A Lesson in Compassionate Detachment

I shared a version of this with my mom via email today, and as I re-read it, I felt like it might serve you in some way, so I made you a plate. See if it feeds you…

So, I woke up in a panic this morning.

The kind that comes as a result of yet another dream of feeling trapped.
I’ve been having those dreams almost nightly, since our return from Jamaica.
Those dreams bring with them feelings of failure and a strong sense of lack.
But I always come back to mySelf; that Higher Self who knows how to use
what she is feeling to fuel what she knows is hers–a fulfilled life.

I spoke to Kris about my anxiety,
got some sunshine,
gulped down some water,
ate a banana,
went through some asanas,
brought my awareness to my breath more,
and eventually calmed myself.

When I felt calmer, I sat first in prayer and then in meditation.
I do that often in efforts to lean in on my feelings and see what they need from me,
and also what they have for me.

As always, when I get quiet and observe my thoughts
instead of taking them on as my only reality
I hear things clearly.

I used what I heard to refine my goals for the week,
so that they could be more aligned with what I feel is missing in my Now.

One of the things I heard was this:
Thoughts become things, but they don’t have to.
They can start and end as thoughts.
Them coming to me, doesn’t mean that I am
obligated to attach myself to them.

I have the right to apply compassionate detachment to my own thoughts
I can observe what I am thinking and feeling,
and I can observe what I am thinking and feeling,
and I can observe what I am thinking and feeling.

I use the practice (I believe it’s a Buddhist principle) often in my coaching and with friends and family, but the lesson I received today is that I can also use that principle within my own Self. My thoughts are not all there for me to embrace and act upon, but oftentimes there for me to observe as part of my experience, and then to consciously decide if/how those thoughts serve me.

If you ever feel like a victim of your thoughts, consider using compassionate detachment to give yourself space to see yourself as the primary focus.  Try (and try again) to see yourself as the person having the thought, and not the person upon which the result of that thought might be inflicted.

For me, that meant recognizing that these feelings of lack and of failure are not realities in my life, but fears that I have about my life. Big ass difference there–HUGE!  Eckhart Tolle writes about this in his book, Stillness Speaks, and I recommend it as an awesome Life Design resource for you!

So, I successfully shifted my focus, not on the thoughts I had, but on to the person that I am.  Then the thoughts became experiences, much like looking out the window in your car and seeing the images pass by as you move on.

Try that out, okay?  Then sit with how you feel. And then of course, ask yourself the question I believe we all need to be asking ourselves several times per day…