Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Oooh, Boy.... Go EASY on Yourself!

WHY is that SO difficult to do?? I read a GREAT article in the NYTimes online (LOVE that paper) that I have to share. Somehow, this morning I felt it necessary in my yoga classes to mention that we should consider extending the same compassion to ourselves that we offer up to others... something that I know firsthand can be a real challenge. After class I spoke with a student who relayed a story that confirmed my thoughts: that's easier said than done!

photo courtesy Sadie Nardini)

Then I came home and read this article entitled Go Easy on Yourself, a New Wave of Research Urges and the following pops out at me:

“I found in my research that the biggest reason people aren’t more self-compassionate is that they are afraid they’ll become self-indulgent,” said Dr. Neff, an associate professor of human development at the University of Texas at Austin. “They believe self-criticism is what keeps them in line. Most people have gotten it wrong because our culture says being hard on yourself is the way to be.”

Ah yes, indeedy! Just think of this: Do you treat yourself as well as you treat your friends and family?

I have to confess it is like I have 2 standards: one for me, and one for everyone else. I work to counter the common myth that being hardest on yourself is the way to be... not that I don't think it is important to challenge ourselves, to better ourselves. But we must learn to treat ourselves with love and compassion and... trust.

It ends with this: “The problem is that it’s hard to unlearn habits of a lifetime,” she said. “People have to actively and consciously develop the habit of self-compassion.”

So, with that in mind: place one hand over your heart, the other over your belly, breathing deep belly breaths. Be GOOD to yourself ;), click on the above link, read the article and let me know what you think.

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