Monday Mindfulness

Cultivating Strength, Joy, Peace & Resilience


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Learning to Knit

So much of this past year was spent retracted, curled inward, huddled up against myself. Darkness, distractions, and attempts to keep things all the same occupied much of my thinking. Circular thoughts woven into fears. Captive in this castle, spinning my time into the yarn of “what if.”

I imagined I was suffering, experiencing punishment of some sort. Separate from my routine, separate from others, separate from much of what I knew as familiar.

Now, a year later, I am being asked to do something with all the yarn that I have spun. I am being asked to go back to some form of the way things were, to put the yarn away. But I have rather come to enjoy the spinning and might just want to sit and spin some more.

Ah, but it could be time instead for me to learn to knit. There are endless possibilities of where I can go from here and what I can create. If I can only see that every moment is an opportunity to learn and create something new. How fortunate I have been to have this time to spin this yarn.

In this re-emergence as the gates slowly open, it is lovely to see what others have woven. Some have acquired new skills. Connected and inspired from within, they are already knitting. Some have rolled the yarn into balls to store away for another time. Some have just begun to make the yarn. In this experience, I have learned that I can resist the weaving, stumble and climb over all the yarn, or I can learn to knit.


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Stillness in Motion

Have you ever noticed the calm in movement? A dancer fills the stage with motion and even in the flow of the dance there is a sense of breathlessness, of suspension, and stillness.

Take a moment to sit and watch the falling snow or a drip of water in a faucet. Notice the stillness present in every motion. See the pause of the droplets, the gaps in between the snowflakes, or the steady space that is filled as you watch one flake make its way down, down, down right after another…one drip chase another. The moving object becoming the stillness itself. Feel time pause, honoring the power of stillness in the movement.

Move your body. Move your breath. Move your mind into the deep crevasses of the movement until you find the stillness.


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Seeking

So focused on the work,

on striving to be something, someone…

The joy has slipped away.

But there is no need to run after it, seeking it.

You see, luv, the joy is always right here in your heart. Your heart just beats more loudly to the rhythm of some things, like walks in the park, playing in the woods, cooking delicious foods and wrapping up in snuggly blankets.

Include those rhythms in your daily routine and you will not need to seek joy for it will already be there dancing with you.


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Mine

What’s yours is mine and mine is yours — at least that’s what we learn as children, right?

But sometimes it’s hard to share, to let someone have something we treasure…a favorite object, a delicious treat, our time, or our work product.

It sometimes makes me want to stop creating, contributing, doing and having!

But we know that renunciation — refraining, withdrawing, doing without — or non-action does not eliminate the fears and attachments. In fact it may even make them grow as in the unknown still lurks the possibility – even in doing nothing – that I might have something to share.

Instead, I think I will listen more, align myself with actions that fulfill me as I do them, and find such joys in the doing, creating, and connecting that I can unconditionally share anything of mine knowing that I am satisfying the tenants of pure love and that in giving to you I give to me.


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Be-leaf in yourself

My new year wish for you…

Not that you make time for me or to do other things.

Not that you resolve to be any different than you are right now.

Not that you set out to accomplish anything more than you already have.

Not that you accumulate more than what is already there .

My new year’s wish for you is that you be safe where you are,

that you be fed on the soul level,

that you feel love,

and you fully and completely believe in the power of you to be a bright beacon for yourself and others

and in that light you thrive.


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Dashing through the snow.

Where are you running to? Are you so sure that where you are headed is better than where you are now?

When the ego takes the reins and the animal instincts snap the whip, running seems the only answer.

But we can always pause…we can always choose to let go of the drive and fear and sit in stillness until where we are becomes clearer and where we go is not as critical as why.

What you leave behind may actually be a more hospitable space than where you are off to. It may be all you need is to stop long enough to allow the path to appear, for you to know on that deepest level what is your right way.

Stay here for just a bit longer and you may find the freedom you seek, your greatest potential, is right here where you are.

You will always know the way if you just stop long enough…and then if you choose to run, the dash is simply for the fun of it.


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Pulling for Us

Feeling the tug on the visceral thread that connects us all…riding the wave…knowing we are all so bravely in this together.


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Presumed Flavor

On the surface rests an assumption of flavor, texture, and tartness. Neither color, nor shape, nor size can truly tell me what’s inside.

I can’t necessarily rely on prior experience to guide me. I am informed and intelligent, yet my predictions are never risk free. There is always a chance of finding sourness, mushiness, under ripeness or rot. Even in the bitterness there is nutrition.

Am I willing to let down my guard, to go against the odds, and to look past the outside appearances and find a way to see all as just ripe for me?


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Open Seat

Both chairs are always available to you. One sits above and allows you to sprinkle your wisdom confidently, but also requires you to hold a caring space, to lift me up. The other sits at the feet of the first, providing a place to listen, learn and receive, ignighted by curiosity and wonder.

Which seat do you choose? Can you find a way to sit under, to humbly receive and accept knowledge and perspective from others? Can you sit above without looking down and casting a shadow?

Is there a way you can fit in either seat depending not on what you desire but on what I need?

Please come sit with me for a spell.


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Brushes with Bromeliads

Every day, I tenderly pluck and sort the unwanted guests between the treasured plants in the garden of this life of mine. I carefully reach between the stalks and flowers I choose to keep and arrange them all just so.

And, even with the most careful attention, I never leave my garden without scrapes, brush marks and bruises.

Yes, some of the most treasured plants in my garden have thorns. I move with particular sensitivity around them lest they snag my flesh. And somehow even as they cut me, I am still able to see their beauty and feel their special worth. They reach out and brush against me as if they just want to touch, to say “isn’t this all so grand that we are here?!”

It is at that moment when I am wounded but still capable of loving – even those plants with thorns – that I recognize that this coexistence is the essence of thriving.