“If I am not for myself, who will be?” ~ Pirke Avoth

We all know we should be kind to animals and considerate of other people. But, are we actually kind to ourself? If you regularly find that you are beating yourself up or are plagued by guilt, it is worth making an effort to be a bit kinder to yourself. Here are some ideas so that you offer a bit of support for your good self.

The Past is Dust ‘The Past is Dust’ is a saying of Spiritual teacher, Sri Chinmoy. When we live in the past, we become plagued by regrets and guilt. By constantly reliving the past, we cannot change what has gone before. If we have made mistakes in the past, we should not feel that this is our permanent reality. Focus instead, on the present moment and see how you can improve and go forward. It is only by focusing on the present and doing the right thing, that we can learn from the past.

Do One Thing at a Time We have all tried to juggle several things at once. We also know how stressful and difficult this is. Sometimes when we try to do several things at once, we give ourselves an exaggerated feeling of self importance. However, don’t pile pressure on yourself; value simplicity and do one thing at a time. When you focus on only your current activity, you are not only being kind to yourself; but, also will be able to do things much more effectively.

Give Time for Your Self Improvement We spend many hours pleasing other people; 8 hours a day in the office, several hours meeting family and friends. Can we not find 15 – 20 minutes to look after ourself? If we can find 20 minutes a day, we can learn how to relax, meditate and find a moment of calm in the rush of daily life. To our surprise we may find that this 20 minutes of quiet reflection makes us more productive and we don’t actually lose any time at all.

Don’t Create Unnecessary Problems Some problems are unavoidable, and we have to deal with them with detachment and equanimity. However, if we are honest, some problems can easily be avoided. Do you really need to dispute with your colleagues about minor work issues.

Don’t Seek to Meet the Expectations of Others Some people can be quite demanding and place unrealistic expectations on us. Don’t feel obliged to meet the expectations of others. If you try to please everyone, you will always be striving for an unattainable goal.

Remember Your Positive Contributions Sometimes our mistakes and faults stick in our mind more than the good things we have done. At the end of the day, take time to remember some of the constructive, positive things you have done. This doesn’t have to be big achievements; sometimes a kind word to other people makes a big difference.

Be Happy Life is there to be enjoyed. Don’t feel that if you suffer you will make more progress. It is when we are happy and in a good consciousness that can we be of greatest service to others.

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