Advice for a Compassionate Life


Poster by Zany Du Designs: Click the image to her site with options to purchase! The theme of my February is compassion. Rather than basking in compassion given and received, however, I'm actually dealing with situations challenging my compassion. Have you ever found yourself struggling to maintain your compassion for someone or something while at the same time wishing that person/situation would simply remove itself from your life? It's a sucky feeling, and it makes you think you're a terrible person. You're not.


Compassion, as I'm sure most of you know, is being so utterly empathetic to a person or situation that you desire to take away the suffering. You put yourself out there, whole-heartedly, to help in that healing process. Sometimes, however, you receive nothing in return, whether it be returned compassion, support, advice, or even just seeing that person/situation reach for or turn toward a solution that you truly believe will work for them and lift them up. And it hurts. You hurt for you, for that person, for the situation, and maybe even the world at large. Gazillions of positivity articles will tell you not to expect anything in return or you'll drive yourself nuts, but it's human of you to appreciate the reciprocation of feeling loved, special, taken care of, etc. It's natural that your gut reaction to not receiving what you put out is to cut out or cut off.

Possible solution? (if you truly care deeply for that person/situation, of course):

Most reading this are likely searching for a balance in their body, mind, and spirit or tips on how to help someone find this balance. Remember that we're all likely at different points in our lives. I sometimes forget that not everyone is where I am, and there are plenty of people sprinting ahead of me. Really, though, none of that matters. This isn't a race. Strive to be compassionate with yourself and others. Allow yourself and others to make mistakes. Don't shit on yourself or someone else because you/they didn't run that extra mile or decided to eat pizza for lunch instead of a salad. Beyond that, don't push yourself or others to be 100% healthy, happy, and positive, either, because, guess what? That's unrealistic. There will ALWAYS be ups and downs and your/their strength comes from the grace with which one deals with those ups and downs. True happiness is found in the acceptance of the ebb and flow.

So keep in mind:

Don't push people away who may not be on the same step of the ladder as you because maybe they'll eventually skip that step, or maybe they'll choose a different ladder because only they know what's right for them. Just love them, with everything you have. Check up on them. Don't write them off. If you're not where you feel you should be, love and forgive yourself and remember that you're exactly where you need to be. If you're one who receives more than gives, pay it forward. Don't hide from yourself, don't hide from others, and most importantly, don't act like you know better than anyone. We all struggle and we all win and we all fall and we all brush our shoulders off. I write this because I need to be reminded of it from time to time. Be compassionate. Be kind. Be humble. <3

This song sums up this post in more ways than I can count: