Tired of trying to be nice? The solution for compassion fatigue is…

May 4, 2020   |   18 Comments

Audio only version is here
Meditation begins at 9:20

Dear Open Heart Project,

I hope you and your loved ones are well. Please let me hear how you are doing? What is difficult? What is helping? I’d love to know.

I once had the chance to interview the wonderful vipassana meditation teacher Tara Brach about compassion. I asked her what she advised her students who were finding it difficult to be compassionate because…people. It’s not easy! However her answer was so direct and straightforward–and right. She taught what helps to keep our hearts open in a chaotic world. Before this week’s sit, I share her answer with you.

Please remember that the Open Heart Project is offering four live meditation gatherings per day, Monday-Friday. All the details are here. The 3rd sitting is in Spanish. Yoga Nidra has been introduced in certain sessions. Please feel free to share if you know others who would benefit from sitting in community. FREE.

With love, S

PS If you are looking for more connection, support, and friendship, please consider joining the Open Heart Project sangha. Now is the time time to renew our commitment to sanity, courage, and gentleness. Details are here.

Free for Open Heart Project Sangha members. Join the Sangha here.
Find out more about the rave here.


Free Live Online One-Day Meditation Retreats: Sign up here. Open to all.

  • May 9: Michael Carroll — Kindness
  • May 16: TBD
  • May 23: Kevin Townley — Wisdom


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  • Posted by:  Janet

    Thank you so much for your weekly meditations Susan. I have been so grateful for your wise words in these last weeks. You have lifted me out of the downward spiral of depression on several occasions, allowing me to reset and face things in a better spirit.
    I have missed seeing your cat in the videos. Perhaps you are in a situation where you are missing them too. If so I feel for you. I often feel that no-one understands me so well as my cat :-))
    With much love to you.

    • Posted by:  Susan Piver

      So glad we can practice together, Janet. The cats are well! I have been making videos in my office (rather than my home) and I am so happy to see them every single time I return. Stay well! With love, Susan

  • Posted by:  Sarah

    Thank you so much for you and your teachings & offerings. I feel your support through the ether.
    Particularly loved this session about compassion being in the moment and how it can take so many forms.
    And I loved ‘May your immune system Kick ass’ -just brilliant.. made me laugh out loud 🙏

    • Posted by:  Susan Piver

      So glad this was useful (and made you laugh)! With love, Susan

  • Posted by:  Evelyn Asher

    Thank you, Susan. Your meditations over the past few years have helped to support me through these intense times. What I value is being able to meet challenges spiritually, reinforced by your teaching and example. Stay safe and resilient

    • Posted by:  Susan Piver

      Evelyn, I’m so happy to hear that these practices have been there for you. Please stay safe and resilient yourself! I will do my best, too. With love, Susan

  • Posted by:  Renee

    With immense gratitude Susan. Your sangha over the years has helped me so much become a compassionate person. But I do have a problem being compassionate when I see people doing uncompassionate things or lying. Sangha is so important in getting through this shutdown but I do direct my compassion to all the people who are sick and dying, or their families, or the first responders.

    I am with you for this divine journey.


    • Posted by:  Susan Piver

      Renee, I share your difficulty. It is so good to focus on where you can genuinely feel compassion. Glad we journey together. With love, Susan

  • Posted by:  jane

    You are so right. Whenever I feel disconnected with myself it is often in times when I have been ignoring family&friends afar. Simply re-connecting with my community of loved ones feels so right. At this time connection with people is so important whether a smile to someone on a dog walk, phoning family/friends or meditating together.
    Thank you for your teachings and support Susan.

    • Posted by:  Susan Piver

      You are so welcome, Jane. Thank you for putting the teachings into effect. That is what really matters. With love, Susan

  • Posted by:  Kevin J Waters

    Thank You Susan, Your Interview With Tara, Was Something that was Very Touching For Me. Since I try to Follow you Both when Able ! At a time when Compassion, Self Compassion, in my life seen’s to be Fractured, I’m brought back by your talks, Meditations, and of Late using something Borrowed from a Talk by Tara, Called “The Sacred Pause” (2015), Printed it so as to have it at my disposal, When Ever. My Practice, &, Recovery is Secured, by being able to pull-up All Important Reminders to bring me back, to Practice ! Peace, &, Loving Kindness

    • Posted by:  Susan Piver

      I’m so glad that the 3 of us, you, me, and the wonderful Tara, are connected in practice. With love, Susan

  • Posted by:  Myrtle Harrington

    “May your immune system kick ass” 🤣 That made me laugh. Thank you. Just what i needed.

    • Posted by:  Susan Piver

      Haha!! Glad to hear it. xo S

  • Posted by:  Paul

    Thank you Susan for allowing me to connect with you so that I may hear your wise words and participate in some meditation with you.
    I listen to a lot of different teachers and have to say that your ‘style’ and approach in discussing the various topics is one that I very much love and resonate with.
    Please keep up your great work and remain healthy and happy.
    Sending love to you and everyone here and may the light inside us all shine brightly.
    Namaste 🙏 😀 Paul xx

    • Posted by:  Susan Piver

      So happy we are able to practice together. Many thanks for the kind words. With love, Susan

  • Posted by:  april

    I appreciate your sangha so very much. Keep that immune system of yours kickin’ ass, too, and we’ll all get through this together.

  • Posted by:  Suzanne

    Thank you for the practice. Community… Sharing values, goals, and challenges. Letting go anger or bitterness is easier if you don’t feel alone.

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