Last week I wrote a post titled Empathy and How to Use it to Connect With, Relate To, and Help Others. In that post, I talked about the three attributes of empathy: cognitive, emotional, and empathic. Today, I want to cover resiliency and the importance of practicing self-compassion.
Most of us are quick to support a friend emotionally in times of need. As a friend we support them, encourage them and will do anything to keep them positive and optimistic. Why then are we so hard on ourselves? No, there is nothing wrong with admitting you made a mistake and taking responsibility, but you should never berate yourself mentally to the point of depression, anxiety, and self-loathing.
Taking responsibility for your life is a good thing, but only as long as you use it to learn and grow. We all struggle. We all go through tough seasons of life, but if we start to define ourselves by the hard times, then we begin to lose perspective. You are so much more than your valleys. There are plenty of peaks in life, but sometimes they are hard to see because we’re so focused on the valley floor that we forget to look up.
Have you ever walked a mile in your shoes? I know that’s a strange thing to say, but have you? Take a step back and take a look at your life. Yes, there have been struggles but don’t beat yourself up about them. The sum of your life is so much more than that. Be self-compassionate. Don’t be so hard on yourself that it leads to inaction. Be just hard enough that it motivates you to want to do more. To be more. Love on yourself, encourage yourself to keep pushing on, just as you would with a friend or loved one.
Being emotional resilient means that you can weather the storm; it means you bounce back. Not because bad things don’t happen, but because you’re mindful enough to be present in the moment. You must understand the struggle while in the struggle and be able to name the emotions you’re feeling. Naming them gives you power over them. Naming them allows you to assign whatever emotion you want to your feelings. Feelings we can’t always help, but our emotions we can.
Also, you must understand that you’re not alone. Again, we all struggle. We struggle with our finances, with the loss of a loved one, our health, and many other things. You’re not alone in your feelings, so be kind to yourself. Practice self-compassion and be your own biggest cheerleader. Cheer on!