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1.Self-pity entails being immersed in your own emotions and thoughts to the point that you are not connecting with others and their emotions or problems. It feels like you are the only one in the world who has problems and hurts.

In being self -compassionate you practicing kindness towards yourself. It allows you to experience your pain, acknowledge it but also hold space for other’s pain and that comes from the realization that pain and hurt are part of human condition. Feelings of such as hurt, shame, sadness, fear, anger and despair are universal. We all feel them. A connection rather than isolation to others is made. We are thus being compassionate towards others ,as well as, ourselves.

2.Self -pitying feeds, indulges and grows on it’s own negativity. It is a downwards spiral of negative emotions, which lead to avoidance, stagnation and helplessness. It is passively wallowing in the bitterness of your situation, which feels like it is fate and you are a victim. In pitying yourself you do not take actions but wait for others to react  to you due to guilt or empathy and take over.

While in being self- compassionate you are not waiting on others to be compassionate towards you but you offer that compassion to yourself. You comfort yourself with a positive blanket that can perceive the hurt but also the hope. It is motivating, loving and uplifting ,which can lead to more focus and a change for the better. Self-compassion also leads to less negative reactions and resilience. In being self -compassionate you are also taking responsibility and action to help yourself, try harder, find a solution and learn from it as to avoid repeating past mistakes.

3.In pitying yourself you are wallowing, obsessing and consumed by the pain ,suffering and the misfortunes that it starts to define who you are.In being self -compassionate there is more balance between embracing the pain, shortcomings, mistakes and having a healthy dose of self- respect and self -love. The pain and hurt do  not define you. Self-compassion  helps you go beyond dwelling towards acceptance of self, self -care and action taking.

4.The extreme focus on the self, your own thoughts and emotions in self -pitying makes it difficult  for you to be open to alternatives , maybe more balanced perspectives on the situation and come up with different solutions. In self-compassion, on the other hand, there is more willingness and openness to look beyond the self and recognize that others may have other perspectives to offer from their own life experiences and wisdom.

5.Self- compassion is associated with positive interpersonal relationship. The self- compassionate is emotionally connected, accepting and supportive while those are not self compassionate are more detached, controlling, and may even be aggressive within the relationships. Self- compassion was also found to be correlated with positive strengths such as more happiness, optimism, wisdom, curiosity, personal initiative, and emotional intelligence.

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Breines, J. G., & Chen, S. (2012). Self-compassion increases self-improvement motivation.Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin ,38,9,1133 – 1143.

Neff, K. D., & Beretvas, S. N. (2013). The role of self-compassion in romantic relationships. Self and Identity ,12 ,  1,78-98.

Neff, K. D., & Rude, S. S., & Kirkpatrick, K. (2007). An examination of self-compassion in relation to positive psychological functioning and personality traits. Journal of Research in Personality, 41, 908– 916.

Barnard, L. K., & Curry, J. F. (2011). Self-compassion: Conceptualizations, correlates, & interventions. Review of General Psychology, 15, 289–303.

 

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