I just returned from a week of training with my mentor, Jack Canfield and 80 other people committed to human potential. I am on the "training high" as they call it after you get out of one of these types of seminars. But, what causes that training high. Well, or one week, I was able to serve and help others; I was listened to; I was a shoulder for others to cry on; others offered me love, compassion and support and, I received hundreds of hugs. For one week, each of us was listened to and accepted just as we were. No one needed more or less. There was no concern about being right or wrong. It was simply enough to be and stay in a space with your heart open.
I teach others to always keep your heart open, but that is so much easier said than done. I often times talk about how loving I am only to a moment later experience a feeling of anger or annoyance at another person. There are two proven ways to keep your heart open. The first one (and really the only one, as the second is derived from this one) is to remain in a state of gratitude. The more grateful you feel, the more your heart opens. When you can look around you and only see blessings, your heart cannot help but to stay open. You can be grateful for anything. For the ability to see, hear, touch. You can be grateful for people in your life; flowers, pets, nature. I live near the ocean and have a daily ritual of watching the sunset. The way I feel when the sun sinks into the water is indescribable. The whole time I am watching it, I am listing all of the things I am grateful for in that day. Gratitude is not just the key - it is everything. When you are in a state of being grateful, your heart is as open as it can get. And, when your heart is open, more and more flows into your life.
The second way to keep your heart open is focused on how to release negative feelings towards other people. One of the things that can quickly pull us out of a state of gratitude is our perception of other people's actions (and the meaning we assign to these actions). First of all, all actions are neutral. An action is simply an action. Each of us give actions meaning. Getting flowers is a neutral action - you provide meaning (value) to that action. Someone hanging up on you is also just a neutral action - again, you provide the meaning to that action. These meanings are derived from past experiences which have led to expectations. Let's take the example of someone forgetting your birthday (or Valentine's Day, since that is coming up). The action is forgetting a special date. The meaning is what you give it. You can say, "Someone did not care enough about me to remember this special day", in which case you would feel sad or disappointed. Or, you can say, "someone I care about, who I know cares about me, forgot a day that was special to me, I wonder what is going on with them". In this case, you may feel worried or concerned. Same action, two different emotional outcomes based on what meaning you gave the action. The key to dealing with others is to understand that each person is doing the best they can with the skills and abilities they have. That is not to make excuses, but rather to create compassion. And, by creating this sense of compassion, it brings you back into a state of gratitude. Gratitude that you have learned and now know more than that and can be in a place of compassion rather than judgment.
So, as Valentine's Day approaches, I urge each of you to walk around this week with your hearts open. Stay in a place of gratitude for the love that is all around you at every moment. The sun shining down on you is an act of love. Each person who passes you and smiles is an act of love. Be grateful for each of those (and more will easily come). And, for those that may not be a pleasure to be around, remember to come from a place of compassion and move right along, there is always a new person to interact with right around the corner.
Hi! Welcome to my blog, Lunch with Cinderella. I love writing about my life experiences and the fact that they may help spur some cool experiences of your own. If you are here, leave a comment... I read them all and love hearing from you!
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