Last blog we explored increasing our awareness of unhelpful habits and working with curiosity, rather than judgement, to replace them with more helpful habits. I was interested to read that Megan Watterson considers curiosity to be a form of compassion. This is so true! Rather than be critical or judgmental of yourself and others you can instead bring a sense of curiosity to whats happening. When judgment of myself and others comes up I try to remember to let it go with curiosity and a helpful slogan like "Oh my funny mind - there it goes again'. This helps me prevent further judgement.
Last week I lost my wallet, complete with credit cards, cash, driver's licence and other things! I had the opportunity to be aware of my self-critical, destructive habit as I was tempted to go into panic mode!
I was aware that the inner voice, the destructive one on my right shoulder start up 'How could you be so stupid and irresponsible, Someone was going to take off with all my money, steal my identity. Once again, I was on the way to working myself into a nervous wreck.
As my friend Shadi reminds me - Curiosity rather than judgment is so useful. How are any of those judgmental, fearful thoughts of any use? No! And as Byron Katie says they are simply not true. So often we head to that fear of the future when there is simple no need. Everything is perfectly ok when we bring ourselves back into the present moment. Our fear and worry exist in times that don't. - the future that has not come yet and the past that has already gone. So some breaths back to the present and curiosity needed here.
So I remembered to be curious and use the formula I have been finding useful.
1. ACCEPT the feeling - fear and stress are happening
a). UNHELFUL REACTION.............
This is terrible, I am in suck trouble, I am so stupid....Letting that destructive attacking voice take over.
b). SUPPRESSION THE FEELING
Ignoring the anxiety. Instead accept and Remember it has come as a reminder to .....A blog that might be useful is stress as a friend.
2. BREATH and tune into the kind, encouraging angel voice
3. Kindly ask ....What do I need? (to be of benefit)
I need to give myself what is missing - the encouragement and kindness! (I would give it to a friend, so why not give it to myself?) Again remembering Brene Brown wise words 'Talk to yourself like you would to someone you love'.
So, I tuned into and turned up that kind friendly, angel voice gave myself some kind, friendly encouragement. I said to myself 'that can happen - it doesn't mean that I am irresponsible, or stupid, worry is not going to help, As Lama Marut says worry is never any use. If you can do something about a concern, do it and don't worry. If you cant do anything about it, don't worry.
This kind talk meant I could get on with what I needed to do - look for the wallet and suspend my credit cards. Would you believe my wallet turned up 2 evenings later. It had fallen off my lap onto the road next to the driver's side door. A kind passer by had placed it on the bonnet of the car near the windscreen. Amazingly the wallet travelled to and from Glen Waverley and then onto Carlton where one of Alice's friends found it while helping her unpack the car. I felt very grateful for everything including my wonderful teachers and the 'be kind to me' lesson.
Here are some self talk slogans I find helpful to replace some of those unhelpful attack ones. Maybe you will find them helpful too.
1. When things go wrong..............(I have lost my wallet!)
Turn up that kind, encouraging voice .......
And of course remember to be that kind, encouraging friend to others too! As Pema Chodron says 'Be kinder to yourself. And then let your kindness flood the world'.
We will explore some more helpful slogans next blog.
With love and my very best well wishes to you all