Monday Mindfulness

Cultivating Strength, Joy, Peace & Resilience


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Caught up

Why is it that I am so regularly seduced by over work at the sacrifice of self care and compassion?

Caught in the net of a never ending to-do list that lures me away from rest and towards the mirage of success.

In the end, it is not the amount of work I get done but my capacity to enjoy the work I do and that is only possible with sufficient compassion and care.


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For a Smoother Takeoff

“Prepare your doors for departure and cross check, please” said the pilot before departing the gate.

How often in our daily lives do we launch without proper preparation?

The brief pause to transition from one moment to the other – to conduct a cross check and prepare for what comes next – provides clarity, confidence, and confirmation that I am ready to move forward.

This cross check also eliminates potential danger and reduces the likelihood of unfortunate outcomes.

On the rhythm of every breath lies the opportunity to prepare for departure, to make wiser choices, and be ready for what lies ahead.

And, with that next exhale, looking keenly and calmly ahead, I softly whisper, “Cross check complete.”


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Awakening

Imagine no more separateness. No more day. No more night. No more sleep. No more wake. Simply a space in which I rest when I am tired and I dance and play when I feel joyful.

Night and day converging, it is all just a dream. What takes place is all imagined – what power I have to control my story! I can awaken at any time to adjust the impression left by this moment.

I can dance in the moonlight, rest during the day, sun and moon in one sky. The yin and yang of life itself poised in equanimity, one space, one being.

When the sun and the moon brighten the sky together, that will be the moment in which I realize anything is possible, any story can be written or rewritten, and life is all unfolding under one timeless sky.


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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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Pretending to be bored

Waiting for my thoughts to quiet.

With each breath, feigning an attempt to soften the tension in my muscles.

Always on high alert, my body is the ever faithful soldier standing at attention, ready to advance, attack, or defend.

My thoughts and feeling providing constant counsel, conducting their business at all hours of the day and night as if essential personnel.

It is a strange request I make that all the components that serve me in my daily busy-ness are called upon now to rest.

They are troubled by this pause as it could imply they may no longer be needed. They resist – the body…the mind…the emotions that want to protect and define me.

And yet, a strange and delightful spaciousness coats my experience when I am willing to just sit down and breathe.

It frees them all to not disappear but to serve me better. They become my friends, sipping tea on the deck, holding hands and dancing in the absence of mission and doing.

Oh, the joy of knowing my thoughts, my feelings, my body in the absence of need.

We rest here for a bit together, finding a freshness in how we coexist…

…and then we agree to do this much more often.


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On Belonging

It is not discrimination I fear as much as dejection.

Discrimination says because you are different you do not fit in.

Dejection says because I don’t value you, you don’t belong.

We all deserve to feel we belong…and fit in.


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All Wrapped Up

All Wrapped Up

There comes a time and space where each of us longs to curl up in a snuggly blanket, to feel the pressure on our skin, the cocoon of warmth and connection.  This need for contact, pressure, and restriction is also the driver for the invitation of struggle, suffering, and conflict into our lives.

With difficulty pressing in upon me, I will always still find the same comfort and ease on the inside if I allow it.

It is simply a matter of the material of the wrap and the lens with which I see it that determines whether I feel it as nurturing or limiting.

The wrap is just a reminder to feel what’s on the inside – to know the true essence of me, undefined by the fabric of my experience.


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When the gates are open

I certainly don’t claim to have any part of this whole dying thing down. But I have seen enough family and friends make that transition to understand that it is not in the clinging to this life or the wallowing in the departure that brings peace. It is not in the anointing or in the fighting that we pass on but in the releasing…the letting go of the story, the belief that we are only of value in this living physical form, the fear we have somehow not been or done enough, and the pressure to continue on in something that has drawn to a close.

I believe we always have the choice. There can be fanfare and drama or quiet and stillness. Those left behind can wail and wrestle with their loss or

be happy for the soul that returns to the light, which I believe allows the departed to float more freely, untethered to the strings of our emotions, fears, and needs in this temporal space.

We need not believe in “life” after this body, but we can be sure that we are more than this body. We can be grateful for the space this body provided for us to play and learn – whether just hours or days or many, many years.

We all have within us a mysterious longing to be free, yet we spend little time preparing for the opportunity to run freely when the gates are open.

One thing that is becoming increasingly clear to me is that it seems the way to die may be to live in love, to surround ourselves with those who are willing to hold the gates open for us, and let nothing hinder us from feeling whole, content, and ready to run.


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And the beat goes on…

And the beat goes on

Let the music play, the beat tuned to the flow of my breath and the rhythm of my heart.

I am the amazing conductor of the orchestra of my life.

Its sound perfectly tuned.

Its measure justly syncopated.

Its harmony divinely aligned.

Oh, how lovely the notes and tones come together when I mindfully raise my baton with a smile and create just the right pulse and rhythm on which this ensemble plays on just for me.

 


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Adventurous

Adventurous

I never thought of myself as adventurous…but then again when joy and goodness are in the driver’s seat, anything can happen…if you just let it.  Put the peddle to the metal.