How to Be Kinder to Yourself

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How can I stop being so hard on myself?

This is one of the top questions I get from clients.

Self-kindness is the key for any healing or change. It is my personal go-to whenever my own mental health is struggling.

Being kinder to yourself feels tricky because you’ve been trained, like we all are, that productivity comes from being hard on yourself. And productivity – getting things done – is prized above all else in our modern hustle culture. Being kinder to yourself might feel like too big a risk to take. You might find yourself thinking,

“If I don’t beat myself up, I’ll never accomplish anything, and if I don’t accomplish anything, how will anyone – including me – know that I’m worthy.”

Before I teach you the three steps to being kinder to yourself, let’s define self-kindness.

Self-Kindness is Not…

  • doing nothing or being lazy
  • giving up on goals or pursuits
  • excusing disrespect or mistreatment of others
  • viewing the self as infallible
  • Perfection

Self-Kindness Does Not…

  • need to be earned
  • need to wait for the right time
  • happen overnight
  • require ideal circumstances
  • get old

Self-Kindness Is…

  • something we never grow out of the need for
  • an inherent skill we are all capable of
  • a habit to practice and maintain over time
  • simple (if not always easy)

Again, being kinder to yourself may feel really difficult at first because it is new. Unfamiliar territory is always scary to the human brain. Let it be scary. But also, let it be simple.

Here are the three simple steps to being kinder to yourself:

Call it Out

Common Humanity


Call it Out…

This means noticing, with language, self-criticism or any other type of emotional upheaval.

…Can Sound Like

“Wow, that’s a really mean thought my brain just fed me about myself.”

“Huh. Look at that old self-criticism habit showing up.”

Common Humanity…

This means reminding yourself that everyone knows this feeling.

…Can Sound Like

“This is human. Self-criticism is part of the human experience.”

“It’s human to be hard on myself sometimes. Everyone does it. I’m not alone in this.”


This means letting go of any resistance and letting whatever is happening happen.

…Can Sound Like

“Okay, self-criticism is here. It’s okay that it’s here for now.”

“This is okay. It’s okay to be human. I can handle this.”

It’s that simple. Altogether, an effective self-kindness script sounds like:

“Self-criticism is here. It’s human to be hard on myself sometimes. It’s okay to be human.”

The three steps to being kinder to yourself:

Call it Out

Common Humanity


Repeat as needed. And remember, no one ever grows out of the need for self-kindness.

In this month’s webinar…

I taught the three steps to self-kindness in much more detail then modeled kindness to myself in the moment. I used myself and my inner critic as a real-time example of how to respond when self-criticism crops up.

Attendees received a bonus How to Be Kinder to Yourself PDF as well as a link to the webinar recording. My inbox was bursting the morning after the webinar with thank you’s and follow-up questions. This stuff is gold 💥

Every monthly webinar is jam-packed with helpful information and hopeful encouragement – and they’re always FREE. Get on my email list and follow me on Instagram so you don’t miss the next one.

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