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Mindfulness and Love In Your Role As A Caregiver

By: Gail R. Mitchell

(Page 2 of 3)

The practice of mindfulness defuses our negativity, aggression and turbulent emotions, which may have been gathering power over many lifetimes. Rather than suppressing emotions or indulging in them, here it is important to view them, your thought and whatever arises with an acceptance and generosity that are as open and spacious as possible. In this space there is a feeling so warm and cozy that you feel enveloped and protected by it, as if by a blanket of sunlight. As you remain open and more mindful, your negativity will slowly be defused; you will begin to feel well in your being.

The practice unveils and reveals your essential Good Heart, because it dissolves and removes the unkindness or the harm in you. Only when we have removed the harm in ourselves, do we become truly useful to others.... we allow our true Good Heart, the fundamental goodness and kindness that are our real nature, to shine out and become the warm climate in which our true being flowers.”

By now, you may be saying to yourself, “What is she talking about?”

If you can reflect back to a time when you felt loved and you loved, remember how it felt to you. Now remember a time when you were angry or hurt. What did that feel like? Can you recall a time in your childhood when you wanted to tell your parent about something exciting only to be told, “I am busy, you will have to wait until I am finished.”? Do you remember a time when a relative might have pinched your cheek out of love and you thought to yourself, “Ouch! That hurt!”? A gentle stroking touch would have felt more loving to you. Now, can you remember a time when you fell asleep and woke up feeling uncomfortable because your bed linens were crumpled beneath you?

In caring for another person, mindfulness, intent and love all play an important part in meeting the needs of both of you. If you are not in a loving space, if you are coming from fear, resentment, guilt, obligation, feeling overly responsible, or some negative space when you are caring for your loved one, your role will become burdensome and you will burn out.

When you come from mindfulness, with a clear intent and love, your role will become easier and more effortless. Your loved one will feel the differences as well. Slow down before you take action. Be fully present in all that you do. You may be thinking, “This is full time work in itself. I don’t have the time or the patience to do any of this!” So be it. 

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