Wednesday, a new message is published via internet and email starting
course will last for 52 weeks, ending in June, next year.
the second Monday of each month, starting July 11th, at 12:00 noon
(US -EST), we have a 45 minute conference call to provide depth
and clarity. We will be reviewing the previous weeks messages and
Thom will answer questions.
calls are recorded for those who cannot attend and links to the
recordings are posted below and on "The Community Resource
next call is:
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online forum is an integral part of the Compassion Course...
participants to support one another by sharing information, staying
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reading and participating in group discussions, we can be part of
a community of support in our learning. When we share our experience,
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Founder and Director of
NYCNVC, Certified Trainer, CNVC
greatest of all gifts is the power to estimate things at their true
de la Rochefoucauld
Appreciation versus Praise
As a child, I grew up hearing expressions like "good
boy" or "nice job". These expressions of "approval"
were often nice to hear and yet, always left me wondering. What
was "nice" about that? It also left me a bit nervous.
Does that mean I might not be "good" if I do something
These were the "instructions" I received on how to be
a human. It was the "praise" I received from the "people
in charge". From this "praise" I learned that certain
behaviors earned me the label of "good". They also reminded
me that I might lose that label if the "people in charge"
decided my behavior wasn't "good".
This way of relating to others has shifted to something new for
me, as I have traveled my path to a more compassionate and connected
life. I have come to realize that many of the expressions of "praise"
that I have received were often designed to get me to "behave".
Others were designed to let me know that someone appreciated my
actions and was grateful for what I did. The second category felt
different. These expressions touched me in a way that felt connecting
and clear. These are the ones I want to understand and be part
of. They were not "praise"; they were "appreciation".
Living in Appreciation
A profound part of the practice of appreciation is that with
the skills we have learned in this course so far, we can experience
a deeper, more satisfying life, through our awareness. Also, as
we discussed last week, through language, we can share it with
Inside myself, I can use the skills of feeling feelings and connecting
them to my met needs, to notice the copious amounts of "metness"
I am experiencing throughout my day. Right now, as I write these
words, my brain is having thoughts, translating them into words,
organizing them into sentences, helping my body type them into
the message you are reading and helping me share this with you...
Self-expression, mmmmmmm. All this while I am sitting in my office,
which is clearly 40 degrees warmer than it is outside, while I'm
fully clothed, while I'm fully rested, while my heart is pumping
life through my body, while my lungs are bringing me fresh air,
while the trees are helping make that fresh air, while this big
blue ball of water, earth and life spins in space, while the sun
gives us warmth and light... Comfort, security, care, well-being,
peace of mind, communion... that's what I'm talkin' about! I can
feel this; I can notice this. I can see that there are thousands
of things happening that are contributing to the "metness"
of my needs. I could go on... And I will (although I'll stop for
now so I can get back to writing heheheh). Simply summarized,
this practice makes my life and the lives of those around me more
My partner and I have developed a practice of taking a few
moments each day to share our appreciation for how we contribute
to each other. In the beginning, it was a bit uncomfortable for
me. After some thought, I realized it was because when I was growing
up, appreciation had usually come with some sense of "approval"
and "power over" and even engendered a sense of anxiety.
Over time I have learned to receive appreciation like "a
shower", as opposed to "sustenance". Appreciation
has become something that adds to my life, not something I depend
on to feel OK about myself. This shift gives me a very different
experience, one that is more choiceful and gratifying.
I have also noticed that instead of only thinking about the things
that we did, or that we do, when we specifically think about the
needs that we contribute to for one another through our
actions, our experience is deeper and more satisfying.
to Compassion Course Main Page
"A Moving Experience"
number of years ago, when I was living on the Upper West Side
of Manhattan, I was in my favorite book store, a Barnes and Noble
I was lining up to get on the escalator, as is common in the city,
and noticed a father and his three-year-old son approaching the
moving staircase. The father was weighed down with a full day's
supply of purchased goods along with a stroller, his son trailing
close behind. As "Dad" got on the escalator, juggling
his bounty, his son stood there frozen, struggling to find the
right spot to hop on for his ride to the lower level. The little
boy called out in a frightened, slightly quivering voice, "Dad?"
By the time his father noticed what was happening, he was hopelessly
watching the space between them grow, from half way down the moving
mass of metal stairs.
Seeing this, I stepped up and held my hand out to the soon-to-be
panicking little person at the top of the stairs. I spoke. "Hold
my hand." He reached up. "Ready? Here we go." We
stepped onto the machine together. And down we went.
As the two of us reached the bottom and stepped onto solid ground,
he looked up, straight into my eyes, let out an audible sigh of
relief and said perhaps the most heartfelt little "thank
you" I have ever heard.
It was so sincere and chock full of deep appreciation, I almost
cried from the joy of this wonderful exchange. I feel warm right
now recounting it. I could clearly see and feel what this
meant to my little friend. His dad was pretty happy and relieved
too. I owe it to my practice of compassion, that this seemingly
"little" moment was so wonderful for me. Thanks to my
ability to fully connect with this little guy's feelings and the
"metness" of his needs in the moment... I had a moment
I will appreciate forever.
More to come, as the Compassion Course continues...
to Compassion Course Main Page
for the Week
#1 - Check In Again - As we did last week, write down a list
of things that are happening and the needs that are being met
in this very moment. For example, breathing/air, reading this/learning
and growth, sitting in a building/security. This time, write down
ten to twenty of them. How do you feel?
#2 - Appreciate Yourself - Write down three ways you contribute
to your own life, three things that you do or have done that you
enjoy. Then write down the needs you meet for yourself.
Then look in the mirror and say, "Thank you." Note:
It is difficult to do this without smiling... Oh well... Guess
we'll just have to smile.
#3 - Renewed Sharing an Appreciation - Think of something
that someone said or did that contributed to your needs being
met. Ask them if you could share something you appreciate with
them. Then let them know what happened, how it felt and what need
(or needs) it met.
example: "I just want to let you know how much I appreciate
your company at the movies last night... and for that matter all
the times we've spent together... the friendship, the fun and
companionship you bring into my life makes such a difference to
me. Thank you, really."
can do this in person, through an email or by sending a card.
to Compassion Course Main Page
Copyright Thom Bond 2016