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An Unexpected Remedy For Feeling Judged

  Photo edited with http://www.tuxpi.comIt's simple: You feel judged because you judge others.

It’s a defensive maneuver: You assume people are doing it right back to you, so you protect yourself. Whether on the subway or walking down the street, the thoughts creep in: little remarks about people’s clothing or weight; what they are eating or how they are speaking.

This way of being in the world comes at a great expense: You are creating and reinforcing the idea that the world is an unfriendly place, and that you are separate and isolated.

 

Here is a super easy way to tackle this kind of social anxiety: 

  1. Start to notice the negative thoughts about the strangers you see throughout the day. It might take a minute to start catching yourself, because these thoughts are likely happening without much awareness.
  2. When you catch an impolite thought, consciously flip the script in your mind.  Tell yourself that this person is no different from you. This person is doing the best they can. They are struggling like you are. Like you, they need love (and maybe they have never been loved). Have compassion for this person. And yourself. Not in that order : )

That’s it! Experiment with this and see for yourself. You will quickly start to notice that the world feels softer; kinder. Like you are amongst friends. It is such sweet relief. It means you can stop holding on so tight; you can exhale, relax your armor, merge with the other mortals who are walking through this strange and beautiful life. 

You are no different from me.

You are doing the best you can.

You are struggling like I am.

Just like me, you need and deserve love.

 

We are all in this together. 

 

Try these steps and report back! I would love to hear from you in the comments!

 

artwork by Heidi Schmidt

Now Is The Perfect Time To Let Go

Screen Shot 2014-10-16 at 9.29.05 AMI just returned from a quick trip out of NYC. As a nature-starved Brooklynite, I am completely enchanted and seduced by the brilliant colors of the trees (the leaves turn a certain kind of orange-red that make me feel like I’m imploding into a single point of joy). The change in foliage is one of the things I love most about this time of year. Not just for the eye candy, but because of what it inspires in me. Connecting to nature is a way for us to connect more deeply to ourselves.

And here’s why: the seasons show us where we are in our consciousness. We are in the time of year that asks us to turn inward, slow down, get reflective.

An important part of this “quieting” is letting go of something no longer needed. If you look outside you can get some clues as to how to proceed:

 

These gorgeous trees are deciduous -- Latin for “that which falls off.” When we are in tune with our intuition and make a decision (same root, literally to “cut off”) about something that needs to change, we are aligning with our nature; our higher intelligence.

The non-essential dies off and only what is essential remains.

Allow yourself to ride the energetic “letting go” momentum of Fall. The elements will be supporting your choice.

So, what are you prepared to part with? What substance, behavior, person, or thought pattern that is hindering your growth can you shake loose?

Know that whatever you “cut off” now will give you the stamina to move through the darker months ahead. You have the chance to feel resourced, strengthened, and look forward to winter this year instead of dreading it. Mmmmm.

Happy "fall off" : )

 

What is one thing you can “cut off” from your life that is keeping you from being happy? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!