Mindfulness Paired with Music Series: Day 4

Time for a thought experiment! Your friend comes to you frustrated, self-critical, and self-shaming. They made a mistake. It happens. How did you respond to them? What did you say? What tone did you use?


Let's flip the situation. You made a mistake. You're frustrated, self-critical, and self-shaming. What thoughts are going through your mind? What do you say to yourself? What tone do you use?


If you're like most people, you were probably kinder with your friend then yourself, which brings us to today's theme, #selfcompassion.


First time here? On Day 1, we talked about how to make the most of these mindfulness and music pairings. Check it out if you missed Day 1 and then start experimenting.



The Song: Typical Situation by Dave Matthews Band


But one Everybody's happy Everybody's free We'll keep the big door open And everyone'll come around -Dave Matthews Band


The Practice: Everybody's Happy and Free


Today's practice brings together two areas: mindfulness and self-compassion.


Dr. Kristin Neff and Dr. Christopher Germer's self-compassion research show us that self-kindness, recognition of our humanity (the recognition that everyone makes mistakes and feels pain), and mindfulness lead to a better life. You'll experience greater happiness, life satisfaction, motivation, resilience, relationships, physical health, and less anxiety and depression.



Listen to Everybody's Happy and Free here.


See the transcript below if you'd like to do it on your own.


Find a seated posture that is comfortable for you and allow your hands to rest in your lap. Gently close your eyes or gaze downward past your nose. Relax the whole body... the jaw. The shoulders. Anywhere you might be holding.


Now settle into where you are right now. Notice the state of the mind... Notice the emotions arising... Notice any physical sensations in the body… Notice the breath... Take a deep breath in. And a deep breath out. And another deep breath in and out.


What is present for you right now?


Welcome it and bring one or both hands and place them on the heart.


Bring to mind someone that you love and who loves you. It could be a family member, child, friend, or pet. Someone you love deeply. Someone who deeply loves you. Imagine that loved one sitting in front of you, wishing you happiness, health, and freedom. You can feel their kindness. Their love. It radiates like golden sunshine through your chest.


In your mind, you hear their wishes. Repeat the following phrases silently:


May I feel calm, connected, and free

May I be happy and light in body and spirit

May I accept myself just as I am…

May I be safe and healthy

May I be free from anger, fear, and anxiety


Begin to send the same wishes back to this loved one. You are alike. They also wish to be happy, healthy, and free. Repeat the following phrases silently:


May you feel calm, connected, and free

May you be happy and light in body and spirit

May you accept yourself just as you are

May you be safe and healthy

May you be free from anger, fear, and anxiety


Invite more loved ones to join you in your mind's eye... and now those you don't know well. Those who you don't have any particular feeling about. Look at all of them. Notice the golden sunshine radiating throughout the space, connecting all of you, and repeat the following phrases silently:


May you feel calm, connected, and free

May you be happy and light in body and spirit

May you accept yourself just as you are

May you be safe and healthy

May you be free from anger, fear, and anxiety


Lastly, bring the whole world to your mind's eye. Imagine it as a small ball encompassed by this golden sunlight. Emanating. Resonating. Connecting all of us. Send your wishes to everyone who, like you, wants to be happy, healthy, and free. Repeat the following phrases silently:

May we all feel calm, connected, and free

May we all be happy and light in body and spirit

May we all accept ourselves just as we are

May we all be safe and healthy

May we all be free from anger, fear, and anxiety


Now come back to the sensation of your hands on the heart. Take a deep breath in. And a deep breath out. And another deep breath in and out.


Notice the state of the mind... Notice the emotions arising... Notice any physical sensations in the body… and how you feel after this practice.


When you’re ready, you may open your eyes and return to your day.


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