Last week I gave some examples of how to detach from another person’s personality or behavior. I’ve since realized it would be helpful to expand on that topic with some concrete tools on how to accomplish the actions/changes I suggested.
I was speaking to a friend the other day and we were talking about how much more patient we are with our kids today than when we first birthed them. For both of us there has been a span of 16-17 years in between. I asked her if she thought it was because she was more patient with herself and after she thought about it, she agreed. I notice that many people are rather hard on themselves for seemingly no reason (obviously they have their reasons but it’s not obvious to others). Do you know people who are very capable and confident yet treat themselves with little self-compassion?
How we treat others is a mirror of how we treat ourselves.
For us not to take life personally, whether it is our partner, our children or any other person or situation life hands us, we must work toward self-compassion. This takes a persistent commitment to be our own ally and stay present within ourselves as much as possible. The reason I say this is because if we are present and lead with self-compassion, we can recognize what is happening as it is unfolding in front of us and respond appropriately without taking others’ behavior personally. When we feel compassion for our own suffering, we are better able to see others suffering and view their behavior from a perspective of love instead of judgment.
Practicing persistent present consciousness and “pause”
How do we practice persistent present consciousness with ourself? Great question! I’m not talking about a new age-y type of lingo. What I mean by this is noticing what happens within you that signals when you are having a reaction. This may happen at lightening speed and for some of us, we don’t even notice. Most of us get a physical feeling/sensation when we react emotionally. Take a moment and think about it – what happens to your body when you have an emotional reaction. Where do you feel it in your body? Does your heart start to pound? Does your breathing become shallow? Do you feel heat in your body and if so, where? Understanding the physical reactions can help you recognize when you are having an emotional one. This is important because it can help us to slow down and push our internal “pause” button. When we pause first, we respond instead of react.
Strengthen our minds
Whether we are choosing to participate in our own internal emotional healing or physical healing we must strengthen our minds. What do I mean by this? First, we must believe we can change and heal. Once we believe this, then everything becomes possible. We must choose to accept that if someone is acting out, it is a reflection of their own suffering – just like when we act out with others. No one has perfect behavior. We are all human and we all have our moments. If you or I are in a bad mood and we take it out on someone else, doesn’t it really have to do with our own state of mind than what someone else did to make us upset? It goes both ways. (If you read this and insist that the other person is at fault for your unhappiness and discontent, then I invite you to read my book “Embracing Love by Letting Go: A Metaphysical Cleanse”. Once you practice the exercises outlined in the book, you might feel differently.) To order click here.
Attaining physical health requires us to be aware of what our minds tell us. If we believe we can heal; believe that hurtful behavior from others is not personal to us; believe that hurt people hurt people and are crying out for love and compassion; choose to respond with kindness and detached love for these hurt people – then we ourselves can have a healthy physical, mental, emotional and spiritual body. By detaching with compassion for ourselves, and others we benefit with the gift of health and happiness.
How wonderful is that?
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