Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Understanding and Compassion

When working through a loss, what outcome do we want?  It is fair to say we all want happiness—inner joy, peace, contentment, self-confidence, a strength that comes from living our truth and our purpose—or whatever that means to you. 

Ideally, we all want to remember “I am a Shining Soul” and experience the joy of shining through.  When we are ready, how do we move from the feelings that rob our power to empowering ones?

A friend shared a thought with me one day that shifted everything.  She said “They are doing the best they know how.”  WOW!  By opening to this idea, a glimmer of compassion began to grow inside me.  Think about that for a second.  We are all just doing the best we know how.  

Each of us has past experiences, beliefs and instilled programs that affect the choices we make in our relationships with others. We may have no idea what someone else has experienced, perhaps as a child that may be replaying in our current relationship. Not to mention, they might be part of a replaying experience for us.

As one example, if at a young age we experienced conditional love, lack of respect, hurt, shame, guilt and secrets, in later life we may choose, usually subconsciously, experiences that reinforce these feelings and even do our part in treating others this way.  In an attempt to live our truth, we may not always make the most loving choices and hurt others.  Ultimately, we have forgotten we are a shining soul and are doing the best we know how.

Directing our attention inward, rather than toward the other person provides an opportunity for self-discovery.  It is normal to identify things we did or didn’t do to contribute to a situation of loss.  We can sometimes even feel an enormous sense of responsibility and find it hard to move on.  Again, it is good to remember that given our experiences and the tools we have, we are doing the best we can.  

Learning about ourselves and truly understanding the situation, is paramount in breaking the “replay” cycle.  Once we learn what we need to learn, we no longer need that type of experience.  As with all of this, it takes time and effort—which will all be worth it!

Experiencing understanding and compassion for ourselves, encourages us to begin opening our heart to understanding and compassion for others.  Eventually, we can move toward the next step of forgiveness.

~ Sherry Buikema

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