Have you ever noticed that we are usually so much harder on ourselves than the people we care for and love? Let’s do a little experiment, shall we?
Step 1 • Think back to the last time your best friend reached out to you because they were feeling down or having a tough time. Try to recall details that may have hinted to you how distressed this person really felt. Try to really call this scenario to mind and re-live it.
Step 2 • Keep thinking and recall the way you spoke to this person and responded to their hard time. Think about the tone you had and the specific words that you said.
I bet that you were very kind and understanding towards your friend. Maybe you helped quell their fears or calm their nerves. You may have reassured them that everything is going to be okay, even if it doesn’t quite feel like it right now. Now, let’s dig a little deeper.
Step 3 • Think back to the last time that you were feeling down or struggling. Try to call to mind the unpleasant and uncomfortable ick that uad you feeling so down in as much detail as you can.
Step outside your mind for a moment, seperate yourself from this exercise for this step.
Step 4 • Take a physical inventory of your body. Are you tense? Maybr you are clenching your jaw, or your shoulders are up to your ears!
Step 5 • Take a mental inventory. Are you getting a little edgy? Maybe you’re feeling overwhelmed or anxious. Maybe you’re a little irritatable or upset.
Step 6 • Compare these feelings you’re noticing to some of the indications of distress that your friend had portrayed when they confided in you because they were upset. I’ll bet they are probably pretty similar.
Let’s keep digging even deeper. Pop back into recalling the last time that you were distressed.
Step 7 • Think back to how you spoke to yourself. Maybe you were harsh and judgemental. Maybe you distracted yoursel. Maybe you were angry and frustrated.
Step 8 • Let’s go back and do some more comparing. I bet the way you spoke to and treated yourself was not even close to the way you had treated your friend back in Step 2.
Now, if you didn’t before I bet you see what I mean by how we are sometimes way harder on ourselves than we are on our loved ones.
If you are struggling right now try giving yourself the same grace you’d give to one of your best friends if they were going through a tough time. Change your inner dialogue to match that which you’d tell your friend.
We think one of the most effective ways to start this shift is to first recognize how you are actually talking to yourself. Be mindful when you’re upset. Our inner dialogues have become so routine over years that we don’t even realize what we are saying to ourselves or how our body holds tension.
We challenge you to take a few days and be truly mindful of how you talk to yourself. After a few days check in with yourself and even here the same way we did through our experiment above. Acknowledge how you’re talking to yourself. Challenge your inner dialogue with grace and compassion.
Check in with us here, let us know what you’ve discovered!