Freeing yourself of old demons

The word COMPASSION simply means empathy…

You can never genuinely show compassion to others until you are compassionate to yourself. As a matter of fact, compassion radiates to others through you. You can’t give what you don’t have. Mastering the art of self-compassion  brings about freedom and true happiness. Often times we’re quick to  encourage a loved one going through a difficult situation, or shower praises on other people. But reverse is the case when it comes to ourselves. When was the last time you commended yourself for a job well done?  How often do you talk yourself out of negative thoughts? When it comes to ourselves we are not compassionate. This is not fair.

Humans are naturally motivated when encouraged or praised. Stop waiting for validation from other people, validate yourself. Stop judging yourself harshly because of a single failure of the past. No matter the situation you should always be your number one fan. There is only one you. I challenge you today to start showing compassion to yourself.  You can do it, if only you love yourself enough to give it a try. There’s no harm in trying they say.

Things don’t always work out as planned. You put all your effort to make something work and you still fail woefully at it, you perform below your expectations and frustration sets in.  Your mind begins to paint your imperfections to your face, it compares you to your friends and colleagues who are more successful, and then you begin to lose confidence in yourself.  You begin to think there is something wrong with you. Your mind starts replaying scenes of past mistakes in your subconscious which becomes emotionally draining. You try to fight your mind against these thoughts  but the more you try the weaker you become, then you give in, you allow your mind defeat you, you stop struggling to take charge, before you know it your mind consumes you with the lies it has created and made you believe over the years.  But here’s the trick, when these thoughts start creeping in and your adrenaline starts pumping. Breathe! It’s all a lie.

The mind feeds you only what you deposit in it. So start depositing positive thoughts. You have the right and authority to decide what stays in your mind and what should be flushed out. Cultivate the habit of self assessment. For instance, analyze how you failed in a past experience, outline all the things you could have done to aid a better result and next time you will certainly do better when faced with similar challenges. Genuinely work on improving yourself. No matter how little your improvements are praise yourself daily. Set realistic goals for yourself. Be honest with yourself, don’t be too hard on yourself. See yourself like a child that needs pampering and at the same time needs to be corrected when necessary. These are great ways to show compassion to yourself.

Your thoughts – either positive or negative – trigger all kinds of emotions, which lead you to act in certain ways. Positive thoughts lead to positive emotions,  that’s why you laugh when you remember an old joke. Likewise, negative thoughts welcome negative emotions, e.g. old grudges that keep you in the same emotional loop, those thoughts and emotions that leave your heart pounding. The good news is, if you master the patterns of your thoughts you can control them but you can’t stop emotions from popping up once in a while, one minute you’re full of life and the next you just want to be alone, far away from people, back in your shell. This can be due to your thoughts. 

For every one negative thought you have you need to counter it with series of positive thoughts. The thoughts you allow to linger the most dominate your mind. The choice is yours.  Sometimes you sit and a past event just crosses your mind even without thinking about it. Your body language changes, depending on what that event  is, you either become happy or sad. But you need to master your emotions such that you are not controlled by your present state of mind or what is happening around your environment. Mastery over your emotions is absolute power. Focus your thoughts on things that boost your spirit, good memories that make you happy. Sharing your story with the world could bring healing to your soul more than you expect. Whether it’s an online blog, a video of yourself, or a poem, when you are being exposed and franc about your fears you are minimizing their effects over you significantly. You will be amazed by the millions of people your story would resonate with. You’ll find out that you’re not alone on this journey and there are thousands of people out there going through the same experience as you are. It takes true compassion to share your story with the world to heal others. 

Negative thoughts, drive your actions. Sometimes it’s easier to remember negative events than the positive ones, but it takes cautious effort not to dwell on those negative thoughts. A negative thought can ruin a good day for you and make you go about being moody to people around you. Here is a scenario on how your thoughts work; Suppose you are given a new task to carry out at work. Your mind quickly replays past tasks you’ve handled and failed. This instantly makes you doubt yourself, fear creeps in, you start getting sweaty, the images start flying around your head, you begin to dwell on those negative thoughts which ultimately hinder your progress. That’s the trick of the mind.  But on the other hand, if you decide to remember just one thing you did right during the task and how it yielded positive results, it boosts your confidence and helps you approach this new task with great enthusiasm leading to a better outcome.

Life can be cruel at times. It brings unexpected events to your doorsteps without permission. Like a flash your life changes, it hits so hard you begin to ask yourself what’s the meaning of life? It could be the loss of a loved one or a painful break up. It’s really hard not to breakdown. In fact  it’s okay to vent, cry, scream and let it all out,  it’s natural to think about it and feel sad. What is not healthy is allowing your mind put that event on replay mode. This slows your healing process, and the ability to move on, it keeps you stuck in one place.  To come out of this trap, you need to change the way you see that event, feed your thoughts only the positive memories you had.

The troubles of life alone are overwhelming. Stop compounding them by blaming yourself over what you had no control over. Over the years you’ve blamed yourself, cursed yourself and you’ve refused to forgive yourself. You have believed the lies your mind fed you and you have made it your reality. Can you be brave enough to come out of the cage your mind has put you? The next time your mind flashes a  picture of your past failure, replace it with a current or past success, continue to replay this picture in your mind. This helps a lot. You should try it. It’s not going to be easy at first, as when you’re doing something new it takes effort, but if you can consistently do it daily, you’ll see a drastic change.

Time heals all things if you allow it. There’s a time to cry and a time to laugh. The event that caused you so much pain is now a thing of the past, you deserve to move on. You need to understand that there are some things beyond your control, understanding this saves you a lot of emotional trauma. Wake up from the negative stories your mind has fed you all these years, it’s time to recreate your own healing stories out of that event. Choose only the positive memories you want to remember and how you want to remember them and feed your mind to recreate it. Only then can you truly be compassionate to yourself.

We all have demons we’re battling. In our careers, our personal lives. We battle both present and past demons. Unfortunately, this battle has no respect for class, gender, age, or race. Many have fought and lost, some have won, and others are still fighting. But there’s only one way to win this battle, to have absolute victory and freedom forever and it’s only those who have adopted this method as a weapon for their battle have attained victory. This weapon is compassion. A true gift of life is the power of choice.  You have the power to decide that no matter what it takes you’ll overcome these demons. If you’re tired, take a break and recharge yourself, don’t quit. It is important to harness this gift to your advantage. Now you know the power of compassion and how applying it can set you free from your demons. Now is the time to take that life changing action. Remember, no one will ever love you more than how you love yourself.