Compassion for Yourself

Perspective

As we come close to the end of 2021 let’s not browbeat ourselves for all of the things we did not do. Rather, let’s take a peak at some of our favourite ordinary things that we did do this year. A bit like a mind map of what we enjoyed; what we are pleased to have done; the occasions we spent with favourite people; the books we devoured; new recipes we tried; what did we learn; any mishaps; adventures and so on. It is hard to be free of ourselves, especially our judgemental selves. Natural enough that we judge others but we are even worse critics of our own so-called failings.

This morning I read a wonderful poem by James Crews. It came my way from my poet friend, Janice, and it goes like this:

Self Love by James Crews

Treat yourself as an honored guest
in your own home. Sweep the floors,
whisking loose hairs and crumbs
into the dustpan, clearing cobwebs
as if you were about to arrive here
for the first time. Stoke the fire
in the wood stove, stacking logs
of birch and maple, whose bark
curls into flames that will warm
the whole house as you step inside
your body, learning to love its shape
like never before. Offer yourself
the wedge of brie you’ve been keeping
at the back of the fridge, pop open
whatever bottle you’ve been saving
for the moment you finally become
your own dream date, your own
special occasion. Now sit at the table
set for one, and feast on a simple
meal of bread and cheese, relishing
each taste of this new life, which has
always been waiting inside you.

Experiment

What fun to experiment a little this New Year and see if we can each find a way- a small ritual perhaps to start or end our day that brings tenderness and kindness to ourselves and thus to the people around us. Kindness is contagious too.

Personally, I am contemplating a few lovely ways to put this in place in my own life and I will tell you about it next week. The banner photo is from my friend’s Japanese Tea House. And if we can take that idea into the new year that each day is the first morning –  a clean slate – we may cultivate days of tenderness, joy, curiosity, surprise, and meaning.  And for once in our lives stop evaluating ourselves only by what we have accomplished or not accomplished. Instead, we can be mindful to do each thing that we do wholeheartedly and compassionately and notice all of the things working in our favour.

2022 holds the possibility of a very good year: beauty, truth, love, joy. Sadness too. Moments of everything.

Notes

1:) May this be a new year of discovery. A recognition that we will never get everything done but a determination to take time for what matters most, including moodling time. A time to notice that the “interruption” may have turned out to be the hi-light of our day.

2:) Always I wish for your good health, and enough of everything you need, including loving people.

3:) It is with deep gratitude that I thank you for stopping by here. It is an honour and a privilege to meet you here each week. Thank you and warmest wishes, Trudy

PS Thanks to Patricia for creating my favorite Anthem on metal.

10 replies
    • T Boyle
      T Boyle says:

      I was grateful to read your selection, today, dear Janice. I knew my topic and your poem was perfect. Many many thanks! May we all “Keep on ringing the bells that still can ring.” warmly, Trudy

      Reply
  1. Pat Scanlan
    Pat Scanlan says:

    Hi Trudy. Wonderful poem and as usual your thoughts inspire. And I am thinking deeply about accomplishments or non accomplishments right now. That has been my yardstick for the past three weeks and, as I have not accomplished much, I have been beating myself up a bit. Self love is important .

    Reply
    • T Boyle
      T Boyle says:

      Thanks so much Pat. Firstly, no beating yourself up. Secondly, accomplishments for me include drawing a hedgehog for my granddaughter. Or taking the time to spot three things in nature that bring me joy – actually, simply remembering to notice. Taking time to visit a friend. Those are the wonderful things I am wanting to remember. As for you, you take time to send encouraging words to many people. How could it get any better. Warmest wishes, Trudy

      Reply
  2. Mary
    Mary says:

    Thanks Trudy and Happy New Year to you. Love the idea of a ritual to look at accomplishments. Presently in Campbell River, BC (near your old stomping ground) with family. Such a wonderful time – paying attention to the fact we got here safely, celebrated Xmas with a 3 year old (amazing imagination) and her wonderful parents, mountains/trees covered in snow (very magical), the opportunity to love and be loved despite our, well my, cracks!! Love and many, many thanks for your weekly posts and your many accomplishments that I have benefitted from in this past year. Happy 2022. Mary

    Reply
    • T Boyle
      T Boyle says:

      Thank you dear Mary. Your encouraging words are gifts to me. So happy to hear that you have had such a lovely Christmas time on the opposite coast. I have lots to say about cracks because I have so many. And I come to learn that the cracks contribute to who we are. And isn’t it wonderful that we are loved in spite of them. Safe travels on your return trip and a Happy 2022 to you and your loved ones. Hugs all around. Trudy

      Reply
  3. Karen Cain
    Karen Cain says:

    Thank you, once more for your uplifting words which I always appreciate. Even more now, while I am ‘in the trenches’ of 24/7 caregiving.
    Happy New Year dear Trudy. . Each moment to moment something new.

    Reply
    • T Boyle
      T Boyle says:

      Dear Karen: you are such an inspiration to me always. You truly are most thoughtful to send your kind words here. They mean alot. May you continue to have the strength and the courage to do what you need to do. And may 2022 bring some unexpected and delightful surprises your way. Gentle hugs, Trudy

      Reply

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