Compassion is a feeling of concern, a sense of warmness, an emotional connection and understanding with a desire to work for the state of well-being of any other person. And when we practice compassion, directed inwards, and look to ourselves with the same sense of care and wellbeing, then it is called self-compassion. Personal shortcomings and inadequacies, failings are dealt with love and care. It is neither a weak feeling nor a selfish one. Self-compassion is the deeper sense of understanding, supporting and accepting oneself. As it is said, ‘If your compassion does not include yourself, it is incomplete’ Jack Kornfield
The traits of self-compassion are more effective when seeded in early childhood, yet, with the development of behavioral and psychological science, many training programmes are later designed to teach and develop quality self-compassion.
Self-rating and self-criticism are two degrading elements towards self-compassion.
‘Accept everything about yourself-I mean everything. You are you and that is the beginning and the end-no apologies, no regrets’ Clark Moustakas
Self-compassion is not;
Self-pity; Self-pity exaggerates the sufferings and feels like the sole one to suffer. Self-pity is a carried away feeling, in which one gets wrapped up in own emotional journey. However, being compassionate recognize the problem from a different perspective, by separating it from individual identity.
Self-indulgence; Excessive involvement with oneself may lead to self-indulgence. For eg, in order to lighten up one’s mentally heavy days, indulging in unhealthy food habits or an unhealthy lifestyle, can be termed as self-indulgence. While being compassionate is wellness and well-being.
Self-esteem: Self-esteem is self-worth, but sometimes more of self-esteem may also get converted to egoistic mindset, and even lower self-esteem may lead to shy and demotivated character. Self-compassion, on the other hand, is a balanced emotion, without any evaluation. It is feeling good about oneself, neither high or low than others, whereas self-esteem is fluctuating.
Compassion expert Dr. Kristin Neff defines self-compassion as consisting of three central components;
Self-kindness versus self-judgment; No one is perfect or polished. Without judging oneself, for any of the imperfectness and shortcomings, allowing oneself to a happy and healthy living is the true essence of self-compassion. Accepting and honoring oneself, with positive sympathy and kindness leads to self-compassion.
Common humanity versus isolation; Failures, problems are all in everyone’s parcel of life. Recognizing, and accepting this very fact, makes one common with humanity, rather than considering oneself to be the sole sufferer of miseries.
Mindfulness versus over-identification.: A balanced attitude towards the problems, rather than overburdened with the same. Mindfully observing the thoughts, feeling, situation and the conscious effort towards well-being is the self-compassion. Being overburdened or over-identification results often brings negativity to mind. Notice the present (be it a situational problem or shortcoming), and moving towards wellness is the exact way.
Self-compassion strengthens emotional wellbeing, by lessening mental complexities and insecurities, which in turn immune the physiological system too. It helps people to thrive towards a happy living by altering the thought pattern of mind.
With all the wishes of peaceful living !!
This is my 14th post, alphabet ‘N’, for the ongoing #blogchattera2z challenge, 2019