Compassion is practicing loving-kindness toward ourselves and others. It is contagious because when we treat ourselves and others kindly, we can be unexpectedly showered with loving kindness as well. Here are some simple acts of loving-kindness I was fortunate enough to receive during a busy speaking schedule:
My client arranged for a late check-out of my hotel before I even requested it.
Do something thoughtful for someone before they even ask.
While waiting for my flight, a colleague surprised me with a carriage ride in historic Philadelphia even though she was pressed for time.
Surprise someone with the precious gift of your time.
When I told my driver in Detroit I was born there, but hadn’t returned since childhood, he said, Welcome home! You are one of our own and always will be!
Sincerely welcome someone new to your yoga class, meeting, or neighborhood.
At 5pm on a Friday afternoon my hairdresser gave me a last minute “emergency haircut”.
Do a favor for someone even when it’s not convenient for you.
My extended family put girlfriends, football games, and social commitments aside to spend time with me when I was speaking in Indiana.
Make time for a family member to show them how important they are to you.
Audience members took the time to personally thank me with an email or hand written note (even though this is my job).
Thank someone with the written word.
A good friend gave me permission to schedule guilt-free down time after my marathon speaking to rest, recover and recharge.
Treat yourself with loving kindness so that you have it to give to someone else.
Because what we focus on expands, when I treat myself with kindness and acknowledge all the loving kindness given to me, I easily and effortlessly pay it forward. What act of loving kindness could you practice today, for yourself or someone else?