Be nice to yourself. It’s hard to be happy when someone is mean to you all the time. — Christine Arylo
This has been a concept I have been working with for quite some time now. We are constantly exposed to expectations of what we should look like, who we should be friends with, what we should wear, how much money we should make, and what we should do to make all this happen. We are treated like robots, but the truth is, we are humans.
Humans are great, we have emotion, and have the potential to do more than we can dream of. We can do extremely difficult and complicated tasks, but we also make mistakes. Some days are easier than others, and we have to accept that as part of being human.
Trying to be more productive? Realize that you can only do one thing at a time, and work on what’s important.
Searching for happiness? Do things that make you feel good, and that is good for you.
Want to improve your self-esteem? Treat yourself like you would treat your best friend.
At the end of the day, you are all that you got. You might as well be good to yourself, and treat yourself right. If you want to improve as a person and push yourself, by all means, you have permission to do that. You are allowed to acknowledge your points of weakness. Yet, if you want to improve, you should be easier on yourself and improve from a place of self-love because you want to live a better life, not just because others say you have to do something. If you worry about not being good enough, think about it this way.
You are a human who has a ticking heart, who can read, eat, breath, drink water, and live. Despite all of the challenges and heartaches, you have made it this far, and that is something to be proud of. You have made people smile, and you have turned someone’s day a little better because of something you have done, whether you realize it or not.
Instead of saying that you aren’t good at something, focus on ways in which you could get better at it. Instead of beating yourself up because you forgot something or made a mistake, see how you can set a reminder for yourself or learn from your mistakes. Failing is a part of life, and it contains many valuable lessons if we choose to accept them.
When we are easier with ourselves using this approach, we aren’t being lazy, or just ignoring all our responsibilities. Instead, we are cultivating happiness while practicing self-improvement because we want to improve ourselves to improve our lives. When we do things this way, we use that inner critic as an inner friend who can help us navigate the hard road ahead. Working this way allows us to get more done while liking the person in the mirror along the way.2