Self-Compassion Deficiency Disorder: We All Suffer From It

Have you ever said to yourself:

  • How could I be so stupid, to have done that?
  • How could I not see the red flags (about that person)?
  • Why did I not listen to my gut feelings?
  • I am the worst mom/dad/person ever.
  • I am so incompetent.
  • I hate myself for… (fill in the blanks).
  • I am so stupid.

I know you did because we all say these things to ourselves, especially when we make a decision that we regret later. These kinds of statements show one thing: lack of self-compassion. This lack of compassion for oneself is not conscious, and is not intentional. It’s just how it is; it’s how the brain works on auto-pilot (unquestioned).

Unless a person does real work in therapy to connect to all parts of Self, he/she may even take pride in being “tough on myself” for motivation to do better in the future (which never works).

Dr. Gabor Mate, M.D., in his book, In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts, writes:

Being cut off from our own natural self-compassion is one of the greatest impairments we can suffer. Along with our ability to feel our own pain go our best hopes for healing, dignity and love. What seems nonadaptive and self-harming in the present was, at some point in our lives, an adaptation to help us endure what we then had to go through. If people are addicted to self-soothing behaviours, it’s only because in their formative years they did not receive the soothing they needed. Such understanding helps delete toxic self-judgment on the past and supports responsibility for the now. Hence the need for compassionate self-inquiry.

This lack of self-compassion shows up in the parent-child relationship in the form of:

  • yelling
  • anger/raging
  • unreasonable reactions/punishments
  • harsh judgements of the Child
  • fear of the future
  • shame/regret
  • unreasonable expectations placed on the Child
  • lack of follow-through
  • lack of limit-setting when most needed
  • inability to listen and connection.

Things you can do today to get in touch with Self-Compassion, and become a more Present Parent:

  • download the BE WELL WORKBOOK 2024 (free) from the Neuromindfulness Institute (click here)
  • check out Dr. Kristin Neff’s work and free resources on her website;
  • read No Bad Parts, book by Richard Schwartz, PhD;
  • join my conscious parenting program, or work with me in 1:1 sessions. Book a free call with me today; link below.

GRATITUDE NOTE: I am very grateful to my colleague, Lori, from the Compassionate Inquiry for Professionals program, for our work together throughout the year of 2023.  Lori and I came up with this “diagnosis” of ‘Self-Compassion Deficiency Disorder’ in a recent practice session when my inner critic part was louder than a megaphone, and we made space for it with compassion and understanding. Thank you, Lori, for your wisdom and beauty ❤️.

Visited 8 times, 1 visit(s) today