I came across this quote this morning:
'A moment of self-compassion can change your entire day. A string of such moments can change the course of your life.' C.K.Germer.
Wow! I thought. What a great way to start the day! Thank you C.K.Germer.
I was, in fact, so impressed by old C.K. that I Googled him.
(Aside: how did we manage without Google? I'd have to seriously have my socks blown off by someone before I'd troop down to the local library and look them up on the dewey decimal system).
Here's what C.K. has to say about Mindful Self-Compassion:
"Mindful self-compassion is the foundation of emotional healing—being aware in the present moment when we're struggling with feelings of inadequacy, despair, confusion, and other forms of stress (mindfulness) and responding with kindness and understanding (self-compassion). Mindful self-compassion also means holding difficult emotions—fear, anger, sadness, shame and self-doubt—and ourselves, in loving awareness, leading to greater ease and well-being in our daily lives.
"Mindful self-compassion can be learned by anyone. It’s the practice of repeatedly evoking good will toward ourselves especially when we’re suffering—cultivating the same desire that all living beings have to live happily and free from suffering. And as the Dalai Lama says, self-compassion is the first step toward compassion for others."
He sounded like such a wise chap that I decided to download one of his meditations and give it a go. (If you want to do the same, then click on the Mindful Self-Compassion link above).
I've never tried meditation before, but I've been meaning to. The children and the husband were all still slumbering upstairs, so I found myself a comfy chair and pressed play on the first download (18 minutes long).
Lots of breathing. Lots of paying attention to the breathing, and to what the breathing feels like.
This was all somewhat scuppered when the terrier got overexcited by discovering me sitting down with an unoccupied lap and decided to join in. Soon I was paying attention to the feeling of being licked by a puzzled dog.
You will find thoughts wandering in....says C.K. No shit Sherlock. Mine went something like this:
How long have I been doing this for already? Any minute now the troops will start appearing for breakfast. I'm hungry. What happens if I stop concentrating on the breathing? Will I stop breathing? Arrgghh. I'm going to die. How long have I been doing this for already? I've got stuff to do. I've got to write my blog and go for a run all before they wake up. Was that someone waking up? I'm hungry. How long have I been doing this for already?
Ten minutes in and I was stressed!
So, I totally buy the concept of self-compassion. We all need a bit of that. Plus, I love mindfulness, BUT I like mindfully doing stuff (see Monkey Brain and Mindfulness), not mindfully doing nothing. It freaks me out. And I feel like a pillock. Perhaps I'm too British?
Any thoughts and experiences with meditation gratefully received.
Have a great sober Sunday my friends! I'm off for a run...(after breakfast)