Monday Mindfulness

Cultivating Strength, Joy, Peace & Resilience


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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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Soaring

Taking flight,

balanced in the nature of giving and receiving,

knowing that leaning too heavily into one force or the other will take me off course,

Cause me to tumble.

In order to give, I must receive.

To receive requires generosity.

When I balance these complementary forces I experience the grace and ease that can only be realized when I move from the center of my being,

Wings extended,

Heart open.

Souring on the currents of life.


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An antidote for loss

When you are suffering, my smile does not mean I don’t care. It may be that I am just opening my heart more in a time when yours may feel closed off.

I am holding a space of warmth and hope in which you can feel sad but not alone.

Allow my smile to soften your pain and be not a blinding light but a guiding light.

Feeling and noticing love and joy in others does not negate the loss. It just reminds us of our capacity to heal and honor loss without getting lost in it ourselves.


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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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Steadfast

When I become the mountain that I see in the distance, I feel my steadiness, my ability to withstand the currents of the winds and the torrents of rain. I may be walked upon by people, animals and time, yet the cracks, worn paths, and decay only add to my character and beauty.

I reach towards the sky never forgetting the love of the earth – the earth within me.

When I feel my true strength, I no longer need to be strong


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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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Badlands

I stand at the edge of what appears to be a barren and desolate canyon, seemingly incapable of supporting my growth.

Between the jagged and piercing crevasses, I reach down and discover I don’t need as much as I thought to thrive – simple and small gifts of connection are enough to sustain me. Humility, patience, and kindness soften the edges of the canyon like a gentle rain just enough to allow me to take hold and flourish.

Here I learn of my own fortitude and resilience. Here I may appear to stand out but it’s really just where I belong.


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Badlands

I stand at the edge of what appears to be a barren and desolate canyon, seemingly incapable of supporting my growth.

Between the jagged and piercing crevasses, I reach down and discover I don’t need as much as I thought to thrive – simple and small gifts of connection are enough to sustain me. Humility, patience, and kindness soften the edges of the canyon like a gentle rain just enough to allow me to take hold and flourish.

Here I learn of my own fortitude and resilience. Here I may appear to stand out but it’s really just where I belong.


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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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Meditate Me

The gentle breeze brushes the hair off my face, opening my eyes to all the possibilities that lie on the path before me.

Sunlight bends and shifts through the branches above me, sending waves of warmth and shadows dancing upon my skin, drenching my muscles down to the bones.

The earth below pushes up into the soles of my feet, every step met with a symphony of sensations – crackling forest debris, jagged rocks protruding through the dusty soil, the path shifting and bending me.

The pops of green in the scattered brush and the sprinkling of wild flowers and occasional sprigs of berries remind me of the lushness in this life.

Smells meld together, carving new trenches in my memory, designing a magnificent tapestry of infinite connections linking the past to the now.

My palm now meets the furry edges of the bark on the thousand year old gatekeepers of this sacred space, full of knobs, notches, and burn marks, all signs of a life well lived. It’s touch drains the deepest crevasses of my being, tears now flowing in synchrony with the close by river, eroding the stone edges of my cheeks, chin, and chest.

All the pain, struggle, and fears, begin to melt. All the doubts and failures dissipate. My body, my soul now willing, softness consumes me, not absent strength, but expanding into the subtle power of me.

It is here that I witness harmony, balance, and beauty in the inconsistencies, imperfections, death, and birth before me…within me.

It is here that I discover my own capacity for healing.

It is here that I meditate instead of medicate.