Should you have known better? Be nicer to yourself

On a scale of one to ten, how hard are you on yourself?

When you say the wrong thing, do you shrug it off or freak out completely?

When you make a misstep, do you beat yourself up or do you look lovingly at the woman who made that choice?

When you’re feeling like crap, do you let yourself feel that way or do you make it worse by expecting it suddenly to be better?

Why is it so hard to give ourselves a dang break? Why is it so hard to treat ourselves with the same compassion that we provide to those that we love. We’d never talk to our favorite people the way we talk to ourselves. And goodness do I wish it was as easy at just being our own favorite person (which for the record, I think is one of the single greatest attempts at progress you can make in your life. To like yourself. To really like yourself.)

When I get really down on myself … for making that mistake … for not learning the lesson … for being in a behavioral pattern … for not seeing my own value … for not using my voice … for (insert any of the million reasons we’re hard on ourselves), it all comes back to a falsely-rooted expectation that I should have known better.

But if we had known better, wouldn’t we have done better? And isn’t the whole point of living this wild life journey that we’re on to learn the lessons that life is here to teach us?

You aren’t supposed to know the answers to all the questions already. You’re not supposed to have mastered all the lessons. You’re not supposed to get it all right. You’re not supposed to have this living thing aced. That is simply not the point. And not how it works.

Human existence is predicated on the experience of learning. Of absorbing. Or lessoning. Of expanding. Of starting somewhere. And you’re starting here. So is it possible to quit being such a total ass hole to yourself by acknowledging that your knowledge and your humanity isn’t static? It’s here to grow. You’re here to learn the lessons. You’re here to find your answers. You’re here to get better. You’re here to expand. So have some compassion for yourself, because core to any of that knowledge is not knowing it already.

Give yourself a much-needed break. Let yourself off the hook. Quit being so mean. You’ll find that wrapping yourself in just a little bit of grace is enough to make this entire journey of living thing much, much more enjoyable.

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