Just Like Me

20374a03b025ee1a540c3a53b7022ea1I heard the phrase this week, “Just Like Me” in reference to not judging others. When we’re having a conflict with someone, try to remember these things:

  • The other person wants to be happy, just like me.
  • The other person loves and wants to spend time with their family, just like me.
  • The other person experiences pain and suffering, just like me.
  • The other person sometimes speaks before thinking, just like me.
  • The other persons sometimes procrastinates, just like me.
  • The other person sometimes does stupid things, just like me.

I know all too well, this is much easier said than done. I often end up writing what I need to learn, so I wrote this post for Psychology Today called, Love Yourself More by Judging Others Less.

What I Wish People Knew About Depression

Barbara Markway:

This is so important, I had to reblog it!

Originally posted on Therese J. Borchard:

robin-williamsSomeone recently asked me to write on what I wish people knew about depression, in light of Robin William’s suicide. Here’s my response.

I wish people knew that depression is complex, that it is a physiological condition with psychological and spiritual components, and therefore can’t be forced into any neat and tidy box, that healing needs to come from lots of kinds of sources and that every person’s recovery is different.

I wish people knew the depression doesn’t happen in a vacuum and is part of a intricate web of biological systems (nervous, digestive, endocrine, respiratory), that depression is about the gut as well as the brain, the thyroid and the nerves, that we would have better health in this country if we approached depression with a holistic view.

I wish people understood that untreated depression can increase the risk of developing other illnesses, that a 2007 Norwegian study found…

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Building Safeness: How to get intimate with our inner critic

Barbara Markway:

I haven’t been blogging much lately, but wanted to share this article I found. I like this line, from it, “Like all relationships, our relationship with our inner critic is complicated.” So true!

Originally posted on Ottawa Mindfulness Clinic:

chive heart

We all want to feel safe. It’s important. When we feel safe, we feel confident and more willingly open ourselves to new experiences. In fact, feeling safe leads to the willingness to take risks – to risk being known, being seen, loving and feeling loved. As we encounter the world in all its various ways of showing us what being safe means, we learn to open and close our hearts (and minds) when we feel respected or rejected. Paul Gilbert¹, the developer of Compassion Focused Therapy, uses the term “safeness” to describe the experience of being safe. It’s different from “safety” or “safety-seeking” which tend to be what we do when we are engaged in the threat evaluation/response processes.

There are many things in our environment that we have learned are safe and many we have learned are unsafe. Hot stoves, fast-moving traffic, dark alleys and the like are easy to discern in…

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Forgive Yourself

I don’t know if I continue, even today, always liking myself. But what I learned to do many years ago was to forgive myself. It is very important for every human being to forgive herself or himself because if you live, you will make mistakes- it is inevitable. But once you do and you see the mistake, then you forgive yourself and say, ‘well, if I’d known better I’d have done better,’ that’s all. So you say to people who you think you may have injured, ‘I’m sorry,’ and then you say to yourself, ‘I’m sorry.’ If we all hold on to the mistake, we can’t see our own glory in the mirror because we have the mistake between our faces and the mirror; we can’t see what we’re capable of being. You can ask forgiveness of others, but in the end the real forgiveness is in one’s own self. I think that young men and women are so caught by the way they see themselves. Now mind you. When a larger society sees them as unattractive, as threats, as too black or too white or too poor or too fat or too thin or too sexual or too asexual, that’s rough. But you can overcome that. The real difficulty is to overcome how you think about yourself. If we don’t have that we never grow, we never learn, and sure as hell we should never teach.

– Maya Angelou

 

 

 

Duck Meditation

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Tara Brach’s podcast on Equanimity: A Heart That is Ready for Anything kept me company this afternoon while I sat at home going through an entire Kleenex box nursing a cold.

She read what she called a duck meditation, and I just looked up the source. It’s a poem that was published in The New Yorker on October 4, 1947. I wanted to share it with you, along with a personal note at the end.

 

 

The Little Duck

By Donald C. Babcock

Now we are ready to look at something pretty special.
It is a duck riding the ocean a hundred feet beyond the surf.
No, it isn’t a gull.
A gull always has a raucous touch about him.
This is some sort of duck, and he cuddles in the swells.
He isn’t cold, and he is thinking things over.
There is a big heaving in the Atlantic,
And he is part of it.
He looks a bit like a mandarin, or the Lord Buddha meditating under the Bo tree.
But he has hardly enough above the eyes to be a philosopher.
He has poise, however, which is what philosophers must have.
He can rest while the Atlantic heaves, because he rests in the Atlantic.
Probably he doesn’t know how large the ocean is.
And neither do you.
But he realizes it.
And what does he do, I ask you. He sits down in it.
He reposes in the immediate as if it were infinity—which it is.
That is religion, and the duck has it.
He has made himself a part of the boundless, by easing himself into it just where it
touches him.

***

It’s been a month of many waves, the biggest of which was Greg’s Mom dying two weeks ago. She had been ill for awhile so it wasn’t a surprise, but it’s hard nonetheless. Both of us getting sick right afterward–Greg last week, me this week–hasn’t helped matters, but all in all I think we’re both being compassionate with ourselves and with each other. I’ve had you all in my heart even though I haven’t been around online very much.

***

Image found on etsy.com

Miracles #tinyhearts

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After all, I don’t see why I am always asking for private, individual, selfish miracles when every year there are miracles like white dogwood. –Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Miracles, in the sense of phenomena we cannot explain, surround us on every hand: life itself is the miracle of miracles. –George Bernard Shaw

Miracles come in moments. Be ready and willing. –Wayne Dyer

Miracles are a retelling in small letters of the very same story which is written across the whole world in letters too large for some of us to see. –C.S. Lewis

A gentle word, a kind look, a good-natured smile can work wonders and accomplish miracles. –William Hazlitt

Miracles are not contrary to nature, but only contrary to what we know about nature. –Saint Augustine

Seeing, hearing, feeling, are miracles, and each part and tag of me is a miracle. –Walt Whitman

Prosperity #tinyhearts

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Friends, February is almost over, and I am running out of hearts. I think sometime I’ll try to make some of my own clay hearts so I can add whatever words I want. When I started this series I was sleeping really poorly and waking up at 4:30 in the morning and posting then. I found out I woke someone up  because their computer beeped when my post came through (she swears she was awake anyway). I’ve gradually posted later and later, and right now it is evening. We’ve just come back from the gym and are going to watch a Seinfeld episode. (And in case you read yesterday’s post, Lily is going to the vet tomorrow.)

I really don’t think about the word prosperity very much, but I do like this quote I found.

We cannot seek achievement for ourselves and forget about progress and prosperity for our community… Our ambitions must be broad enough to include the aspirations and needs of others, for their sakes and for our own. –Cesar Chavez

This was my first post in the #tinyheart series: Hearthstones.