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How to be kind to yourself"
December 20, 2016

December 20, 2016 Issue #129

How to be kind to yourself

When I look back on my life, I see many things I wish I had done differently. It's too late to change that now--for me--but I can change it for you. Or at least I can try.

I was WAY too hard on myself for much of my life. I was overly critical. Negative. Pessimistic about who I was and what I was capable of. Sound familiar?

Judging from emails I get, I think that's a common problem with singles. Because we don't have a spouse, we think there's something wrong with us. We end up punishing ourselves for our imagined failures.

There's also a wide streak running through Christianity that any type of kindness or compassion toward yourself constitutes selfishness, and we're never supposed to put our own needs first.

Really? How about the times Jesus simply had to get away from the crowds because they were exhausting him? How about his verbal defense against the accusations of the scribes and Pharisees? Where, in the Bible, does it say we're required to become a doormat?

My experience with other Christians is that pride is a much rarer problem than self-hate. How would your life change if you were consistently kind to yourself? How much happier would you be if you treated yourself as politely as you treat others?

So during this Christmas season and the coming year, let's all make an attitude adjustment. Here are a few ideas on how to be kind to yourself.

Jump to our Christmas poem!

Jack's Note: Work and family obligations made it impossible for me to write a new poem for this issue. But to get your monthly poetry fix, here's one I wrote a few years ago. It's titled: As Long as There's a Christmas

Nathaniel Branden makes QOTM Club

December's Quote of the Month comes from psychotherapist and author Nathaniel Branden. He wrote one of my favorite books, The Six Pillars of Self-Esteem.:

“Self-Acceptance is my refusal to be in an adversarial relationship with myself.”
~ Nathaniel Branden (1930-2014) ~

In keeping with this month's theme of being kind to yourself, we should all ask ourselves this question: "Am I a friend to myself or am I an enemy?" We already have an adversary. He's called Satan. We don't need another, especially our self.

Too often in the Christian world, anything relating to self-esteem is criticized as being prideful. Nonsense. You cannot love others if you don't love yourself first. A spirit of humility is great, but I refuse to beat myself up.

We need to strike a healthy balance. We need to be confident and assertive to get things done in life, and there's nothing wrong with that. Many, many forces gang up to try to knock you down. Don't let them. And most of all, don't become one of them.

Are ebooks a ripoff? Is this one?

Outsmarting Loneliness is an ebook. Is it less valuable than a printed paperback book?

Think of it this way: Are this newsletter and the articles on less valuable because they're not printed on paper?

Outsmarting Loneliness is sold through Clickbank, a reputable Internet merchant. (Google it for details.) They process your credit card for $7.97, the cost of this ebook. You then download the PDF file directly to your computer. No bugs, no malware or spyware, guaranteed by Clickbank.

Outsmarting Loneliness also comes with a 60 day money back guarantee, also from Clickbank.

If you have the f'ree Adobe Reader software on your phone or tablet, you can also read Outsmarting Loneliness there. Print it out and read the paper copy if you like.

When I (someday) publish Outsmarting Loneliness in paperback, I'll have to charge $16 - $20 to pay for the printing and postage costs.

If you want to know what the book is about, just go to this no-obligation information page. Thanks!

If Christmas has you reaching for the Pepto…

For many singles, Christmas is something to endure, rather than celebrate. Yep, I've been there and done that too.

Here are some articles on you may have missed about that "most wonderful time of the year." You may find them helpful if you're feeling underwhelmed right now:

Beat the holiday blues

How to get through Christmas

Learn to appreciate Christmas

Tips for having a better Christmas

If You're Single at Christmas

The hidden message of Christmas

You don't hear much about the shepherds during the Christmas season. In the ancient world, they were outcasts. But to whom did God send the angels to announce Jesus' birth?

Right. The shepherds. Christ came with love to rescue the outcasts. We single people can sometimes feel like outcasts, like we don't fit in with the rest of the crowd.

Jesus has a message for us at Christmas--and always: "I love you. You are precious to me. I see wonderful things in you the rest of the world does not see. I have come to bring you forgiveness, peace, and eternal life. You are not outcasts. You are my brothers and sisters now."

Christmas is the promise and the cross is the fulfillment. Don't let anybody fool you. Singles are special in the eyes of God.

If you have a comment on this newsletter or the single life in general, you may send it to me using our mistletoe-free contact form or email me at

That, fellow singleton, is our December issue. Who knows what 2017 will bring? Well, I know what next year's Inspire-O-Grams will bring: hope and encouragement!

And I hope your holidays are joy-filled this year. Laugh. Enjoy your friends and family. See you in January!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Jack Zavada
401 Indiana Ave
Streator, IL 61364 USA

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