Where did you learn kindness? Was it from your parents? Perhaps a “kindly” grandparent. Did you learn kindness in school or perhaps from a faith leader? Who was the best role model on kindness for you? Or perhaps you didn’t grow up around kindness and had to learn how to be it by yourself. Sadly, there are millions of children around the world who have grown up in environments devoid of kindness and compassion. Yet, despite their suffering, many have gone on to build lives of purpose and meaning. Just think what they all may have become had they been loved first. That brings me to the subject of today’s blog and this week’s challenge of practicing random acts of kindness towards children.
Do you like a challenge? Then I’ve got a great one for you this week, in fact for the entire month of June. And it’s all about kindness. Something I think we could all use a bit more of these days. Since I’ve dedicated the month of June to the joy habit of kindness, as far as I’m concerned, the best place to start is always with yourself. So my challenge for week one of your kindness challenge is to practice at least one “random act of kindness” towards yourself every day. You might be asking yourself “how can I show kindness towards myself in a random way?” Well, you might surprise yourself. Which is actually the point! The objective is not to overthink this. In fact, take planning right out of your equation when it comes to this challenge. This isn’t about controlling anything. I’m asking you to trust that your soul always communicates with you, guiding you in loving ways in the direction of your ultimate joy. You just need to pay attention. In fact, there really is no such thing as random. Trust the messages you receive and act upon them.
Did you know that you have more power than you can imagine? You have power over the thoughts you think. You have power over the words you choose. You have power over the company you keep and the experiences you attract. And ultimately you have power over the life you wish to live. It all comes down to the choices you make. Sounds obvious doesn’t it? But sometimes the obvious gets overlooked during the distractions of your busy life. Until that is, you make time to really think about it. Take for example the power you have to choose your thoughts. Yes, you have a choice. This is what I mean.
Who and what do you choose to let into your bubble? I’m not just talking protecting your physical health during a pandemic. I’m talking about the environments that influence you and the people who you interact with regularly. Are they positive and uplifting or negative and depressing? Even before COVID-19, we created bubbles. Sometimes we just weren’t aware of the consequences. But when you really think about them, at an energetic level, you know which people or experiences make you feel good and those that don’t. You can feel it in your body. Unfortunately, we often give into that friend or family member that takes advantage of our generosity or crushes our dreams. We let them into our bubble anyway. I’m asking you to think “outside the bubble”.
What words do you use when you speak to yourself? When you speak to others? Are they uplifting and motivating or demeaning and disempowering? Believe me, it matters. When you speak in quiet and non-aggressive tones and send out loving peaceful thoughts, you can literally make change happen. Your words have power. Let me explain. A few years ago, I was fortunate enough to attend a seminar lead by the late Dr. Masaru Emoto, a Japanese author and entrepreneur who was known for his research into the effect that human consciousness has on the molecular structure of water.
Most of the time we are busy thinking and doing, thinking and doing. It’s just automatic. But have you ever really thought about the thoughts you are actually thinking? Where they originated and how habitual they have become over time? Are these your thoughts or someone else’s? You see, we can easily become trapped by the “hypnosis of social conditioning”, as I’ve often heard Deepak Chopra refer to it this way. And this conditioning can be quite insidious. But you have a choice. You can choose thoughts that are empowering instead of self-defeating. Thoughts that are kind rather than those that are demeaning. Thoughts that energize and lift you up or thoughts that deflate you. Your choice. But at the end of the day, the thoughts you think are what you become.
I love this quote. It certainly inspires me to aim higher, especially for the things that matter most. What matters most to you these days? And are you aiming high enough? And how does hope factor into the equation? For me, hope is the ultimate belief that by digging deeper and aiming higher, I can do more that I might have thought possible. You see, there’s an alchemy in hope. It’s quite transformative. But you have to believe for it to hold such power. That brings me to the subject of today’s blog, and the last post dedicated to the joy habit of hope. And it’s probably the one that will have the most impact on future generations.
What do you hope will improve in your orbit over the coming months? More gatherings with your friends and family? More certainty about your job? More rest, better health, more time? If you’re feeling stressed and want things to change, remember that hope gives strength to a belief that things will be better. And it’s a really important joy habit to cultivate. During this month in which I’ve dedicated my weekly Joy Journals to the joy habit of hope, I am focusing on one major theme each week that begins with one of the letters in the word HOPE. The first week was on the topic of Hope for Health representing the letter “H”. In that blog I shared a new book I’m reading about how to reduce the risk of cognitive decline. As a “woman of a certain age”, I am finding it particularly relevant in my life right now.
What are you hopeful for? Perhaps this week’s blog will give you some food for thought outside of the most common answer. During this month in which I’ve dedicated my weekly Joy Journals to the joy habit of hope, I am focusing on one major theme each week that begins with one of the letters in the word HOPE. Last week’s blog was on the topic of Hope for Health representing the letter “H”. I placed particular emphasis on brain health and featured a great new book I’m reading about how to reduce the risk of cognitive decline. I encourage you to read the blog, no matter your age. This week’s offering stands for the letter “O’ and will ask you to Hope for Oneness of our people and our planet as I believe our interdependence will be even more important as we take our place in a new post-pandemic world.
When you hear the word hope, how does it make you feel? Do you feel elated or do you write it off to just wishful thinking? What does hope mean to you? Take a minute to really think about it. Because the way you define hope likely translates into the way you perceive everything that is occurring in your life. You see it acts like a barometer, measuring the amount of life pressure you allow in, to either lift you up or weigh you down. But hope isn’t wishful thinking or optimism. It’s much deeper than that. It’s faith in something beyond your control. It’s trust. It’s a knowing. And to me, hope is about possibility. During this month of April in which I’ve dedicated my weekly Joy Journals to helping you cultivate the joy habit of hope, I’ll be focusing on one major theme each week that begins with one of the letters in the word HOPE. This week’s offering stands for the letter “H’ and is all about helping you to be more hopeful about your health. I know, we’re all tired of talking about COVID-19. And I promise that’s not what this blog is all about.