Surely you have heard the phrase, “Attitude of gratitude.” The phrase is all about focusing on what we are thankful for, which can be amazing for our physical and mental health. However, we often forget that this phrase includes showing gratitude not just to others, but ourselves as well. By building up your “attitude of gratitude,” it can lead us to become more self compassionate and in turn, live a more fulfilling life. But what exactly is self compassion?
While gratitude and self compassion are not the same thing, they are interrelated. Self compassion is about being as kind to yourself as you would be to a friend. This often poses a challenge for many people, as it is usually much easier to be understanding and empathetic towards others than ourselves. The opposite of self compassion is to be self critical; something most of us are (unfortunately) experts at.
BUT, if you are great at practicing gratitude, you already have the skillset, you just need to learn to apply it to yourself, which can be done through learning how to be more self compassionate. In this article, we are going to do just that!
We will discuss 3 ways to enhance your self compassion through:
- Self gratitude journaling
- Creating a self compassion mantra
- Practicing self compassion mindfulness
Self Gratitude Journaling
If you are looking for an easy way to begin your self compassion journey, look no further. Self gratitude journaling is a great way to take that gratitude you show others and apply it to yourself. By using journal prompts, you can focus on self discovery and honoring oneself. Download our Self Gratitude Journaling Worksheet with prompts to get you started!
And don’t worry, if you are stretched for time and can’t complete a prompt, you can always do a simple journal exercise at the end of the day: Write down three things about yourself that you were grateful for.
This can be as simple as: “my patience, my love of helping others, my body.” No self gratitude is too small! The most important part is practicing.
Self Compassion Mantra
A mantra is a statement that is repeated as a way to aid you in a purpose – in this case, the purpose is building self compassion. You can create a self compassion mantra that is your personal saying when giving yourself a pep talk, needing some self encouragement, or just because!
Let’s look at some examples of a possible self compassion mantras:
“I will treat myself with love and care” or “I deserve kindness and respect.”
Here are some tips for developing your self compassion mantra:
- Keep it short and sweet.
- Make sure it flows.
- Choose one that reflects your ideals and feels true for you.
- Set intentions about who you are and what you want to be.
- Ensure it is comfortable for you.
- Your mantra should make you feel good, positive, relaxed, and empowered.
Self Compassion Mindfulness
The last strategy is based on mindfulness. Mindfulness is when we are in the present moment, we are intentional, and we are engaged in what is happening. Yes, this means put away your phone or other distractions and BE PRESENT!
There are many ways you can engage in self compassion mindfulness. Here are a few tips:
- Start by finding a few minutes once or twice a week to practice being mindful while focusing on self compassion through positive affirmations, or other guided self compassion exercises.
- Put away any distractions. Remember, mindfulness is about focus and being fully engaged in the moment.
- Find a quiet and calm space.
- Set an intention. The intention should be personalized and related to self compassion.
Remember, self compassion takes consistent practice, but in the end, will help you with your personal growth and psychological well-being. We encourage you to try one, or all, of these 3 strategies today and see the difference self compassion can make in your life.