Tag Archives: care

Day 410: Learning Empathy

These recent days I have been exploring the words empathy and compassion. In my line of work, it is both a strength and a weakness to have empathy. On the one hand – empathy is what allows me to stand in the shoes of another and truly experience their position – and when I do – that motivates me to do what is needed to support them to sort out their situation. On the other hand – too much empathy can create stress and a tendency of being overbearingly responsible – where I place too much burden on me to sort things out. Another problem is when we define empathy in the sense of taking on the emotions and feelings of another – making our ‘feel’ for the other person energetic. That can cause to make stupid decisions – as action driven by energy usually means that we do something without sufficient consideration.

Thus – there it is a balance and a skill to be empathic – empathic in the sense of feeling for another, yet at the same time keeping distance, and keeping once cool – remembering that I have my own process and they have their own – and at the end of the day – they are responsible for their life. And thus – the point is not to become overwhelmed with feeling bad for another – it is rather to understand them and see where they are at. That allows me to step in and take the direction that is best for all.

I have had difficulty implementing the word empathy because I am by nature introverted. In conversations I tend to keep my focus directed inwardly – and hence it is not easy seeing the small movements that occur in the face and body language of another. And being attentive to those aspects – that is a key in living empathy. If my focus is only on myself then I will miss the signs someone is sending me that indicates to me how they feel – and no energy will be given to actively place myself in their shoes to envision for myself how it would be like for me if I would be them. Thus for me – empathy takes effort – it is not something that naturally occurs within me.

And it is not strange that empathy does not come natural to me – if I look at my education as I grew up – there was very seldom anyone sitting down with me to share the basics of how to live and apply empathy – and in school it was never mentioned. Somehow – parents believe that their children should just understand what it means to be empathic and then proceed to live it. Though – then we miss the fact that empathy is a technique – it is not a characteristic. While the reason as to why we should apply empathy has more to do with our sense of equality – the actual application of standing in the shoes of another is technical – we use our mind to place ourselves in the experience of another. In our current education system we have a serious deficit when it comes to showing kids how to put into practice spiritual techniques that will empower them and their peers. We take it for granted that our children will developed spiritually when they are fed with information about the world and other people – and we somehow believe that everyone will turn out pretty much okay at the end of the day. And that is a mistake which we now have to undo as adults by relearning the basic techniques required to create an effective social environment.

The way I see it – empathy consists of a couple of ingredients, which are the following: 1) Receptivity 2) Sensitivity 3) Imagination. Thus – in order to apply empathy we have to firstly be receptive and take in our environment. We must be open and vulnerable and allow us to see people and events without judgments, preconceived ideas or morality. If we judge what is here, empathy will be difficult to conjure – because through judgment we put ourselves in a state of superiority – on a pedestal – and to access empathy we need to stand as an equal.

Sensitivity has to do with our ability to be in touch with our environment. To put ourselves in the shoes of another we have to be able to notice the details and allow ourselves to feel the moment – and that means we have to let ourselves go. Sensitivity thus is about letting go to fully experience what is here – and not try to rationalize, theorize or observe – it about feeling reality. And if we do not allow ourselves to go there – empathy will only ever be a thought-experiment and not an actual understanding of the experience of another.

Thirdly, imagination. Sometimes empathy can be difficult because we have no reference points. An example would be war and refugees. How can I empathize with refugees and victims of war when I have absolutely no idea how it is to be in such a position? I have grown up in a safe country with constant access to the basic necessities of life – I have been protected. Am I then even able to understand what it is like to have your home blown to pieces, parts of your family killed, and then having to leave your home country for life? The only way for me to come close is to use my imagination – and also to look for similar experiences in my own life. That way I am able to get somewhat of a understanding as to what another has gone or is going through. And applying this step usually takes some time. In order to realistically imagine something – it requires a bit of effort – because what is easy to forget is the details of the experience.

These are the ingredients that I use when I apply empathy in my life – a skill that I am still practicing and that I have had great use of so far both in my personal and professional life. From my perspective – I think that life on earth would improve greatly if more people started practicing and applying empathy in their daily life.


 

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Day 438: Practical Care

The word CARE. The past week I have practiced living this word and had a couple of realizations in the process.

One point that I realized was that in living care in relation others is that the focus must be how to give/share of myself in such a way that is supportive to another. That cannot be done effectively if I hold unto my own preferences and desires. An example is the following: I sat in the dining room at work and was talking to a colleague of mine. In the past, I have not bee able to talk with this person very well, because I judged their ‘taste’ in what subjects they want to discuss as boring/uninteresting. This time however, I had my eyes set on living the word care. I began to talk with my colleague, and I deliberately opened up and shared myself in relation to topics that I knew my colleague enjoyed to talk about. Further, I asked this person questions – questions I would have normally considered boring – however now – I asked them because I knew that they enjoyed this form of communication. And this was how I applied CARE in this moment.

On a similar note, I have also during my week, when I have heard friends, colleagues or family sharing with me a issue or problem that they have encountered, pushed myself to genuinely consider and look at their difficulty/issue/problem. And then I have communicated with them, and when I have been able to, shared a perspective/solution on the point to support them. Hence, when I have lived care in my communication, what I have done is that instead of me wanting something out of the discussion/interaction, I have instead pushed myself to give and share what I could see would be supportive to the other individual.

When it comes to living CARE towards myself, I have looked at listening to and being attentive to the needs I or my human physical body has in a moment. One way that I have practiced caring for myself in a practical tangible way is through for example, when I have found myself in a state of emotion or feeling, to give myself the time, a moment, to slow down, apply self-forgiveness, make a commitment to myself, and let the reaction go. Hence, giving myself that moment to recognize where I am at, how I experience myself, and assess what would be a supportive course of action to ameliorate the experience/state, has been supportive. Especially while at work, I have found resistances towards giving myself this moment of self-introspection, due to believing/experiencing that there is too little time, too much to do, and that I have to push/will myself to continue working, else I will fall behind. Though, this experience is only an illusion, because I only need a moment to stabilize, a couple of minutes, and then, its done, and afterwards, I will be able to continue with what I was doing, however be far more effective than what I would have been if I had just let the experience continue to mull around inside of me.

I will continue to work with this word in the week to come. I want to expand my application more when it comes to practical care, which I see, is connected with my ability to see/hear what would be supportive to others, and then push myself to give that. Usually, practical care when lived in this way, in some way or another, contradicts my own self-interest in the moment, hence, it is a matter of pushing through the resistance towards giving as I would like to receive, and doing it even though I might not get what I want. Though, not getting what I want, does not necessarily mean that will lose or miss out on anything. Caring and being genuinely concerned for the well-being of another, it is has a value and a sense of fulfillment in itself. It is satisfying to do/live unto another as I would like them to do unto me, and it is satisfying to also, care for myself, and give to myself what I know is best for me.

I will return to this topic in future blog posts and share my findings when it comes to living the word CARE.


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Day 405: Practically Living Care

Today I practiced living the word CARE – and my starting point within it was that I wanted to find practical and concrete ways to live the word. I found a couple of ways to live this word that I had not considered or related to the word care.

The first thing I did was that I, when it was lunch time at work, went to the grocery store and bought some really nice coffee beans, bread, butter and liver pate. Because I really like to ground my own coffee and drink it right away after my lunch – however I tend to procrastinate going to the store and buying the coffee when I have run out of it. However, as an act of care for myself, I decided to go out and buy it as soon as I ran out of it. And because of this I could prepare a nice cup of coffee and drink as an addition to my meal.

As I shared above, I also bought bread, butter and liver pate. I did this because I have for a long time considered having a small storage of light food at work to eat during the afternoons. Usually when I get home from work I am really, really hungry, and hence it was suggested to me to eat a small portion of solid food a couple of hours after lunch. However, I had not, until today that is, realized this idea. For some reason, I had accepted and allowed myself to procrastinate and wait, and now as I write this, I can see within me, that a reason as to why I waited, was because I thought/considered that it was going to get better (by itself) at my next job.

Though, the thing is that my job, my position, will never alter or change WHO I AM at work – that is something that I will change and bring through by my decision and by living it. That is what I did today – so at roughly three o’clock – I prepared a couple of sandwiches for myself and I sat down to eat them. It was great to have some time for myself at the end of my day, to slow down, to restore my blood sugar levels, and to support myself to get through the rest of the day. And when I got home later during the evening – I was not as hungry as I use to be.

So, these might seem as some very simple points – however – for me they were acts of CARE. And I am beginning to see, more and more, that implementing words in my life, in a way that is concrete and practical, begins with changing the small, simple, rudimentary things and parts of my life – such as for example – making sure that I am adequately nurtured throughout my day by having proper access to food.

 


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Day 354: Nostalgia, Why Does It Exist?

Today, I had a moment where Nostalgia arose within me. With a sense of loss I remembered passed moments in which I had lavishly enjoyed hours of making music, which stood in stark contrast with my current lifestyle, where most of my time is spent working. Instead of remaining in that experience, I stopped myself, and I gave myself a moment to question the experience.

What is Nostalgia? Why does Nostalgia comes up within me? What is the consequence of participating in Nostalgia?

One thing that I could see clearly as I asked myself these questions was that it is not like my current life is in anyway bad, or that I lack opportunities to for example, make music. In-fact, I have ample of opportunities to pursue hobbies, and thus I could see that it was not the fault of my work that I was not making music anymore. In-fact, the thing that was standing in my way of me making more music was myself – nobody and nothing else. Surely, the conditions of my life had changed since back then, though it is still a possibility for me to pursue music creation. And this then opened up another dimension of the experience of Nostalgia, with regards to the question, what is Nostalgia?

Nostalgia, it is the negative emotion, the drug of choice, that we give to ourselves to feel inferior and less than our past. It is what we use to not have to create, live, pursue, and actively expand in our current reality HERE – because when we are in an experience of Nostalgia – the past is seemingly always better and always out of reach. However, that is not true, fact is that we are still alive, and still fully capable of creating our life and future. The function of Nostalgia is thus to justify why we should not give effort and willpower into creating ourselves and our lives – why we should wait – why it is okay to be discontent with what we have here yet still remain in a experience of longing towards what we lived and experienced in the past.

The solution to Nostalgia is thus to look at where in our lives where are not living our utmost potential, where it is that we are holding back, allowing ourselves to be limited and confined, and then in that area, push ourselves to break through and live what we see is best for ourselves. Thus, it is not about recreating the past, it is about creating the future – and making sure that we always expand, move and challenge ourselves to be the best that we can become.


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Day 299: Anxiety and Fear When I Am In The Center of Everyone’s Attention

Today a situation played out at work where I for a moment was in the center of everyone’s attention. This brought a emotion of feeling uncertainty, insecurity, and anxiety – because when I am in the center of attention – I have this tendency to think about how I am perceived and seen by others.

I have written about this point before, and also been able to change and direct this experience during a couple of instances, and now I fell, which was a bit disappointing to me. As the point was playing out, I did have a vague inner voice saying that I can correct my experience by placing my attention and focus on breath, and also apply self-forgiveness. However, that inner vague voice never materialized, as I did not act on it. And afterwards, I was sitting with this experience in myself; why did I not change, or direct this experience within me?

Hence, in this blog I am going to work with this experience further, and also clarify a couple of points to myself, and also for you, the reader as well. Firstly, what defines me is not the fall in itself, rather it is WHO I AM after the fall, and what actions I decide to walk to support myself to transcend and learn to direct the experience. Thus, in this case, I am sitting down to write out the experience, investigate it, learn from it, and eventually learn to direct it.

Secondly, I can either look at a fall as something to resent, OR, I can use a fall to my advantage – and utilize it to expand myself in my process of self-creation. This is what I am doing here through writing this blog, I am standing up within myself, saying to myself, that this experience and way of interacting with other people is not something that I wish to have as a part of my character – instead I want to be able to be in the center of attention and remain STABLE, CALM, SELF-DIRECTED, in SELF-CERTAINTY and SELF-CONFIDENCE, and be RELAXED and at EASE in my physical body. That is the vision I see for myself, and what I want to establish in my life when it comes to social interactions, and when it comes to being in the center of attention.

That being established, lets look at the specifics of this moment particular moment. I can see that the origin point, the underlying issue is in-fact self-judgment. This self-judgment is then projected unto others and takes shape in backchat such as; “What do others think about me?” – “What do others see in me?” – “Do others like me or not?” – and so forth. It also takes the shape of uncertainty, because in judging myself, I am trying to be something or someone that I hope can be accepted by another, and looking at it more deeply, actually accepted by myself.

I can see this judgment towards myself coming up when it comes to establishing relationships with others. Because, when it comes to for example, deciding to meet another, and that person does not immediately show up on time; I will have backchat come up that this person does not like me, that I have done something wrong, that I have not acted properly, that they have in some way decided to push me out of their lives because they are not content with me. Hence, this shows that on a deep level within me, I do not see or recognize my own value, I do not accept myself as being valuable. And that is why I feel so happy and positive when people seem to take a liking to me, because in my twisted self-image, I do no see myself as worthy of such a relationship.

What is the solution?

It is quite simple; practice self-acceptance and valuing myself – RECOGNIZING and SEEING the value in myself. Giving myself recognition for my strengths, skills, and abilities, and for the integrity that I have developed throughout this process. There is much more to me than I admit, a unassailable value that I have not allowed myself to embrace and stand with – as I have seen myself as flawed and imperfect. That is what must change.

So, a solution can be, that when I notice this anxiety, stress and uncertainty come up within me – that I state within myself my qualities for which I am genuinely proud – such as: Discipline, Integrity, Openness, Loyal, Curious, Investigative, Questioning, Expressive, Spontaneous, Specific, Focused, Detailed, and Structured – these are qualities that I see and recognize in myself and for which I value myself.

And thus – it is a matter of continuously stopping this self-abuse of focusing on my flaws and weaknesses, and also seeing my positive and strong sides. And then also, to accept my bad sides, to not try to hide or suppress the fact that I do have weaknesses, but to accept and embrace the entirety of me. Because suppression does not work, and real self-change cannot take place unless I allow myself to SEE what it is within me that is required to be changed and directed.

Day 245: Extending The Family Unit

If we take a look at the base programming in human beings, one deep and very much influential pattern is the characters we create and live out in relation to the family. The average human being exists within and as the understanding that the family means more than ‘strangers’ – and that it’s okay to love your family members more than someone you’ve just met, or someone that you’ve never met, that is suffering in poverty on the other side of the world. We tend to justify this line of thinking with the fuzzy logic that family is more important. Though, when we ask the question: Why is our family more important than anyone else? It’s difficult to find an answer that can stand.

familyEvery answer we produce to this question will be based on either feelings or emotions, because it’s only through valuing the physical on the basis of subjective experiences that we can create an idea that some parts of this physical reality and its inhabitants are more important than others. Though, when we look at what is here, without energy, it’s easy to see that all physical matter is equal – that suffering is suffering regardless of who it hits – that not only some but ALL deserve to live a life of dignity.

See, we might believe that our feelings are true, that only because we experience a feeling of love towards someone in our life, that this means that the person in question is more important than someone we don’t experience that feeling towards – YET – isn’t it true that we all consist of the same flesh and blood? That we all do require nurturing, and support to develop and grow as human beings? That we all have the same basic needs? That we intuitively can see, feel, and understand the discomforts and pains of others?

We have an important question to ask ourselves, and that is how did we create this world of suffering, where starvation has actually been accepted as a reality, and where children are seen as lucky to grow up in a supportive and nourishing environment? The point is hidden in plain sight – we have created this world through our value systems, where we give to some, find some worthy of our support, and others we simply reject. Let’s ask ourselves, and answer this question honestly: Is this how we would like another to treat us? Because if it isn’t, then why would we do this to another?

Unfortunately we are programmed since a young age to value and move ourselves in the world on the basis of love, on the basis of a feeling, on the basis of us seeing ourselves, and our lives as more important than the lives of others – and this has created major consequences in this world. Though, we are able to stop this, and change this world on a personal level – we’re able to step up and take responsibility and extend our family unit – and see that our real family is actually this entire physical world and reality – that no one is excluded, and that we’re only able to exclude things through a process of deceit, which we create in our minds, and that comes through as thoughts.

What is really the purpose of being on earth if we’re only going to extend ourselves to some few selected individuals, and attempt to fight, avoid, and push away everyone else? Why hold unto a feeling of love, when real love, which is the living application of caring for all, is so substantial and fulfilling? It makes no sense to hold unto our confined mind realities, we are missing out on so much – we do have the potential to create a life, and a world that is truly magnificent – and all that is required – is that we live the courage to care for all, and not only for ourselves.

I am one vote for world equality, where do you stand?

Day 238: Self-neglect – and how to correct it

A couple of awesome and inspiring interviews have been released from Eqafe in the last few days covering the subject self-neglect. Here are links to the products:

Self Neglect: How you Neglect Yourself – Atlanteans – Part 307

Self Neglect: Changing the Pattern – Atlanteans – Part 308

Self Neglect: Awareness Emerges – Atlanteans – Part 309

NeglectedWhen I listened to the interviews I was amazed, because I could clearly see how I had been neglecting myself, my body, my process, and in short myself. Before I couldn’t see my self-neglect – it had become part of me – and in this world the generally accepted way of moving through life is within and as self-neglect. In some ways it is actually demanded of each human being to neglect him or herself – neglect is a part of the survival system – where we have to neglect that which is best for all in order to survive in the world system.

The word neglect in the dictionary has the definition: Fail to care for properly

Now this definition requires us to have a clear definition of the words care and properly – because without being clear on those two words – we are not able to see when we do not CARE for a point in our world PROPERLY – and thus neglect ourselves. And that is what these interviews assisted and supported me to see – because some practical examples are given – and being shown the nature and of neglect and it comes through – it’s easier to see the energetic signature.

For example, you can find the energetic signature of self-neglect in your self/actions/living when you rush through doing the dishes, just trying to get it down as fast as possible, and leaving behind grease, and stains of food on the plates. You can find the signature when you go to the bathroom, and as you wash your hands, you do it routinely without attentively making sure your hands are clean, rubbing the soap, and making sure that your hygiene is effective. You can also spot the energy of self-neglect when you wake up in the morning, and you start that inner rush, going into the bathroom while at the same time thinking about what you are going to do, and forgetting to make your bed, or opening the window to vent musty air from your bedroom after a night of sleep.

Basically, you will find self-neglect in the areas of your life where you have a tendency to be IN YOUR MIND, in the NEXT THING you are going to do, in the NEXT project – and this you will experience as a RUSH – a constant experience of anxiety/stress/pressure – where you will justify not living in and caring for your physical reality effectively, through thinking that you do not have the time. That is the very core of self-neglect – failing to care for your physical reality because the mind reality is seen as more important.

It’s not strange that our world looks the way it looks, with the ecosystem deteriorating, the economical system falling apart, the educational system worsening by each day, when we in our personal lives are not able to care for ourselves and our direct environment. Isn’t it obvious that this will reflect in the world system? It’s common sense that the greater whole is the sum of all the small parts – and the small parts in the context of the world system is each human beings individual life – individual actions – and individual expression.

Thus, if we are serious about changing the world to become a better place, we MUST start with ourselves, and make sure that we don’t accept and allow neglect in our personal worlds. Because if we do – how can we ever expect the greater whole to change? It’s impossible!