A woman closing her eyes while enjoying a cup of tea.

When friends wallow in self-doubt, you automatically put on your BFF-on-duty hat. You send them appreciation texts, give , and lend a shoulder to cry – the bare minimums on your friendship card. But do you show yourself the same empathy you give others? Self-compassion means acknowledging your flaws without guilt or shame and still loving every aspect of yourself.

Showing kindness to yourself will help break the habit of attacking your character and appearance. Find out why you should learn this underrated skill and how to cultivate it daily.

Self-Compassion Makes You Feel and Do Better

Constantly comparing yourself to others is part of being human because everyone strives to have more. However, your inner critic can make you feel inferior when you see the success of others, feeding your insecurities. The more you try to ignore it, the more it consumes your mind. You might even start wondering, “Why do things never work out for me?” which traps you into a cycle of self-pity. It sounds harrowing, but it happens whenever you nitpick your appearance, like thinking your is too big or your is less attractive.

Self-compassion frees you from obsessing over imperfections. It gives you a sense of security that allows you to admit you don’t feel good about your body, and it’s okay because people struggle sometimes. In psychology, self-compassion has three interconnected facets:

  • Self-kindness means you can be gentle when you mess up.
  • Common humanity reminds you that everyone has shortcomings.
  • Mindfulness is the wisdom that painful thoughts are fleeting and do not define your whole being.

As you give yourself grace, you also raise your standard. Gone are the days of tolerating toxicity from people around you. Insults and mean jokes no longer faze you because those comments reflect their values, not yours. And most of all, you have so much love within you that fuels your motivation to try more things in life.

How to Be More Self-Compassionate

It takes strength to look inward and embrace unpleasant feelings with open arms. But with some practice, you can be kinder to yourself and let go of the “ and move on” mentality.

1. Give yourself a break.

One of the simplest ways to practice self-compassion is by asking yourself what you need right now instead of pushing to do more. Don’t shame yourself into trying to fix your mistakes. Pause for a minute and think of activities that you enjoy and can support your well-being. It could be talking to your girlfriends, baking cookies, or .

Addressing your needs can also give you a much-needed boost. Eat when you’re hungry, drink to rehydrate, and relax in the shower with Dove Relaxing Lavender Body Wash after a long day. The lavender and rosemary blend calms your skin and senses almost instantly. Incorporate it into your self-care routine for a quick pick-me-up and of course, soft and smooth skin. 

2. Write a letter to yourself.

Dealing with emotions is a slow and challenging process. Don’t beat yourself up for being critical. It’s tough to break away from negative self-talk when you’re accustomed to it. Imagine talking to your inner child if you’re too upset to offer kindness to yourself. What would you say to a younger version of yourself? Jot it down on a piece of paper and describe what happened.

Try not to apologize and give positive affirmations instead. Let your feelings out without blaming anyone. When you’re done, you can save and read it later or discard it.

3. Create a successful album.

Oftentimes, insecurity comes when you see people living your dream life. You become more focused on what should have been and forget what you have achieved. Remind yourself now and then by creating an album filled with good memories. Upload pictures with your loved ones, screenshots of colleagues' compliments, and other things that make you feel fulfilled.

Looking back at past victories is a way to show your inner critic how resilient you are. Plus, it motivates you to make new memories, like learning a new hobby and . You can still pamper your skin even when you’re far from home. Pack Dove Bar Relaxing Lavender with you to have a relaxing bath experience wherever you go. This scented soap, made with moisturizing cream and gentle cleansers, keeps your skin soft and radiant when traveling.

4. Try meditation.

Since one of the pillars of self-compassion is mindfulness, slipping in a few minutes to meditate is highly recommended by experts. A explains how focusing on the five senses for a few minutes daily can positively affect the brain’s gray matter – the part that controls emotions and memory. So if sitting still in a dark room for 15 minutes is not your thing, you can practice mindfulness in other small but meaningful ways.

When lying on your bed, feel the fabrics on your skin and the AC sound. Take a moment to truly experience the moment, from the movie you’re watching to the weight of the blanket wrapping your body. Your physical senses can rope you in whenever your mind ruminates on self-sabotaging phrases.

Anyone can learn self-compassion, including you. Some days may feel like you take one step forward and two steps back but keep believing in yourself. After all, you have surpassed many unknowns and will keep doing so