Kind promise: I will share strengths compassionately.

7-28-15After last week’s blog post, the word for which I was searching came to me: compassionately.

My history in this area is not a healthy one. I say “yes” to too much and become overburdened. I try to ease my stress by planning each task carefully. Moving forward with this level of control, surprises become threats. I find myself ignoring others’ suggestions because “there just isn’t time.” When the commitment is completed, I am exhausted and embittered. Yet I repeat the pattern.

Sharing strength compassionately, I will not give so much that I leave myself exhausted. Self-compassion asks that I notice when my cup starts emptying and replenish it. Sharing strength compassionately, I will not run over other peoples’ traditions, ideas or gifts as I implement my own. With compassion, I am neither less than the other nor more.

Compassion means – etymologically – to love together with. To practice true compassion, I must be connected with and equal to another. If I sense disconnection, compassion calls me into relationship. If I think I am better or worse than the other, compassion calls me into partnership.

When I think about it honestly, I realize that each time I interact with another person, I consider myself either inferior or superior to them. This is a mind-boggling insight for me.

Compassion assumes equity: do unto others as you would have them do unto you.