Imperfectly Sober: Embracing Self-Compassion to Navigate Recovery

[00:00:00] Sonia: Hi, we're Kathleen and Sonia and you're listening to Sisters in Sobriety. Thanks for being here. I'm Sonia and I'm with my sister in sobriety, actually my sister in law Kathleen. How are you doing today, Kathleen?

[00:00:11] Kathleen: I'm okay. I think we're both sort of struggling with, being a bit run down. You've had like a mold exposure and

[00:00:19] Sonia: a part broke in my freezer and I was in Toronto, my freezer in Pennsylvania, and so it was closed for a month and the part came back in and they put it in yesterday, but when we opened up the freezer, it had mold in it and now I'm cleaning out the mold, but I'm pretty sure I'm having an allergic reaction to it.

[00:00:37] Kathleen: mean you're allergic to a lot of things so I've seen you in full allergic reaction mode so I am not surprised that you might be allergic to mold.

[00:00:49] Sonia: Yeah, I feel like when I get a little itchy, like I have a little itch in the corner of my eye. Look, I have an itch on my nose right now. Yeah, it's a bad sign.

[00:00:56] Kathleen: And I'm struggling with a bit of a cough. I'm a bit under the [00:01:00] weather and, but I'm, yes, we have a snow day here today. my daughter still has not gone back to school after the Christmas break and it's time now.

[00:01:11] Sonia: We had our first snow in 700 days here, in

[00:01:14] over

[00:01:14] Kathleen: What?

[00:01:15] Sonia: days. We haven't had over an inch of snow in over 700 days.

[00:01:21] Kathleen: Wow. Wow. You know, it was something I haven't told you. Is I have received three messages from people wanting us to do a silent and not silent retreat

[00:01:33] Sonia: Like a co retreat? Like a silent part and a not silent part?

[00:01:37] Kathleen: yes. And one of, one of the people who reached out to me was like, Sonia can do the chatty part and you can do the silent part. And I was like, yeah, that's okay.

[00:01:46] So I feel like this needs to be planned. I think you should check with your Everbloom group and see do people want to do this? yeah.

[00:01:53] Sonia: what if we

[00:01:54] what

[00:01:54] Kathleen: on the spot every time about this

[00:01:57] Sonia: I think we should do a virtual Remember you did that virtual [00:02:00] silent retreat?

[00:02:01] Kathleen: I oh, oh, yeah, I attended it. I attended a virtual that was actually really good. That was really good. Yeah

[00:02:07] Sonia: mean, I, I would consider it, but you know, it's funny. So I get messages too. And the message is always like, your sister in law is something.

[00:02:15] Yeah. As in like, you're really good at this.

[00:02:18] And I was like, Oh, she went to school for acting. So it makes sense. And

[00:02:22] Kathleen: Oh my gosh

[00:02:23] Sonia: But people find you fascinating. So maybe you should be talking and I should be silent. That's what

[00:02:31] Kathleen: can never be silent

[00:02:33] Sonia: I should be.

[00:02:35] Kathleen: You will never be silent sonia

[00:02:37] Sonia: you know what I'm going to do with that, that remark, I'm going to have some self compassion. And that is what we're talking about

[00:02:43] Kathleen: Good segue good

[00:02:45] Sonia: Right? Yeah. I'm going to have some compassion for myself and my chattiness. so yeah, self compassion, really interesting idea because I don't fully understand it.

[00:02:56] Right? And so I understand compassion and empathy. [00:03:00] for other people. I can recognize suffering in other people and want to help, but apparently compassion also combines a practical element of wanting to improve someone's situation. So it's a combination of empathy and action. And so how do we have that for ourselves?

[00:03:20] Kathleen: Mm hmm. Mm hmm. Well, so it's interesting because self compassion, it's such an important aspect of sobriety, and it's also such an important aspect of, of living, actually. And so what I find, even in my practice, that most people don't know what self compassion is, and they actually have a really hard time practicing it.

[00:03:45] So Self compassion is about treating ourselves with the same kindness, concern and support that we would offer a good friend, for example, who is suffering. And, it is also about recognizing our humanity. [00:04:00] So, we are human. We are going to make mistakes, and that is a normal part of being human. And, in sobriety, we confront our vulnerabilities and challenges and being compassionate towards ourselves.

[00:04:12] isn't just helpful, it is essential. It is essential.

[00:04:16] Sonia: Yeah, I totally agree. I'm learning that.

[00:04:19] Kathleen: So how would you define self compassion?

[00:04:22] Sonia: Yeah, for me, it's really rooted in, understanding and accepting your own imperfections and struggles and not seeing things as failures. And it's funny, we had this conversation last night in my Everbloom group about mistakes and how I have trouble using the word mistake. but really seeing things as stepping stones or a sign to change direction.

[00:04:46] I think that it's about having a nurturing attitude towards yourself, and a big thing that I've been working on is not self judgment, but self kindness. So, decreasing that [00:05:00] criticism you have, and accepting that all your feelings are valid. And that's where mindfulness comes in, and you can talk about that a little bit later, right?

[00:05:09] How would you define self compassion?

[00:05:11] Kathleen: So I agree with that definition for sure, and then I really just want to add again that focus on humanity, that piece of humanity of self compassion. So like we are all human, we all make mistakes, big and small, none of us are perfect. So how can we reflect the same care and compassion that we would on someone else to ourselves?

[00:05:34] Sonia, you have made mistakes. I have made mistakes. Let's just say in our relationship, we have made mistakes. You are such a forgiving person, like you, you see me for my humanity. So you know I'm human, you know I'm flawed, and you love me anyway.

[00:05:53] And I feel the same about you. I know you're human, I know you're flawed, I love you anyway.

[00:05:59] Then [00:06:00] when we turn that to ourselves, can we say the same things about ourselves? It's taken me a really long time to get to this place, and I know it's a struggle still, and I know for you too, but that's, that's what it is. It's like, you can see the humanness, and then accept yourself for who you are. It doesn't mean that you, Are just like, oh, well, I'm going to continue to make all these mistakes and be an asshole in my life.

[00:06:25] it's not like that. It's that, oh, okay. I made a mistake. How am I going to fix it? And then also not to beat yourself up over it.

[00:06:35] Sonia: Yeah. Yeah. I don't have a problem saying the word mistake in terms of something I've done to somebody else. I think what I have a hard time with mistake is something in my own life, calling it a mistake. were our marriages mistakes?

[00:06:49] Kathleen: No, but I mean, so, so here's, I say a lot to my clients, like it's only a failure if you learned nothing from

[00:06:57] Sonia: Yes.

[00:06:58] Kathleen: So, and I, I [00:07:00] believe that to be true. So, were our marriages failures? Well, we're not married, I guess, like technically, like we're no longer married, but man, I learned so much from my marriage, right?

[00:07:11] So I learned so much from it. And yeah, like I have made something that I would call mistakes, I make them, but did I learn from it? And I think that's the key piece. So you can't really make a mistake if you learn from it in a sense, right? Like you still are getting something from it in the sense that I'm learning, okay, I'm not going to do that again.

[00:07:31] That was not the right thing to do.

[00:07:33] Sonia: Yeah. Or even being grateful for it, right? Yeah.

[00:07:35] Kathleen: Yeah. Yeah. Oh, for

[00:07:37] Sonia: Or recognizing, what you got out of it. I was talking to people yesterday about mistakes, and I'm like, well, could my sister in law say their marriages were mistakes when they got these amazing kids out of them?

[00:07:47] Right? Like, I would never say your marriages were mistakes because I have three nieces, right? And so,

[00:07:54] Kathleen: Yeah, no, no. I would, I actually, I don't know if I've ever called my marriage, maybe in the throes of it, [00:08:00] a mistake of the divorce, but, no, I, I just learned so much from my marriage, as hard as it was. I learned even more, actually, from my divorce.

[00:08:09] Sonia: mean, I think there was some poor decision making.

[00:08:12] Kathleen: Oh, yeah.

[00:08:13] Sonia: I think that we both like, yeah, ignored some red flags. there was definitely some poor decision making But yeah mistake slash failure. I don't know. I don't know i'm on the fence about using those words.

[00:08:26] Kathleen: Can you imagine if I hadn't gone married, I wouldn't know you. We wouldn't

[00:08:28] be here right

[00:08:29] now. Like it's not just about the nieces. It's like also us

[00:08:32] too. I wouldn't know you. Yeah. Yeah. So, so what can implementing self compassion look like for our listeners?

[00:08:41] Sonia: Yeah, it takes a real shift in your mindset and reflecting on what are those learned behaviors you've internalized. So you can ask yourself a bunch of questions. How do you talk to yourself? What types of things are you saying to yourself throughout the day or in response to difficult situations?

[00:08:59] [00:09:00] Do you automatically blame yourself for things? So there's a lot of ways to determine like where your self compassion level is and then go. from there. What do you think? What do you think implementing self care can look like for listeners?

[00:09:13] Kathleen: Yeah, well, self compassion is about how you, you talk to yourself. And I also think it's about forgiveness and understanding. So I find that, so many of my friends, clients are really hard on themselves in one way or another.there's just like beating themselves up internally again and again.

[00:09:33] And To move forward and be a healthy person, that involves self compassion. And if we dwell on our imperfections, then how can we ever try? if we stayed in our self loathing, let's say, about our marriage, orbeating ourselves up about our marriage, well, we would never date again.

[00:09:52] We would never try again. Because why would we?

[00:09:55] If it's like, oh, well, that happened, I'm a horrible person, I was a bad wife, [00:10:00] or whatever, whatever the story is, what it would be, then why would we ever try again?

[00:10:04] Sonia: Yeah. That's so true.

[00:10:06] Kathleen: Mm hmm. What has self compassion meant for you?

[00:10:10] Sonia: I would say lately, I try to figure out what, what is the difference between self pity and self compassion. And so sometimes I think, feeling all the feels in sobriety can look like self pity, for sure. Like crying, we've both been crying on the kitchen floor. because our husbands may or may not have cheated on us.

[00:10:30] Um, and,

[00:10:32] Kathleen: I, it's funny, I can laugh about it now. I'm like, oh, they may or may not have cheated on us.

[00:10:38] Sonia: Mine did.

[00:10:39] Kathleen: Mine's questionable.

[00:10:41] Sonia: there's a timeline there that is very hard to grasp with yours.

[00:10:45] Kathleen: Yes. Very sketchy timeline in mine. Yes.

[00:10:52] Sonia: I want to like just drink myself into oblivion. But I think self compassion for me is the difference between saying, wipe your [00:11:00] tears, get up and move on and saying, it's okay to feel this. And so I was always taught to suck it up and move on. And I think self compassion for me is Letting myself sit on the floor of the kitchen.

[00:11:13] and there's a point, right? There's like a, a turning point where it, it turns from self compassion to self pity. especially if I'm giving myself excuses, for example, to drink. Like, my husband cheated on me. I deserve to drink.

[00:11:23] Everybody drinks when they're having relationship problems. Um, but yeah, I think it's really important for me to stop criticizing myself, and I didn't really even notice how significant that was in my life until I started going to therapy, and I could hear what I was saying about it. So, Situations in my life I was taking the blame for everything.

[00:11:49] It was just even the way I was like phrasing things Was what did I do for this to happen like I caused everything and but on a [00:12:00] side note you know about my, wallet. So there's like, yeah, it was either stolen, dropped or misplaced. And I didn't look to put the blame on anything immediately.

[00:12:09] So I reversed my steps. I checked the post office and when I couldn't find it, I just moved on and reordered the cards. but I could hear, and you know, my ex. Being like you're so disorganized. You're always distracted. You leave things lying around and I I could hear it I could hear it creeping and being like this is your fault.

[00:12:30] This is your fault But in reality, first of all, we don't know where it went, but I realized whether it was stolen or I misplaced it, I don't know. But placing blame wasn't gonna solve it. And let's be honest, in 20 years of drinking, I never lost my wallet.

[00:12:42] So we don't know what happened to it.

[00:12:45] Kathleen: We don't know. So, good moment. I think, and it was interesting, because when I was like, Are you okay? And you were like, I'm dealing with it. I'm good. And you were like, I, what did you say? You said something in a text message, like, I'm not, I'm really trying not to [00:13:00] freak out about it. So, I was like, I just moved on.

[00:13:02] I was like, okay, let's move on to something else.

[00:13:04] Sonia: you know, I looked at it like this like it happened on a Friday when I didn't have a ton of things on my schedule after um, I had the time to reorder the cards and I really was like This is not that big a deal. Like I really, really thought that and you know what?

[00:13:21] Good opportunity to get a new wallet. I went to the bank. They made me a new debit card in a couple of minutes. I learned how to get gas with my Apple watch.

[00:13:31] Kathleen: Oh, I don't even know how to do that yet.

[00:13:33] Sonia: Yes, that that's a learning experience that you just take your apple watch and put it up to the pump and you can get gas I

[00:13:46] Kathleen: so excited. I just actually started using my Apple phone wallet and I, I feel like I'm so technologically savvy. Now I'm going to just bring it right to the watch.

[00:13:58] Sonia: do it but yeah I think it [00:14:00] was so I know it sounds like such a small thing but like even waking up the next morning and realizing that What that is ingrained in me, I know my ex would have been flip, we all know, he would have been flipping out, right? He would have been flipping out, there would have been yelling, there would have been like, this is your fault, I can't believe you let this happen.

[00:14:22] And so for me to be able to not do that and to say, This is okay. It was like a really big thing for me. I know. What about you? What made you realize that you needed to use self compassion as one of your sobriety tools and what changed after?

[00:14:41] Kathleen: Well, I have always put a lot of pressure on myself to achieve and be the best at what I do. and it's compulsive at times and it's, it's been that way since I was a teenager. I, I think I was so scared to fail and make mistakes and disappoint people. You know, when I was growing up, I didn't want to [00:15:00] disappoint my parents and I didn't want to disappoint any authority figure like teachers, anyone.

[00:15:05] but like everyone, I make mistakes. And. I made mistakes in my marriage, very much so. I made mistakes when I got sober, and I definitely made mistakes when I was using drugs fairly heavily. I wasn't a great friend. Um, I hurt people that I loved in my life and I still do sometimes, but the change for me came when I could acknowledge that I'm human and I'm not perfect.

[00:15:32] And it came when I realized that yes, I do make mistakes, but I can take responsibility for them. I can take, I can be accountable and seek forgiveness, but also ultimately. Forgive myself, and I still struggle, I still struggle with this for sure, and you know, when your brother and I divorced, there was a bit of drama involved in our separation, as you know, and I had to work really hard to see [00:16:00] and understand where I was to blame and where I wasn't, because there was a point that I was accepting a lot I was being blamed and and I was internalizing it and I was being like, yes, this is my mistake.

[00:16:14] This is my fault. And, you know, I really had to work hard to see like, what did I own and what did someone else own? And to understand that, I am flawed and I, did things that I did at the time because I thought it was right and those thoughts still creep in now and then and I sometimes still question myself, but then I think to myself, okay, if my daughter made a mistake, which she does, how do I show her compassion?

[00:16:43] How do I help her grow instead of, saying things that she's just going to internally punish herself more.

[00:16:50] Sonia: Yeah. I feel like that is the tough part about separating out what is your responsibility and what isn't. And [00:17:00] I struggle with that too. I'm all or nothing when it comes to blame. And so I think that's really important, especially in Relationships, right? That no one person is to blame.

[00:17:14] Even in my situation where, let's be honest, seems black and white, you know what I'm saying? But even in my situation, I have some blame in marriage ending, right?

[00:17:25] Kathleen: Yeah. Yeah, let's say responsibility

[00:17:28] Sonia: Let's say responsibility.

[00:17:30] Kathleen: Like instead because blame I don't know it's such a negative like blame like you have some blame I think what it is, you know, and I'm a couples relationship therapist, right? So i'm always asking Okay, what can you take accountability for like I see couples and it just drives me nuts inside I don't say this obviously but You know that there's like people that just blame blame blame everything is the other person This

[00:17:54] is a hundred percent this other person and it's like what are you accountable for?

[00:17:58] Sonia: yes, yeah, [00:18:00] and that can be maddening, especially for the other person, because at some point, do you just take the blame and say, okay, it's all me, which was sort of how I was in my marriage. if something went wrong, it was all me. Like if

[00:18:13] a, if literally, if this guy dropped a mug of coffee, I took responsibility.

[00:18:21] I somehow I made it my fault. Yeah.

[00:18:24] Kathleen: Yeah, well, there's there's certain situations where It could be a hundred percent someone's accountability and then there's other listen, I I don't believe I don't believe relationships are 50 50 Actually, I believe they vacillate between like sometimes it's 70. Sometimes it's 30 Sometimes it's I don't think marriages end and it's like 100 one person I think there still could be like 10 20 another person in that a relationship is two people.

[00:18:51] Anyway, we're very much like digressing

[00:18:55] Sonia: but

[00:18:55] actually, no, I do want to hear a little bit more. I, I've seen you make a lot [00:19:00] of changes in how you show yourselfcompassion in your relationships with

[00:19:05] Kathleen: Yeah. Mm hmm.

[00:19:07] Sonia: Can you tell us a little bit more?

[00:19:10] Kathleen: So I think. Self compassion can be really liberating, and it also helps you set boundaries. So, for example, I work fairly hard now. I'm very conscious of it, of being compassionate to myself and seeing my own humanity. So when people don't treat me with the same compassion, I can really see it.

[00:19:31] So before, I might have let myself be treated poorly. And, but now, if someone doesn't treat me with compassion, it's a hard no for me, because I, I think self compassion also teaches us how we want to be treated. And it creates boundaries for us.


[00:19:50] Sonia: so yeah, I like how you're talking about how we need to teach people to treat us with compassion But what is a hard no mean to you and how do [00:20:00] you enforce that boundary?

[00:20:02] Kathleen: So I think hard no's, they're different and they're unique for every person. So, for me, I try to, I always treat people with compassion and I also, I really do treat people, I believe, as I would want to be treated. Yeah, I slip up sometimes, for sure, but I do my best to treat others that way.

[00:20:22] And I'm very accepting of people and accepting of flaws. So if someone is not accepting of me or not accepting of my flaws and can't show me compassion. It's like Do I want that kind of person in my life? You know, do I want that kind of and i'll give an example of my current relationship He's gonna be so excited that I gave him a positive shout out right nowbut I have I think we're really good him and I are really good at

[00:20:54] So I have come to him and said, like, I've made a mistake, I did this, I made a [00:21:00] mistake, I regret how I reacted to something, and I'm really sorry, and this is how I'm going to fix it, or what would make it better for you. And he shows me the same compassion. he's not like, You idiot, you shouldn't have done that or blah, blah, blah, he's like, thank you for recognizing that and so he again shows me you're human.

[00:21:22] We make mistakes. It's natural that you would respond this way. so we have that sort of relationship and, and, you know, to be honest, I wasn't like that in my marriage. So I wasn't, I've grown a lot in that way. if he were to come to me and not treat me with compassion, if he were to come to me and be like, yeah, you are an idiot, like you shouldn't have done that, blah, blah, blah, I would be like, no, that's,

[00:21:46] I don't want someone treating me that way.

[00:21:48] Sonia: I know you are very mindful

[00:21:50] what what role do you think mindfulness plays in self compassion

[00:21:55] Kathleen: Well, yes, as you know, I strive to have a very mindful life, [00:22:00] meaning that I try to be in the present moment as much as I can. Though I'm not always successful, but when we are, when we have present moment awareness, we're able to notice our thoughts and stories that we tell ourselves, and when we notice that we can get curious what brought on that thought?

[00:22:17] How is that thought serving me? So I, Imindfulness and awareness is huge in self compassion. you were talking about earlier when you started going to therapy, you started realizing what the kind of things you were saying to yourself, what they were. So being aware is catching yourself in the thought like, Oh, that wasn't a really nice thought that I just said to myself.

[00:22:38] Sonia: Yeah, for sure.

[00:22:39] Kathleen: What are some practical tips that we can use to get us to a more compassionate place with ourselves?

[00:22:46] Sonia: Yeah, so I think a while back I learned that I had not learned how to self soothe. And I would either just stay in this like heightened state of anxiety until it burned itself [00:23:00] out or until I drank. To be honest. So, my only real technique for self soothing was alcohol. And so, when we get sober, we need to develop some more active self soothing techniques or self compassion practices.

[00:23:16] And like you're saying, I really think the most important thing is changing that inner dialogue.sometimes I think, what would you say to me? in that situation. And sometimes I will actually ask you and you always show me self compassion. I remember asking Sunday morning, I was like, I don't know how to ask for what I want in a relationship.

[00:23:40] how do I tell somebody I need more reassurance or I need more attention? Because all I keep thinking is I'm needy and weird and I'm so damaged and it's so obvious and you One, you sent me an Instagram post before I even said that.

[00:23:55] Kathleen: It's like I psychically

[00:23:57] Sonia: Yeah, and yeah, you totally [00:24:00] validated me, right? So where I'm telling myself, before I reached out to you, I was telling myself, you're so needy.

[00:24:06] you need all this reassurance. And, I need to change that inner dialogue. And if it, if it takes for a while, just asking somebody, but yeah, I think always try to channel, like, what would, what would a really good friend say to me?

[00:24:19] Kathleen: Mm hmm. I'm so glad you reached out, too, I hope you continue to reach out, I know that you think you're needy. I know that you think you're damaged. And I think I have, such awareness of that, I worry because I know you know how busy I am, and I don't want you to not do that.

[00:24:33] I don't want you to not reach out to me.

[00:24:35] Sonia: I mean, I save it till like a Sunday morning.

[00:24:38] Kathleen: I mean, but you don't have to, you don't have to, that's funny because you were very quiet last week on, on, on texting and then on Sunday morning you blasted me. I was like, is she trying to not text me during the week when I, I mean, I'll answer when I answer, but I'm so, I'm so glad that you can do that.

[00:24:58] And I really think we should [00:25:00] encourage our listeners to like, that's vulnerable.

[00:25:03] Sonia: Yeah.

[00:25:04] Kathleen: that is vulnerability, to be like, listen, I have this thought about myself, this is what I'm feeling,

[00:25:10] Sonia: And I mean, and I also think it's important to choose who you're vulnerable

[00:25:14] with, because I think, yeah, maybe there's only three or four people. In the world that I trust to give me that compassion. And to give me compassionate advice.

[00:25:28] Kathleen: mm hmm,

[00:25:29] Sonia: And so, yeah, I think that, that is so important. And I don't know if you remember, but a couple of weeks ago on episode you were talking about like speaking affirmations into the mirror.

[00:25:40] Kathleen: yes, yep, mm hmm.

[00:25:41] Sonia: I'm not going to say I'm speaking them into the mirror, but I sure am telling them to my dogs.

[00:25:46] I am telling them affirmations.

[00:25:48] Kathleen: you're, you're telling them

[00:25:49] affirmations, but like present tense for you. You're not like, you're not telling your dogs, you're a beautiful dog.

[00:25:56] Sonia: I'm saying, Isn't mummy a beautiful [00:26:00] mummy?

[00:26:00] Kathleen: Good. Okay. Well, we're on our way. I think that's, I'm really happy. I think that's a step in the right direction. Yes.

[00:26:11] Sonia: humanity like you were talking about, that the opposite of comparing yourself, in a sense, right? Knowing you're not alone in your struggles, and that can come from sharing in a group, and I think you are very quickly reminded that mistakes Or a universal human experience.

[00:26:31] one thing I love, I know I do a lot of journaling, but gratitude journaling is always a good go to when you're not sure what to journal about because I think it shifts the focus from what's going wrong to what's going right. And so, an easy one is list three aspects of yourself that you are grateful today.

[00:26:48] Kathleen: And I want to encourage any of our listeners who have kids that this is a really good thing to do with your children. So I'm asking them also, like starting self [00:27:00] compassion young. So asking them, you know, what, what is something that you're good at? What is something that you like about yourself?I think that's not always something.

[00:27:09] we think to do,I remember when I first started doing that with my daughter, I was like horrified because she couldn't name anything. And, when I started asking, she was going through a hard time, for sure, with, with her dad not being in her life. but now when I ask her, she has things.

[00:27:24] And so, it's something, you can do this not just with yourself, but if you're raising little humans, you can help them do this, too.

[00:27:32] Sonia: I love that.

[00:27:32] When do you think self compassion is important in sobriety? Mhm.

[00:27:40] is not linear, and I self compassion really helps cope with those setbacks, and it really provides you a nurturing voice reminding you it's okay to struggle. Wanting to drink doesn't mean you're weak, and so even now, I'm Close to seven years [00:28:00] sober.

[00:28:00] I have I would say moments not days But I have moments where I want to drink as badly as I did on like the fifth day I quit drinking and I have to have self compassion For that person. I'm growing and it's a process, but it's not linear. And I think that self compassion can really help reduce that shame and guilt.

[00:28:26] And I think actually those emotions are really intense in early sobriety, when you start to gain some clarity. And when you start to think about things you did when you were drinking, which I don't think is a particularly useful task. but I did some vile things to our other sister in law, like pretty bad things, but we can accept that and move on.

[00:28:49] Right? And we have to switch up that negative self talk and replace it with something more forgiving and healing. And it helps a lot when the other person is coming from that [00:29:00] place too. So when we, we did talk about it, my other sister in law and I, and she didn't say, Man, you did some vile shit to me, when you were drinking.

[00:29:10] But she said, I want to talk a little bit about what's happened. And yeah, and I think that she came from a, a place where I felt comfortable. She wasn't shaming me for it. And so, yeah, I think that comparison concept is don't compare your journey. To others, right? Yeah, that is devastating self talk.

[00:29:30] And I feel like there are people that compare it to mine because I Went seven years and didn't have a slip, right? I haven't I haven't had a drink in seven years, but I haven't been emotionally sober for seven years I've eaten like a pint of ice cream and like seven samosas, you know on On a bad day, and so, yeah, I don't want people comparing that to me, and I also couldn't go a single day without drinking, and a lot of people that compare [00:30:00] themselves to me can go two weeks without drinking, two months without drinking, and so I have a lot of respect for that.

[00:30:06] And just reminding yourself that you're unique and you are on your own path. What do you think about, about self compassion and sobriety?

[00:30:17] Kathleen: Yeah, I think what you said is really important that it's not linear, and I do think that self compassion is a real and I think that's a really important pillar in sobriety and it might be one of the harder things I find it so interesting how we can.

[00:30:31] Say loving things to other people and act with compassion to other people, but yet to ourselves It is so so hard and I think that Once we can truly do that and love ourselves that you know the sky's the limit in terms of what we can do and also What we can then give to other people

[00:30:55] Sonia: Yeah, that's so true.

[00:30:57] Kathleen: resonated with you the most today [00:31:00] Okay.

[00:31:00] Sonia: when you were talking about how setting boundaries with people is an act of self compassion, I never thought about that. That, and, and teaching people how to talk to you and not accepting them talking to you in a, in a bad way is, is an act of self compassion.

[00:31:22] And I didn't think about that. I don't know how I typically see boundaries. the way I grew up, there was no boundary. I think that I'm in a, I'm in a journal about that.

[00:31:32] Kathleen: Ooh.

[00:31:32] Sonia: that how is setting boundaries an act of self compassion and why is it important for me?

[00:31:39] Kathleen: Mm. Good. That's a good journal prompt.

[00:31:41] Sonia: what about you? What resonated with you?

[00:31:43] Kathleen: I think that just our discussion around the humanity of self compassion, so that's often the component that I think maybe is missing in when people talk about self compassion is that Understanding your humanness [00:32:00] and we live in such a society that is very individualistic and we're all out for ourselves and we think about ourselves and I'm not saying everyone's like that, but I'm just saying like that's the society that we live in and so to think of yourself as human as part of a collective and that we all make mistakes.

[00:32:20] And none of us are perfect. And showing that compassion that we might show to a child, or a friend to ourselves, is the thing that I think about a lot. Yeah. Thank you for listening to Sisters in Sobriety and we'll see you next week when we are going to talk about one of my favorite topics, values.

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