If You Want to be Happy

“If you want others to be happy, practice compassion.  If you want to be happy, practice compassion.”

–Dalai Lama

Picture the last time you helped a baby take her first steps.  She stood up, wobbled a bit, and fell.  Her efforts warmed your heart.  You were happy with each of her awkward movements and encouraged her with every emotion in you.  Not once did you say, “Why can’t you walk yet?”  Nor did you say, “Hurry up!” or “You can’t do anything right!”

Yet, how many times in our impatience with ourselves do we berate ourselves with an internal monologue of hostile and negative static?  Do we know how much better we feel when we are encouraging and polite to ourselves?

Treating ourselves with compassion helps us to challenge our own self-criticisms and take compassion into our everyday experiences.

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