The Business Case for Self-Compassion
Many modern workplaces are demanding environments where results are rewarded but mistakes are condemned. When emotions run high and fingers are being pointed, the pressure can be overwhelming – especially if you feel you are to blame.
If you find yourself struggling in such a high-stress environment, self-compassion can help you lead a healthier, happier life. It can also make you a better leader. Read on to discover the business case for self-compassion.
Sooner or later, you’re going to make mistakes at work. Everyone does – it’s only natural as no one is infallible. The question is: what will you do when it happens?
Rather than becoming bogged down in self-doubt as you blame yourself for messing up, self-compassion can help you accept your imperfection. This is valuable in the workplace as it will enable you to get over your mistakes more quickly and focus instead on solving problems.
In this way, self-compassion can make you more efficient at navigating difficult situations and moving your team forward despite bumps in the road.
Leverage your support network
Are you frustrated because you’re struggling with obstacles at work and can’t seem to find a solution? Left unchecked, this can lead to rising stress and unproductive self-criticism.
Self-compassion offers a healthier approach, encouraging you to be kind to yourself and reminding you that you are not alone in your struggle. While no one else may be facing exactly the same problems as you, it is likely that you have peers or mentors who would be happy to discuss your challenges and brainstorm solutions.
There’s no shame in looking to others for help – in fact, by leaning on your network, you and your organisation can both come out stronger.
See clearly with mindfulness
Suffering can spark strong emotions, including grief, helplessness and resentment. In the workplace, these feelings can quickly lead to poor performance or conflict with colleagues if you don’t properly manage them.
Mindfulness is a key component of self-compassion because it helps you recognise your feelings as you are having them. Only when you are aware of what you are feeling will you be able to take active steps to better manage your emotions.
This is not just good for you: it can also translate into improved EQ, which in turn can make you a better collaborator and team leader.
Perform to your full potential
There’s a time and a place for perseverance, but at some point you need to pause and catch your breath. Pushing yourself too hard – whether physically, mentally or emotionally – can be damaging to both your well-being and your workplace performance.
Self-compassion helps you care for yourself and tend to your needs. This includes ensuring that you take sufficient time for rest and recovery when your mind and body have been pushed to the limits.
This approach is simply good business, as it’s hard to perform at your best if you’re burnt out.
Lead by example
Setting a positive example is a powerful leadership strategy, and this applies to practicing self-compassion. When you show kindness to yourself in the face of suffering and emerge stronger, it sends a clear message to your team that this is a productive way to handle adversity.
Being a positive role model in this way and giving your team space for self-compassion will help them develop resilience. And by strengthening your people, you will ultimately strengthen your organisation.
Self-compassion can boost your physical, mental and emotional well-being, making you more productive in the workplace and more effective as a leader. As these benefits spill over throughout your organisation, the business case for self-compassion is clear.
Become a better leader
Do you lead a team or an organisation? Discover how the application of self-compassion can help you become a better leader. Join us on 14 February for our Introduction to MSC for Leaders event, or sign up for our 8-week MSC for Leaders course. Spaces are limited, so book your spot now!