Parenting Blog

The official blog for Ann Douglas, parenting book author and weekend parenting columnist for CBC Radio. Ann is the creator of The Mother of All Books series and the author of Parenting Through the Storm. Her most recent book, Happy Parents, Happy Kids, was published by HarperCollins Canada in February 2019.

Self-Compassion is the Ultimate Parenting Guilt Eraser

Parenting guilt eraser self compassion.jpg

Here’s that parenting guilt eraser you’ve been looking for.

It’s called “self compassion” and it makes parenting so much easier and less stressful.

Learning about self-compassion has been life changing for me, both as a parent and as a person.

  • It has encouraged me to embrace my own glorious imperfection.

  • It has helped me to see myself as a work-in-progress and to recognize the hard work of being human as an amazing opportunity for personal discovery and growth.

  • It has helped me to recognize that I don’t have to be perfect and neither do my kids. We can be gloriously imperfect together.

And that’s why I write and speak about self-compassion so passionately and so often: because self-compassion is the ultimate guilt eraser.

Eager to start applying the principles of self-compassion to your own life? Here’s a simple way to get started. Think about what you would say to a friend who was having a really hard time (what you would say to support and encourage that friend) and then say those very same kind and reassuring words to yourself. Perhaps you might find yourself telling your friend something like this: “You’re doing the best that you can in a really difficult situation.” (Because sometimes life – and parenting – can be really hard.)

Want to know more? My most recent book, Happy Parents, Happy Kids, takes a deep dive into all things self-compassion. I also highly recommend Kristen Neff’s book Self-Compassion – the book that got me thinking about self-compassion in the first place.

If you have a story to share about how you’ve been working at practicing self-compassion in your own life and/or encouraging other people (maybe your kids?) to do the same, I’d love to hear it. Hopefully, by sharing your story, you'll encourage other people to be a little kinder to themselves, too -- which may help to send out ripples of kindness into our world.