The Journey to Gentleness

Hello and welcome back as we go through the journey to find gentleness. I hope the negative appraisal went well for you, that you discovered things about yourself upon which to improve…

Today, I am going to talk about compassion and forgiveness, and how they contribute to your gentleness. Compassion is defined as the ability to have sympathy or sorrow for another’s plight, usually accompanied with a desire to help the other person.

Compassion is a great strength to have because it softens your heart, it brings you to gentleness. As you consider those who have hurt you in some way, see them as wounded people. Once you see their wounds, apply compassion just as you would for any sick person.

Keep revisiting and revisiting that recognition of the other person’s wounds. Offer compassion and before you know it, forgiveness will gently fall upon you one day when you least expect it. Just as you would for anyone else, have compassion for your wounds; hold yourself in compassion and allow forgiveness for yourself to flow in.

Doing a self-appraisal, both negative and positive, and then identifying the wounds that exist, is a powerful way to bring yourself to gentleness. The act of forgiveness is icing on the cake… Once you forgive, you will know gentleness like never before, along with great peace, happiness, and freedom.

I wish you well on your search for gentleness.

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In Search of Quiet Gentleness

Good morning to each of you! Thank you for your steadfast following of my blog! I hope you find it of use to you. As I promised in my last post, I’m going to spend a couple of days talking about the quietness found in gentleness.

The first step in the search for that gentleness is to envision it. See in your mind’s eye what gentleness would look like for you… a soft and quiet place in which to rest. See a less harried mind and heart than what you currently have today. Take the time to see it before you start…

Once you have a vision of what you want your gentleness to look like, then you can start on the process to get to that point. The first thing to do is to develop willingness… willingness to see the world from a new perspective, with new eyes. Develop willingness to have a one degree shift in your thinking. When you do this, you open the way for major things to shift inside of you.

The next step we’re going to undertake is that of performing a self-appraisal. This will yield you great information about yourself. The point of doing this is to locate yourself in the world, to determine the ways that you are so you can alter your behavior, actions, and thoughts to become who you want to be… that gentle and peaceful person you envisioned.

Start your self-appraisal by becoming willing to look honestly at yourself. Next, get writing stuff ready. Then, make a list of all your positive traits. List out what you see as those traits, as well as things others have told you. Include your skills and talents in this list. If you are having trouble identifying your positive traits, google positive character traits and use what comes up as a guide to possible traits.

Once you have this list completed, spend a day reveling in it, being in awe of who you are in your essence, at your core. Then, take the past three-day period and list out every kind and considerate thing you did for others and for yourself during that time period.

Now I’d like you to just “be” with those lists, soaking in deeply the goodness of your soul. Do this for a couple of days. Then, we will continue… Join me again on Monday, and we will go further into the self-appraisal… We’ll continue with our search for gentleness…

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The Art of Gentleness

Good morning and hello to each of you after a few days of silence. I have been flying to workshops during that time, so I apologize for the lack of posts. Today’s search term I resonated with was “the art of gentleness.” I think in our haste to get things done, we forget to show gentleness.

In fact, it is more that we forget, or get too busy, to “be” gentleness. It’s a state of being, gentleness is. It occurs when we are working from, operating from, our heart. It flows naturally when we are “in” our heart.

How do you get into that state of gentleness? Well, it starts with having a good feeling about yourself, holding yourself in your heart with good feelings. When you are feeling good about yourself, you can generally feel good about others, as well. When in this space, you feel softness for others, and you can express your gentleness through such acts as acknowledging another, complimenting someone, or offering comfort.

It all starts with a good feeling about yourself. To get to a good place when thinking about yourself, list out all your positive attributes, your positive qualities. Then, consider the past month and write down, list out, all the positive and kind things you did during that time period. Include the kindness you showed yourself. Let yourself “be” with those things you listed until you realize your goodness.

The thing about gentleness is that, often you can show it to another, but you don’t to yourself. Maybe you don’t think to offer yourself gentleness, or perhaps you feel you are not worthy of it. The anecdote to these two things is to first take the time to think about it, and resolve to think about it for yourself more often.

If you don’t offer yourself gentleness because you feel unworthy, stop. Offer yourself compassion for that wounded person you are, for in my belief, you must be wounded if you do not feel yourself worthy. We are each worthy. You are worthy simply because you are a human being on this earth. Look at your lists again of your positive traits and of all the good things you’ve done in the past month and allow yourself to consider your worthiness.

Once that settles within you, then feel some gentleness for yourself. Feel a soft spot in your heart for yourself. Remember to stop and do this several times a day until it becomes a habit. Calendar it if you must, just remember to do it. Soon, it will flow naturally.

How do you get to a space of gentleness? How do you express gentleness to yourself? Leave a comment and let us know.

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The Art of Gentleness

Good morning and happy almost-New-Year. My cat Izzy is walking back and forth in front of me, looking for pets, reaching out her paw, asking for more, so I pet her with great gentleness. She is so precious. She brightens my life.

This morning, I wanted to write about gentleness of heart, gentleness of spirit. I wanted to talk about gentleness to others as we interact with them and to ourselves as we grow and change. I feel light in my heart when I am gentle with others, when I treat them in a kind, serene and patient way.

The same goes for me when I treat myself with gentleness, with kindness, patience, and serenity. I am more gentle with others than I am with myself, as I forget a lot of the time to be patient with my progress, my attempts to learn, grow, and heal. Yet, when I show gentleness to myself, I progress further than when I am being unkind and impatient.

Bed of Gentleness

This is the image from my book, Opening the Gates of the Heart: A Journey of Healing. The verse is: “Oh, could we not treat ourselves with great gentleness as we go through life learning, growing, healing? Would we then be more gentle with others, too?”

How do I show gentleness to others? It truly is as simple as being kind and serene… patient with them. When I am in that space, I am quiet and assured in my heart, and that is reflected in my actions, my behavior, my words, and my tone of voice. I am relaxed and others, in turn, become more relaxed as well.

And how do I show gentleness to myself? I use a lot of self-talk with quiet, reassuring words that I am okay, that I am doing fine. I show myself kindness and patience, and I act in a serene manner. This leads to a gentler way to approach my thoughts, my behaviors, and my actions.

Do you treat others and yourself with gentleness? How does that feel for you? Leave a comment and let us know.

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Be Gentle with Yourself in Sobriety

Bed of Gentleness

Be gentle with yourself as you move forward in your sobriety. This is so very important, so listen… 🙂 We get so mired in beating ourselves up and criticizing ourselves, that we are beaten down before we even start. 

This is so self-defeating. It does nothing except put a damper on our sobriety. It makes us wrong, rather than human. Instead, be as gentle as a bed of ivy…

This is especially true for our work with our performance appraisal. As we look at our shortcomings, we want to be especially gentle with ourselves. I’m not saying we excuse ourselves from our bad behavior, but we can still be gentle with ourselves while we become responsible for ourselves.

We also need to be gentle with others, just as we are with ourselves. Be like that bed of ivy – soft, caressing, swaying in the breeze.

Remember to treat others as we would like to be treated and don’t forget to be gentle with yourself! This is necessary on our path to peace…

Today, practice being gentle to yourself and see how that feels.

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Show Gentleness to Yourself as You Heal and Grow

Bed of Gentleness

There is nothing quite like showing yourself gentleness to speed along your healing and growth processes.

It will go a long way toward helping you to overcome the desire to beat yourself up, or to criticize yourself, not only during the appraisal portion of your journey, but throughout your journey.

Cut yourself some slack. I’m not advocating you pat yourself on the back for unkind and uncaring behaviors, but I am saying to allow yourself to be human with failings.

The thing about your failings, your short-comings is that you can choose to change them into victories, lessons to learn.

I am advocating you take a long, hard, honest look at yourself, using humility to do so. And I am advocating that you show yourself gentleness as you do that looking. Beating yourself up is counter-productive.

Feeling regret or remorse over some action, words, or behavior? Be gentle; recognize that you did the best you could at the time. If you’d have known better, you would have done better.

Now you have the opportunity to change anything you did that you don’t like, or, at the very least, to get some peace from your regrets. Be gentle with yourself as you go about making those changes.

Allow yourself to slowly and gently reveal yourself to yourself and others. Showing gentleness to yourself and others is paramount as you continue on your journey to living your dream and finding peace. 

 

 

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Have You Found Inner Peace?

A Promise of Peace brings us to the conclusion of the book. And I quietly wonder if you have found inner peace, any at all, by going through the book with me this last 42 or so days. I really hope you have…

Promise of Peace

Promise of Peace

Peace. How do you know peace when it finds you? For me, it is the all-inclusion of everything we have been talking about into my senses, seeing with the eyes of my heart, and feeling a great deal of love for all beings on this Earth.

It is promised to us, if we go through the process that is defined in my book, because in doing so, we learn to love deeply. There is no desire to be in conflict with others.  When really in-tune, that includes inner conflict as well.

Does that mean we go through life in this glow? Hardly. That doesn’t happen because we’re human beings and, as such, are a caring and feeling species. Given the ever-constant changes in our lives from day-to-day, and the fact that we react with feelings and emotions, we slip temporarily from that space of centeredness and peace. 

So, what is there to do when this happens? Lament the loss of our peaceful existence. even if it was only for five minutes? No, we merely start in by looking at the situation, feeling our feelings, examining our response to situations that have arisen.

Case in point, I am in the middle of something which has the potential to affect how I conduct my life in the future, and I was stunned to realize I was playing the victim role! Wow! I thought I was past that, but it showed up very subtly. So, I am in the process of doing more self-appraising to see what is going on with me that puts me in that mindset.

At the same time, I am feeding myself positive affirmations. These tasks equate to ” taking action,” as we discussed in previous posts. Slowly, I am becoming able to see glimpses of my terror over how this new information could affect my future. How much will I get out from behind that terror to affect my own future? That is the key.

We can affect our own future by the actions we take today, in this moment. What do we do with the fear? We can recognize and feel it, acknowledge that it exists,  then walk away from it and take action, and, as needed, allow a glimpse of it again later.

We repeat this again and again until our fear subsides. I believe these issues get raised for us, so that we can take a look at core beliefs, and to heal from the destructive ones. While we do this, we remember to be gentle, kind, and tolerant with ourselves and the others around us.  And the result is, we find our center again. We find that peace again.

We even can go to it among the turmoil by distracting ourselves with a favored and cherished activity, one in which you get lost. Your peace will return as a reprieve for what you will again visit to sort out. That’s how it works for me. Maybe it will work for you, too.

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What is Kindness

“If this is not the time to be kinder and gentler to each other and to ourselves, when will it be?” This is the verse from my book, and the next topic we will be discussing today – what is kindness?

Friendly, gentle, tenderhearted, sympathetic, generous, and cordial are all terms Webster uses to define “kind,” with “kindness” being the state or habit of being kind. So that answers what is kindness…

How do you treat others with kindness? Perhaps by using many of the things we have discussed up to this point. Things like being gentle, having compassion, being willing to be kind, and having an open heart can all contribute to acts of kindness.

Having a good sense of who you are is also needed for you to be kind, both to others and to yourself. When you feel more at home with yourself, you have less need to strike out in anger, defensiveness, and fear, or to cut yourself down.

The next time you feel the urge to say a disparaging word about someone, hold that thought and allow your heart to soften. Allow in a kind thought, and say something kind instead. Become willing to do this.

In like fashion, every time you catch yourself saying unkind things to yourself about yourself, come into awareness that you are doing that. Make the choice to stop, and think something kind about yourself instead.

This all may sound easy, yet it takes consciousness and practice. When you have the urge to be unkind, or if you actually are, do a self-appraisal and examine what you were feeling at the time that prompted you to act unkindly. If you were feeling “less than,” treat yourself with compassion and gentleness.

What is kindness to you? What are the ways in which you are kind to others? How about to yourself?

 

 

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How to Find Peace with an Open Heart

As we move along in the book, one topic at a time, we come to how to find peace with an open heart. In the book, it’s called Openness of Heart.

Openness of Heart

The verse talks about how we go through life with a heart that is closed to life’s pains to protect our heart. The verse continues with, “If we allow our hearts to open, we will see things in a different light.”

“We will grow through the barriers of our heart and be able to fully experience the richness of life.” And we – you – find peace.

Along with an open heart comes an open mind. You must develop an open heart and an open mind to find peace.

How does this work? How do you come to have an open heart and mind?

You make a choice and you decide to see things in a different light. You decide to see the world and the people around you with more kindness, gentleness, and tolerance.

You begin to delight in people and their differences by opening your heart to them. Perfect example… Last weekend I was in a holiday craft show at the mobile home park where I live. The woman across the aisle from me had a table with lots of stuffed bears, around which she had placed small scarves she had knitted. There were other objects, as well.

Now, I’m not much iinto stuffed bears and the like, but I decided to look upon the wares at her table, and to notice her and them with an open heart. What I had the gift to observe was this woman, lovingly placing these scarves around the bears’ necks, then arranging and rearranging the bears and other items on her table.

The expression on her face was one of pure focus, pure love, and I was able to be a witness to that, simply by opening my heart to her and her product. It was priceless to watch her… My heart soared.

When you close your heart and mind to others, you miss out on priceless moments such as these. In fact, you miss out on peace in your soul. So, how do you find peace with an open heart and mind?

As I said, you make the decision to see with eyes of gentleness. You consciously decide you will be open-minded about what you encounter, that you will delight in someone’s differences. You consciously decide to not be fearful of their differences. Then, you view another with the eyes of the soul, viewing them as another child of the Universe, just like you.

You allow them to be different and praise the differences in them, knowing that the differences you witness add great richness to your life. You recognize that, to some, you and your expression of who you are will seem strange, and you smile at yourself when you think this, allowing you to be yourself with your strange habits. When you can do these things, you will experience peace of mind and openness of heart.

How do you open your heart, your mind, or, do you go about life with your heart and mind closed? Wouldn’t you like to experience seeing life with the eyes of your soul, being more gentle, kind, and tolerant? Try it. You’ll enjoy the feeling.

 

 

 

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The Art of Practicing Perseverance

Rolls of Perseverance is the image of the day. No inspirational sayings, no quotes about life, just a discussion about practicing perseverance, especially in the face of discouragement.

The verse in my book Opening the Gates of the Heart: A Journey of Healing talks about the discouragement I try to ward off because I have not become the person I want to be. Instead, I hold tight to that vision of what and who I want to be, and keep moving forward to achieve that vision.

For example, I strive for being a person who is consistent in my efforts with the book, and with my blogging. As you well know, I am not consistent with the latter, and yet, I want nothing more than to be so disciplined that I blog on specific days, every week. I have great difficulty getting to it, as I seem to have with some other of my efforts.

Instead of beating myself up, which is my norm, I try to just keep working toward that goal. That is all I can do. The fact is, I AM beating myself up for my inconsistency and that behavior gets me nowhere. It paralyzes me, makes me feel guilty. These thoughts about my lack of action are not useful.

In fact, I believe we each do the best we can do at any given moment. We need to remind ourselves of this when we start to self-criticize. It might be helpful to see what is behind our lack of action. Is it fear, which it often is for me? Or, is it overwhelm, which is what it is in my case involving blogging consistently. Regardless of the root cause, we can continue to practice perseverance with our efforts, until we reach the vision which we hold for ourselves. In the meantime, we can be gentle with and kind to ourselves.

As you identify ways you would like to be, just keep practicing perseverance, plugging away a bit at a time as you are able. Soon, you will reach the goal simply by taking continued action.

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