Mindfulness Meditation Challenge Day Nine
If you want to be happy, practice compassion. –The Dalai Lama
If you’ve ever seen The Devil Wears Prada, you’re going to understand exactly what I’m talking about in this description. And if you haven’t, try to imagine…
In life, there are THOSE people. You know the ones.
You smile; they frown. They’re right; you’re wrong. You try; they complain.
No matter what you say or do, they’re as cold as ice on a winter day. You long, yearn, and wish that they would show you just one thing.
In life there is also another breed of people.
THESE people make us feel good. They have a way of making us feel accepted, unjudged, and worthy of love all at once.
They radiate a kind of warmth that can light up a rainy day.They have the one thing that we all need to receive…
You see, compassion is an amazing thing. It truly goes full circle. When we make people feel good, we feel good… and when we feel good, they feel good.
There’s another aspect of compassion that’s actually quite interesting. People who practice compassion tend to be happier and healthier.
Numerous studies have shown that practicing compassion can lower stress and anxiety levels, reduce depression, and even reduce the risk of many diseases.
Taking a positive, caring attitude makes us more resilient, optimistic, supportive, and socially adaptive.
This extends to more than just how we treat others. It’s also true of how we treat ourselves.
We often forget that we need to treat ourselves the same way we would want to be treated by someone else. If someone pelted us with negatives, we would be angry and find this act to be unacceptable.
Compassion for the self is one of the healthiest practices we can adopt.
Imagine how much easier life would be if you treated yourself with the utmost respect-if you embraced your imperfections with a loving attitude of warmth.
This weekend, I want to challenge you to something big. I want you to make a conscious effort to be more compassionate with yourself and others.
I believe that The Dalai Lama is absolutely right. “If you want to be happy, practice compassion.”
In truth, you deserve happiness, don’t you?
Today’s Meditation Exercise
Today, I’d like for you to try a compassion meditation. I know, I know…this sounds a little fruity. But don’t knock it til you’ve tried it!
Compassion meditations are sometimes known as loving kindness
meditations. In these types of meditations, we often use a mantra similar to the mantras you have tried over the past week.
I would recommend starting with this…
“May I be happy. May I be healthy. May I have peace.”
Start by setting a timer for ten minutes. (I know I say this over and over again, but it’s just a reminder so that you don’t get caught up in time checking.)
Begin the meditation by focusing on the breath for a few minutes. Then, as you settle in, begin to repeat the mantra over and over to yourself, keeping your attention on the words.
If you want, you can experiment with different wording. For example, to develop compassion for others, you might try this…
“May we be happy. May we be healthy. May we have peace.”
Remember to take a minute to bring your awareness back to your breath before you end the meditation. When you’re ready, simply bring your attention back to the breath and release the mantra.
Congratulations on completing day nine of this mindfulness meditation challenge! I know this meditation can be confusing, so please do not hesitate to reach out to me with any questions. I’m always here to help.
See you tomorrow…