Every Monday features a tip, activity, inspiring quote or some other tidbit that helps boost your body image, whether directly or indirectly — and hopefully kick-starts your week on a positive note!

Got a tip for improving body image? Email me at mtartakovsky at gmail dot com, and I’ll be happy to feature it. I’d love to hear from you!

Many of us know that it’s important to be kind to ourselves. But for many of us it’s also very hard.

Several things can stand in our way: We don’t even realize we’re struggling and need kindness; our inner critic roars so loudly that nothing else can get through; we think self-kindness or self-compassion is selfish; we think we don’t deserve it; or we think self-compassion will lead to laziness and complacency.

Kristin Neff, Ph.D, a researcher and pioneer in the study of self-compassion, recently gave a beautiful TEDx talk on the topic.

In it, she makes a powerful case for being self-compassionate, and shatters many of the common misconceptions we have about being nice to ourselves.

She explains why it’s more helpful to cultivate self-compassion than self-esteem and how self-compassion is a much better motivator than self-criticism.

Any time you think you don’t deserve self-compassion or you’re struggling with any of the above, watch this video, and remind yourself. And check out these five strategies for practicing self-compassion.