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ruthless compassion

Finally, and belatedly, I'm thankful for those painful moments of embarrassment about my own past behavior or speech or thought that, when I can see past the cringe factor, let me see and appreciate the growth and progress I've made in my skills, values, empathy, or compassion. The moment isn't always fun, but it does always provide a powerful lens to view progress in a way that few other experiences do, and it never fails to inspire me to want to go further in the directions I strive, in hopes that over time, I'll behave less and less frequently in ways that cause me embarrassment after the fact.