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Abigail Steidley's Blog Were you hard on yourself today? Join the Self-Kindness Movement!

Discussion in 'Mindbody Blogs (was Practitioner's Corner)' started by Abigail Steidley's Blog, Jul 9, 2015.

  1. Abigail Steidley's Blog

    Abigail Steidley's Blog Reposted Blog by Abigail Steidley

    They say you teach what you need most to learn. This makes sense to me, as all I teach these days is self-kindness. When I was younger, I was beyond harsh with myself. I was downright mean. I was not one bit loving toward myself. I put constant pressure on myself to change, all the time. All day, every day. (I am not exaggerating!)

    Self-kindness is the biggest healing factor in pain-relief, stress-relief, and connection to one’s soul and inner wisdom. It’s been my biggest struggle.

    In my twenties, I went on diets constantly, I pushed myself to do more, more, more, was incredibly hard on myself, and I ignored anything my body had to tell me. In fact, I had no idea my body was even speaking to me.

    I was depressed, in pain all the time, exhausted, and unhappy.

    I remember once visiting an orthopedic surgeon for a consult about intense knee pain. At the time, I was on a strict diet, dealing with major stress in my life, over-exercising, pushing myself to succeed in my career, judging myself constantly about my abilities, and generally angry with myself. Gosh, it was such a mystery, that knee pain. I spent a lot of time going to doctors in those days. (Although, in that case, the knee doc looked just like George Clooney, so it wasn’t much of a hardship.)

    Now, many years later and several thousand lessons later, I still often struggle with self-kindness.

    Sometimes, I really suck at it. (Oh wait – that’s not exactly the kindest way to put that…)

    My first go-to is often the same ol’ self-judgment, self-pressure, and ignoring-my-inner-wisdom habit.

    Luckily for me, I teach self-kindness every day, all day. This forces me to be honest with myself about where I really am in the self-kindness spectrum. Every client I work with, every class I teach, and everything I write is pretty much Big Wisdom coming through for myself, not just for others. I never feel like I’m the one teaching or coaching. I feel like the translator just sharing wisdom, and I’m clear that my job is to listen and follow through on what I’ve learned each day.

    This is actually pretty cool. The cure for pain syndromes, stress, and mind-body-soul disconnect is self-kindness. I get to experience that cure every day, even when I forget.

    It’s pretty easy to forget to practice self-kindness. Self-kindness isn’t usually our first go-to when life happens. And, if your life is like mine, life happens every day. There are mistakes, lessons, discomforts, struggles, surprises, and more at any given moment. Self-pressure can sneak in like nobody’s business. Suddenly, you realize you’re being hard on yourself!

    Here’s today’s homework: What can you do to remember to practice self-kindness? What would help you focus on this each and every day?

    For me, the work I do is an automatic reminder. I also have a schedule that includes five minutes each day of the self-kindness practice I teach in the Kindness Community. I also have friends who are willing to remind me to be kind to myself.

    What would work for you? What are your ideas? [ ]

    This is the ESSENTIAL focus you need each day if you want pain relief, stress relief, and a strong connection to your inner wisdom. As a bonus, you’ll also find yourself awakening more and more to your true nature and spiritual connection.

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    BennyBee and Judy66 like this.
  2. Misha

    Misha Peer Supporter

    Wow, what an insightful post. I just joined your Kindness Community a few days ago and very much feel I am now on the right path :)
  3. Alyssa5

    Alyssa5 New Member

    It's hard to be kind to myself when I feel that my body has betrayed me.
    BennyBee and JacketSpud like this.
  4. Andy Bayliss

    Andy Bayliss TMS Coach & Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi Alyssa5,

    Yes, this does sound hard. It sounds like, if I understand you, that you are angry, and don't trust things, or trust your body/self. This (rejection/distrust) might be a place that needs some compassionate contact. I think that Abigail is right that the practice of self-attunement is critical in healing, and addresses what we want deep inside, regardless of pain. And you are seeing some of the barriers for this self-contact in you. That is a good start.

    I think this honesty is itself is a form of kindness, if we can hold our assessment of self-kindness or lack thereof with understanding. I think for humans, this practice of self-kindness, empathy, attunement may be a life-long journey, and I appreciate Abigail, that you express it this way.

    Andy B.
    BennyBee and Alyssa5 like this.

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