Here are five everyday actions that can help you develop a deeper, more loving sense of wholeheartedness, and a greater capacity for loving others – an yourself.
1. Let go of Exhaustion
Wholehearted people know when to rest. Brown explains that when you’re saying no, you’re also saying yes. While our fear of missing out can drive us to say “yes” constantly, Brown says this is actually a form of shame we must say no to.
The only reason I can now say no is because I work on my shame “gremlins.” Gremlins are the tricksters who whisper all of those terrible things in our ears that keep us afraid and small. When the gremlins say “you better say yes, or they won’t like you” or “they’ll think you’re lazy,” I whisper back: “Not this time. I get to say no. I get to love myself, stay home and drive soccer carpool.”
“All of us were made to make things,” Brown writes. “During my studies, I found out a surprising piece of data: There is no such thing as a creative or noncreative person. Every single human being is creative. Every research participant could recall a time in his or her life when creativity brought him or her great joy.”
In order to free ourselves up to create, there’s another gremlin to quiet! In order to create, we must address, and reject, the voice inside us that wants to shame us into comparing, and believing we’re not creative.
No one gets calmer by telling themselves to do so. Instead, Brown writes, it’s important to recognize what calm is. Calm has three ingredients: 1. Listen and understand. 2. Let yourself feel the vulnerability of the moment. 3. Manage that feeling.
4. Make Time for Play
Play is something you do that makes you lose track of time – it is time spent without purpose.
“What keeps most of us from dancing—at any age—is usually the desire to be cool, and being cool, even for grown-ups, is a refusal to be vulnerable,” Brown writes.
What are some ways that you work to increase your capacity to love, each day?
Read more about increasing your capacity to love.