How to be kind to yourself

Anna Pinkerton, therapist, coach and author of 'How To Smile Again: Recovery For Those In Public Life But In Private Pain' (Powerhouse Publications, £24.99), advises that learning how to smile again starts with kindness of thought towards self and others. Here, she shares how to be more kind to ourselves…


How to be kind to yourself
  • Start by building a relationship with yourself in this order: Consideration, Care, Kindness. Begin the journey gently, as if walking hand-in-hand with a small child, not rushing them. You can’t embark on challenging the brutality of your thoughts in an unkind way.
  • Kindness in action cannot exist without kindness of thought first. Gradually silence the self-scorn; speak softly to yourself instead and be gentle with your thoughts. Be best friends to your hurt. No-one is able to heal amidst a brutal environment.
  • Bring your inner kindness to mind no matter how far away it seems. One act of kindness to yourself encourages more, in turn healing and bringing happiness to yourself and others. One of your gains will be to be kind to yourself in thought and action when you least feel like doing so.
  • Being open to your full range of feelings is the kindest thing you can do. If we don’t allow ourselves this, we’re not open to being fully alive.

How To Smile Again (RRP £24.99)

Photograph: iStock

Create a life you loveSubscribe for under £20

Subscribe today and save up to £26 on your first 6 issues of Psychologies!