kar·ma •ˈkärmə • noun: (in Hinduism and Buddhism) the sum of a person’s actions in this and previous states of existence, viewed as deciding their fate in future existences.
informal: destiny or fate, following as effect from cause.
A good friend of mine shared with me that whatever happens in your day, your life, is your karma. Your karma encompasses the good, the bad and everything in-between. After she shared this idea, it helped me to be more understanding, accepting and conscious of my actions and reactions to any situation.
For example earlier this week, I was almost hit by a car. My initial emotion was anger because the driver had made eye contact with me (and made me feel that it was safe to cross the street). To my surprise, the driver proceeded to accelerate at full speed. I jumped back in order to not get hit.
I reflected on how I reacted to the situation, I reacted out of fear. That fear turned into anger. At the moment, I had the opportunity to practice my breath, act calm, let go.
Yet I failed – miserably.
I share this story with you because most of the time I am balanced and grounded. On this specific day, I was caught off guard. My reaction is my own karma. I can control my own reactions and thoughts. Instead of allowing the driver to go ahead first, I let my assumptions and ego get to me.
Four Simple Steps To Improve Your Karma
- Treat others the way you want to be treated.
- Practice being patient with others and yourself.
- Practice compassion and forgiveness to others and yourself.
- When you feel upset, angry, sad (which is fine once in a while because we are all human), to acknowledge the feeling. From there, reflect to understand what happened and learn how improve the next time a similar situation arises.