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9 Self-Compassion Exercises & Worksheets for Increasing Compassion

Source | | Courtney E. Ackerman, MSc

“Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them humanity cannot survive.” – Dalai Lama

We know about the importance of love and compassion for others. As the Dalai Lama stated, humanity cannot survive without these characteristics.

I’ve always loved this quote, in part because it can be taken two ways: either humanity will become physically extinct without love and compassion, or humanity will become metaphorically extinct without love and compassion – meaning these two concepts are intrinsic parts of what it means to be human (find more self-acceptance quotes here).

I tend to take the second perspective, but either way, the Dalai Lama’s meaning is clear: we must cultivate love and compassion if we hope to survive and thrive as a species.

Another insightful quote about compassion also comes from the Dalai Lama :

“If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.”

Compassion, then, is not only a vital piece of our humanity, it is also an extremely effective tool for improving our lives and the lives of others.

Fortunately, it is not all that difficult to cultivate a sense of compassion for others – it’s fairly easy to develop compassion beginning with those we love, moving on to those we like, continuing to those we don’t know, and finally widening our compassionate circle to encompass those we actively dislike.

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