Setting a new goal for yourself can be thrilling, but doing the work to achieve it? There are as many downs as there are ups. Working toward a goal and changing habits is no easy task, and it is so easy to become frustrated and critical when we face setbacks. Including a routine of self-care while you work toward a goal can help you be kinder toward yourself and create a more positive journey to accomplish something.

Let’s face it: setbacks are frustrating. However, when you face them while practicing kindness toward yourself, the situation can be framed differently to understand that challenges are part of the process of growing into your true self, rather than signs of failure. You can see past the negative stories our brains have a tendency to tell and instead focus on how much you’ve managed to accomplish, even where you are today.

Treat yourself like your best friend.

If we heard a friend waxing poetic about their “failures”, surely we would interrupt them to remind them of all their wonderful accomplishments. The same should hold true for ourselves: when we begin to mentally beat ourselves up for falling short, that’s when it’s most important to practice kindness, and treat ourselves like we’d treat our best friend.

Make time for self-care practices helps to reset your mind.

If you’re having a hard time seeing past the ways in which you’ve fallen short, take a step back to do an activity that brings you joy: get a massage, swim in the ocean, or read a good book. Pamper yourself like you would a loved one. This simple act helps you to refocus away from negativity and toward the good in your life. And this positive mindset is key to achieving goals – if you practice forgiveness with yourself, you are much more likely to stick with your goals and follow through to the end than if you beat yourself up at every step.

It’s all grey.

Life isn’t black and white, and we are all simply people trying to make our way through the world. Practicing self-care is a useful way to recognize that we are all working hard and trying our best, and sometimes challenges will pop up. There’s no right or wrong way to do something – we are all on our own journeys, and each journey will look different for each person. One setback will not end your journey if you can understand the bigger picture and see that challenges are simply a part of the journey to reach your goal.

Self-care doesn’t come automatically and can be learned. Get in touch for your free chat with any and all of our therapists. We can help you learn the skills it takes to meet every challenge with positivity and reach your goals with compassion for yourself.