When a reporter asked HH the Dalai Lama how he was able to stay so cheerful and free of resentment towards the Chinese, who stole his homeland and killed thousands of his people, His Holiness said, “They have taken everything from us, should I let them take my mind as well?”

I was asked recently, “Given how much violence and political unrest has increased in our society, isn’t it healthy to fear for my child’s safety?” The welfare of our children is a compelling natural concern for almost all living beings – not just human beings.

Getting stuck in anxious energy and busyness, but getting nowhere. Does this sound familiar? I call it "running in place," and it's a sure sign that I’ve stopped giving myself love and compassion. When you notice yourself doing this, don’t think, “I have to stop this.” Instead, think, “Oh! I'm running-in-place! I must be denying myself love and compassion.” Then if you like, you can put your hand to your heart as you do in the Hands Over Heart Technique I mentioned in this earlier post. . . .

If we are accustomed to living a "good life" of relative privilege, we can tend to be ashamed that we're afraid of epidemics, terrorism, and climate change. This unfortunate combination of feelings makes it difficult to develop a good course of action.

Feeling Helpless?

It takes a lot of energy and attention to drive yourself crazy. If you redirect that energy away from "feeling helpless" and bring it into alignment with your desire to benefit, you may come up with some creative solutions. I'll explain.

What does recognizing oneness have to do with healthy sexuality? We are always imagining separation and antagonism where there isn’t any. Due to our sense of separateness from each other, we often generate fear.

If we feel upset when things go wrong or something unpleasant and unexpected happens, we’re not exactly unique in this world. But if we develop the habit of holding on to these upset feelings, we may resort to drinking too much, using drugs, or overeating (using food like a drug) in a futile effort to try and feel better.

Having worked with clients and students for many years, I’ve noticed that we are often extremely skilled at deluding and torturing ourselves. How do we do it? We speak using virtuous-sounding euphemisms for what are actually harsh and fear-inducing judgments. In my opinion, that is the case with the phrase ‘high expectations.’