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Pausing for Self-Compassion

This meditation explores how to generate self-compassion in times of distress, anxiety or despair. Discover the gentleness, safety and support of your own friendship.

Let's begin by finding a comfortable posture for this meditation. This practice can be done either in a seated posture or lying down, or even standing, whatever happens to be the most supportive for you in this moment. We will be exploring how to develop a means of generating self-compassion in times of particular distress, anxiety, or despair. So take a moment to settle into the posture that you've chosen. Feeling the points of contact between the body and the ground beneath you, whether through the seat of a chair, a cushion on a bed or on the floor.

Just allowing the body for the next few moments to gently rest in the sensations of being held by the earth. So picking up perhaps on the in-breath, or the out-breath, wherever you happen to find yourself now. And gently allowing a few deeper than and usual breaths for you to support you, and just resting in the sense of being lovingly held in this present moment. And as you breathe in now, the invitation is to do a gentle scan of the body in this moment. And notice any place in which you're holding any tightness, any pain, any emotional discomfort, any sensations that indicate any of this in the body.

So breathing in and out, noticing where you might be feeling tightness, sadness, grief, rage. Or any more subtle feelings of discomfort. And the invitation then in this moment is to invite the intentions you bring for alleviating your own suffering, for supporting yourself and just gently holding your own experience with love. Bringing that intention to the fore in this moment. As you breathe in and breathe out, imagine just in a certain way in which you're most cradling or holding yourself, and inviting full rest in this moment.

Lovingly attending to your own body and being, as you notice any way in which you're feeling, even the subtle form of any sort of discomfort, pain, challenging emotion, difficulty at this time. And so then the invitation now is to deepen the support for yourself by, if you're willing, placing one hand over the heart. And the other hand may gently be placed right over the first on the heart region. Or you might experiment with placing that second hand in the region of the belly button, maybe just beneath it. And then taking a few deep breaths and just sensing into what it feels like to allow the extra support of your own hands on these regions of the body, where our energetic nerve systems are so profoundly engaged with feeling sensation around the sense of being nurtured.

So just breathing in and breathing out and inviting these points of contact, placing your hands, right on these particular points of contact. Offer this additional support, much in the same way that you might place a hand on the back of a friend in need of support. Or in the hand of another. We're bringing that same kind of loving, gentle touch-based support to our own body and being in this moment. And as we pause and allow ourselves to support ourselves in this embodied way, we might deepen this support by calling to mind a particular place where you felt really safe before.

This might be just a momentary awareness of feeling safe in a park or at a beach, or, or maybe it's inside a home or a location where you felt safe, nurtured, cared for. This could be someplace you have access to now or someplace from your memory. And if it's easier than locating a place, perhaps allowing that inquiry to dissolve and inviting the image of a person is whom you felt really safe, cared for. You might now just be noticing their face. And see you're smiling at me, looking at you in this moment in your mind's eye.

Or you might be imagining feeling their hand in yours, offering you just a bit of additional support. And again, if this is difficult, allowing that inquiry to dissolve. And perhaps it's just the image of a person in history, a figure or spiritual or other figure whose image brings your peace and ease and allows you to feel cared for in this moment. So with this gentle visualization practice, whether you're visualizing a place or person, really see if you can make the image just a bit more vivid. Really noticing light falling in the space or the scent of food in the oven or on the stove associated with that place where you felt safe.

Or the warmth of the feeling of the person's hand and yours, or again, the particular coloration of their face as they're looking at you. This visualization aspect of the practice is important in that the body really has this image within it. And as you call it to mind in this way, it really has the neurobiological effect of really putting you back in that place, back in the presence of that loving being or person. So as best you can, bring that image to mind. Just take a few moments.

Allow yourself to breathe in and breathe out. Feeling the support of that place, that person as you do so. And as you breathe in and out, now allowing the imagery to dissolve. Resting in a sense of being held in remembrance of the support that exists for you in this universe, in your own experience that you have felt in your own life. And now, perhaps noticing the quality of the heart in this moment.

Breathing in and breathing out and sensing into the heart region. Or maybe noticing some other region of the body where you can, maybe, if you inquire into it, feel in a way in which you are being impacted by this meditation already. Maybe you're noticing a gentle softening of the heart, opening up of a sense of ease, rest. Maybe even a bit of joy. And as we prepare to bring this meditation to a close, just notice the way in which you have been able to practice cultivating a sense of the support that exists for you in the universe, and a sense of your inherent belonging.

And know that this practice is available for you anytime you might need to experience cultivating the ability to bring self-compassion, love, and the will to alleviate your own suffering a little bit more to the fore in your experience. Keep practicing like this. I thank you for your practice. And until we meet again, may you be well, safe, and connected on the journey.

Meditation

4.4

Pausing for Self-Compassion

This meditation explores how to generate self-compassion in times of distress, anxiety or despair. Discover the gentleness, safety and support of your own friendship.

Duration

Your default time is based on your progress and is changed automatically as you practice.

Let's begin by finding a comfortable posture for this meditation. This practice can be done either in a seated posture or lying down, or even standing, whatever happens to be the most supportive for you in this moment. We will be exploring how to develop a means of generating self-compassion in times of particular distress, anxiety, or despair. So take a moment to settle into the posture that you've chosen. Feeling the points of contact between the body and the ground beneath you, whether through the seat of a chair, a cushion on a bed or on the floor.

Just allowing the body for the next few moments to gently rest in the sensations of being held by the earth. So picking up perhaps on the in-breath, or the out-breath, wherever you happen to find yourself now. And gently allowing a few deeper than and usual breaths for you to support you, and just resting in the sense of being lovingly held in this present moment. And as you breathe in now, the invitation is to do a gentle scan of the body in this moment. And notice any place in which you're holding any tightness, any pain, any emotional discomfort, any sensations that indicate any of this in the body.

So breathing in and out, noticing where you might be feeling tightness, sadness, grief, rage. Or any more subtle feelings of discomfort. And the invitation then in this moment is to invite the intentions you bring for alleviating your own suffering, for supporting yourself and just gently holding your own experience with love. Bringing that intention to the fore in this moment. As you breathe in and breathe out, imagine just in a certain way in which you're most cradling or holding yourself, and inviting full rest in this moment.

Lovingly attending to your own body and being, as you notice any way in which you're feeling, even the subtle form of any sort of discomfort, pain, challenging emotion, difficulty at this time. And so then the invitation now is to deepen the support for yourself by, if you're willing, placing one hand over the heart. And the other hand may gently be placed right over the first on the heart region. Or you might experiment with placing that second hand in the region of the belly button, maybe just beneath it. And then taking a few deep breaths and just sensing into what it feels like to allow the extra support of your own hands on these regions of the body, where our energetic nerve systems are so profoundly engaged with feeling sensation around the sense of being nurtured.

So just breathing in and breathing out and inviting these points of contact, placing your hands, right on these particular points of contact. Offer this additional support, much in the same way that you might place a hand on the back of a friend in need of support. Or in the hand of another. We're bringing that same kind of loving, gentle touch-based support to our own body and being in this moment. And as we pause and allow ourselves to support ourselves in this embodied way, we might deepen this support by calling to mind a particular place where you felt really safe before.

This might be just a momentary awareness of feeling safe in a park or at a beach, or, or maybe it's inside a home or a location where you felt safe, nurtured, cared for. This could be someplace you have access to now or someplace from your memory. And if it's easier than locating a place, perhaps allowing that inquiry to dissolve and inviting the image of a person is whom you felt really safe, cared for. You might now just be noticing their face. And see you're smiling at me, looking at you in this moment in your mind's eye.

Or you might be imagining feeling their hand in yours, offering you just a bit of additional support. And again, if this is difficult, allowing that inquiry to dissolve. And perhaps it's just the image of a person in history, a figure or spiritual or other figure whose image brings your peace and ease and allows you to feel cared for in this moment. So with this gentle visualization practice, whether you're visualizing a place or person, really see if you can make the image just a bit more vivid. Really noticing light falling in the space or the scent of food in the oven or on the stove associated with that place where you felt safe.

Or the warmth of the feeling of the person's hand and yours, or again, the particular coloration of their face as they're looking at you. This visualization aspect of the practice is important in that the body really has this image within it. And as you call it to mind in this way, it really has the neurobiological effect of really putting you back in that place, back in the presence of that loving being or person. So as best you can, bring that image to mind. Just take a few moments.

Allow yourself to breathe in and breathe out. Feeling the support of that place, that person as you do so. And as you breathe in and out, now allowing the imagery to dissolve. Resting in a sense of being held in remembrance of the support that exists for you in this universe, in your own experience that you have felt in your own life. And now, perhaps noticing the quality of the heart in this moment.

Breathing in and breathing out and sensing into the heart region. Or maybe noticing some other region of the body where you can, maybe, if you inquire into it, feel in a way in which you are being impacted by this meditation already. Maybe you're noticing a gentle softening of the heart, opening up of a sense of ease, rest. Maybe even a bit of joy. And as we prepare to bring this meditation to a close, just notice the way in which you have been able to practice cultivating a sense of the support that exists for you in the universe, and a sense of your inherent belonging.

And know that this practice is available for you anytime you might need to experience cultivating the ability to bring self-compassion, love, and the will to alleviate your own suffering a little bit more to the fore in your experience. Keep practicing like this. I thank you for your practice. And until we meet again, may you be well, safe, and connected on the journey.

Meditation

4.4

Duration

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