Being trained in both Western health disciplines (nutrition and dietetics) and Eastern based health practices (yoga) and recently completing the Mindful Self Compassion Training brings personal depth and breadth to my life coaching as I can attest to the life changing subtle yet powerful practice of mindful self compassion (MSC).
As a participant, I found the MSC program helped me to understand at a much deeper level how all people suffer, the element of ‘common humanity’ and that in some weird way, when I was ‘suffering’ knowing that I was sharing this experience of sadness or anger or hurt or whatever the ‘suffering emotion’ was, and that there were probably thousands of others in just that moment sharing the exact same emotion eased the suffering. The MSC program also integrates the concepts of self compassion and self kindness which align so well with self care and teaches practical tools and strategies that can be used daily to be less reactive, more mindful, and reduce stress.
As a ‘teacher in training’, I found the program took me deeper in all areas and brought up some of the ‘mud from the bottom of the lake’ (no mud no lotus), or ‘unhealed emotional wounding/suffering’. Our teachers encouraged us to be slow learners to allow mindful self compassion to slowly permeate our life, to become sustainable life habits.
So, in the spirit of gentleness, kindness, self learning and friendship, I offer the following …
Compassion Inspired Health Coaching Tips:
- Include yourself in the circle of compassion. I used to say ‘Put yourself at the top of the priority list’, however, that wording now sounds linear and edgy and people often ask ‘but isn’t that selfish’. I much prefer the ‘circle of compassion’ wording used by my friend and colleague Victoria, from the Center for Compassion Inspired Health.
- Daily, check in and ask yourself, “What message is my body giving me? What activities/food/beverages/exercise does my body need more of? What does my body need less of?” Listen to and act on the messages.
- Develop your own compassionate self-care routine. Ask yourself, what do I need to do for myself on a daily, weekly, monthly, bi-annual and annual basis to really take care of myself and extend to myself the care and kindness that I would give to a dear friend. Maybe your body (you) needs nothing to be different, simply to be accepted the way you are.
- Plan a “retreat day” or weekend and craft your ideal self-nourishing time. You also may choose to create some intentions or vows for yourself! If you are near the Lower Mainland of BC, you may consider joining us at “You Are So Worth It” Retreat in January 2019 or if you want to immerse yourself in mindful self compassion, join us in Yelapa, Mexico at the 9 Day Mindful Self Compassion Training/Retreat
- Make a list of all the areas/committments in your life that feel like ‘energy drains’, you know the ones, the ‘should do’s, obligations and things you agreed to but really don’t want to do. You can then ask ‘what’s the kindest thing I can do for myself about this obligation’ and see what you come up with.
- Plan some time for fun and recreation! When was the last time you danced, or had a belly laugh or did something spontaneous that felt liberating and creative?
- Spend time every day in solitude, doing nothing, no reading, no music. Sit and appreciate your life and acknowledge yourself for all the great parts of you!
“In solitude we give passionate attention to our lives, to our memories, to the details around us.”
– Virginia Woolf