Why Self-Kindness is so powerful and so hard all at once...
Being kinder to yourself is not simply a nice "new age" concept; the power and benefits of it are being studied extensively. It's not just nice theory, the science around "self-kindness, self-love & self-compassion" shows evidence of how it serves and supports every aspect of our lives.
While the point of me sitting here and writing these thoughts is not to rhyme off all of the benefits; I believe in this moment, it's still worth mentioning a few:
- greater happiness, life satisfaction & fulfillment
- improved physical health and healing
- better relationships, even with difficult people in your life
- less anxiety & depression
- resilience to navigate challenges
This list goes on and the best part is that self compassion, kindness and love are internally generated, there's no need to seek it in anything out there in the external world. There's no need to because the true source is within.
But let's get real, self kindness is great in theory but hard to practice. We can read all the books and blogs and quotes about the power and the benefit of it in our lives, but the practice is not easy and at times incredibly hard.
Why is this is so?
Well, there are likely quite a few reasons and quite a few perspectives on this. The one I wish to focus on is the nature of the brain; your brain, my brain - the human brain! One of our greatest physical assets, as a species, and yet when this magnificent brain is in stress mode, non-stop busy mode, the brain can become one of our greatest liabilities, especially when it comes to self kindness.
When the brain is in busy mode, it's in survival mode - that's just the way it's wired. There's no need to argue about it, it's just how we are designed - all of us.
When the brain is in busy mode, the practice of self kindness is not its top priority and if we do practice any self-kindness techniques and tools, when the brain is busy, it can seem inaccessible and even inauthentic.
Hence why the first step in this powerful practice of self kindness is to calm our brain and mind.
Because when we do so we:
- bypass the busy analytical mind (very important)
- engage the human heart, making authentic elevated feelings more real and available to us (this is being studied - check out the Heart Math Institute which studies the power of the human heart
- gain access to the subconscious mind - 90% of our mind - that's the place to work on self kindness
Enter Meditation - the practice of calming the human brain and mind and why it plays such a vital part in the practice of self kindness. It is the way to bridge theory and make it real in your life.
So I hope that some of these thoughts have inspired you. I know you likely already know these things and what I love most is that they just make sense, for me and maybe for a few of you...
Here's our practice this month and next month on the Symphonies for the Mind Meditation Experience, where each month, I marry powerful personal growth concepts, like Self-Kindness with the effectiveness of meditation - it's where it gets real!
Enjoy this lovely precious day...