February brings us Valentines Day, the day we celebrate love. Instead of just one day, let’s look at this month as a month long celebration of love. Normally you run out and buy a card or flowers or candy for your loved ones. But now that you have less stress and more control of your thoughts, let’s focus this month on creating a mindset of love, compassion and kindness as part of your gift to yourself and others.
Before you can start to share this with others, you must first create this mindset for yourself. Most people tend to forget about themselves or do not treat themselves with enough love, compassion and kindness. Here are a few simple things to consider that will increase these key elements for yourself and others:
Practice – Set a time of day that’s best for you to practice observing your thoughts/self talk. Some of my clients will do this first thing in the morning before they get out of bed or before bed time. I like to do this when I am in the shower as the water is cleansing and I won’t have any distractions. I find that is a good time to cleanse my mind as well.
In order to be more observant of your thoughts/self talk, pretend you are watching a movie. It is a lot easier to be neutral in your observation when you can pretend it is not about you. The more you can separate yourself from the emotions connected to your thoughts/self talk, the more rational you are in your observation about what really is taking place.
As you get better at observing, you may find that you begin to do this throughout the day and not just at a set time.
Awareness – Look at the thoughts you create about you and/or your actions and ask yourself, “Would I speak to someone else the way I speak to myself?” Here it is important to be kind to yourself. Replace any negative thoughts with loving, kind thoughts. Accept mistakes or poor decisions as lessons so that you can make better decisions in the future.
My clients will complain to me about poor eating choices or not exercising and refer to themselves as a failure or worse, a loser. It is very important at these times to be aware of your self talk and how it can negatively impact your mindset, energy and mood. Rather than beat yourself up, have love and compassion for yourself. Look at why you made those decisions and what you can do differently to make better choices in the future. Accept and own the decisions that you have made, they are avenues to personal growth and learning. Instead you can say, “I am not happy with the choice I made and next time I will be more aware to make a better choice.”
Next, look at what special gifts you have been blessed with that make you unique. Acknowledge and be thankful for these gifts. Everyone has special gifts, if you are having difficulty identifying what they are, ask a loved one or close friend what they think to help you along. I have clients who are great teachers, helpers, artists, listeners, writers, etc. Don’t be shy here, really look at what makes you special and own those gifts. Look at how you can share these gifts with those around you.
Patience – To be successful with this process you must have patience with yourself. Remember, be kind, as this is a new way of thinking and you will not be perfect. The more patience you have as you practice this, the better you will get.
Once you have created a strong base of love, compassion and kindness for yourself, you can now more easily share this with others. Be sure to share with your spouse or significant other, children, family, friends and those you interact with on a daily basis.
Share the message with others:
- Acknowledge and help others see their gifts.
- Let others know why you are grateful for their presence in your life.
- Hold open a door for someone.
- Say a friendly hello when passing by someone.
- Give a genuine compliment.
- Listen and support others.
- Share with children
- Smile at others
There have been times when weeks later a friend or a client will come back to me and say “Your words helped me so much and because of your words I was able to…..” Your attitude, words, actions and energy impact others in ways that you may not always be aware of. This is why it is important to be aware of how and what we say and do to others.
Giving doesn’t always have to be financial or material in nature, our simple actions and words of love, compassion and kindness are more valuable than any physical gift you could give to someone. Remember, this is the month of celebrating love, so share the love.
Sending you much love and compassion,