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Are You as Kind to Yourself as You are Towards A Friend? Why Self-Compassion is Important, and How to Develop it

The Harvard Business Review posted a valuable article on January 12, 2021. The article, entitled “Be Kinder to Yourself”, by Alice Boyes, discusses what has been termed self-compassion, an attitude that has been shown in multiple psychological studies to be associated with resilience and other mental health benefits.

Self-compassion means being as kind to ourselves when we fail, as we would like to be towards a friend, or towards our child, in a similar situation. However, we are often much less kind to ourselves in the face of failure and when falling short of how we would like to view ourselves. Yet the capacity to grow from mistakes requires that we don’t allow the associated negative feelings to crush us. The recognition that failure is an unavoidable part of human experience is important, in order to be more tolerant of our own mistakes, as well as those of others. These days, in particular, enhancing our personal resilience and our interpersonal tolerance are important, as access to friends and to social activities that normally provide support and buffer us is limited by social distancing. Most importantly, we must develop the capacity to tolerate the negative feelings, own our mistakes and our responsibility for unwanted outcomes, yet not be overwhelmed by these emotions. The article, which can be read by clicking on the image below is valuable as it offers suggestions of specific tools to help us develop self-compassion skills.

                     Irit Felsen

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