This is my first post for #1000Speak, though I’ve been meaning to post for a while and have been avidly following the blog movement. What is #1000Speak? Find out on the Official Blog.
The topic this month is Compassion. I’ve decided to address something I’ve been struggling with a lot lately: Compassion for Myself.
What does is mean to have compassion for yourself? For me, it means self care. It means sometimes saying NO to others in order to say YES to me.
This sounds easy, doesn’t it? For some, it’s simple. But for those of you, like me, who have let your empathy run amok, it’s very difficult to put our needs ahead of others.
When it comes to other people, I’m a very forgiving, compassionate person. I will go out of my way to help someone else and my heart breaks at the thought of someone being hurt or disappointed.
When it comes to me? I’m not nearly as forgiving. I hold grudges against myself, constantly dredging up past mistakes and lapses in judgment. When life disappoints me, I see it as a punishment for something I did or didn’t do.
When other people need something from me, I often drop everything in order to help, even if it means I undergo extreme hardship in order to ensure they don’t suffer the slightest inconvenience. My compassion for others often means I end up tired, stressed out, and depressed.
If I could channel a fraction of that love and compassion and redirect it to myself, I would be a much more balanced person. And that’s exactly what I need to do. I recently came to this revelation. If I don’t take care of ME, I have nothing left to give to anyone else. That’s a fact.
Lack of compassion for oneself is a multifaceted issue. For some, it’s a matter of self-esteem. Some people were raised to believe it’s wrong to put their own needs first. For those who have been physically or emotionally abused, they were groomed to believe their own needs don’t matter. Some of us are just so used to being caretakers, we have forgotten about our own needs.
I think we could all benefit from more compassion in our lives. We should all be givers and receivers of compassion. Share love, kindness, and compassion freely – not only with others, but with yourself.