dr. jennifer ballerini

DR. JEN'S BLOG

What You Practice Grows Stronger



One of my clients sent me this great TED talk from Dr. Shauna Shapiro on mindfulness. Dr. Shapiro shares a lovely bit of wisdom she received while struggling as a younger woman: What you practice grows stronger. The implication, of course, is that it is up to us to decide which parts of our selves we want to feed — the anxious, judgmental, avoidant, reactive parts or the compassionate, present, calm, and centered ones.

On that note, she explains that the key to growth and change is not just paying attention, but HOW we pay attention. So many of us can be hard on ourselves, often thinking that if we are tough on ourselves, we can will ourselves to change. However, unkind, judgmental attention that triggers shame literally leaves our brains incapable of growing and learning. (This echoes the evidence-based work on mindful self-compassion espoused by Kristin Neff and Christopher Germer — and taught locally by Dr. Luana Coloma Cook & Dr. Sean Cook.)

So, enjoy this TED talk, and I hope you'll be inspired to be a little kinder to yourself today…and every day.