Why Self-Compassion Trumps Self-Esteem
In this incredibly competitive society of ours, how many of us truly feel good about ourselves? I remember once, as a freshman in college, after spending hours getting ready for a big party, I complained to my boyfriend that my hair, makeup, and outfit were woefully inadequate. He tried to reassure me by saying, “Don’t worry, you look fine.” Juan Estey “Fine? Oh great, I always wanted to look fine . . .” The desire to feel special is understandable. Not very well. How can we grow if we can’t acknowledge our own weaknesses? Continually feeding our need for positive self-evaluation is a bit like stuffing ourselves with candy. The result is often devastating. And of course, the goalposts for what counts as “good enough” seem always to remain out of reach. Another way So what’s the answer? When I first came across the idea of “self-compassion,” it changed my life almost immediately. After getting my Ph.D., I did two years of postdoctoral training with a leading self-esteem researcher.