Do one thing: be kind to yourself

Love self
CC image via flickr: Glenn Euloth

As the annual self-flagellation of a new year rolls around again, many people tie themselves up in knots thinking about ways they can improve their lives.

Lose weight… Stop drinking… Eat more healthily… Do more exercise – come January, come the same good intentions.

But, as we know, most people who try to introduce them fail miserably. The numbers vary, depending on what poll or survey you read, but around 4 in 5 people who make a New Year’s resolution have abandoned it by the end of February.

Now, I don’t have any magic bullet for making your resolutions stick – should you have made any. I’ll leave that to the behavioural psychologists.

No, this post is more about a suggestion for what you can do to improve your life in 2023. As the title of this blog post indicates, I think we all need to be kinder to ourselves.

Stop beating yourself up over your failure to save the planet / lose weight / keep in contact with everyone / be continuously good and thoughtful.

By valuing yourself, you will not only improve your own mental health and reduce any anxiety or other worries, but this will then make you more likely to achieve those lofty goals and targets you set yourself.

Treat yourself as you would your best friend. Tell yourself that you’re ‘enough’. Remind yourself that you are already a good person, who cares about others and is – most of the time – kind and generous.

None of us is perfect. We can all be a ‘better’ version of ourselves, but that doesn’t mean that our current version is bad.

In case you’re wondering, I’ve been terrible at this in the past. I beat myself up constantly for not achieving more, I compare myself unfavourably to others and rarely think I’m good enough.

But I’ve vowed to try and change. To try myself with kindness and take small steps to a ‘different’ version of me, rather than a ‘better’ version.

Why don’t you join me?

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