Have you ever realized that you often treat others with much more kindness and compassion than you ever extend to yourself?
Being overly critical of ourselves is something that most of us can relate to. Maybe we didn’t follow the doctors’ orders 100% on any given day... or maybe we overindulged on junk food at a family celebration or holiday gathering.
Whatever the pitfall may be, our immediate reaction is usually to feel badly about ourselves and completely disregard all of our wonderful accomplishments. We become so self critical that we forget that the desire to make our health a priority is an accomplishment in itself!
We all make mistakes from time to time.
It’s part of being human! So in case you haven't already been told today...
Keep up the great work!
Nobody is perfect and you are doing the best you can. Appreciate yourself for putting your health first and forgive yourself for your imperfections. We all have them.
It's important to remember that an effective self-care routine has self love and appreciation at its core. In order to give your body the care it needs to heal from the inside out, it’s important to nurture yourself and maintain realistic expectations.
Here are 10 ways to be kinder to yourself today:
Try a loving kindness meditation
These meditations focus on increasing love and compassion for yourself and everyone around you. Consistently practicing this meditation has been shown to improve reactions to stress and overall emotional intelligence.
Set more boundaries. Practice saying 'no'
We can only do so much in a single day. Being kind to yourself means knowing your limits and setting healthy boundaries. Simply saying ‘no’ more often will prevent burnout. Even better, you’ll be surprised to find that others are usually more understanding than you might have expected.
Embrace more alone time in solitude
Spending time alone in solitude is an irreplaceable part of any self-care routine. Time alone allows you to really get in tune with your needs and desires and get to know yourself a bit better. Studies have also shown that it helps expand creativity and productivity.
Try self-love affirmations upon rising
Your morning routine largely dictates how the rest of your day will turn out. That’s why beginning each day with some positive self-love affirmations can have a huge impact on your self-image later in the day. Try playing an affirmation video that suits your needs or simply repeat mantras such as “I am strong” until you begin believing them!
Take yourself out for a treat once a week
Small indulgences, such as treating yourself to your favorite meal or activity once a week, can help boost endorphins and overall feelings of happiness. Showing yourself this kind of self-care and respect each week with a “solo date” will certainly leave you feeling uplifted and confident.
Go to bed a little earlier
One of the best ways you can care for your body and mind is by putting sleep at the top of your priority list. Getting a couple more hours of precious sleep each night will leave you feeling rested, calmer, more in control of your emotions, healthier, and better equipped to tackle anything that might come your way.
Speak to yourself as you would a friend
When you really think about it, doesn’t it seem ridiculous that we are so critical of ourselves, yet supportive and kind to our loved ones? Instead of putting yourself down, try listening to that inner voice and speak to yourself as you would your best friend. This underrated habit of positive self-talk can have a huge impact!
Keep a daily accomplishment journal
Each day, we accomplish a multitude of tasks that largely go unappreciated. Instead of going through your incomplete “to do” list at the end of the day, try keeping a pen and paper next to your bed and jotting down at least one thing you accomplished at the end of the day. Instead of focusing on the negative, this habit will help you find accomplishments to celebrate (no matter how small) and leave you with an instant feeling of gratification and accomplishment.
Give someone a compliment
Often times, being kind to others is one of the greatest ways to be kind to yourself. Some studies have shown that giving back to others can actually increase feelings of happiness. Volunteering, donating to a charity, lending a helping hand, or just giving a genuine compliment will ultimately leave you a kinder, more compassionate person.
Don't compare yourself to others
We’ve all heard the saying that comparison is the death of joy. Constantly comparing yourself to others will only leave you with negativity. Since we often compare ourselves to others unconsciously, the first step is to become conscious of this unhealthy habit. After this, you can then stop yourself, focus on your unique strengths, and work to accept imperfection. There is nobody in the world quite like you!
“Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a harder battle.” ― Plato
Did you enjoy reading these tips about self kindness? We'd love to hear from you in the comments below!
IT'S ABOUT YOU. IT'S ABOUT YOUR HEALTH. IT'S ABOUT RECONNECTING.