How do you be kind to yourself?

Hi all fellow grievers!!!
I really would like some advice on how to be kind to myself???
I honestly don’t know the answer to this seemingly simple question!!!
I have also been informed that I am very hard on myself…I’d love to know what this actually means and how to rectify same?
I really would appreciate some opinions??

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Hi Patrick, it’s a good question and I fully understand why you are asking it. I think we are excellent at putting on a brave face and telling the world we are fine when really we are far from being fine. We don’t give in and that is something we need to do when grieving. We need to let out ore emotions and not bottle then up. Hard for many of us. Fine on our own but when we really need to let go, sometimes we need someone to hear. We push our selves, when we should stop. It’s the same for many of us.
Take time, relax and just don’t do anything. Tell someone how you are really feeling, a friend or counsellor. Spoil yourself, buy something you will enjoy but most of all let your sadness out.
Well that’s my lecture over with for the day and sorry I don’t practice what I preach. Look after yourself, now that is something you really must do. S xxx


Hi Patrick, so sorry for your loss, my wife passed away recently and it has affected me in so many different ways, I have emotions that are entirely new to me.
I talk to myself in my head and tell myself that these feelings will pass in time, so I try not to rush anything. I get anxious going out now and tell myself this is not abnormal, all part of the pain I feel. Previously I would gee myself up thinking “come on Joe you got this,” now I think well it’s not that important so I do it when or if I am able to. I try not to put any kind of pressure on myself, not to blame myself if something isn’t done. If I can’t face something I will try not to feel guilty or bad about myself, if I want to go to bed at 8 I will. Obviously we all differ on how we cope but I think that giving yourselves options and taking the easy one isn’t a bad thing if it can help put less pressure on yourself. I am carrying a ball of hurt inside and anything I can do that will ease this I will. I usually never talk about myself to others but now have chats with people and allow myself not to feel guilty for offloading, it seems selfish to me, but how I currently am is a completely different person to two months ago. I don’t ramble on for hours but the odd chat here in there is theraputic and I can now talk about my wife without breaking down in tears every time.
Sorry I have gone off topic, I guess it is don’t feel critical about anything you currently do and if you make mistakes (like I do constantly) forgive yourself.
Hope you find some peace
Joe x


Patrick, I had a quick look at your profile. You’re very recently bereaved. I’m so sorry you’ve lost your Dad. I lost my Mum over two years ago.

I remember reading somewhere, that we should treat ourselves as if we are our best friend.

Are you very hard on yourself? Or are you just naturally, due to loss going through a hard time? Does the person who said you are ‘very hard on yourself’ fully understand what you are going through? Have they experienced grief.
In the early days, loss is a lot to try and process in the mind. We try and make sense of it. (Well, I tried to make sense of it all. )

Whether, the person who made the comment is right or not. Being kind to yourself is a sensible route.
Do what feels right for you. To me, self care was going to bed earlier to allow for broken sleep and eating well. I didn’t over-push myself.
Being kind to yourself = self care.

Self care, could be saying no or yes to an invite.

Self care, could be eventually going back to doing something you used to enjoy. For me, it would probably be swimming.
Self care could be, as simple as going to the beach with a small picnic.
Be kind to yourself.

Thanks for your kind words :blush:

Thanks Joe!!!

You sound like a very sensible chap @joeb40.

I would also say, one person’s “offloading” is another person’s “sharing”.

I wonder @patrick1, if people say this to you because you perhaps dismiss your sadness when talking about your loss?
Are you a stoical, stiff upper lip type of person?

I imagine you would gain some insight into what people mean by these remarks if you just asked them “what makes you say that?”

Their answers would tell you how you are perceived.

More importantly than their (and my!) thoughts and opinions, are your own.
Do you feel you are hard on yourself?
If so, why?
Is it detrimental to you or is it your coping strategy that helps you function?

Sometimes in life, we all have to give ourselves a good talking to!


I’m naturally hard on myself !!!

I think we can all be very hard on ourselves.

Unfortunately I don’t really know what it means…I am an incredibly sensitive person and really wear my heart on my sleeve I’m incredibly fearful of the future I’m very confused too, daddy was my life apart from being my dad, looking after him was my job too now everything is gone and I fear that the worst is yet to come

Especially when you’re a failed perfectionist!!!

Actually, I lost my mum 24 years ago :cry: and that was hard but absolutely nothing like this I am older of course and I looked after dad for 12 years, 24/7 …
He often told me how good I was to which I always replied" you reap what you sew" I’m in bits !!

Just rereading your message and I probably think that I should be better!! I’m so confused and every day throws up something new…this is by far the worst experience of my life

@patrick1: It’s very early days yet, Patrick.
I always think bereavement is a double whammy for carers.
In one fell swoop, you’ve lost your nearest and dearest and also your sense of purpose in life.

I prefer not to think too much about “the future” just now - it’s too scary.
I’m just concentrating on the here and now, for the moment.

I was bereaved in March too so can well relate to your feelings of confusion and having to deal with things you’ve never had to deal with before in your life.

The fact that we’re up, dressed and have clean teeth is a massive achievement methinks!


The fear cripples me!! I was always an anxious individual another thing that I’ve noticed is my apathy…I’m just not interested in a lot these days

It’s all bleak isn’t it, I really feel for you. I spoke to a counseller Tuesday who said these type of feelings are to be expected, not that it makes them any easier. It is all difficult to comprehend and our lifes are totally alien to how we once were. I have tried going back to work wbut just want to be at home and at home I just feel negative thoughts. I hope and believe in time we can all find some kind of life where the pain is less and the anxiety and confusion settles. I also think my wife would want the best for me which helps me when I dwell on bad things.
Sending love and I hope you can find some solace at some stage, such a personal thing that we will probably find at different stages of our grief.
Joe x


You’re a good man Joe!!!

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Hi Patrick. I feel sad for your recent loss. Grief is a strange and hard thing to cope with and we all do it in our own way.
We beat ourselves up emotionally for many reasons, most of them we maybe unable to understand why.

I used to beat myself up in this way emotionally , and never acknowledge my successes and instead emotionally deny the good things i had done
but after many friends have told me that i should acknowledge and be proud of my achievements and talk about them .
Perhaps you could consider doing this , and be proud of the good things you have done for others?
I hope this helps you in some way. Mr chipps the poet ??

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Hi there it’s a question that’s always eluded me. I guess when I was younger I’m 56 years old now I was kind to myself without even knowing I was doing it but as I got older I forget to be kind to myself. I suppose life gets in the way and many years later I’m not aware I’m being unkind to myself. Over 5 years ago I lost mg mum I’m so consumed with my own grief I am not sure how kind to myself. I am hurting so much it is tearing me apart.
I guess kindness to one’s self is how someone chooses to be. I can’t choose the luxury of being kind to myself until I feel I am ready. I probably will never be ready.

Self care.& being kind to yourself… getting out of bed, showering & having breakfast is self care, doing the dishes after letting them pile up because why not, is self care, meeting a friend for coffee, making yourself a cuppa is self care & being kind to yourself, etc, etc. But getting through another day without the person who is no longer here is so so painful, the weight of grief is like a rock on your chest & you think it’ll be like this always, my beloved Keith died nearly a year ago, I miss him every day, I went to the hairdressers last week out of necessity , self care, call it what you like but no one here to say how nice (or not) it looked, to me self care is about getting through another day