Cultivating Self-Appreciation is critical to becoming comfortable in your own skin.
I'm not talking about staring at your navel or taking a deep dive into narcissim. Rather, I'm talking about being able to look at yourself in the mirror at any given moment and comfortably say to yourself in your reflection, "I like me!"
I'm talking about moving into a mindset where you recognize that as a human you make mistakes, but you don't need to beat yourself up over them any more; that you actually have a choice over what occupies your brain.
Where do we start?
The first step is courageously taking action.
We face and embrace the discomfort of looking at those parts of ourselves we might otherwise suppress or deny.
We intentionally choose to be kind to ourselves. We open-heartedly embrace our successes and gently acknowledge our failures.
And we practice this daily.
Does it work?
I created these simple and practical tools for the students in my Cultivating Mindful Compassion course. I use these tools over and over again, for myself, and with students/clients.
Research on neuroplasticity shows us that we have the power to rewire our brains. Which means the more we practice something (like thinking kind thoughts about ourselves) the more we create lasting change.
I want to share with you my 5-step technique for figuring out embracing self-appreciation.
For free. Because the more of us walk around with peace of mind, the happier we are all going to be.
Are you ready?
All you have to do is say yes.
I'm an unshakable optimist, educator, and life-long learner dedicated to helping you discover fully and completely, that you are enough, even when you’re not perfect.
But, I wasn’t always an unshakable optimist. In fact, I was a fearful kid, with a low self-esteem, and often suffered from situational depression. But in the mid-90s I attended a weekend Taoist meditation workshop that led me to realize the powerful benefits of regular meditation and positive mindset.
Over the years, and via many hours of workshops and retreats, my life has unfolded in a remarkable and joyful way.
Augmenting my Taoist background, in 2014 I became a certified facilitator for Stanford University’s Compassion Cultivation Training.
Cultivating Mindful Compassion blends the best aspect from both my longtime Taoist practice and Compassion Cultivation Training.
I want to help you build a life that you truly love.
To learn more about me and how this course evolved, click here.
Wishing you well,
A Letter From Amy
Founder of Compassion U.
Cultivating Compassion is the Key to Creating Peace
Why did I create Compassion U.?
As I mentioned in the bio, I’m an unshakable optimist. However, that wasn't always the case. In fact, I was a really fearful kid, with an incredibly low self-esteem, and often suffered from situational depression.
I was a classic people-pleaser—a great student, always volunteering to help out, never created waves. All of my teachers liked me. So why didn’t I like myself? As a kid I didn’t even know a different mindset existed. Assertiveness felt harsh. Setting limits seemed rude. Requesting that my needs be met didn’t even cross my mind.
So, how did I end up building a business helping people worldwide move beyond those very limitations into a space of resilience and peace of mind?
It took patience, courage, and a desire to change my own limitations.
In the mid-90s I attended a weekend Taoist meditation workshop and immediately fell in love with this style’s deep connection to our heart and incorporation of movement into meditative practice.
I enjoyed the weekend, and was inspired to practice a little bit of meditation every now and then (emphasis on little and now and then). I attended a few more weekend workshops with the same teacher over the next few years, but again, didn’t commit to any formal personal practice.
Meanwhile my people-pleasing self entered a relationship with someone skilled at taking advantage of those well-honed skills. Eventually, I figured out that pleasing him in order to feel loved was not a good choice for me.
I started a daily meditation practice and it changed my life.
Sometimes the experience was peaceful. Sometimes my brain would spin, and I’d remind myself to go back to my breath and be patient. Sometimes I’d be overwhelmed by grief and despair, and cry my eyes out—but I stuck with it because I knew in the long run something would shift.
Sure enough, it did. Committing to a regular meditation practice helped me cultivate the courage enact change.
It helped me remember to focus on the positive.
It helped me notice when those self-critical stories came to mind, and reminded me to redirect my thought process.
It helped me discover peace of mind and raise resilience.
In truth, I have to say that a regular meditation practice completely transformed my life in a positive way.
So we split amicably, moved on and entered relationship with people who are better matches for us.
How did I decide to teach courses?
In the midst of that era of my life I became a massage therapist, and worked at Google for a dozen years.
While there, I observed that self-compassion was often in short supply. Instead, I noticed many people lived stress-filled lives, frequently without realizing they had choices around how to manage their stress, anxiety, and discomfort.
My personal experience with stress, anxiety, and depression inspired me to help others help themselves. I began offering tools and techniques that could help people cultivate appreciation, acceptance, and compassion for themselves and others.
From 2011-2014 I offered a 30 minute meditation/qigong class 3 times per week at Google. One day per week was offered online and was available in 16 cities around the world. Yet I knew I could do more to help people. I wanted to figure out how present my heart-based and qi-focused Taoist mediation practice to a broader audience.
In 2013 I learned of Stanford University’s Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education 8-week compassion mediation curriculum called Compassion Cultivation Training. I applied to the teacher training program at the next available opportunity, and now am one of about 50 certified facilitators worldwide.
Ultimately I blended aspects of Compassion Cultivation Training with my longtime Taoist practice and created the Cultivating Mindful Compassion course. This program sparked the idea for my bestselling book.
I’m so grateful for where life has taken me. I’m grateful that every day I wake up and love what I do. I believe we are the authors of our own life, and I’m blessed for the challenges I’ve faced. It helps me appreciate my life all the more and resonate with those who aren’t quite yet at their place of peace.
I created this business to make a difference. To help you build a life that you truly love. A life that is one of a kind, unique and brilliantly tailored for you.
I teach people how to become their own best friends. I encourage people to recognize that taking care of themselves has an impact not only on themselves but on their loved ones and the world.
Remember you were born for a reason. You have a purpose that is bigger than yourself. But YOU have to choose to extend yourself.
It’s your responsibility to know that you’re enough so you can then help others learn the same. No one is going to give you the power to develop mental strength, emotional intelligence, spiritual perspective, or physical health. You must choose to live courageously and create the joyful and vibrant life you want.
I know life is challenging sometimes. It may feel like you can’t overcome obstacles. But I’m living proof that you can! Make the choice to live to your full potential. You have the power to change your life and, by doing so, you’ll change the world.
Start your journey with me because the world needs your light to shine.
If you’ve read this far, thank you!
I hope this is just the beginning of our relationship. And, I’d love to learn more about you. Enroll in a free class and you'll be connected to our community.
Thank you so much for taking the time to visit. I’m thrilled we’re connected and I can’t wait to meet and spend time with you!
See you soon!