The compassionate self

How do you feel? Do you often become irritated or impatient with those around you? Are you continually criticising those you are closest to in your thoughts? Does your general interest stretch as far as your circle of family and friends, yet anyone else outside of this circle does not have a look in? How far does your emotionally-charged radar go? These feelings are very common and leave us feeling disconnected with ourselves and those around us. Sometimes this may manifest itself in an angry passion towards a certain belief. This type of feeling can leave a feeling of emptiness inside. Being passionate is different; it is a wish for change in a loving direction, a compassionate one. Angry passion is a drive towards change with underlying feelings such as anger, resentment, guilt and even shame. This is the antithesis of compassion. When the drive forwards enables us to leave behind any feelings of discord and towards making a difference, then love comes in and a reconnection with self and others occurs.

When the attention is drawn towards the realisation that connection has been lost with ourselves, the frustration and irritability towards others sets in. This can occur when a loss of relationship or feeling of depression creeps in and the time for reaching out is realised. Once we recognise that we may be feeling such deep feelings of discord towards others, then it is time to do something about it, to ‘be’ with these feelings. For these feelings are the inner child crying out for self-compassion, for forgiveness, for nurture, for love and support.

Most of us believe that we need a process to follow in order to reach where we need to go. Most of us believe that we need to find more balance in our lives yet there is some difficulty in following a process in order to reach our goal. Since certain processes are more tangible and can be seen as working, there is sometimes a reluctance or a feeling of lacking in some way when we begin to experiment with finding a process which works for us within. We are conditioned to a certain extent to follow a particular process, and then we reach our destination. For example, if we wish to go to work by car, we open the car, sit in the seat, put our seatbelt on, switch on the engine, check the mirrors, signal our departure, manoeuvre and we are on our way to work. When we look at how we become relaxed, we can make this process simple, to begin with, then build on this.

We can do this by giving attention to ourselves with compassion; by finding a quiet space to be. By placing yourself in a comfortable position, focussing on your breathing, noticing any areas within the body which may have tension and breathing gently into these spaces, the body then relaxes, the cells are given an opportunity to regenerate, the heart rate slows and the mind begins to create a space for an opening up to creative thoughts. We can make a difference today by bringing this compassion towards ourselves, which must begin with ourselves and which then spreads out towards others. By compassionately giving ourselves time to be, even for a minute or two and repeating this process at least twice a day, this installs new habitual ways of just being which we can turn to in times of need and as a way of regulating our emotions. Never forget - any time is a good time to begin.

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