Ways to be Kind to Yourself at Work

Written by Karen E. Mosier

Do you ever feel tired and worn out? Do you ever think “I’m going to fail. I’m not smart enough to do this?” Sometimes life is tough and work can be hectic. It is especially important during these times to take care of yourself. Being kind to yourself allows you to move past self-criticism and negative self-talk.

Here are some great ways to be kind to yourself at work:

Adjust your expectations

You will enjoy life more if you are mindful of what you do rather than what you get.

You can control what you do but you can’t control what happens next.

Remind yourself of your good qualities

Maybe you are not good at sports but you excel in math.

Perhaps you are painfully shy but have a great sense of humor.

Be happy

You don’t need everything to go your way to be happy.

Celebrate whatever happiness exists in the moment.

Cultivate habits of happiness that will carry through to difficult days.

Forgive yourself

We all mess up.

If you are angry at yourself, stop blaming yourself and resolve to do better.

Carve out some time for yourself

Take time every day to do something that brings you joy e.g., write, play the guitar.

Give yourself some “me time” every day.

Ask for what you need

If you need something to do your job just ask for it.

Say “yes” when a colleague offers to help you.

Get inspired

Try to get a little inspiration every day.

Read something inspiring or collect inspiring quotes.

Do more of what you are good at

Do something you are good at every day.

Maybe it’s to encourage others, give compliments or do random acts of kindness.

Respect yourself

Value yourself for who you are.  Don’t allow others to dictate your value.

Trust yourself, think for yourself, form your own opinions and make your own decisions.

Refuse to compare yourself to others.

Treat yourself

If you see something that you really want, buy it to treat yourself.

Don’t wait for someone to give it to you, give it to yourself.

Being kind to yourself cultivates resilience—the ability to bounce forward after setbacks. It empowers you to be open minded. It gives you the ability to identify problems, accept negative feedback from others, and change habits that are no longer aligned with your best interests. Openness to change and resilience from setbacks helps you to be happier, more resilient, and more successful at work.


  1. Chrysta Bairre. Live Love Work. 33 Ways To Be Kind To Yourself. http://www.liveandlovework.com/2013/02/22/be-kind-to-yourself/
  2. Marelisa Fabrega. Daring to Live Life Fully. 17 Ways to Be Kind to Yourself. https://daringtolivefully.com/how-to-be-kind-to-yourself
  3. Leah Weiss. Greater Good Magazine. How to Bring Self-Compassion to Working with You. https://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/how_to_bring_self_compassion_to_work_with_you
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