Sometimes life can be tough. There can be lots of demands whether from work, social engagements, volunteering activities, or the worst of all – self induced demands. The demands to clear your plate, conquer your to do list, or take on that new hobby you’ve been meaning to pursue for the past few months.
Isn’t it funny how often we live in the future? “What do I need to get done?” Or how about the past? “I wonder what happened in my childhood to make me the way I am today…” Our minds are at work and it’s never ending.
In the midst of running errands today I’ve come to the conclusion that MANY spur of the moment acts of “Metta” should be applied. Regardless of whether or not we have these thoughts.
So…Errr.. what is metta?
Mettā (Pali) or maitrī (Sanskrit) means benevolence, loving-kindness, friendliness, amity, friendship, good will, kindness, and active interest in others. – Wiki
Formally there are steps to applying Metta and you move further along in your practice of Metta as you begin to grow compassion.
- First, you always apply Metta to yourself. Direct the love and compassion toward you. After all, you cannot give what you don’t have 🙂
- Think of someone you look up to, feel thankful toward, or think positively of and send loving kindness towards this person
- Now think of someone you feel neutral towards. It can be anyone from the person who served you coffee this morning to a co-worker you haven’t had a chance to know yet
- This might be the trickest of them all… send loving kindness toward someone you don’t have oh-so-great feelings about.
- Lastly, send loving kindness out into every part of the world and to all beings
I first learned of Metta when I was going through adrenal fatigue. You see, one of the reasons why I had gotten adrenal fatigue was from the barrage of activities I thought I needed to do in order to achieve a state of “good enough” aka chasing perfection. You can read more about it here.
How did Metta help me?
I had learned what it meant to truly love yourself. To love yourself where you are, in this moment, exactly how you are. To love the body you are in. To thank every cell and fiber of your being for working FOR you all these years. To even love the negative voice in your head and to have compassion to the part of you that is listening to this voice. To love the part of yourself that wants to make sure you get to your to do list so everything is ok and taken care of. To love the part of yourself that goes to work trying to do the best that you can in order for others not to find out what a fraud you might be (not knowing everyone else feels the exact same way). To love. Just love.
And I’m reminded again today how amazing this practice can be. So remember… give yourself LOVE today, everyday. You deserve this love. Aside from God, you are the only other person in this world that knows yourself the way you do. So love YOU. Be the love for yourself and share it with others.
Love & Peace friends.