Friday, December 20, 2013

Reverb 13: Day 19-- Practicing compassion and quiet

1. The Buddha said, “You, yourself, as much as anybody else in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.” In the past year, I have been on a mission to understand and practice self-compassion, which is sometimes defined as "extending compassion to one's self in instances of perceived inadequacy, failure, or general suffering," and what I have learned has made me realize that this practice is at the heart of everything. 
How will you practice self-compassion?
2. Personality | Were you an extrovert or an introvert this year?  Why?  Is that normal for you?  Or a switch from previous years?

1. This is hard for me -- and, I suspect, for many. I am far, far harder on myself than anyone else could possibly be, and that little judge in my head who comments  on my shortcomings can be a big pain-in-the-ass. 
He's gotten quieter, however, and I try not to listen to his rantings, but it takes work. One way I learned to practice self-compassion this year is by looking into a mirror and focusing on my left eye, and saying, "I love you, Beth..." several times. I know how corny that sounds...but it works. Warts and all, I tell myself that I am loved. It helps to practice active gratitude for loving friends and family who accept you as you are. It helps to say gratitude prayers to the wide beautiful sky and sun and moon and trees, and to ask the angels to help, to stand by you, to wrap you up in their love. 
When you love yourself and are not actively judging your perceived shortcomings, you are free to practice kindness and compassion to others as well. And that helps everyone.
2. My Myers-Briggs result has long been INFP. That I score can come very close to an E score, depending on what I am involved in and actively doing -- especially when I was in jobs that required a great deal of social interaction.  But I always needed the down time, the contemplation and solitude and quiet, especially after actively being engaged with groups.
By nature  I am an introvert, and definitely was one this year as I spent long hours sitting in a recliner with my foot up, reading or thinking or knitting or watching television or talking with my honey, who also is an introvert. Our camping trips were quiet times, mostly, with the two of us and the kitties sharing our little trailer and reading or napping or talking or enjoying the scenery where we were camping.  I don't see this changing much in 2014.

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