"Simplicity, patience, compassion. These three are your greatest treasures. Simple in actions and thoughts, you return to the source of being. Patient with both friends and enemies, you accord with the way things are. Compassionate toward yourself, you reconcile all beings in the world."
-- Lao Tzu
I happened upon this quote and found it especially applicable to a season traditionally devoted to thanksgiving for family, friends and life. As such, I'd like to use Lao Tzu's words to make a framework for this month's musings...
Simple in actions and thoughts, you return to the source of being.
Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings are an American funk and soul band. They started a revivalist movement that combined funk and soul music, sounds that I heard growing up in the mid-1960s to mid-1970s. Sharon, at the age of 60, passed away this past Friday of pancreatic cancer that had been in remission but returned last year.
The lyrics in this song are reminiscent of values my parents tried to instill in me including humility and simplicity. I'm dedicating this song to you, Mom and Dad. I want you to know I appreciate the lessons you taught me through your example.
Sharon Jones and The Dap-Kings: Humble Me
Patient with both friends and enemies, you accord with the way things are.
One of the gifts I received in surviving a trauma lasting 46 hours is an appreciation of and ability to demonstrate patience in all life circumstances, ranging from the unexpected to the absurd.
Traffic jams, long lines in the grocery store, waiting for the friend who always runs late, the doctor's office--any appointment for that matter, even in accomplishing personal or professional challenges I set for myself. Former reasons for impatience have become opportunities for perspective.
I remain conscious of keeping professional and personal commitments. In other words, I place high value on my own punctuality and follow through with issues, promises, assignments. I instill these traits in my nursing students as well.
Speaking of patience, I have to share another motivational number by Sharon Jones, who didn't become a household name until she was forty. To me, she was worth the wait and I'm grateful for twenty years of her music.
The lyrics of I'm Still Here remind me that patience and persistence is always worth it.
Compassionate toward yourself, you reconcile all beings in the world.
Recognizing and addressing my stress and need for self care is the most compassionate thing I can do, for myself and those I love and work with.
My physical body carries me through the life that God has given me.
My mind helps me think about issues with clarity and meaning.
My soul keeps me aligned with my purpose in the Universe.
My self care plan includes:
In taking care of myself, I am better able to take care of others in a compassionate manner.
I'm currently enjoying the music of a new artist who calls himself Rag n Bone Man. His song Human is vulnerable and strong at once and reminds me of the importance of self-compassion. Take a listen. This may strike a chord in you as well.
Until next month, I am thankful to each of you. Please take time to enjoy the simple treasures in this season.
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This blog publishes the third Sunday of each month. I look forward to your visits and appreciate your feedback.
Please enjoy your stay...