Just Like Me

“Realizing that the other person is also just like me is the basis on which you can develop compassion, not only towards those around you but also towards your enemy. Normally, when we think about our enemy, we think about harming him. Instead, try to remember that the enemy is also a human being, just like me.” -- The Dalai Lama

Working on a team inevitably brings conflict and with conflict comes the possibility of becoming alienated from team members who seem to be just too different from ourselves. Subtly and over time, our human tendency to make enemies out of those who are different from us emerges. 

This "Just Like Me" meditation by Ram Dass can help remind us that we are all human, all seeking love and belonging, and all in this together. 

 

Find a quiet place where you will not be disturbed and sit in a comfortable yet alert position. Bring to mind someone with whom you struggle. 

 Silently repeat these phrases, while keeping the person in mind:

This person has a body and a mind, just like me.

This person has feelings, emotions and thoughts, just like me.

This person has in his or her life, experienced physical and emotional pain and suffering, just like me.

This person has at some point been sad, disappointed, angry, or hurt, just like me. (You can say these one at a time....)

This person has felt unworthy or inadequate, just like me. 

This person worries and is frightened sometimes, just like me.

This person has longed for friendship, just like me.

This person is learning about life, just like me.

This person wants to be caring and kind to others, just like me.

This person wants to be content with what life has given, just like me.

This person wishes to be free from pain and suffering, just like me.

This person wishes to be safe and healthy, just like me.

This person wishes to be happy, just like me.

This person wishes to be loved, just like me. 

Allow some wishes for well-being to arise:

I wish that this person have the strength, resources, and social support to navigate the difficulties in life with ease.

I wish that this person be free from pain and suffering.

I wish that this person be peaceful and happy.

I wish that this person be loved. 

Because this person is a fellow human being, just like me. 

For reflection alone or together: 

What did you notice in your body during this meditation? 

When did you notice resistance and when did you notice willingness within yourself during the meditation? 

Next week: How to make work life balance work