In the video I’ve posted below the Dalai Lama is showing us how to do Radical Self Care. All of this video is important but what I’d most like you to listen to is the first 2 mins.
The title of this video is not the sort that would normally draw me in but for some reason I watched it and I’m so glad I did. This is such a powerful message one with the potential to radically change your life.
He is showing us by his choices, that we have these choices too.
We can come up with all the excuses we like but at the end of the day if he can do this so can we, but we have to believe we are worth it, to understand as he does that, his body has needs despite what his mind and spirit desire.
I used to to treat my body very poorly, in fact I treated my whole self unkindly. I did not pay much attention to it and expected it to just keep on going no matter what, well it didn’t. It literally had to put me flat on my back to begin the slow and rather painful process of teaching me about myself and my life.
Like the Dalai Lama we need our bodies and treating them with respect is a radical act in this mad world where we are expected to keep on going all the time.
Our medical system largely runs on the basis of throwing some pill or potion at your body to suppress the symptoms in order that we can stay on the hamster wheel.
We are not taught to pay attention, to listen and to learn from what the body’s symptoms are trying to tell us. This is such a sad state of affairs when so much healing might be be possible if we did.
But our western lives are not about this are they?
They are all about chasing after more lest we miss out. They encourage pushing through, doing more, telling us that some how this depletion of ourselves makes us better, a more valuable person.
How often are we encouraged to stop, to take stock and recognise the ways in which need to take care of ourselves?
The delusion offerred by the consumer society promises more happiness if we acquire more; more possessions, more experiences, more friends on social media. You name it, it’s all about keeping us chasing our tails, done in and exhausted, too tired to actually pay attention to reality and to start to make healthier choices for ourselves.
This incredible teacher of our times shows us by his actions that the choice to stop, to say no, to cancel commitments and turn towards ourselves is there.
When your body says no, listen!
Instead of pushing through, promising to rest tomorrow, or at the weekend stop now. Say yes to yourself and no to whatever commitment you’ve made. The world will keep spinning, everyone will survive, but if you continue to use your mind to over ride your body, you may not.
Could you say no to something?
How does that make you feel?
What do you fear will happen?
Having the courage to face our fears and see the truth of why we do what we do is the beginning of change. Instead of letting all the shoulds and oughts, musts and have tos run our lives we learn to dive a little deeper. We start to give attention to ourselves and our needs.
It’s not selfish it’s about self preservation.
If we learn to create a sustainable way of life for ourselves then we can be of service in the world from our surplus not our substance. From this place everyone benifits more.
This is Radical Self Care.
Radical Self Care
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