Self-Compassion Made Easy: Yin and Yang

Do you struggle with practicing self-compassion? It's a common challenge, but one that can be overcome with the ancient Chinese approach of yin and yang. Discover how to put this into practice and create healthy boundaries with these simple tips.

In today's world, phrases like "be kind to yourself" and "practice self-care" can feel overused and unhelpful. But what do they actually look like in practice? The yin and yang approach to self-compassion provides a clear roadmap for anyone looking to improve their relationship with themselves.

In the yin, or feminine approach, self-compassion might involve soothing and calming yourself through actions like taking a hot bath or disconnecting from technology for a while. On the other hand, the yang, or masculine approach, might involve active handling of difficult situations, like drawing up healthy boundaries or speaking up for yourself.

Wondering how to put this into practice? We've written up a handful of go-to tips for dealing with any situation that calls for a bit of self-compassion:

1.    First, ask yourself whether the situation requires passive self-care (yin) or active handling (yang).

2.    If it's the yin approach you need, ask yourself whether the situation would be helped if you felt physically calmer, or if your emotional needs were met.

3.    If it's the yang approach, ask yourself if there are any ways you could stop others from harming or intruding in your space, or if you could motivate yourself using encouragement and understanding, rather than criticism.

4.    Don't feel like you have to put the actions in place right away. Take baby steps -particularly if this involves what could be a difficult conversation with someone else.

5.    Likewise, don't be afraid to ask for help. Knowing the actions required might be half the battle - but it's only half. It's much easier to ask for (and get!) assistance when you know what it is you need to do.

6.    Remember that if your approach doesn't work the way you thought, don't worry. Take it back to step 1 and try again!

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