While we may be experts in showing compassion to others who are hurting, we often lag in our expressions of compassion to ourselves and our own suffering. Like the "cobbler's children who have no shoes," we who spend our days attending to the emotional, mental, and spiritual pain of others can find that we have not extended that same loving care to ourselves. It is difficult to continue to give away to others what we have not freely given ourselves.
Consider this quote from doctor Jeremy Geffen:
"The path of healing at times can be filled with periods where you feel tired, where you feel discouraged. Those times are part of the journey as well. And If you are feeling tired, or discouraged, and not sure of yourself, not sure of your path, it’s most important to remember to stop and give to yourself, some moments of the kindness and the love and the caring, that you give to so many others, and have given to so many others for so long. Sometimes that’s all that we can do, is to stop and close our eyes, and with our heart, and our intention, send love deep into the innermost core of your heart and being, and wrap your own spirit and your own soul in your own arms of kindness and forgiveness. In that tender act of bringing love and kindness to yourself, especially when you may feel tired and unsure, the love that you give to yourself is the same love that ultimately will heal the world."
For reflection alone or together:
What are some of your biggest internal barriers to extending compassion to yourself?
What might one small gesture of self-compassion look like today?