“If your compassion does not include yourself, it is incomplete.” –Jack Kornfield
Moment of honesty here; it never occurred to me that I need to be compassionate with myself. I am my own worst critic and I suspect that many of you have the same struggle. I find it easy, second nature really, to be caring and compassionate with those around me. They can be facing the worst moments of their lives (or what feels like the worst moments of their lives) and I’m able to be empathetic, compassionate, caring, and merciful no matter the circumstances. Trying to take those same gifts and turn them inwards is my biggest challenge. Assuming that this is true of you as well, I’d like to challenge us all to take a moment each day to show ourselves compassion. I’m not talking about an hour of self-care because that may not be something any of us can commit to right from the get-go. But what if when you sat at your desk each morning, you took a blank sticky note and posted a compassionate reminder to yourself that you can read throughout the say. “I am strong.” “It’s okay not to be okay.” “I can do this!” “I am unique.” Whatever may strike a chord with you. Just imagine how many of us can heal ourselves with just a few compassionate words. Then imagine how being compassionate with ourselves can spread and translate into a compassionate movement that heals the hurts of others around us. Maybe self-compassion is the key to healing the world of pain we see all over the place. Maybe one sticky note makes all the difference.
Sarah Deats is a Behavioral Health Technician at RI International and the Hope Inc. Stories Inspiration Engineer.