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Mindfulness, Meditation And Messaging

The 3 M's I'm talking about don't have much to do with Minnesota, but there a plenty of mindful meditators up there, and with the Winter months approaching (here, in the Northern Hemisphere) there will be ample occasion to sit!

Politically speaking, the theory of messaging-- repeating the same thing over and over, until it becomes so familiar that some voters begin to believe it-- is hardly new. And as I was recently thinking about mindfulness and meditation, a couple of hitherto unconnected dots began to connect, and it suddenly became apparent to me that there is an obvious connection between the concept of messaging, and certain forms of meditation-- particularly, led meditation.

Specifically, I'm thinking of certain metta meditations (yet another "M") and self-compassion meditations, both of which can be a kind of internal messaging-- whether led by someone else, or led by ourselves. Metta is often an outward-facing meditation, extending love and kindness to others, while self-compassion meditation is often more inward-facing, or directed toward ourselves-- at least, those are the traditions that I've been taught.

Honestly, when I was first introduced to metta and self-compassion, I was skeptical. 50-plus years of being taught that kindness was not a quality or emotion that was valuable-- either personally or professionally-- took time to unlearn. As I persisted in the practices of metta and self-compassion, however, I began to feel a lot differently. I began to feel much more kindly toward both others, and myself.

As the old band, the Bee Gees, once put it: I just gotta get a message to you-- a pinch of self-compassion, and a healthy dose of kindness, can take us a long way toward happiness and success-- both personally and professionally.


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