"Compassion practice is daring. It involves learning to relax and allow ourselves to move gently towards what scares us. The trick to doing this is to stay with emotional distress without tightening into aversion, to let fear soften us rather than harden into resistance."
- Pema Chödrön
Western culture places great emphasis on being kind to our friends, family, and neighbours when they are struggling; but places comparatively little emphasis on being kind to ourselves when we struggle.
Somewhere along the line, we get the message that strong individuals should be stoic, silent, and removed from their own suffering.
Unfortunately, these attitudes rob us of one of our most powerful coping mechanisms when dealing with the difficulties of life: self-compassion.
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What would it be like to receive self-compassion, whenever we need it?
Self-compassion is a skill that can be learned by anyone, even those who didn’t receive enough affection in childhood or who find it embarrassing to be kind to themselves.
Research has shown that the practice of self-compassion greatly enhances emotional well-being and resilience. It boosts happiness, reduces anxiety and depression, and can even help us stick to our goals.
What does the course cover?
This weekend workshop is an invitation to familiarise ourselves with the practice of self-compassion and transform the way in which we relate to pain, suffering, failures, and feelings of inadequacy.
We will learn to embrace our vulnerabilities and shortcomings with warmth and kindness. All that is required is a shift in the direction of our attention — recognising that as a human being, we too are always worthy of receiving compassion.
In this workshop, we will explore evidence-based methods for cultivating self-compassion. These including mindfulness-based mind training techniques, personal exploration, group-sharing, and reflections on creative works, all of which have been shown to develop self-compassion.
When / how often does the course run?
We will meet in a small group on Saturday, 16 June and Sunday, 17 June from 10 am to 1 pm. It will be a safe, supportive, positive and wholesome environment.
What does the course draw on?
This course draws upon the research of Brené Brown, Ph.D., and Kristin Neff, Ph.D., and in particular the books:
- The Proven Power of Being Kind to Yourself: Self-Compassion, by Kristin Neff, Ph.D.; and
- I Thought It Was Just Me (But It Isn’t) by Brené Brown, Ph.D.