It seems like a no brainer, but often we need the reminder from someone else, “be kind to yourself!” We can’t expect kindness from others, or even think we can be kind to people all the time if we’re unkind to our own self to begin with.
It’s a good thing there are many fairly easy ways we can show love to ourselves in our daily to day lives. I’ve spoken about five simple ways you can inculcate the habit of kindness to yourself in this episode of the podcast.
Listen on the player below 👇🏽 (or on any podcast app that you like). If you prefer reading, then scroll down for the transcript. Enjoy! 🙂
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Transcript: Five simple ways to be kind to yourself
(gently edited for a better reading experience)
Most of us are kind to others. And all of us want everyone else to be kind to us. This is a natural expectation. But how often are we kind to our own self?
I mean, it’s so easy, right? You’re there. Nobody else is involved. All you have to do is be kind to your own self so that you can receive the kindness, and reciprocate it. One little circle closed right there.
We don’t have to depend on anybody else’s kindness. We don’t have to expect something back from someone else because we were kind to them. All we have to do is be kind to our own selves. But really how often do you even do it?
The idea to talk about kindness, about being kind to our own selves came to me this morning when I was laying in bed
I have a tendency to wake up and stay in bed for a while, before I get up and then slowly and gently start my day.
And I realised that this is a kindness that I’m showing to my own self — not rushing myself, not pushing myself to do things as soon as I wake up.
My morning ritual, starting slow, taking it easy, and then, much after my breakfast and my tea, starting my work. That makes a world of difference to the way I handle my day, the way I feel throughout my day.
So that’s when I wondered, “is everybody doing this?”
We could all do this for ourselves. We could all make sure that our morning is something that starts gently, where we aren’t just plunging into this ice cold water of work and activity, and hustle bustle of the day as soon as we wake up. But how many people actually don’t even give themselves that kind of time, that kind of gentleness and kindness?
So when that idea came to my mind, on one hand, I was feeling so grateful that I got to do this for myself. And on the other I was feeling sad that, yeah, not everyone gets to do this for themselves.
That’s why I thought today’s podcast episode is going to be all about a few simple ways that we can be kind to our own selves
Now it’s all well and good asking for things. Putting the intention out there in the universe. Asking for things that we want in our life like, “I want love, I want kindness. Universe, send it to me!” Visualising it, setting the intentions, putting it out there. Great! All that is important and it’s useful.
But the universe works a lot faster, a lot more powerfully, in the show and tell mode
Instead of just saying, “this is what I want”, you know, “I want more kindness in my life. I want more peace and joy and love in my life”, instead of just saying that, you need to give yourself that.
You need to show yourself more love, more kindness, you need to put yourself in more joyful situations. And as the universe watches you, you become a magnet for more of those kinds of feelings and situations to arrive in your life.
Just saying, “oh, I want more kindness and love”, but then turning around and being unkind to yourself, not prioritising your joy, not being loving to your own self. If you’re doing that then you’re sending mixed messages to the universe. And the universe never works well on mixed messages.
So here they are: a few of the many, many ways that we can all be kind to ourselves
These are opportunities that we can use, in simple ways in our daily lives, to be more kind, more loving to our own selves. So that we become magnets, and the universe sends more kindness and love and joy our way.
First one is, like I said…
1. Be gentle with yourself in the morning, ease into your day
Don’t get up and rush yourself. Allow your body, your mind, your heart to slowly wake up.
Take a moment while you’re lying in bed to listen to the sounds around you. Are there sounds of some birds outside? And these days we have rain, so if it’s raining, listen to the rain for a bit.
Feel that light around you, the rays of the sun. Or if you’re a very early morning person, then the soft light outside your window. All of it, just feel it. Feel the texture of your bed, your blanket, feel that. You’ve been covered with that safe feeling. Experience all of it slowly. Then gently wake up, gently get up from bed. Take your own sweet time.
Now I know it’s not practical for everyone
Many people have work to rush off, to food to cook for their families or, “oh let me get my workout in before I get on with my day”. You know, these are all things which are valid concerns.
But if you want to, you can. Even if it’s for 5-10 minutes, you can be gentle with yourself. And you can easily ensure that your morning is slow and easy before you get out of bed, while you get out of bed, and a little after it. So see how you can stop rushing first thing in the morning.
And let me tell you, when you start your day with ease, when you clear your mind first and you feel a sense of peace and joy when you wake up, that sets the tone for the rest of your day. Then later on, you’re actually going to be more productive, more joyful.
So it’s not like you’re putting things off or not getting things done. You can get things done in a lot more efficient, clear-minded way, just because you started off your day with ease and peace and love and kindness to yourself.
The second way we can be kind to ourselves is…
2. Stop wanting to make everybody happy all the time
Especially with women I see this. We prioritise our families, the people around us first. We want them to be happy, and we feel like if they’re not happy or satisfied with their life, we cannot also be happy.
But here’s the thing, you cannot please everyone all the time. You cannot make everybody happy all the time. That’s just impossible. So let go of that desire.
You do your best to be nice. You do your work, take care of people, be loving, kind, yes. But never do it at the cost of your own happiness!
You cannot be kind to someone else, while you’re being cruel to your own self, while you’re being even a little unkind to your own self
In the long run that’s just not sustainable. So you need to be loving and kind to yourself. You need to look for your own joy, contentment, fulfilment and happiness, and then do what comes naturally after that for others.
Don’t bend over backwards, don’t go out of your way just to please someone else – regardless of whether they’re appreciative of it, they’re reciprocating it, if they’re just taking advantage of you, or if they don’t even care what you’re doing for them. Regardless of any of this, you make sure that you’re taking care of yourself first, you’re pleasing yourself first, because you’re the only person you can please.
You have the power only to make yourself happy all the time, to make yourself feel joy all the time, to give yourself love and kindness all the time. So embrace this power and just lean into it.
A third way to be kind to yourself throughout the day is…
3. Take little breaks in the middle of your day, multiple little breaks, to sit down, check in with yourself, and send a lot of love to your own self
Two, three minutes. It doesn’t even have to be very long breaks.
There’s this thing I do when I give myself a tight hug. Oh you have to try it! It’s just so wonderful. Let’s try it right now. Stop whatever you’re doing and go sit down for a moment.
Cross your arms around yourself and just hold your shoulders. The back and sides of your shoulders, clutch them firmly and tightly. You feel yourself giving yourself a hug, right?
Now close your eyes and tilt your head lightly so that your cheek is resting on your right shoulder, or if it’s more comfortable for you then on your left shoulder.
Hug yourself. Just a little bit tighter. Perfect.
Feel that energy for a while now. Oh God, you have the most wonderful hugs! Don’t you deserve to experience them yourself?
Now say lovely, kind, nice things to yourself. Give yourself a compliment about the kind of person you are. Say your name. Talk to yourself.
Feel the warm glow around yourself. You’re sitting in that wonderful, warm glowing sphere of love. Just feel it.
You can stay here for as long as you like, you know, smiling holding yourself safely. You totally deserve it!
Didn’t that feel good? Now imagine doing this multiple times throughout the day. How wonderfully self sufficient is that?
You’re not waiting for someone else to come and hug you. You’re not waiting for someone else to accept your hug. None of that. You know it’s you, yourself and you’re hugging yourself, you’re loving yourself, you’re caring for yourself.
And whenever you have more time, sit with that and go farther, see where it leads you. Just feel that love for yourself and experiencing the emotional hug, the physical touch, the mental joy and love that you feel, all of it. Just feel it encompassing you through your body, your mind, your heart, your soul.
The next way that you can be kind to yourself, do good things for yourself is to
4. Put yourself first sometimes…or often
And I’m not asking you to be selfish without caring about what others want. None of us want to be selfish. But very often we’re just not kind to ourselves. We’re just not prioritising our own desires. We’re putting everybody else around us first.
Something as simple as, what are you cooking today?
So if you’re going to make a meal, how often do you make the food that you love? You’re always thinking of, “what does this person like? What does that person want?” And then you make the food according to their tastes and their desires.
How often does it happen where you’re like, “okay, it’s time to cook now. What do I feel like eating?” and then make it. That’s such a simple way to prioritise yourself. So do things for yourself and don’t be afraid of whether others around you will appreciate it or not.
You’re doing it to bring yourself joy, because you love and care for yourself. You’re doing it to be kinder to your own self.
A final way to show kindness to your own self throughout the day is…
5. Don’t be constantly available, for everybody around you, all the time
I see people having their phones in their hand all the time. Even if they’re out doing something with friends, or if they’re in the middle of their work, or if they’re, you know, deep in the zone of creativity, it doesn’t matter. They have their phones next to them always.
I ask them, “why don’t you put it on silent for a while and keep it away? Why do you need it with you always?” And they’re like, “what if someone needs me, if someone calls me? What if my mom calls, my husband calls, my wife calls, my daughter calls….? What if my colleagues call? My team is so new, they don’t know their way around. They need me to be available to them so that they can connect with me anytime, and ask their questions.”
It doesn’t matter who. Some one or the other, always putting them first!
But what about you having “me-time”? What about you needing that peace of mind without distractions?
It’s important to take long stretches of time for your own self without feeling like you need to be available to others. So turn off your notifications, make your phone silent, put it away in a different room. Then do your thing.
Once an hour or after a couple of hours you can go and check your messages.
Honestly, how many emergencies are going to be there?
And if it’s truly an emergency, a person will figure out a way to contact you. You don’t have to be on WhatsApp or Telegram or Instagram or on your emails all the time. You just don’t need to be available all the time.
In today’s world, this is one of the biggest of the kindnesses we can show ourselves. Taking time off for ourselves, without making ourselves available to others.
There are of course many more ways we can be kinder to ourselves through our day to day life
Small ways, big ways we can keep finding them. But these five I wanted to share today because I felt like we all need this reminder.
It seems like a no brainer, it seems so obvious, but sometimes somebody else has to tell you to be kind to yourself. It’s important.
Another way you can be kind to yourself is to subscribe to my free newsletter, The Feel Good Tribe. Haha
I share things to ensure that whoever’s reading it, they will feel good. Lots of feel good stuff. So sign up. I’d love to have you on The Feel Good Tribe.
All right, this is all for today. Talk to you again next week. Take care.
I use Otter for all my transcriptions, and it’s awesome! Try it out.
“I’m a Spiritual Vegan Multi-Passionate Entrepreneur. I read voraciously, find humour in most things, and believe kindness and authenticity can make this world a happier, loving place.
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