Befriending Ourselves - Resources for Inner Peace & Compassionate Self-Care
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The Foundation of Self-Compassion
When Life Sucks: Buddhism, NVC, and Mourning
Transforming "Not Enough" Thoughts with Mindfulness and Compassion
How to Stop Viewing Your Anxiety as an Enemy
How to Practice Self-Compassion When You Think You Can't

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The Foundation of Self-Compassion

The Foundation of Self-Compassion

An editor at PsychCentral.com recently asked me, "What do you wish people really understood about self-compassion?" Here is my response.

I wish people really understood that self-compassion is fundamentally about caring about yourself. It’s about treating yourself like you would your best friend: with kindness, attention, love, and responsiveness. It’s saying to yourself, “I’m here for you. I care about you and I want to support you.”

I believe this compassionate attitude towards ourselves is the foundation for sustainable change.

When Life Sucks: Buddhism, NVC, and Mourning

As I sit at my desk in California, awaiting the trick-or-treaters, an e-mail my sister just sent me is reverberating through my mind. She wrote from New York, "No power. No school. Halloween postponed 'til next Friday."  I picture my little niece and nephew all dressed up in their adorable costumes, having to wait over a week to celebrate one of their favorite holidays.
 
As the Buddha taught, sometimes life really sucks. 
 
I'm writing this in the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, and am struck by the theme of loss that seems to be calling out for my attention this month, so I thought I'd muse on the topic of mourning, and offer some insight and support I've learned from my adventures in both Buddhism and Nonviolent Communication (NVC).

Transforming "Not Enough" Thoughts with Mindfulness and Compassion

What lies about your "not enough-ness" did your mind tell you today? How did you respond?

While scrolling through Facebook this evening, I noticed a sinking feeling in my chest and could sense my upper body contracting. Luckily, thanks to my mindfulness practice, I was able to notice the unpleasant feeling right away and trace the feeling back to the thought that went something like, "I'm not informed enough."

I felt relief in noticing the thought and identifying it as one of those pesky "not enough" thoughts.

How to Stop Viewing Your Anxiety as an Enemy

I was recently featured in an article on PsychCentral.com about helpful ways to relate to anxiety.  Here is the article, written by Margarita Tartakovsky.  Click here to read the article on Psychcentral.com.

How to Stop Viewing Your Anxiety as an Enemy
by Margarita Tartakovsky, M.S.

If you struggle with anxiety, you might start to see your anxiety as an adversary. After all, anxiety stops you from doing things you need to do and things that you enjoy. Anxiety keeps you in the house and keeps you from pursuing your dreams.

How to Practice Self-Compassion When You Think You Can't

I was recently featured in an article on PsychCentral.com about practicing self-compassion. Here is the article, written by Margarita Tartakovsky.  Click here to read the article on Psychcentral.com.

How to Practice Self-Compassion When You Think You Can't
by Margarita Tartakovsky, M.S.

Self-compassion is powerful. It promotes inner peace. Self- criticism, the opposite of self-compassion and what most of us are used to practicing, “is an experience of inner conflict,” according to Ali Miller, MFT, a therapist in private practice in Berkeley and San Francisco, Calif.

Practicing Self-Compassion When You're Struggling with Anxiety

I was recently featured in an article on Psychcentral.com about ways to practice self-compassion when you're struggling with anxiety. Here is the article, written by Margarita Tartakovsky.  Click here to read the article on Psychcentral.com.

Practicing Self-Compassion When You're Struggling with Anxiety
by Margarita Tartakovsky, M.S.

People who struggle with anxiety often beat themselves up about it. "I should be able to handle this." "There must be something seriously wrong with me.

Ho Ho Hum: Coping with Sadness During the Holiday Season

It’s that time of the year again. Or, as some may say, it’s that time of the year again!

Whether you’re the most enthusiastic merry-maker on your block or the most cynical Grinch there ever was, there’s one thing we Americans all have in common during the month of December: Christmas is inescapable. From the non-stop jingle bells tunes on the radio and in the stores, to the incessant commercials selling the hottest new gadgets that little Jimmy is sure to love, to the glowing lights and manger displays filling up the streets, the message is clear.

Simple Ways to Befriend Yourself Throughout the Day

Simple Ways to Befriend Yourself Throughout the Day

Being compassionate towards ourselves, research shows, is a major contributor to mental health. No longer limited to the realm of transpersonal or Buddhist-influenced psychology, articles on the benefits of self-compassion are popping up in mainstream periodicals such as Harvard Health Publication and Scientific American. There’s no question that befriending ourselves is a powerful and transformative approach to healing low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, and a host of other variations of human suffering.