What is compersion? The fact that my spell check doesn’t even recognize it as a word tells me that it’s not widely known, and I guess when you consider how the majority of us have been conditioned to think about love and relationships in the context of scarcity, it makes perfect sense.
Compersion is the opposite of jealousy. It’s a feeling of joy in the face other people’s happiness, and it’s what polycules thrive on. As lovely as it feels, however, it can be hard to achieve at times. Here are some tips for how you can encourage its growth within your life.
4 Tips for Practicing Compersion
1. Acknowledge Meaningful Dates in Your Partner and Metamour’s Relationship
Share in their excitement—anniversaries, big nights out, upcoming trips—for anything that you know is a big deal for the two of them, just don’t try to include yourself in it (unless that’s how your polycule rolls).
Send a text to your metamour expressing your well wishes. Plan an anniversary party or offer to switch up your date night to facilitate their special plans. These acts of acknowledgement will help you to access that part of yourself that feels joy in other people’s joy.
2. Congratulate Your Metamour on Life’s Successes
Celebrate all the great things that are happening for your metamour by sending them flowers, or planning a surprise party. If either of these suggestions sound cheesy to you, do something more in keeping with the vibe of your group.
The idea is to focus outside of yourself by offering your metamour the spotlight. Let them know that you’re happy for them and that their success is well deserved. This can help foster the kind of noncompetitive mindset that is helpful when practicing compersion.
3. Focus on Gratitude
This is another great way to keep yourself in the noncompetitive head space I just mentioned. When you focus on the things you grateful for, you remind yourself of all the wonderful things you have going for you, and thus avoid feeling so jealous as others.
Of course, it’s not a perfect science. Some days despite all your positivity, you will feel resentful of others. The trick is to strive for compersion, but not beat yourself up for sometimes falling short.
4. Nurture Your Belief in Abundance
Remind yourself of all the ways that life (sometimes mysteriously) provides for what you need. Think of all the times you’ve found a twenty-dollar bill on the ground, or in an old coat pocket. Or of the times that friends (or perfect strangers) have come to your aid at just the right time.
If you focus on examples from your life that prove there’s enough of what you need to go around, compersion will come a little more easily. All it takes is practice and a desire to feel more at peace with being a part of a poly whole.
How do you practice compersion? Share your thoughts in a comment!