Monday Mindfulness

Cultivating Strength, Joy, Peace & Resilience


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Tuning In

Connection is at the core of communication. How I feel about you and what you say is directly tied to my beliefs about myself. My stories and patterns of reaction determine the fruits of our interactions. So, in order to communicate effectively, I must leave you to your own beliefs and stories and simply tune my vibration to what feels good. When I leave all that other stuff out of it, I find authentic and harmonious connection in every communication.


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Holding on too tight

Control creates the illusion of safety.

The more I seek control, the more insecure I become.

The more I allow myself to trust the not-knowing to result in wisdom, the uncertainty to to inspire clarity, and the gift of others’ feedback to grow my confidence, the less I approach life as a field of potential failures and instead find a river of opportunities.

The less I grapple with control, the more I understand how much there is to learn and realize how much I already know.


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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.


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Doable

passion and common sense (2)

When passion and common sense come together they bring with them a whimsical assuredness.  Their rhythmic dance is reverent and focused, yet meandering and joyful.  Together they carry me forward with comfort and ease.

With a balance of passion and common sense, life seems quite doable…anything seems doable…everything is doable when we walk this path together.

 

 


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Self Conscious

 

I see myself…not in the mirror, but in your actions, in the rippling waters of emotions that swirl as I step into this experience with you.

Connected not because it pleases or displeases you or me but because it is aligned with a greater consciousness.

Most diligently and kindly I attend to my own being, more keenly aware of myself as the stone tossed into the river.

I am moving, yet still. You are moving, yet still.

With every breath, more aware of my existence.

Deliberate attention to the essence of peace and joy and love and grace in me results in the current that flows as me…

…when I am Self conscious.


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Making Something of Myself

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Stand out!

Be seen!

Grab others’ attention.

Smile!

Press on!

Make something of yourself.

It presses against my nature,

and yet I go on as best as I can.

In all my efforts to stand out

All I really want is to blend in.


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In the Sea of Knowing

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Funny how we assign emotions, assume other’s perspectives, and assimilate outside experiences as our own.

The body works so hard to represent the advisory panel of our thoughts, feelings, and sensations, but sometimes it doesn’t always get that representation right.  Sometimes we read too much into posture, expression, engagement.  We jump to conclusions.

All along, it’s just a series of labels we attach to things to create order — an illusion that we have some sort of control.

Let the labels wash away and then what is there?  Energy — plain and simple chemical reactions — that whimsically attach to illusions.  Eliminating the labels, we engage our intuition, not just our eyes, to interpret our surroundings.  It is not always what I see that informs, but how it bumps up against me energetically.

The real gift in communication and connection is tapping into that energy.

Bored…or relaxed?

Impatient…or enthusiastic?

Sad…or peaceful?

Or maybe the energy isn’t connected to the expression at all.

Lose the labels…make the deeper connections…feel the power in knowing beyond seeing.


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It’s Time We Come Together

 

Still Hands

We talk about coming together as family, friends, community.  Of course, we are social beings and need one another to share experiences, confide in, lean gently upon, and confidently hold up.

Yet, so often, in our coming together we climb over one another, talking over top of each other, thinking into each other, never really arriving in that space of coming together at all.

Even when we play together, our words, feelings, and bodies get in between.

What if we were to sit or lie down beside each other?  Comfortably, safely, in our own individual space, yet together in one place.

What if we were to close our eyes, quiet our thoughts, cease the chatter, and agree to simply be there…not to sleep, but to rest side-by-side and unconditionally hold a soft space of awareness for ourselves and each other in silence.

Then, as we drift beyond the container of the body, a dance begins…a dance of the breath, of connection without words, of equal sharing in this seemingly timeless space.

It is in this space where we are equals, where we listen to the songs of others, where we simultaneously share everything and nothing, where we see each other as we see ourselves, where we are in this skin but somewhere else.

A palpable collaboration takes place in this precious space of collective rest — wakeful, conscious allowing of the stillness, allowing of our being, allowing of one another.

Maybe it is not in a board room or at the family dinner table or on the basketball court where we can do the most leaning on, supporting of, and accepting of one another.  Maybe it is actually in this space of shared rest where we can find the greatest power in our coming together.


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Cantankerous

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It is not my intent to be uncooperative or argumentative.  I never rise in the morning with a plan to see others as difficult or ungrateful.  But, soon antigens like stress, fatigue, and illness feed into the chaos of my day and next thing you know otherwise favorable relationships begin to sour.

It is easy to defend my actions, to blame others, and to deny the fear that gives rise to my crustiness.  But, for what? Why is it that just when I need kindness most I fuel the unrest?

If we seek empathy, acceptance, and compassion from others, we must first practice it ourselves.   Reflecting on how we come across and how we see others may help us to be more patient with the “cantankerous” people who cross our paths each day…and that just might make it a little less likely that we will be the cantankerous ones.