Monday Mindfulness

Cultivating Strength, Joy, Peace & Resilience


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Kaleidoscope of Change

What is regular? Normal? The way things are “supposed to be?”

It seems our nature is to crave stability and consistency, to look around us for the expected.

Can the expected really be a constant pattern of change, redefined based on circumstances?

In the fall every tree chooses a slightly different timing and color and pattern of change based on its relationship with the earth, the air, and its surroundings.

Even the evergreen loses some leaves, changes shape, and becomes something different year after year.

This shifting is considered beautiful, an often awe-inspiring evolution.

No tree taking the exact same steps, no one looking the same, yet all normal, regular, naturally changing.

This change allows the tree to thrive.

I must remember there is no right or wrong in change, simply an opportunity to be unafraid, vulnerable, and resilient.

Think about the possibility.


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Pressure

The harder I rattle the cage, The tighter the confines become.

The more I strive for spaciousness, the more suffocating and unfruitful my actions.

Moved by desire, lofty outcomes in place, I remain caught up in my belief that freedom, success, and wholeness are not attainable…there is always one more sticker to put on the chart before I can experience that reward.

When I put aside the roadblocks of desire and achievement and allow true being to flow, there is still plenty of room for me to thrive and the world to know my magnificence, right here, right now, just the way I am.


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Unfolding Into Me

It’s so hard to come out of this cocoon,

Perfectly fitting around me,

The barrier I need to dampen sensations and dull the sharp contrast of the outer world and what’s going on inside of me.

I arrive at the precipice of transformation, the seal broken on my familiar encasing,

The time now ripe for my evolution.

Thinking the hard part is past me,

The formation of this new way of being is here.

And yet as the cocoon slices open, there is no longer a sense of security, of the familiar, or predictability.

These new wings are wet and heavy, my footing unsure.

My nourishment and direction are uncertain.

Yet, I find the courage to spread my wings, scattering the newly applied and still wet coating that will ultimately protect me.

Now settling into this new being,

I look out at the vast horizon.

Vibrant colors, textures and shapes seem distantly familiar,

Invigorating my curiosity,

Reminding me vaguely of what I once was and what I now will be.

It is time.

I flutter my wings.

I am free.


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Loss, Not Lost

Grief…it’s not about the loss as much as creating and being able to access a little warm place in your heart where you hold that connection forever.

I used to think that grief was the act of severing ties and throwing away something special because it was lost.

But now I know that grief is a process of storing the memories of the specialness of every experience regardless of its labels, conditions, and how it came to be or not be.

Grief is experiencing the loss without getting lost.


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Contain Me

For each of us there is a layer that surrounds and holds our thoughts and feelings, that ties physical material existence to a sense of being. Built into the walls of that container are our beliefs, values, and desires, ever connected and blending with the feelings of others. These characteristics are what give the container strength but can also become places of vulnerability, weakness, and destruction. Stress fractures can begin to appear over time in the container where the values, beliefs, and habits are challenged, become inflexible and brittle.

Signs of wear or weakness are not markers of fault in the container, but a means for assessing whether repair or replacement could be useful. It may be the values and beliefs woven into that section are ready for reconditioning.

When I visualize the materials, tools, and mending — stitching the fabric, soldering the metal, molding the clay – and give myself permission to reshape the container, perhaps even layering different media, I can begin to fill and empty with experiences in a way that projects and protects the me I have come to be.


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Contrails

Every morning through my window I watch the airplanes carve a path through the sky, a seemingly straight line built of swirling vortices.

The pilots consider themselves on a steadfast course, honed to the coordinates entered.

But as I watch the swath cover the sky, I see that one path dissipates into a thousand threads of opportunity to go in a different direction.

What one perceives as the path another sees as the starting point. A straight line swirls and morphs into a cloud.

There is nothing wrong with the trajectory on which I ride, but I find it quite fun to imagine where else I might go.


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Hmmmmm

A tear carves a cool path along my skin. My heart pounds furiously against the constricted edges of my body. Focused on my imperfections, I am frozen.

Motionless, my attention is suddenly diverted to a deep and robust murmur in the sky. I slowly turn and open my eyes to find a hummingbird still yet racing in the sky before me.

Wings fluttering so quickly I cannot see them, heart beating 500 times the speed of mine, there it hovers, searching just like me for nourishment in its motionless.

It’s lightness as much a reality as my heaviness.

Joy and freedom projecting from its racing heart and pounding wings.

My racing heart begins to feel less burdened.

My constricted body is now inspired to move.

The illusion I’ve created of my suffering fades.

I find nourishment in transforming my experiences into joy and lightness, choosing the qualities of a hummingbird over failure.


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Scattered

Scattered like the ripest fruit falling away from the tree, petals melt to the ground bearing the raw, delicate heart of the flower.

The breeze carries the evolution of being on its wing.

It is jarring, turbulent, and so beautiful…the scattering…

the falling apart to make something new.


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It’s time for an Evolution

Holding out hope for resolution or dissolution of pain or suffering brings heartache…a direct misalignment of the brain and heart as the heart knows that change is needed but the head resists the shift because it’s too much work to reorganize the memories, beliefs, stories. Gestures we make toward evolution instead of resolution free us to make transitions knowing all will be ok.

The shift doesn’t erase or do away with feelings – it alters receptivity and focus, it forges new pathways of being and seeing and offers a beautiful contrast informing contentment, the capacity to just be, absent good or bad. Contentment when fully present and balanced fuels joy and joy fuels awe…unconditional delight in experiencing evolution over resolution.


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Real

When I feel angry, my world appears abrasive and confrontational.

When I am confused, all is cold and insensitive.

The more beautiful my world feels, the more gentle and receptive it seems.

As I play in this world with wonder, curiosity, and awe, the world invites me to laugh and be free.

When I feel wrapped in care and comfort, I find the world worthy of love.

My world is a reflection of my beliefs, a reflection of what I see on the inside.

My world gives me just what I see.

This is what is real, as long as this is the story I want to see.