I have developed the series to help you reduce stress, inspire you and motivate you with your goals and new year resolutions. Be sure to add your name and email at the end of the article to join the free 5 part email series. It starts on New Years Day! I give personal tips, strategies and insights from my personal life and career and I am sure it will help you rise to new heights in 2017.
Are you suffering through a relationship break up, have money problems, lost a job or, having trouble at work?
Are you suffering when the kids getting into trouble at school?
Are you suffering from procrastinating, have irrational fears or repetitive worrying thoughts?
All of the above concerns are stressors and can cause you or someone you care about to suffer in some way. However, there is something you can do to alleviate the suffering of acute or chronic stress. You can end all the suffering and heartache.
Life is unpredictable. Sometimes, everything flows along beautifully and other times, it feels like everyone and everything is out to get us. Everything feels like it is falling apart. Everything is suddenly hard. Everything is a hassle. And, every one of us goes through times like this. No-one, is immune, not me, not you, no-one.
But, the more we help each other through these times, the less suffering there is, the easier it becomes to get through that hard time. And, the suffering dissipates.
We all want to be happy. I want to be happy, you want to be happy and we all want to be free from suffering. This is the heart of Buddhism.
Thousands of years ago, Buddha discovered the truth about suffering and its causes. He spent six years committed to uncovering the method to end all suffering. Buddha discovered, there is an end to suffering, it can happen to all people, from anywhere at any time. The key to ending any suffering is to remove all desire, ill will and ignorance.
Compassion by definition literally means, ‘to suffer together’. When practicing compassion for yourself and others, you therefore, remove all desire, ill will and ignorance for the suffering. Have you noticed when you see someone hurting, the pull inside you to stop their suffering, you feel motivated to do something to help this person and relieve their suffering.
While empathy and altruism are similar, they are not the same as compassion. You can have empathy for someone without being motivated to help the person or end their suffering. You can help someone through altruism but, this doesn’t always equate to being motivated by compassion.
Neuroscience has uncovered an innate basis for compassion. The instinct of compassion has shown ‘the heart rate to slows down, the secretion of oxytocin (the ‘bonding hormone’)’, and ‘regions of the brain linked to empathy, caregiving and feelings of pleasure light up, which often results in our wanting to approach and care for other people’ (Ekman 2010).
As explained above, the practice of compassion removes the desire of ill will and ignorance towards yourself and others. The heart of Buddhism is to end suffering. By practicing the Loving Kindness Mantra, is to focus your attention on loving kindness toward yourself, those close and similar to you, those who are dissimilar and even those who have hurt you or that you don’t even know. To chant the Loving Kindness Mantra is to focus on compassion for all people in the world.
By deliberately practicing compassion in this way, the brain responds by secreting the feel good hormone, oxytocin, making you feel good, empathic and enjoying the pleasurable effect of compassion and meditation.
Subsequently, we become more aware of how our brain works, and aware of actively cultivating compassion, focusing our attention on compassionate thinking, compassionate feelings and compassionate behaviours throughout meditation and our day ahead.
In other words, you stop suffering from stress, cope with the situation and continue to be happy and experience love and joy. Notice how the Dalai Lama is always smiling and happy? You can and will experience similar feelings of peace, happiness and joy in your life, when you practice the art of compassion and loving kindness. Are you ready to feel happy again? Are you ready for a Happy New Year?
To learn more about the Loving Kindness Mantra & meditation and heaps more sign up to my new five part email series starting on New Year’s Day! Begin 2017 on a high note. Feel great, and stay motivated to achieve your “resolutions” and goals in 2017. – Update: Sign-ups are now closed but you may be interested in the personal life coaching course program
You can now experience coaching online. Click here to hear how it works.