The Compassion Of Remembering Basic Competence

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Life has been busy for me lately, as you all know.  I’m sure you also know what it’s like to be busy with something and keep finding more things to do.  It becomes all too easy to keep worrying “How do I do this” or “How do I do that” as more this and that piles up. So you get an idea of where my life has been on and off as of late.

What I started doing when worries intruded was note “I’m smart enough to figure that out” then get back to whatever the hell I was doing. Or wasn’t doing if I was trying to relax, get back to whatever I wasn’t doing.

I quickly found this simple reminder of my own basic competence kept me focused on my current activities or inactivities, as well as reducing distraction and worry.

It’s no surprise something like this helped me focus in hard times. I’ve had to remind others of their own competence and that it’s OK to focus on what is at hand. I just wasn’t as good as applying that advice to myself, to the point where I was startled what I did for others worked for me.

I’m sure some of my audience is nodding along with me. We’re often good at being compassionate for anyone but ourselves, but when we do, it works. It works just like it does for other people, but maybe we forget we’re people as we’re so overwhelmed with everything else.

So now I’m taking time to pause more in the current maelstrom of life and remember my own ability to get things done. A little self-compassion, a little remembering I’m a person and treating myself as I treat others.

Steven Savage