What is your guiding light most of the time? What is your highest priority, the thing that is most important to you most of the time? As you go through this list, be honest with yourself! Pick one or more things from this list that are most often your guiding light.
- Being right
- Having my way
- Being in control of how people feel about me
- What people think of me
- Avoiding feeling my painful feelings
- Never being taken advantage of
- Getting love, approval, and attention
- Being in a relationship
- Having children
- Having sex
- Food, alcohol, or drugs
- Looking good
- Getting away with as little as possible
- Not being controlled by anyone
- Doing things right, being perfect
- Never making a mistake
- Avoiding failure
- Being taken care of emotionally
- Being taken care of financially
- Making money
- Getting things done - accomplishing things
When you have any of the above as your guiding light, then you will, of course, be harsh and judgmental toward yourself, trying to control yourself and others. You will, of course, abandon yourself in other ways as well - ignoring the anxiety, stress and depression that all this causes and turning to various addictions instead.
What if you decided to make kindness to yourself and others your guiding light? Much would change.
Instead of placing your value on any of the above - what people think, getting what you want, making lots of money, how you look, how you perform, and so on - you would place your value on your kindness toward yourself and others. You would define your worth by your compassion, generosity, caring, understanding, gentleness, tenderness. This does not mean that you would not want to be successful, but it does mean that the means does not justify the ends. You would not be unkind to others to get what you want, because being unkind to others is never kind to yourself.
Your true essence is naturally kind and caring, so anytime you are unkind to others, you are going against yourself - you are in "bad faith" with yourself. This hurts you on the soul level, and is therefore unloving to yourself. You can never feel good about yourself while being unkind and uncaring toward others.
Making kindness your guiding light does not mean that you will be weak and allow others to take advantage of you or control you. This would not be kind to yourself. Your wounded self might say, "If you make kindness your guiding light, you will lose out. You will not be successful. You will not get enough done." How would any of this be kind to yourself? Why would it be kind to yourself to not get things done, or to not move toward success? What I'm talking about here is making your VALUE attached to kindness rather than to getting things done, or to success, or to approval, and so on.
Kindness is not weak - it comes from a place of deep personal power. The more you practice Inner Bonding and learn to be loving to yourself - taking responsibility for your own feelings - the more you will be able to make kindness your guiding life. And the more you make kindness your guiding light, the better you will feel about yourself.
Making kindness your guiding light is not something you do and it is done. It is a moment-by-moment decision - a decision that comes from consciousness of the fact that you get to choose who you want to be. The more moments you choose it, the easier it becomes to choose it next time you are challenged.