In his work, Buddha’s Little Instruction Book, author Jack Kornfield writes: “If your compassion does not include yourself, it is incomplete.”
Many people do a good job of showing compassion and care to others, especially during time of loss. But some of us have a tough time being kind to ourselves. We often are our own worst critics. Having compassion for one’s self doesn’t mean being selfish or ignoring the needs of others. It is a proper perspective of who we are and what situation or situations we are dealing with. Life is not easy and it is not for the faint of heart. All of us need moments of kindness and compassion, and it needs to start within ourselves.
When we experience loss, we need to show self-compassion more than ever. We need to love ourselves no matter what our imperfections may be and move towards a place of healing and recovery.
Self-compassion can be tangibly worked out through self-care. Especially while we are grieving, it is important to take care of our physical selves. There are many simple ways we can show compassion and self-care towards ourselves such as eating healthy, exercising, getting enough sleep, engaging in social relationships, pursuing a hobby, focusing on the positive, meditating/praying, and taking time to reflect.
The more we are able to have compassion with ourselves, the better we will be in showing compassion to others when needed.