Tuesday, November 17, 2015

6 Ways to Shower Yourself With Kindness

6 Ways to Shower Yourself with Kindness

I've been ruminating about "kindness" lately, because someone I care about was rude to me. Although my adult self knew his angry tone and harsh words were all about him, for a few hours, the tender young person inside me took his actions personally. I felt ashamed, even though there was no good evidence to back up my conclusion that his behavior meant I was at fault, guilty, and flawed. To make matters worse, I went as far as to think of how I could retaliate, seek vengeance, and inflict pain on him. 

Writing this blog is my way to look at myself and admit my spirit felt depleted and grieved for the loving kindness he couldn’t give. In hindsight, I know his behavior was a blessing in disguise. It was an opportunity to confront that vulnerable part of me that let myself be disturbed by an outside situation, person, place, or thing and reminded me
 to shower myself with the loving kindness I sought from outside myself.

Knowing what happened to me may come in handy for you, when something triggers you or makes you feel unlovable. Read on to discover the steps I took to recover my equilibrium and love myself unconditionally. Hopefully, these self-help methods will work for you too.

1.    Let go of things that are none of my business. What someone says or thinks about me is beyond my control. This tip helps me refrain from analyzing why I think someone acted a certain way, and puts the focus on me, where it belongs. I've learned that people carry and reveal their hurts in different ways, and this knowledge helps me forgive without knowing more than that. Detaching with love lets me go on with my day unburdened by carrying around resentments, suffering, and things that are beyond my control.

2.    Use "heal not hurt" as a mission statement. This phrase reminds me to pause to rope in my feelings and take to higher ground. I write out my emotions in a journal and reach out to a close friend to express the undercurrents in my emotional sea. When I share about my heartache with someone I trust, it usually releases trapped energy and allows me to go to a loving place.

3.    Take a break to refresh my spirit. If I notice my mind rehashing the situation or wishing things were different, I recite the serenity prayer or meditate. Other ideas may include a soak in a warm Epsom salt bath or a long walk in nature. Both remove toxins from mind and body. 

4.   Love and accept myself just as I am. As soon as I say this mantra and recognize that everything happens for my highest good, I feel more grounded and secure in my self-worth.

5.    Express gratitude for my blessings. This is a key element that helps me accentuate the positive. My “gratefuls” seem to multiply when I count them while disappointments and grudges diminish. My daily gratitude list starts with the blessing of life, love, hope, family, friendship, and goodness and contains even the smallest detail like being grateful I saw a bee in my garden. Being specific and using people’s names and things like my eyesight, dark chocolate, and yoga helps me tap into the abundance in each day.

6.   Treat myself with self-compassion. Unkind words, especially those I think or say about myself, creates stress and turmoil within me. If my inner critic prevents me from coming up with a gentle way to deal with myself, I ask “What would my best friend say or do to comfort me?” Then, I apply it to me. Another tip is to remember that self-esteem is built on and strengthened by self-acceptance, caring, and respectful treatment of oneself.

Once I've taken time to shower myself with kindness, I notice the ripple effect that self care has on other areas of my life. My thinking is clearer, my creative juices flow, and relating to my work and people is invigorating instead of draining. 

Self-help techniques often bring insights later on about what is really going on inside oneself. Do you use any of them or are you willing to try a few on for size? What methods help you remember to be kind to yourself? Please comment below.  

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The quotation for today is: “Champion yourself and all else follows.” Nancy Andres

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  1. Hi Nancy,
    I appreciate this post because I had a family member that I have been close to all their lives and they turned on for reasons I haven't been able to understand. Some of your ideas might help me heal from this pain and anxiety that I have been carrying with me almost 2 years. I have tried everything I know to connect with them but they won't response and I have no idea what I did. So I have to heal myself and put it in the past, heal my own heart and try to let it go. Thanks for sharing your ideas - it comes to me at the right time.

    1. My heart goes out to you Marla. I certainly wish the best for you and hope my tips help. Hang in there and be extra caring of yourself. You so deserve it. Nancy A.

  2. Excellent post dear, I am totally impressed, I am sure it will help many people.

    1. Thanks Sadhna for your comments. I appreciate your kind words. Wishing you a joyous and healthy holiday season. Nancy A.

  3. Hi there, Nancy! I recently found you on Urban Naturale's link up. This was such a fantastic post. I have so much work to do when it comes to self-care. My inner critic is a tough cookie.

    All six were awesome tips, but two of them really stood out to me. The first tip about what people think or say about me is out of my control. I can't remind myself enough of this one.

    Then the sixth tip about treating myself with compassion. That is something I have such a hard time with. I am as nice as I know how to be to others, but when it comes to me, I am just downright mean most of the time.

    And when thinking about being kinder to myself, I guess I feel like I don't deserve it. So as I mentioned earlier, I'm a work in progress:-)

    Thanks so much for this post and I hope your Thanksgiving is simply wonderful.

    1. Thanks Katie. I hear you and know from personal experience what a challenge it can be to stop listening to "old messages" (they are lies) and ineffective "ways of being” (they are outdated). I suggest you replace negative thoughts with an affirmation like “you are wonderful exactly the way you are.” Being hard on yourself is a choice. Choose love. Happy Thanksgiving to you dear one. Nancy A.

  4. Replies
    1. Thanks Davell. Glad you reached out to me. Wishing you a wonderful weekend and ask you to envision yourself taking excellent self care. Hugs, Nancy A.


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