Be Kind To Yourself

June 21, 2010 at 11:12 pm (Sweet Nothings/Ramblings)

I always find Mondays a bit of a struggle. I seem to need twice as much caffeine, dread the long work day twice as much and am twice as likely to tell myself that things aren’t half as great as I thought they were. Enough maths for you?

I find that a lot of my female friends are perfectionists, people pleasers and high achievers. Perhaps these are just attributes of women in general, but they can often turn on us. This week why not try to accept that you aren’t perfect, that not everyone will like you and sometimes you will fail.

I remember a scene in Elizabethtown (starring Kirsten Dunst and Orlando Bloom – a fave film of mine), Orlando’s character has just been fired after losing his company close to a billion dollars. He explains that she deserves someone so much better than him because he is a huge failure. Of course she doesn’t care about this corporate “fiasco” and tells him to accept that he has failed, grieve and move on.

My friend Sarah inspired this post (hi!). She just ate a whole lot of chocolate and proceeded to feel extremely guilty about it and proclaim how fat she is. Darling – chocolate isn’t a failure, it is delicious. If a girl can’t eat some chocolate on a Monday evening, what is the world coming to?

So, here are a few “fiascos” you may come across this week and how to embrace unwanted feelings of failure, guilt or self loathing and letting them go.

The guilt of eating something ‘naughty’
– Remember how great it tasted and smile.
– Think of something good you did for someone else and view it as a reward.
– Exercise the guilt away if you’re so inclined.
– Think of the millions of people who are starving in the world – a few extra grams on your hips doesn’t seem so horrific now, does it?

You miss out on your ‘dream job’
– Realise that no, you weren’t the right person for this job at this point in time, but that does not mean it won’t be with a little hard work.
– Ask the employer what skills/qualifications/training you could gain to assist you in the industry and any tips on how to go about getting them
– Live and breathe the “when a door closes, another one opens” philosophy. The new door may be gold-plated with sequined handles!
– Offer to do work experience at the company. That way when a similar position opens, you already have your foot in the door and proven experience.

You’re having a bad hair day
– Laugh. Isn’t it ridiculous that we consider this a disaster?!
Wear the most fabulous hat you own (or go on a shopping expedition to find one).
– Find a photo where you absolutely love your hair to remind yourself that it usually isn’t such a mess.
– Embrace the very stylish (and on trend) top knot.

Your friend/sister/partner gets an amazing opportunity and you have a bad case of the green-eyed monster
– Write a list of all the wonderful opportunities that have come your way in the last 12 months.
– Allow yourself to be jealous for an entire minute, then put on your favourite song and dance around like a crazy person, imagining that you are expelling all the negative feelings.
– Think of all the reasons that this person deserves a lucky break. Remember, this is not about a kick in YOUR face – it’s about a pot of gold for THEM. STOP COMPARING YOURSELF TO OTHER PEOPLE.

Someone insults you either to your face or behind your back
– Really think about whether or not this person’s opinion matters to you and why.
– If it does, grab a cup of coffee with them and explain that you feel hurt by what they have said. It may be a misunderstanding or they may have had a particularly awful day and were just taking out their anger on you.
– Remind yourself that people who deliberately try to hurt others are usually unhappy people. Either move on or try to help – it’s up to you.

You have  a moment of “I haven’t achieved any of what I thought I would have by now”
–  As Nike says, JUST DO IT. Do it now. Split the achievement into baby steps and take one of them today. At least you can then see the plan evolving.
– Start reading a biography of someone you admire who has achieved great things in their lifetime. You will be reminded that it isn’t easy for anyone to achieve their goals and that it takes a lot of courage and persistence.
– Write a list of all that you HAVE achieved. Sometimes simply changing your perspective can make the dark clouds pass.

I hope you have an amazing week without fiascos, but if you do – don’t sweat the small stuff. Be proud of who you are, what you have accomplished so far and all that you plan to achieve.

Do you have any tips to help you stay smiling when something gets you down?



  1. x Corrine/Frock & Roll x said,

    Love, love, love this, Kimberley!

    • Kimberley said,

      Awww shucks! Cheers Corrine! x

  2. emily said,

    GREAT post Kimberly. Sarah is very lucky to have a friend like you.

    • Kimberley said,

      Thank you Emily, that’s a lovely thing to say.

  3. marthehagen said,

    I love this post! I tend to be very hard on myself all the time, and right now, I feel stuck when it comes to my blog. I feel that I haven’t acheived half as much as what I want to do, but I don’t seem to do much about it either.

    What works for me, especially when it comes to eating chocolate and eating too much in general, I just look forward. So what you ate too much during this meal, what matters is what you eat during the next and the next and the next.. It works! :) Even though you start over every time you eat, you still get results! :)

    • Kimberley said,

      Hi Marthe. I hope that you are starting to get some clarity and creativity back to help you with your blog.
      Great idea re looking forward. It is definitely not helpful to dwell on the past and feel guilty about it. Onward and upward! :)

  4. Melena said,

    Fabulous words of wisdom x

  5. Felicity said,

    What a great post Kim…!
    So true – so many of us are kind to others, but not to ourselves, and most of the time we don’t even realise we are doing it..
    I will have to mark this in my favourites so I can always go back and have a read…

    • Kimberley said,

      Thank you Felicity! I am honoured to have a spot in your favourites list!

  6. Catherine said,

    Brilliant words there my dear Kim…

    I would only add that I tend to also remember that “In the light of eternity, will this really matter?” If you did eat the chocolate, or didn’t get the job, or had a bad hair day, etc will that make any eternal difference? More than likely not, so yes, like you said, don’t sweat the little stuff! But instead “Do now what you know how to do and do better when you know better!”

    • Kimberley said,

      Totally agree with you Catherine. I think we get so caught up in our day to day drama that it becomes hard to see what really matters sometimes. Thanks for the great ideas hun! x

  7. Vanessa said,

    Thank you so much for writing this! It’s really fantastic– I plan on sharing it :)

    • Kimberley said,

      Thanks Vanessa, I’m really glad you enjoyed it! :)

  8. Gaynor Alder said,

    Aren’t you just the most fabulous modern woman!! I would LOVE to have you write a guest post for me :) We women are always too hard on ourselves, and people like you remind us that we are fabulous, no matter what :)) X

    • Kimberley said,

      Thanks Gaynor! We are definitely much too hard on ourselves and it gets us nowhere. It’s just hard finding the courage to tell ourselves we are fabulous.
      I would be delighted to write a guest post for your (amazing) blog. Let me know what you’d like to me write about. x

  9. Fab Friday 6/25/2010 « said,

    […] People are so hard on themselves unnecessarily. Don’t hate yourself for your mistakes. Instead, try to be kind to yourself. […]

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