Sorry for the spoiler in the title, Team, but I always want you to be kind to yourself, no matter what.
I think that one of the biggest obstacles in developing new habits is how hard we can be on ourselves about the challenges involved.
We’re trying to layer a new habit into an already busy life.
We’re trying to rewire our brain to make a different choice.
We’re working to change an ingrained system.
Over time, our brains and our bodies have acclimatized to one thing (for better or for worse) and we are trying to coax them into doing something different.
That takes effort.
Conscious, repeated effort.
This requires experimentation. There will be successes. There will be missteps. There will be adjustments. There will be changes.
The whole initial idea may have to be revamped if those experiments and adjustments provide new information.
This things (and all kinds of others) are all very normal parts of the process of building a new habit, of making change.
So, when you bump up against any of these things and falls into ‘blame yourself’ mode, you don’t do yourself any favours. In fact, it just makes things even harder.
So, please, don’t add that obstacle.
Aim for self-kindness.
When a mistake is make, when something needs to be changed, when you are struggling, try to view yourself through the most compassionate lens possible.
Instead of defaulting framing things in terms of fault and failure, try to to see yourself as a normal human being doing normal human things. A normal human being who needs support, structure, and systems to build a new habit.
Whenever possible, err on the side of self-kindness.
I know that self-kindness may not be easy.
In fact, it is a whole separate habit to build.
But, it is definitely worth putting into practice, even if you are just experimenting with it at first.
Even if you don’t *fully* believe it, even if you have doubts, even if you worry that you are letting yourself away with something, it’s worth giving self-kindness a try.
And if you can’t stir up kindness for yourself, imagine that I am talking to you about the situation at hand. Imagine what I would say to you in the situation (hint: it’s going to be kind and it will not involve blame.)
Self-kindness is never going to be a bad choice.
Your gold stars for today’s efforts in self-kindness, habit-building, or planning are in a basket below. Take as many as you like – you’re doing an awful lot of work here!
Wishing you ease and self-compassion today and always, Team.