Inner Healing & Personal Growth Coach
Inner Healing & Personal Growth Coach

The Loving-Kindness Meditation

The Loving-Kindness Meditation has gained recognition for its transformative effects on reducing stress and promoting relaxation. It is especially relevant in these uncertain times, offering solace for those dealing with anxiety. By practicing this form of meditation, individuals can develop the ability to respond to their fears with wisdom. Instead of battling, feeding, or numbing their fear response, they can establish a solid foundation for courageously confronting fear and cultivating curiosity to explore its manifestations.

Daily meditation is essential for new meditators to maintain consistency and reap the scientifically proven benefits. The Loving-Kindness Meditation, as depicted in this guide, does not require elaborate techniques or settings. However, it does require consistency. 

Within each of us lies a natural capacity for loving-kindness, and this practice serves as a tool to reconnect with that inner sanctuary, a haven of peace and tranquility.

To prepare for the practice:

  1. Sit on the floor with your spine lengthened, or sit in a chair with your feet grounded. Arrange pillows or props as needed to create a comfortable posture.
  2. Sit with an elongated spine, envisioning your head’s crown reaching the sky.
  3. Allow your hands to rest gently in your lap.
  4. Slightly tilt your chin to lengthen the back of your neck, enabling smooth airflow during breathing.
  5. Tune into your body awareness.
  6. Place your hands on your belly and breathe naturally. Observe if your belly contracts or expands with each breath. A pulling sensation indicates shallow breathing that only fills the upper part of your lungs, while an expanding belly signifies deep inhalation that saturates your lungs with fresh air.
  7. Feel your body expand as you breathe, starting from your chest and extending down to your belly.
  8. Exhale and feel your body contract from your belly to your chest, releasing all the air from your lungs.
  9. Notice the rhythmic flow of your breath, synchronizing with the wave-like movements of your belly.

To Practice the Loving-Kindness Meditation:

Begin by generating loving-kindness towards yourself.

Recall moments when you have shown kindness and generosity to others, and embrace the warm, tender feelings that arise within you. Alternatively, visualize a beloved pet and experience the love it elicits.

As you immerse yourself in this love, pay attention to the sensations in your body. Take a few moments to breathe and bask in this open, unconditional love. Invite feelings of peace, acceptance, and surrender.

Extend loving-kindness towards yourself by silently reciting the following phrases:

  • May I be filled with loving-kindness.
  • May I feel connected and calm.
  • May I be safe.
  • May I accept myself just as I am.
  • May I be healthy and happy.
  • May I live with ease.

Now, bring to mind someone you deeply care for, someone who consistently provides a sense of safety and support. Allow your heart to overflow with appreciation for this person, and offer them these words:

  • May you be filled with loving-kindness.
  • May you feel connected and calm.
  • May you be safe.
  • May you be healthy and happy.
  • May you accept yourself just as you are.
  • May you live with ease.

Visualize a “neutral” person you regularly encounter but do not know well, such as a neighbor, grocery store clerk, or mail carrier. Connect with the image of this person and repeat the following phrases:

  • May you be filled with loving-kindness.
  • May you feel connected and calm.
  • May you be safe.
  • May you accept yourself just as you are.
  • May you be healthy and happy.
  • May you live with ease.

Reflect on someone with whom you have a difficult relationship or dislike. Remind yourself to see beyond their flaws and recognize their spirit as deserving of love and kindness, acknowledging their pain and sadness. 

Visualize this person and offer them these words:

  • May you be filled with loving-kindness.
  • May you feel connected and calm.
  • May you be safe.
  • May you accept yourself just as you are.
  • May you be healthy and happy.
  • May you live with ease.

Expand your awareness to encompass all beings in every direction—yourself, loved ones, neutral individuals, difficult people, and all living beings:

  • May all beings be filled with loving-kindness.
  • May all beings feel connected and calm.
  • May all beings be safe.
  • May all beings accept themselves just as they are.
  • May all beings be healthy and happy.
  • May all beings live with ease.
  • May all beings be awakened and free.

To conclude your practice, inhale your arms overhead and bring them together in a prayer position. Take a few breaths in this pose. With your hands at your heart center, place your right hand over your heart and your left hand atop your right hand. Feel the vibrations of loving-kindness emanating from your heart center. Immerse yourself in the verdant energy of your heart and conclude your practice with a gentle bow.


Sarah Brassard is a writer, teacher, and coach living in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.  She’s the author of Inside – A Guide to the Resources Within

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