Salud y bienestar

Befriend yourself

Woman relaxing outside looking at camera

It’s usually easier to be kind to others than to yourself. This loving-kindness meditation turns a little tenderness back to you.

  1.  Find your good
    Start by being thankful for your own goodness, recalling some of the things you’ve done out of kindness. Then silently think about what you wish most deeply for yourself. You can use the following phrases, or create some that are meaningful to you. Relax and let the thoughts come gently from your heart:


    May I live in safety.
    May I have happiness (or peace, or joy).
    May I have physical health.
    May I live with ease.

  2.  Wish yourself well
    Repeat each sentence with enough space and silence in between so they fall into a rhythm. Pay attention to one phrase at a time:
    May I live in safety.
    (pause)
    May I have happiness.
    (pause) 
    May I have physical health.
    (pause)
    May I live with ease. 
    (pause)

  3.  Practice some more
    Each time you notice that your attention has wandered, be kind to yourself and let go of the distraction. Simply come back to repeating the phrases.

  4. Get centered
    After some time, imagine yourself in the center of a circle of people who have been kind to you, or have inspired you because of their kindness. Some you may know, some you may have just heard or read about. Feel the love and kindness from all these people directed toward you. Gently repeat the phrases of loving-kindness for yourself.

  5. Finish and let go
    To end, let go of the image, and simply keep repeating the phrases for a few more minutes. Each time you do, you transform any old, hurtful parts of your relationship with yourself, and move forward, carried by the energy of kindness and self-compassion.

 

This copyrighted information is courtesy of Mindful.org and meditation teacher Sharon Salzberg.

Reviewed by Kaiser Permanente Clinical Ambassadors, including Mark Dreskin, MD, Sharon Smith, LPC, and/or David Kane, LCSW. September 2018.


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This information does not replace the advice of a doctor.


Not all treatments or services described are covered benefits for Kaiser Permanente members or offered as services by Kaiser Permanente. For a list of covered benefits, please refer to your Evidence of Coverage, Summary Plan Description or other coverage documents. For recommended treatments, please consult with your health care provider.