Monday Must: How to be more gentle with yourself
Hi all – it’s me, Mary, back with a must I’ve personally been leaning into lately. We’re almost 6 months into 2022 and in all honesty, this year does not feel much different than the past two years. The constant feeling of uneasiness has not let up and my heart continues to weigh heavy with the heartbreak happening around the world. Which is why now more than ever I am trying to be gentle with myself and create space for kindness. To me kindness is like skipping a stone – it starts small but as it continues to make its way across the water you see all the ripples and how far it expands. I’m sharing some ways to be gentle with yourself because it’s not only beneficial for you, but also for me to remind myself how vital it is right now.
Be Kind to Your Body
We often think about being kind to others but not necessarily ourselves, and especially not our – heart, soul, mind, etc. Your body is always communicating with you, even when you don’t realize it. Do you ever wake up tired and lethargic? Or do you look back at the weekend and think wow, how did I have the energy for everything I did? This is your body’s way of telling you what it needs, or doesn’t need. If you find yourself more fatigued than normal, listen to your body and give it the rest it needs to recover. If you are feeling more social than normally and leaving a friend's house feeling lighter on your feet, lean into socializing more and gaining energy from those around you. By listening to your body you will feel more connected to yourself and prioritizing kindness on an inward level.
Be Kind to Your Mind
Do you ever take note of your inner monologue? Do you hear the conversations you have with yourself, how and what you speak to yourself? One of our greatest strengths and assets is our mind, but we often sell it short - mostly because only we are aware (or unaware) of what goes on in our mind. What we think becomes what we believe, and if we are thinking negative things, well, then all we see, feel and believe is negativity. Kindness starts within yourself. This week try to take inventory of what you’re thinking of – is there a pattern? If you find yourself thinking negatively of yourself, others or the situations you’re in, take a moment to stop – show yourself kindness and remind yourself that you are learning, growing and on the journey to becoming the person you want to be.
Be Kind to Your Loved Ones
If you’re anything like me, the people closest to me see both the most loving side of myself and unfortunately, the not so loving side of myself. There’s something about your loved ones that you know no matter how you treat them or how intolerable you are, they will still love you. Which is true to an extent but also unfair to them. The people closest to us know we have our ups and downs, and want to support us through all aspects of our lives. But that doesn’t mean we can take advantage of that unconditional love. Take time this week to show those you love the most a little extra kindness. Maybe that’s a phone call to your cousin where you share some of your favourite childhood memories. It could also be a handwritten letter to your aunt, thanking her for all she’s done for you as you’ve grown up and the impact she has had on you. Oftentimes the smallest acts of kindness have the greatest impact – especially to those closest to you.
Be Kind to The Process
Do you ever wish this chapter of your life was over? That you could just graduate and get your life started? Or you could move into that dream apartment and stop sharing a kitchen with three other people? Maybe you are where you always wanted to be but it doesn’t feel as rewarding or full as you had imagined. These feelings are so common but so often we never acknowledge how quickly these moments in time will pass – even when we feel like we’re stuck in this season forever. When I was single for most of my twenties and I had nights I felt lonely thinking about not having a partner or a family of my own, I reminded myself that this season will soon be over and I will miss nights all by myself. And now that I have a husband, who I love dearly, I do miss having nights all to myself! That doesn’t mean you can’t feel upset, sad or frustrated with the place in life you're at but it is important to be kind to yourself through the seasons as they change. The concept of the grass being greener on the other side is quite true – you’ll one day be in the place you always wanted and even then you’ll be thinking about what’s next. Know life isn’t about the destination but rather the journey, and each season – both good and bad – will pass. See the good where you are now, be kind to yourself as you continue to grow and evolve, and know that you are on the right path.
I found you through YouTube and TED talks. As many I’ve been feeling down, almost depressed, empty. The July 4th shooting here in the US and the little boy that lost both of his parents in an instance, put me over the edge. I feel anger and sadness and sometime hopeless, because of our political situation. All that hatred that was released by #45. I’m German, so this right wing stuff hits me hard. I’m not even looking at news at this time to not trigger more low feelings.
So I decided to look at TED talks and I feel so much better. Mary, you are an amazing woman. Many couldn’t have pulled themselves out from the pain you experienced. You are strong!
Then this site. I love it. As you say, we support our friends better then ourselves. I also want to be a positive influence on others by working on myself. Keep up the good work. I’ll be telling other woman about you:)
Keep up the great work. Ilka, soon to be age 62