Qualities of being kind are things such as generosity, love, consideration, and offering support. You might wonder if you are kind enough. You may also find yourself going out of your way by being extra kind, so others notice your kindness.
But have you ever asked:
how kind are you to yourself? If you aren't, why?
A question like that may fire up a retort, such as "I am not a selfish person"!
There are many reasons we are more kind to others than ourselves, such as being too busy or preoccupied, unresolved early trauma, or low self-esteem. The hurts of life have a shearing way of disconnecting us from the self.
Here's another question:
What if for one week you were as kind to others as you are to yourself?
This exercise might include demeaning rants to anyone who errs, expressing anger and disappointment because someone didn't get everything done on time, or demanding unwavering perfection.
I suspect that friends would have socially distanced from me as a young person. How about you?
I also recall being shocked when I discovered not only the value of self-love and kindness but also that I could intentionally be kind to myself. I didn't have to wait for someone to be kind to me!
Here are two ways to be more kind to yourself:1. BODY KINDNESS. How do you care for your body? Do you feed yourself nourishing food and move the body in some way? Are you sleeping well? Drinking alcohol responsibly? Can you love the belly even with stretch marks?
A neglected body is similar to a vacant home. After a while, the body may have no energy and become lifeless.
When you are kind to the body, you can tune into the subtle messages and learn to respond kindly.
You might notice mood swings and reduce sugar intake, or because of fatigue, say 'no' more often so you can rest. Rather than feeling disgusted, maybe you gently thank the flabby thighs because they remind you it's time to take action.
Kindness releases feel-good hormones in the body and increases vitality.
I recall one of the great pauses when I realized that I live (in my body), and the quality of my life is dependent on how I care for myself. My priorities shifted dramatically.2. Mind Kindness
Thoughts are things, impacting the energetic electrical system of the body. Thoughts might seem immaterial and are dismissed as insignificant. Yet, they fire up a potent neuro-response that affect cell communication between organs and systems.
The body-mind either constricts with tension or expands flow.
Here's how negativity affects you:
Let's say you believe that you "...can't do anything right." This one thought triggers upset, additional negativity, shame, lack of focus, and two extra glasses of wine.
Behind that one statement is a total mind-body experience.
To stop this cascading effect, you can interrupt the pattern.
Here's how: ===> Focus on breath: Inhale to a five-count; exhale for a five-count for five cycles.
Next, daydream a time when you showed kindness to someone -- any simple gesture. Replay the daydream for about 30 seconds. Feel the kindness.
Next, with an open heart, imagine the part of you that is struggling with self-kindness.
Ask her what she needs. With an open heart, respond with the same kindness you share with the individual in the daydream.
Yes, you may be kind to yourself.
Sanna Carapellotti, M.S., Cht
Life Changing Energy Therapies