Have you ever driven to work and you don’t remember how you got there? Have you ever looked for your glasses and they are on your head? Have you ever yelled at your kids and then wondered where that came from? For me, yes, yes, and yes! We have so much going on in our lives, that we just get lost in thought and our body moves us around like a puppet. It (the body and mind) moves, and lives, and goes through the motions, not really noticing our surroundings or the emotions that guide us. Mindfulness helps us to be more self-aware. It helps us to be more in the moment and be “here”, right now. It sounds really mundane, maybe even ridiculous, but Mindfulness practices work. Caveat, you have to practice to see the shift. So what can you do right now? Notice that you are reading this. How do you feel reading this? What is your mind processing as you read this? That was a mindful moment. Notice. Then notice again. Nonsense, right? Be curious about what and why you think what you do? Are you resentful and dismissive of this idea? Inquire why? Without judgement within yourself or for me, just be curious? What might you find? Mindfulness helps us to notice feelings. It helps us to live more in the moment. It embraces the idea that what you think and feel is just that – thoughts and feelings that you notice. We, as a society, long for connectivity. That longing can be found within you. Then the connectivity happens so naturally with others. Mindfulness encourages self-awareness and acceptance in a whole new way.
I woke up yesterday morning and it was windy and was raining really hard. I didn’t have to work yesterday, so I just stared out the window. In that moment, I was somewhat relieved that I wouldn’t have to stick to my walking routine, but also dreaded the thought of just staying indoors. I like being outside. So, I was thinking about how I have a choice on how I meet my day. Dread and resent the awful weather – sulk around for the day? Just get all of the housework that I’m behind on? That’s always fun… no. I had a choice this day. I chose to get my rain pants and coat on. I put on a baseball cap, and out in the rain I went. What I enjoyed on this walk was the sound of the rain hitting the trees and the leaves releasing the drops to the ground, and how the rain tapped gently on my rain coat. I enjoyed looking at the huge oak leaves that were sort of Modge Podged to the cement creating a collage of brown, gold, and red leaves. I noticed the gorgeous colors of fall surrounding me. Some trees solid yellow, some trees almost empty of their leaf filling. I noticed how the air felt on my face and how it smelled like that familiar smell of Fall. If I hadn’t taken that walk, I would have missed the essence of just “being” in the rain. No thoughts. Just paying attention to the good around me, taking it all in like a good movie.
You see, we have a choice in how we greet the day. Whether we love where we work or where we need to be each day, we can greet it by finding the good things, the curious things, the wonder of things. When we take small moments to notice our surroundings, we are actually slowing life down, noticing that life moment – whether for one minute or like my 1 hour walk (which by the way I was SOAKED!), noticing pleases the heart and helps us notice that in that moment, that moment is good!