Life can be stressful sometimes. From debt to medical issues to paying taxes, we all face difficulties and need tools that can help us overcome them. While practical solutions such as debt relief are helpful, it is also important to take care of ourselves mentally and emotionally. Loving-kindness is an increasingly popular practice for self-care and improving the world around us.
What Is Loving Kindness?
Loving-kindness is a meditation technique focused on generating the intent to show kindness towards others and yourself. There are a few different ways to achieve this; however, the central theme of positive intentions is always present.
This may seem overly sentimental to some. Despite this, it is something that brings a lot of joy and aid. Consider how you felt the last time you helped someone with purely altruistic intent. That experience feels great and can make you feel happier. Loving-kindness is essentially the same idea, turned into a repeatable process.
The Benefits of Loving Kindness
You may already be familiar with some of the benefits of meditation and mental relaxation. Loving-kindness has its own unique advantages:
- Feelings of Warmth and Happiness: Acting benevolently can make you feel good. Research has repeatedly shown that acting altruistically is emotionally rewarding. Several studies have examined the benefits of loving-kindness meditation and found that it and other compassion-based interventions can consistently improve wellness.
- Refocus on Positivity: When we face difficulty in life, it can be challenging to pay attention to anything else. However, refocusing is often exactly what we need to move forward. Loving-kindness can train your mind to focus on positivity instead of problems.
- Reduce Stress: The above two benefits combine to reduce stress. Getting your thoughts onto more positive matters while also feeling good about acting kindly is a powerful way to reduce stress and its negative effects.
- Help Others: It shouldn’t be overlooked that loving-kindness also benefits others. Whether you simply act compassionately or take specific steps to help others, you are having a positive impact on the world around you.
Some research suggests that loving-kindness may be able to help with chronic pain, anxiety and even borderline personality disorder. It can also help with marital conflict and anger in relationships. In short, this technique shows kindness towards yourself as well as others.
How To Practice Loving Kindness
There are different approaches to practicing loving-kindness. Nonetheless, it can be easy to get started, even for meditation novices. Of course, like many other techniques of its kind, loving-kindness takes practice and time to master. This is a four-step process that offers a simple introduction to the technique:
- Get Comfortable: Start by finding a comfortable place to sit or lie down. You can use a meditation cushion if you choose, but that is not necessary. Instead, your goal should be to put your body at ease. This is often easiest if you are physically well-supported by a comfy chair or bed.
- Relax Your Core: Focus on softening your belly and chest. Let your muscles be at rest and allow your breathing to expand then relax your core. Take your time to fully relax. There is no need to rush and it may take practice. It can be difficult to let go of the tension in your body, but you will get there with practice and patience.
- Think About Love and Kindness: Place your hand on your heart and think about feelings of love, kindness, and care. Let them spread throughout your whole body. Try to focus on your emotional memory of these feelings. As you recall them, move to the last step.
- Recite Your Phrase: Say aloud a phrase that reflects the core ideas of loving-kindness. You can use any appropriate phrase that works for you, but here are common suggestions:
- May I be free from danger.
- May I have mental happiness.
- May I have physical happiness.
- May I have ease of well-being.
Give these steps and try and see what loving-kindness could do for you. It will take practice, but it is worth it.
Get Help With Financial Struggles
Loving-kindness is a powerful way to take care of our emotional and mental needs. Of course, sometimes you also need help with practical matters and financial advice. For that, contact Financial Rescue. We can help you with debt relief, tax relief and other financial struggles.