A huge aspect of spirituality is learning how to nurture ourselves and others. It may sound so elementary as to be trite, but how often do we say, “It’s OK” when we mess up something at work, or “Nice try anyway,” when we realize we have an overdraft? Usually, we’re the first in line to berate ourselves as if beating everyone else to the punch will somehow lessen the blow. A wise teacher once told me that harsh words toward oneself are “an act of violence.” That stopped me in my tracks. It’s never too late to be kind to yourself. Ever. Or, to pay attention to that small voice in the folds of your heart that thinks maybe, just maybe, you could try to do something new. A voice that longs to be heard and also protected, like the tiny seedling.