What Is Loving-Kindness Meditation? Everything You Need To Know

When we were young, we all quickly learned the sentiment, “Treat others the way you wish to be treated.” For many of us, it is part of our nature to show kindness to the people we come across every day. But, when it comes to self-compassion or compassion for people we may not get along with well, it is much more of a process. This is where loving-kindness meditation comes in.

What Is Loving-Kindness Meditation?

Loving-kindness meditation invites you to focus on positivity, gratitude, kindness, and empathy towards yourself and others. In this form of meditation, you will be grounded with a mantra that focuses in on wishing well to yourself and others. As is true with most forms of meditation, this practice takes just a few minutes a day, and the results (listed below) are impactful. 

Loving Kindness For Self

There’s a famous quote by Ru Paul, “If you can’t love yourself, how in the [heck] are you gonna love somebody else?” and that’s a profound question to ask. How can you show love to others if you are unkind when it comes to your self-image and self-talk. We have to work on being kind to ourselves so that we can be the best version of ourselves for the rest of the world. Loving-kindness meditation not only says that we should simply be kind to ourselves but, rather, ‘generously’ kind to ourselves. Allowing us to tap into the things we love about ourselves and begin to support our own lives.

Loving Kindness For Loved Ones

Another staple of loving-kindness meditation is to express gratitude and love for those closest to you. This tends to come a little more naturally for us and is a positive way to set your intentions for the day. Outwardly expressing kindness to those you love is just about the most feel-good thing you can do.

Loving Kindness For Someone You Dislike

Unfortunately, we all have people in our lives who we just don’t get along with, and that’s okay. You are not on earth to be everyone’s best friend, but you are here to be kind. Loving-kindness meditation asks you to think about someone you dislike and wish them health, happiness, and peace. Though this may be difficult the first few times, over time, it can get more comfortable, and you might even find yourself developing a little more empathy for those you don’t quite get along with. If this brings up too many emotions in you, redirect this section back to yourself to give yourself compassion in the moment.

Loving Kindness For All

The world needs kindness every day. We are all connected as human beings, and loving-kindness meditation asks you to consider all living beings in one of your mantras to be safe, happy, healthy, and at peace. This marks the end of a loving-kindness session. 

Loving Kindness Mantras You Can Try

For this form of meditation, one is typically sending kindful thoughts to themselves and others. It may feel a little different at first, but as you practice, this can also become very meaningful on a deep level. Here is a simple meditation to try: 

Thinking of self: 

  • May I be happy
  • May I have peace
  • May I be healthy

Thinking of a loved-one:

  • May you be happy
  • May you have peace
  • May you be healthy

Thinking of someone you do not like:

  • May you be happy
  • May you have peace
  • May you be healthy

Thinking of all living things:

  • May all be happy
  • May all have peace
  • May all be healthy

To be impactful, move through all forms of this mantra, starting with yourself and ending with all living beings.

The Benefits of Loving-Kindness Meditation

According to Psychology Today, there are several reasons to try loving-kindness meditation, and they are even backed with science. A few examples of these benefits are an increase in positivity, less chronic pain, more empathy, less bias, and even less self-criticism. All of that can happen from just setting aside 5-10 minutes out of your day to show gratitude and kindness for yourself and others. It truly is a powerful practice.

If you would like to get started with meditation, we have excellent resources on iChuze Fitness, a digital platform that lets you work out, focus on self-care, and show kindness to others from your favorite device. Anytime, anywhere. You can download a free trial for iChuze Fitness on our website. We also have tons of space in all of our locations to practice meditation as you focus on yourself. Whether you join us online or in-club, we cannot wait to welcome you to the Chuze Family.

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