Increasing Self-Compassion

By Lorin Jackson and Lucy Gleysteen

From PHN Issue 45, Winter 2021

Many people are not fully aware of the ways in which their negative thoughts impact them throughout their day and in their lives. One of the reasons we experience negative thoughts are our past (or current) experiences with trauma. In other words, trauma can impact the way that we see and understand ourselves.

Some people who have experienced trauma, oppression, and/or abuse at a young age develop what is called a “negative internal voice.” This voice (or these internal “tapes”) might reveal themselves in the form of feelings of worthlessness, self-hatred, or hopelessness. Examples of negative thoughts can include recurring thoughts like, “I’m stupid,” “I’m a horrible person,” or, “No one will ever want to be close to me.”

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