Sometimes, we all miss the mark. When I do, I have the tendency to yell at myself in the most hectoring tones imaginable. Maybe you do too. Most of us would never talk to a friend that way. If we did, we wouldn’t have many friends for long.
Enter Kristen Neff, Ph.D., a professor at UT-Austin who researches self-compassion. In an interview with Dr. Peter Attia, she explains how to take the compassion we routinely extend to others and extend some to ourselves.
One practical technique I will be trying the next time I fail is to put my hand over my heart and say something supportive to myself. Who wants to try it with me?
My natural inclination is to think this is the road to laziness and failure. However, Dr. Neff cites research showing that performance actually improves as people learn to both give themselves a break and give themselves constructive, rather than bullying, criticism. And our lives get a lot more pleasant too!
Some interesting moments:
- Dr. Attia explains what self-compassion did for him
- Dr. Neff lays out a practical, actionable technique to build self-compassion in difficult situations (this is what I plan to try)
This podcast is also available via Apple Podcasts.