Slowing down when things are speeding up around you can incite internal conflict.
You may have the drive to start everything over in the new year.
There are opportunities and pressures to begin new diets, workout routines, sleep patterns, work dynamics, and relationships.
Sometimes, the urgency of change can cause stress and increase negative thinking.
Read More: “The Secret To Self Care”
While you get bombarded with the new, there may be ways to appreciate the old by showing loving gentleness toward yourself.
You may have difficulty finding love toward yourself at first, and you can develop a practice of self-love at any time.
A healthy habit can start today if you allow yourself to change.
It can be as simple as the way you apply lotion to your body each morning.
Rather than rushing through the process, you can slow down.
Think about how the lotion is nourishing your skin and speak kindly to yourself through positive self-talk.
Fast results are tempting, and they are not reality. If you don’t succeed the first time or at all, go gentle with yourself anyway.
Timing is different for everyone, and the more you practice your responses toward yourself, the more you can regulate your emotions and develop self-love.
Have compassion for yourself, which can encourage kindness for you and others.
Gentleness is an approach you can use in every facet of your life. Often, the difference between reactivity and a response is one breath.
Getting different results may require a few changes in your daily routine, and you don’t have to rush through actions to be successful, whatever that means to you.
You may have mixed emotions with slowing down and practicing self love or self care. That’s okay.
You don’t have to minimize your experience or become toxically positive to be a positive person in the coming year.
Your wellness journey may not lead directly to happiness or even stay there. It’s still worth being gentle toward yourself.
Here are a few ways you can be gentle with yourself in the new year:
- Increase nourishing food intake, feeding all parts of yourself (inner family system)
Read More: “5 Ways To Become Your Own Loving Parent”
- Consider movement like walking, yoga, or a short dance party inside your home
- Call a friend (an 8-minute phone call can change your life)
- Shift your self-talk (Hey, don’t talk to my friend like that)
- Be kind if your sleep goes long or short
- Start meditation and mindfulness
You don’t have to be perfect to start something new.
It can be challenging to think you will fail, and yet, it will happen all of the time.
It is unfair to yourself to think that this would never occur. If you do fail or don’t do as well as you intended, you have options.
You can start again, try something new, or problem solve to a result that works for you.
These strategies can help you to make shifts in your life.
You will make mistakes, do things imperfectly, and screw up sometimes.
It’s okay. You are in good company.
When becoming gentle with yourself is overwhelming, there are therapists who are available to help.
If you don’t know what it is like to go easy on yourself, you may need support to help you try a new habit or reprogram your mind.
There are many types of therapy available, including trauma-informed therapy. You can work with an EMDR therapist, relationship therapist, ADHD therapist, and a substance abuse therapist.
Though this is not an exhaustive list, it can be a helpful place to start. You are worth the effort. Wellness looks different for everyone.
Written by: Randi Thackeray, MA
Clinically Reviewed and Edited by: Julie Reichenberger, MA, LPC, ACS, ACC