The following extracts come from The Reality Slap by Russ Harris, with kind permission from the publisher Exisle.
Now here are some questions for you to reflect on:
• Who is the one human being in your life who can always be there for you, in any moment, no matter what happens?
• Who is the one human being who can understand, validate and empathise with your pain, better than anyone else on the planet?
• Who is the one human being who can truly know just how much you are suffering?
So, you are in a unique position. No matter how tough things get in your life, you are always there; even if no one else is available, you are; and you can always do something to help (even if your mind says you can’t).
Building a good relationship with ourselves is essential for inner fulfilment, especially when we run into a large reality gap. Unfortunately, this does not come naturally. Most of us are not too good at accepting, appreciating, nurturing, supporting, encouraging and being compassionate towards ourselves. Far more commonly, we beat ourselves up, judge ourselves harshly or neglect and give up on ourselves.
Now suppose for a moment, you could change this relationship with yourself; that you could become your own best friend. (Your mind may say this sounds corny or impossible, but if you take a leap of faith and keep reading, you’ll eventually see that it’s neither. For now, just let your mind have its say.) Once you learn how to do this, you’re in a wonderful position. Why? Because wherever you go, whatever you do, no matter how big the reality gap you encounter, your ‘best friend’ will be there to support you: to be compassionate when you’re suffering, understanding when you get it wrong, and encouraging when you lose heart.