Kindness in Rough Times
By Jeanie Marshall
As we near the half way point of this remarkable year 2012, this is the perfect time to reflect on kindness, appreciation, and harmony.
If you have experienced these times as rough, the roughness can remind you to be kind. Alternatively, the roughness can prompt a reaction of a sharp barb.
Kindness is a remarkable dynamic to give your attention to. Your attention to a thing or idea expands the thing or idea.
Sometimes when you try to have more of something in your life, you first become more aware of its lack or its opposite. Whenever that happens to you, simply shift your attention to the positive aspect of what you want.
For example, you may yearn for others to be kind to you but they are not (or just one is not). So, you begin to think about kindness and how much you want it in your life. Then you experience unkindness. The best thing to do is to take a deep breath and relax. This unkind experience is only a response from the universe that you're more focused on getting rid of unkindness or on lack of kindness than you are on kindness. Redirect your attention to kindness.
As you're breathing and relaxing, affirm your intention and commitment to be kind. Be kind to yourself. Be kind to others. Applaud, encourage, and notice kind acts, regardless of who does them. Perform acts of random kindness. Such thoughts and actions will tip the balance, and your life will be filled with kindness because you'll attract it to you.
While becoming more aware of kindness doesn't guarantee that you'll immediately have more kindness, appreciation, and harmony in your life, regular attention to kindness as practice will draw it to you more and more.
It's very interesting to me that many people dismiss the importance of feeling good or being kind and settle for being annoyed or unkind, even if only MILDLY annoyed or SLIGHTLY unkind. I've certainly experienced my own moments of annoyance and unkindness; they don't feel good! If it has become familiar to you to be less than happy, I suggest you find ways to make happiness more familiar and frequent.
I find that those with regular personal development practices, such as meditation or working with affirmations, are generally happier in their lives. People with regular empowering practices also tend to be happier. Happiness is one "good" feeling. There are many other good feelings. The many other good feelings are wonderful so that you experience variety and movement. The movement from one good feeling to another good feeling is energizing.
You won't "always" be happy; you won't "always" feel good; you won't "always" be in a state of appreciation or harmony. But if you know how to move your feelings from one to another, you'll find it easier to move from a not-good feeling to a good feeling.
So, my encouragement to you is to find ways to feel good on a regular basis, at least several times a day. Just make this a frequent practice and you'll find yourself feeling better and better.
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