The because I’m worth it bit.
I was reminded of this yesterday when a wise man suggested that I started being my own best friend.
Now there’s a thought. Wouldn’t life look very different if I wasn’t continually tripping myself up.
This is what Brown says –
“There was only one variable that separated the people who have a strong sense of love and belonging, and the people who really struggle for it and that was, the people who have a strong sense of love and belonging believe they’re worthy of love and belonging. That’s it. They believe they’re worthy.”
And later this:
“..the compassion to be kind to themselves first and then to others because, as it turns out, we can’t practice compassion with other people if we can’t treat ourselves kindly.”
I’m not sure it’s this absolute but the compassion is wobbly, I think, if we’re not solid at the base. It is far easier to be empathetic and open if we’re practising that with ourselves; and far easier to reach out if we’re not hiding, which is the other condition that self-judgement and non-acceptance creates.
And so I have decided, for a while, to pad out this “be your own best friend” philosophy; or, at least, to stop shooting myself so painfully down. To start, again, with the basics; and see if by sorting out how I treat myself, it changes how I get on with the world. The temptation has always been to undertake this activity back to front. To assume that if the focus is on how I treat others, I’ll get to myself in the end –
But maybe I’ll have a little more energy to do this if I’m not fighting a running commentary, nor neglecting the simple signs of respect that I would pay to someone else. Smile, be nice, have a hug, be honest, accept the full person, don’t always point out where they’re wrong, be curious, forgive…That kind of thing.
It’s hugely important to connect with others; but it’s also hugely important to connect with someone who isn’t going anywhere: yourself.