003, called Self-Compassion: The Proven Power of being Kind to Yourself and talked about her own journey with self-compassion and where it came from and how it applies to the work that she does in an academic setting. And it has actually stayed in the academic world.
Sarah McLain 02:38
It is not still something that people know when you ask what self-compassion is.
Sarah McLain 02:42
So I wanted to take this time there to tell you what it is. Self-compassion is built on one central idea, and it’s this you should treat yourself just like you would treat a friend.
Sarah McLain 02:52
Would you actually tell a friend that they’re worthless?
Sarah McLain 02:55
Would you tell them that they’re not good enough?
Sarah McLain 02:57
Would you call them a failure?
Sarah McLain 02:59
I mean, if the answer to any of those is yes, then I’m going to guess you’re not a very good friend.
Sarah McLain 03:04
But the whole point is, is that you are not talking to yourself the way that you would talk to a friend.
Sarah McLain 03:09
There are three foundational parts to self-compassion.
Sarah McLain 03:12
The first, self-kindness, is all about taking that inner voice, that inner critic and their self-judgment, and telling them, “No, that’s not right. I am good enough. I deserve to be here. I deserve to do whatever I need to do. I deserve to be happy. I deserve to feel this way.”
Sarah McLain 03:31
It’s really just about finding ways to give yourself comfort in the hardest of moments.
Sarah McLain 03:39
It’s such a hard thing to do, though, and that’s one of the reasons why I’m so convinced that self-compassion is absolutely what we need more than anything else.
Sarah McLain 03:49
Because let’s face it, you’re probably not gonna let a friend talk to yourself the way you talk to yourself.
Sarah McLain 03:55
It’s about shifting that mindset in the way you think and talk about yourself.
Sarah McLain 04:00
It’s about thinking, “Hey, this idea failed, but I’m not a failure, and I’m gonna learn a lesson from it” instead of “I’m a failure.”
Sarah McLain 04:09
It’s about thinking, “You know what? I am good enough. I can teach this. People want to learn from me” rather than falling back on the fear that “I am not good enough to teach this.”
Sarah McLain 04:21
Because the truth is you don’t have to be an expert, you’re still good enough to teach it.
Sarah McLain 04:26
The second part common humanity really, really, really relies on reminding us that we are all human and everything that entails. It’s about removing that limiting belief that you’re all by yourself in your experience.
Sarah McLain 04:41
All you have to do is take a moment to scope out some Facebook groups and see what they’re saying about your limiting belief. Do you feel like you’re the only one that’s ever only had one person buy from your cart? Do you feel like you’re the only person that’s ever had a launch, a major major launch where only 2 people buy?
Sarah McLain 04:59
Well, you’re not. And that’s definitely the point.
Sarah McLain 05:01
For instance, if you look up the question, “does anyone else feel this way” in any kind of a group that is based around mindset or based around building a business or based around parenting? If you search that example, “does anyone else feel this way,” check to see what comes up.
Sarah McLain 05:19
I guarantee that the vast vast majority like 99% of the posts that you find with that particular phrase is followed by dozens or hundreds of commenters empathizing and sharing that yes, they feel the same way. They felt the same kind of shame and guilt when they couldn’t sell anything or when their child wouldn’t sleep.
Sarah McLain 05:45
This is what common humanity is all about.
Sarah McLain 05:48
It’s remembering that we’re all human, we all make mistakes and that it’s actually a very, very human thing, one that is part of just the common human experience.
Sarah McLain 05:59
The final piece, mindfulness, is usually associated with meditation practices, and I will say that meditation is can be a part of your self-compassion practice.
Sarah McLain 06:10
But as an overall piece of self-compassion, it’s more about giving yourself the space to be kind and to feel the pain when it comes to your feelings so you can process them and let them go in a healthy way.
Sarah McLain 06:24
How often do you pause to feel the suffering in pain that comes along with your negative feelings or your negative criticism?
Sarah McLain 06:31
How often do you allow yourself to really, really feel this pain of making a mistake, or you just try to rush forward and fix it Instead?
Sarah McLain 06:42
That’s the problem. We’re always trying to rush forward. We’re trying to paper it over rather than stopping just for a moment, even just thinking about why we’re feeling the way we are and just letting ourselves feel that emotion and then being able to let it go in a very, very healthy way.
Sarah McLain 06:58
So the next time you feel that self-doubt welling up inside you or think that you’re not enough of an expert, take a minute to feel the pain of those emotions and then use self-kindness. Be gentle to yourself.
Sarah McLain 07:11
Remember, it’s okay to feel those feelings. It’s okay to let them go.
Sarah McLain 07:16
So as you can tell from the three foundational parts of self-compassion, they are inextricably linked in myriad ways.
Sarah McLain 07:23
How can you be kind yourself if you’re not mindful of your feelings?
Sarah McLain 07:26
How can you be kind to yourself if you’re not aware of your peers and friends who have gone through the same thing as you?
Sarah McLain 07:31
If you want to find out more information about self-compassion, you can download my free self-compassion challenge at https://www.inspiringselfcompassion.com/challenge.
Sarah McLain 07:41
Throughout this episode, I have told you a little bit about the three parts of self-compassion:
Sarah McLain 07:46
How self-kindness is about being gentle to yourself and comforting yourself.
Sarah McLain 07:50
How common humanity is about the shared experiences we have in making mistakes and feeling badly in being human.
Sarah McLain 07:59
And then mindfulness, which is really all about being present and letting yourself feel those feelings and feel the pain and then giving yourself comfort in those times.
Sarah McLain 08:10
What I’ve talked about in this episode has been about starting to think about how you can develop a self-compassion practice because I believe wholeheartedly the making self-compassion a priority in your daily life is essential to being the best, most complete person you could be in all areas of your life.
Sarah McLain 08:26
I speak on this as somebody that has absolutely felt bad about my weight, about my confidence, about my business, about my mental health, about my physical health, about my relationships with toxic people in my life. And at the other end of it, I came out a stronger person.
Sarah McLain 08:43
And it’s all because of self-compassion, actively developing a daily practice and working on it until it becomes second nature to you.
Sarah McLain 08:51
So as a reminder, you can sign up for the Imperfectly Perfect 5 Day challenge at https://www.inspiringselfcompassion.com/challenge and you can check out our show notes with all these definitions at https://www.inspiringselfcompassion.com/episode1.
Sarah McLain 09:05
Next Tuesday, I’ll pop into your podcast player with some tips and tricks about the elephant in the room. Let’s find out how people are dealing with self-compassion during a time of the COVID 19 virus crisis.
Sarah McLain 09:18
That wraps it up for today’s self-compassion podcast. Thank you for listening, and I’d love for you to subscribe in your podcast player so you don’t miss any Tuesday self-compassion strategy tips.
Sarah McLain 09:29
Now that you’ve learned something new, it’s time to go out and practice self-compassion so that you can grow your business. Have a lovely week!
Transcribed by https://otter.ai (referral link)