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Transitioning from Self-hate to Self-compassion

Transitioning from Self-hate to Self-compassion
November 1, 2020

Do you ever catch yourself in negative self-talk for making mistakes and not being great at everything you do? Do you compare yourself to others? Would you judge your friends and loved ones as harshly as you are judging yourself? In this article we are going to talk about how to change your self-hate narrative to self-love.

What is self-hate?

The definition of self-hate is to direct hate towards yourself instead of others. It’s a harsh term, however, the implications of this attitude and action toward self leaves no positive residual benefit. Those who experience this tend to place blame on themselves if something bad happens to them instead of holding others accountable for their action and this allows others to put them in those situations more than not. Most of the time self-hate stems from childhood trauma. It is also quite common in western societies due to the enormous pressure we place on performing without mistakes and being exceptional at everything we do. 

How does self-hate affect your mental health?

Depression and anxiety are common indicators of self-hate. This can decimate your self-esteem and confidence. For example, you might hate yourself for not being smart, attractive, free, charitable, or special enough. These tend to be cycles that desensitize you from making the positive changes in your life  you want. It can feel like quicksand, the more you agitate it, the further you become stuck in it. There is hope, you can get out of it by taking small meaningful steps in a positive direction. It will be a process and you won’t be able to do it overnight, it’s 100% a labor of love, and the key is patience and consistency. 

 How can you switch the narrative to come from a place of openness and compassion?

You need to be ready to be uncomfortable, most of the time we are content in our little bubble of familiar but detrimental suffering. Also remember, this will not happen as you want, you need to be realistic in your expectations with yourself. You may have to accept that taking a step back on your journey is a possibility. Just remember, that in the long run you are moving forward to a better life. One of the first things you can do is notice you have thoughts that put yourself down, step one is self awareness. The next thing you can do is give yourself a break, then you can replace the negative thought with a positive and compassionate thought. An example of this is “I always mess up and I never do anything right.” you should say “It’s okay that I make mistakes, I can just practice more and try again, I will give myself a second chance.” You can also practice mindfulness and meditation to help with self esteem. 

How does self-compassion affect your mental health?

Forgiving and nurturing yourself can provide for better health, relationships, and general well-being. Self-compassion has numerous benefits, including lower levels of anxiety and depression. Self-compassionate people recognize when they are suffering and are kind to themselves, which reduces their anxiety and related depression. 

What begins to change in your life when you practice self compassion?

You can begin to be grateful for yourself and happy with your existence. You can feel motivated and you stop living in a state of perpetual suffering. Supporting yourself and developing more positive experiences can result in treating yourself with love and kindness. You expect others to treat you the same way as you are projecting this outwardly. It is not necessary to settle for less than you deserve and you will attract your worth in both your internal and external world.

This was a very personal article to write. I personally have struggled with self-hate and low self-esteem. I used to let others walk all over me just because I didn’t have any self worth and honestly didn’t know I deserved better. After a long road of learning the hard way, I now know my worth. I decide how I let others treat me and what is acceptable. After I started this journey, I ended up losing people in my life I thought were good for me, they were only a reflection of what I was allowing to receive which wasn’t very supportive at all.  I now attract those who see the worth that I feel like I have and they match me. Just know the work you put in comes back to you. Remember, you got this life!

 

Author: Zachary Ericksen, Writer, Research and Development Manager for Conscious Content LLC

Sources:

https://www.goodtherapy.org/blog/how-to-turn-self-hatred-into-self-compassion-1112135

https://www.psychalive.org/self-loathing/

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-science-willpower/201103/the-power-self-compassion

https://www.mentalhelp.net/blogs/of-self-hatred-and-self-compassion/

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/basics/self-hatred

 

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