Jun 102013

Often in my work with adults, I help them to reclaim some of the characteristics that were lost from childhood, such as the capacity to play with abandon, to be completely engaged in the present moment, to not care what others think of us, to dance because it feels good being unaware of whether or not it looks good, and to have a temper tantrum when it all gets too much. Now, I know that in reality, we have to learn how to not have temper tantrums in a grocery stores – but why can’t we have one in the privacy of our home? Intentional temper tantrums are a great way to get the excess energy out.

Words are like that too. Children don’t have much of a filter when it comes to speaking. They will tell you “I think you’re pretty” one moment and “I hate you!” the next. In our socialization into adulthood, we necessarily learn how to filter, and to set boundaries on our own behavior. The problem is we learn to contain too much of our natural impulses, so we cage in both the harmful and the helpful – we eek out both the “I hate you” and “I love you.” And in that process we limit our pain but also our joy as well as the pain and joy we might elicit in others.

All of us want more joy and less suffering. If you want more joy and more sweet feeling in your life, one path to that is to soften the restraint of your connective and joyful impulses, which actually may be pushed so far underground that you might not even be aware of them. This is part of the practice of mindfulness and embodiment – to come into contact with our sweet impulses and to develop practices that encourage loving impulse.

Today, I encourage you to notice others while looking for the good. Did your husband do something kind and thoughtful? Tell him how much you appreciate it. Tell your wife she’s beautiful, sexy, smart, etc. And let not your words of grace be reserved for your loved ones. Give them liberally out to strangers. Did your server give you great service? Tell him. Does the clerk have a sweet smile? Tell her. Do you like the way someone’s dressed? Share it. Does the stranger in the elevator smell good? Speak it.  Notice with a kind eye because we are all far too often unseen in the world. So, I dare you to practice this for one day. Give out compliments with abandon. Notice the reactions in the receiver and the gift you give when your words of kindness reach the ears and heart of another human being. Notice, too, how you feel inside after a day of giving others the gift of noticing and complimenting. Kindness breeds kindness and love breeds love. When we let our words speak the language of love, we feel the love within our own hearts. So if you want more love, give more love.

May your day be filled with beautiful connections and words of grace and kindness.

clips words dumbledoor

Sabrina Santa Clara / Authentic Alchemy x3
Spiritual Counseling ~ Temecula, CA

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