Depression can be helped with self compassion. Are you feeling flat, low and basically suffering because you are critical about what is happening in your life? Or perhaps you are aware you as a person are the problem and you are just not happy with yourself right now. These feelings can spiral you down towards depression. Yet depression can be helped with self compassion. You can use this tool as a powerful force for change.
What is self compassion?
Kristin Neff is an eminent researcher and specialist in this area and she describes it as “when we suffer and yet we begin caring for ourselves as we would care for someone else we truly love. Self compassion includes self kindness, a sense of common humanity and mindfulness.”
SELF KINDNESS & COMMON HUMANITY & MINDFULNESS
In the past psychology considered that the best way to have well – being was to work on your self esteem. However, more recent research has uncovered that chasing self esteem can create problems. Mainly difficulties arise with how you develop this self esteem. Do you need to be special and above average? Or do you get it by comparing yourself to others? Or maybe you acquire it by having a great need for admiration, in a self centred way. This is why recently self compassion has overtaken self esteem, as a way to feel better about yourself. It is a proven tool for helping with feelings of depression. You will start to feel better by developing self compassion.
Common concerns that come up about self compassion
Some people say that self compassion is weak and self pitying. However, it is actually a strong and powerful force for change within you.
Self compassion provides the safety needed to see yourself clearly, it is not about being self indulgent or making excuses. In fact learning to use and practise this tool requires effort. You will be developing new habits and persistently attempting to think and feel in new ways. It is actually for the brave and courageous part of you, that wants to feel better and get more out of your life.
How to use self compassion to motivate yourself when you feel down
You may believe if you are critical towards yourself that this will motivate you. Yet often it can lead to you feeling anxious and worried. You can become less confident as you begin to believe you are incapable of change. Self compassion provides a way for you to feel supported emotionally and this actually creates the ideal environment for change and growth.
The research on Mindfulness Based Self Compassion
Self compassion reduces anxiety, depression, stress management, perfectionism, body shame and fear of failure. It increases according the research ~ life satisfaction, happiness, confidence, optimism, curiosity and gratitude. Depression can be helped with self compassion. In the power of self compassion I’ll explain how to go about developing self compassion but for now what you need to know is :
“You are here to embrace your imperfections. It’s not OK, you are not Ok and that is OK”.