January 31, 2020 BY: LISA

I’ve been a terrible role model for self-compassion!

I’ve realised that over the years, my kids have listened to me pay out on myself whenever I stuffed something up.

In the spirit of learning something new every day…I’ve realised that was my biggest stuff up of all!

Definitely time to practise some self-compassion…

A lack of self-compassion sets you up to try and avoid failure, and being shown that failure is worthy of self-chastising is a bit off-putting when it comes to trying new things!

Here’s what I’ve realised. If you are trying to avoid failure, then you are trying to avoid learning. Because if you think about it, you are unlikely to be excellent at something you have never tried before…you are highly likely to fail, at first , then you keep trying and start having some success. I’m working on the assumption that I’m not the only one to have needed to learn this lesson!

A lack of self-compassion means that you are likely to be uncomfortable with failure and might avoid trying something new, as you really don’t want to mess it up. So, you stay the same. If you are trying to change something in your life this is a right pickle to be in!

Fear of failing means staying the same.

Practising self-compassion has three steps:

  • Mindfulness = awareness in ‘real time’ = acknowledging that you are struggling
  • Common Humanity  = remind yourself that struggling is part of being a human being, you are not the only one who struggles.
  • Self-Kindness = kind words and supportive touch = say something kind to yourself and put your hand on your heart or give yourself a pat on the back or a hug.

The author of the ‘Making Friends with Yourself’ program , Karen Bluth, agrees that this can feel really strange at first but if you keep trying it gets less weird!

I don’t imagine self-compassion will eliminate a fear of failure, but it reduces the fear factor and allows you to try, learn and get better, which is all that is needed.

Self-compassion helps you cope with messing up, then you get better.

Failure should be our teacher, not our undertaker. Failure is delay, not defeat. It is a temporary detour, not a dead end.  Denis Waitley.

Be kind to yourself as you learn.


Lisa APD


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