Monday, 3 January 2011

New Years Note

Mostly, New Year's Resolutions are geared towards doing less of something. We are an indulgent society. We are programmed to want more, but the things we want more of tend to make us obese, addicted and in debt.

There are lots of things we need more of in our lives: compassion, down-time, gratitude, peace of mind, kindness, laughter.

Instead of a resolution that revolves around self, try one that revolves around others. Try complimenting a stranger, calling an old friend, reaching out to someone who needs help. Donate your time to a charity. Read an extra book to your kids at night.

Find at least one thing every day that spreads some love and compassion into the world. Even when faced with negativity, spread kindness. Someone cuts you off in line? A cashier is rude? The server is late bringing your food?

You have choices on how you react to things: indignation and annoyance are the more obvious choices, of course. Patience and compassion, however, break the cycle of negativity, bring you peace of mind, and are paid forward in beautiful ways.

There is a lovely concept in Buddhism, that every person you meet, every person you know, is a teacher. Each interaction you have with someone has a ripple effect: if it's angry or negative, it spreads negativity and anger out into the world. If it's gentle and compassionate, it spreads peace and compassion into the world.

The picture is taken @ cao dai temple VIETNAM

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