{a} Mindful Mind/You/Life

One Piece of Advice you Need to Show Yourself Compassion

 

 

Tonight I was out watering my plants. It had been a difficult night. E had thrown multiple tantrums starting when I got home from work and all the way through dinner. I was thankful to be outside with the only sounds being the water coming out of the hose, and the crickets, birds, and frogs and toads. I was taking my 10 minutes, and I was finally feeling like I could take a breath.

 

It was trash night. Neighbors were one by one rolling their trash and recycling cans to the end of their driveways as dusk started to fall. I heard the distinctive ‘rolling’ sound coming from a couple of houses down, and I look up. It was a neighbor I had met only once last summer at her and her husband’s garage sale. I was coming back from a walk with E in our stroller, and after introducing myself, they were asking me about our stroller selection. Conversation ensued. Since then, we haven’t engaged in any other conversation.

 

On this particular evening, I noticed she was rolling her trash can down the driveway, carrying her little one on one hip, wearing a pretty dress. My mind immediately went into comparison mode. Thoughts like ‘she must have it all together; rolling her trash can down, baby in one arm, wearing a dress’. While I’m wearing my totally beat up garden shoes, and my ‘pre-pajama’ outfit (an outfit you change into after work, but before actual pajamas). As my brain went down the ‘comparision rabbit hole’, I caught myself.

 

What good was this doing for me?

 

What good was this doing for my mental health?

 

Why was I putting myself through this?

 

And more importantly, how the heck do I know anything about her situation? The answer is I don’t. At all. For all I know, her husband was out, and she hadn’t had a chance to change after getting home. Or maybe she has been feeling down and just wanted to dress up to make herself feel better. Or maybe she just wanted to take the trash out, holding her kiddo in a pretty dress (either way, you rock, mama). Or maybe, or maybe, or maybe. There are hundreds of possibilities.  The important thing is that I don’t know. And because I don’t know, making up these ridiculous assumptions about something I know nothing about, and then comparing myself to these unknown ridiculous assumptions is well, ridiculous.

 

 

Ladies, mamas, friends, sisters, life can be hard enough without us making ourselves feel bad. My advice to you and to myself if that we need to start being more compassionate to ourselves and focus on what is in front of us instead of what we think others have or don’t have.

 

This particular scenario reminds me of that quote that goes something along the lines of ‘Everyone is fighting a battle you know nothing about. Be kind.’

 

This includes you.

 

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[…] that if this happens to you, you are not alone and that it is important to be compassionate and mindful with yourself; you didn’t develop accumulating habits overnight, and it will take […]

Kendra Sanders
Guest

OMG I catch myself in these weird snarky phases too! But I am getting better at stopping myself when I do than I used to. I appreciate this reminder to be more mindful over our thoughts.

Rachael
Guest

So true! I know that the only reason I’d be carrying my little one to take out the trash is because he would just cry if I ever put him down as a baby, and that was SO overwhelming. I wore mostly dresses all summer because they were the only thing I felt good in with my postpartum body. I also crave those ten minutes of alone time and often find myself wondering “how? how is that other mom able to be better at xyz than I am? Where is she finding the time?” So you aren’t alone! I think… Read more »

Tiffany
Guest

Love this! Such a nice reminder for ourselves. And your quote is spot-on!

Melissa | This Blended Home of Mine
Guest

This is so true. We never truly know what others are going through and what their situations are like. To us, they may look very together; but who really knows? The key is to be kind to yourself and look after yourself – that’s all that we can truly do. And this – “Everyone is fighting a battle you know nothing about. Be kind.” — YES ♥

Annie
Guest

So true! Comparison kills contentment!

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[…] let’s move forward and show some compassion to ourselves and others. Let’s start assuming people are good but in hard times, even if it […]

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[…] If you need some help showing yourself compassion and love, read how here.  […]

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[…] A big part of self-care is showing yourself some compassion. This is great if you struggle with perfectionism or unrealistic expectations. Here is my One Piece of Advice you Need to Show Yourself Compassion […]

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[…] Showing yourself compassion could have been incorporated into self-care, but it’s important so I wanted to keep it separate. When everyone around you is celebrating the holiday season, it can be hard to not feel like you should be too. And if you’re not, guilt can quickly set it, adding on to your sadness (or insert emotion here). When you say no (remember the first tip?) to a gathering or an item on your to-do list, this is another opportunity guilt likes to take advantage of. The solution to the guilt you may be feeling is to show yourself… Read more »