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Apr 21

3 Steps to Practice Self Compassion when You’re Feeling Lost

Feeling Lost?

3 Steps to Practice Self Compassion when You’re Feeling Lost

Feeling lost in your 20’s or at any time in life can be an overwhelming and stressful experience. Not knowing where you want to go or what your next step should be is a tough feeling. Sometimes finding the answers starts with getting grounded in yourself. A good place to start is by practicing self-compassion.

People sometimes think self-compassion is going easy on yourself or lowering your own standards. However, self-compassion is just like the compassion you might feel for a friend. It is the understanding of how difficult and complex a situation is, and aim to understand, relate and empathize with that friend.. Self-compassion is the process of turning the thoughts you would have toward a friend inward to yourself.

1. Make Space for “Unpopular Feelings”

One way to start practicing self-compassion is by making space for those “unpopular feelings.” Take time to journal and list out the things that are frustrating you. Often people feel that making space for difficult feelings will make things worse but bringing these feelings to light can be the best way to honor your own experience of being human.

2. Get Curious About Your Feelings.

Now that you’ve purged your system from the shock and sorrow of failing at something, thanks to some healthy wallowing, it is time to examine your attitude. Maybe you have experienced a series of failures, leaving you with diminished self-esteem and an Eeyore-like attitude about life. It is understandable that your sense of self-worth has been knocked around a bit by the setbacks. This can leave you in a state of fear about whether you can even bounce back this time, as well as in a state of perpetual negativity.

The next step in practicing self-compassion is to get curious about all your feelings. You are human after all and have a full range of feelings. Take a moment to look at all those feelings and ask where they might come from and what they might be connected to.

3. Search Out What You Do Well

Finally, one of the best ways to practice self-compassion is by finding the things you have done well. When your thoughts are loud it can be hard to see the good that is happening in the day. Making a list of what you accomplished, no matter how small, can give you a tangible reminder that you are growing and making sense out of your experience.

About Emily Gumm

Emily is a psychotherapist based in Chicago Illinois.  Her therapeutic approach is collaborative and relaxed.  We live in a complex, contradictory and sometimes painful world. Sometimes in trying to give to everyone, you cannot give as much to the relationships that are the most important – much less to yourself! You are not broken and you are doing your best to navigate your connections and personal value.  By partnering with you, you find yourself supported in making the changes you want.  You can live a fulfilling life, with strong connections, all while taking care of you.

…. Find out more about Emily here.