March 2015 Tool of the Month: The Self-Compassion Break

Each month we highlight some practical resources for therapists interested in compassion. We don’t go into great depth about what we find, but encourage you to check them out if you think they’re interesting.

This month’s find:

Self-Compassion Break from Kristin Neff.

The self-compassion break exercise helps you and/or your client to develop a loving response to pain. We feel the initial sting or "ouch" of loss, rejection, fear, shame, whatever it is. Whereas or default response to the "ouch" is to try to run away from it, ignore it, or get rid of it, those are not the only options. The self-compassion break exercise presents an alternative orientation to the ouch. Rather than seeing the pain as something to fight against or get rid of, we can view it as part of our common humanity, and then offer ourselves kindness. In this way, the very things that have the potential to cause us to struggle can instead be catalysts for love.

Here is the audio recording of the self-compassion break and the script.

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