Saturday, 11 November 2017

Balancing Compassion

Compassion is the core of humanity. For me, it is one of the most beautiful aspects of being human. To be compassionate is to be loving, kind and giving.

When I experienced sudden hearing loss, I became distinctly aware of how I had neglected to be compassionate to self. But how can I be compassionate to self when I am so busy being compassionate to others?

I learnt how from a friend who has lived with hearing impairment her entire life. I watched how she managed her time and was in awe of her wisdom, the ways she was able manage her energy levels in a self compassionate way. She was still loving, kind and giving to others but was equally as good at being compassionate to herself. She always looked beautiful, took great care of herself, invested in different therapies and activities. Her diary was filled with things that fed  her soul and enabled her to support others at the same time.

But I never seem to have time to do the very thing that I long to do, which is to spend time with my stories and poems. So, last week, I decided to draw a diagram & see how I have been spending my creative time. (See above)

To my disappointment, the purple and smallest segment was the amount of time I have been spending on my own writing.

The green section is how much time I have been spending on paid contracts, facilitating others to be writers.

The large blue section is how much time I have been spending helping others through my community projects

And then lastly the red section, is how much time I have spent on healing and therapeutic arts to distract from my tinnitus and hyperacusis  ... mostly in the evenings.

Now that I had mapped out my creative time, I was able to see that the majority of my time is taken up helping others. Now this is fine except it is currently taking me away from my own writing.

And then I had an epiphany! What if my writing and the telling of my stories were the thing that helped people! YES! My stories are all written during my healing pathway, perhaps by sharing them I might inspire others. By doing the thing I love the most, I can be compassionate to others AND to myself, all at the same time.

So, I am swapping the purple and the blue segments of my life. This will be quite an easy shift because the biggest change can be made at Quiet Space Studio, which I set up to enable me to work on my stories and poems but that has inadvertently, become a drop in for people. I will still do drop in and make appointments to see people but not all week. Just at designated times.

We are the keepers of our own schedule but it is so easy to fall into the same dance. It's almost as if certain ways of being have made permanent grooves. But being aware of them is a good way to being able to change them.

The second major change is that I have stopped randomly trying all sorts of crafts in the evening to distract my tinnitus and started making books within which to put my stories and poems. This feels so exciting. 

Now the blue and the red represent how much time I am focused on my own work ... I've only been trying it for 3 days but it seems to have made such a big difference to how I feel. 

Sometimes we can make tiny shifts and yet massive change.

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