Practicing from our new positive value system is pretty easy – As long as we feel good. Right?
I know for me, acting with compassion comes automatically when I’ve had my cup of coffee, am warm, well-fed and well-rested.
And that’s great! All of our positive, value-based behaviors count! We can celebrate our Selves every single time we take a step forward that feels congruent with who we think we are and who we want to be.
Still….those spaces when we feel good aren’t where the big work happens. The big work happens when we manage to act from our positive value system when we don’t feel well, when our triggers are being pushed, and when our center is shaking. When we’re hungry, angry, lonely, tired, sad, or scared, moving in our newly discovered and desired direction can feel impossible, and falling into our old ways of Being can happen before we’re even aware of it.
And every time we manage it…every single time we take a breath and act from the place of our positive value systems instead of our old, self-protective values, we get a gold star. I’m not kidding. We practice our positive values when we feel good, and we ACKNOWLEDGE OURSELVES FOR DOING IT. It might seem cheesy to congratulate yourself for doing “the next right thing,” but the yummy self-reward reinforces the new behavior! So yes! CELEBRATE your successes EVEN when the success came easily.
Doing that little happy dance is going to help you continue practicing from your positive values when you don’t feel good. When your trigger system is screaming, and you want to hit the wall, you will be more able to take a step back, take a breath and move forward in a way that helps you feel really good about yourself. Remember, we want to feel connected. We want to feel solid. We want to be comfortable in our own skin, and whenever we engage in our positive values, we get to. When we engage in our positive values when we don’t feel like it, it’s like moving to a heavier barbell at the gym. That muscle – the big fat muscle in your head – gets stronger, and the next time you need to step into positive values is easier.
So, when you manage to do “the next right thing” when you feel hungry, angry, lonely, tired, overwhelmed, consumed, sad or any of those other not-so-fun feelings, throw yourself and a big party (even if it’s a big party in your own mind), give yourself a treat, DANCE around the room, and let yourself bask in the warmth of your own glorious Being.
Now, get out there and get moving!
Oh, and if you find yourself falling backward into your old habit patterns, don’t despair! That’s just one more opportunity to practice. Jump to the next post to read about that!
- Compassionate Self Evaluation and Self Care