“Your relationship with yourself sets the tone for every other relationship you have.”
To build a good relationship with yourself, you have to use empathy toward yourself. That’s it. It is that simple. You just have to figure out what giving empathy toward yourself is and how to use it to promote personal growth and understand who you are.
Victor was in a similar situation. Since he was a child, he had a natural skill with numbers. They were so easy for him that he even helped his classmates understand challenging concepts.
As he grew up, he saw that people tend to find maths boring. The first time he learned about those feelings he couldn’t believe it. He couldn’t understand why people don’t see math as fun.
That might be something most people forget about. Yet, it was not Victor’s case. He grew more interested in knowing why he loves math while others find it boring. His journey to meet empathy for himself had started.
Victor meets self-empathy to build a good relationship with himself
As you may expect, the world of numbers is so vast that took most of Victor’s free time. He was in a loop: his love for numbers kept him away from people which, in turn, made it difficult for him to understand people having different tastes than his.
He discovered that you need a natural inclination to learn things like math. Yet, he also learned that some people might enjoy learning math if only they had had guidance to deal with overwhelming feelings.
That became a life mission: to help people walk through math and have fun with it. After some trial and error, he comprehended that teaching requires building a good relationship with students.
He was committed, so he started to study the topic. He kept researching and learning until he read about empathy. Understanding that concept and applying it to his teaching process, he got incredible results to the point he had to create a business out of it which became his project life.
Victor is now in the twilight of his young adulthood. His business is going well, yet something is holding him back from taking the next step. What can it be? This is a hard situation for him as teaching is the source of his fulfillment, his ikigai. This is how he solved it.
Empathy toward others or empathy toward self?
No matter what Victor does, he can’t find a reason why he can’t reconnect with the passion of his young days. In the middle of his thoughts, a funny idea crossed his mind. What if he was a teacher trying to teach himself about the reason behind his apathy?
After the question, another thought answers If that’s the case, use empathy. When he tried to do such a thing, asked To whom am I going to be empathetic? He can do that with a future or fantasized “I” and that’s how he started to build a good relationship with himself.
However, his issue is a pressing one. That’s why he decides to use empathy for his past self. After several sessions, Victor uncovers his fears, see them in the face, and decides to build a plan for what’s to come.
Without knowing, Victor created a good relationship with himself and that helped him to solve the issues he had.
Victor’s steps to unleash the power of empathy toward himself
His natural inclination to teach led him to understand empathy is significant to share knowledge with other people. That resulted in a lot of success for him. He could take advantage of a similar opportunity when he applied empathy to himself.
In short, his process was like this:
- Understand and apply empathy to relationships.
- Apply empathy for himself to comprehend internal blocks.
- Make a plan to solve his issue.
Psychology Today defines empathy as:
… the ability to recognize, understand, and share the thoughts and feelings of another person, animal, or fictional character. Developing empathy is crucial for establishing relationships and behaving compassionately. It involves experiencing another person’s point of view, rather than just one’s own and enables prosocial or helping behaviors that come from within, rather than being forced.
Victor could do that for others, but not for himself. By using empathy toward himself, he could connect again with the original fire that feed his previous results, that is, he could build a good relationship with himself. He simply had a conversation between the actual Victor and the young Victor.
The results were amazing. Victor can now understand and listen to his fears without letting them control him. He also stopped avoiding his feelings and thoughts. Instead, gave them space to express themselves without judging, with self-compassion.
In addition, his inner critic transformed from being destructive to constructive. He can now have a healthy conversation with his self-criticism and uses it as an opportunity to reach excellence.
We all want to build a good relationship, especially with ourselves. While focusing on the outside is easy, driving that look to our inner world is quite challenging. However, Victor could do that because the challenge ahead required that from him.
He then used what he knew about empathy and spontaneously applied it to himself. This action was critical to meeting the next level of his life’s purpose: sharing his knowledge.
If you are in a similar situation and want assistance with your challenges, please contact me or arrange a complimentary call to discuss things further.