Shifting to Mindful Living

 

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“We must shift our allegiances from fear to curiosity, from attachment to letting go, from control to trust, and from entitlement to humility.”

~ Angeles Arrien

Imagine if we all did this, how the world would be different …

Lets commit to shifting our allegiances by checking in with ourselves today and every day:

From being fearful to getting curious

From being attached to letting go

From controlling to trusting

From feeling entitled to being grateful and humble.

This is mindful living.

Namaste

The Difference Between Restless and Resting

 

awake at night

‘I know’ is the restless place for all beings.

‘I don’t know’ is the resting place for all beings.*

~ Mooji

 

The need to hold on to “knowing” keeps many of us from finding peace. We think knowing  is the answer, but it creates more restlessness.

It can become a never-ending quest for control and security. We create stories about this state to make it okay. We call it our personality or human nature.

It can appear as worrying about things beyond our control. For example: holding on to being right, trying to change others into our way of thinking and acting, striving to be perfect, looking for answers to problems that only exist in our mind, staying awake at night wondering what would make us happy …

Over time is becomes a habit that keeps feeding the insecure ego mind. The need to know increases fear and uncertainty.

Contentment comes from embracing the not knowing. It isn’t a simple or an easy transformation to make. Yet, when we accept that we don’t know and make room for it in all areas of our life, we create space for peace.

In surrendering to reality we find the freedom to be at rest with life.

Namaste

 

* Mooji. White Fire: Spiritual insights and teachings of advaita zen master Mooji (Kindle Locations 3306-3307). Mooji Media Publications. Kindle Edition.

Inspiration – shifting allegiances

inspiration

Image courtesy of tinybuddha.com

 

“We must shift our allegiances from fear to curiosity, from attachment to letting go, from control to trust, and from entitlement to humility.”

– Angeles Arrien

Imagine if we all did this, how the world would be different …

Lets commit to shifting our allegiances by checking in with ourselves today and every day:

From being fearful to getting curious

From being attached to letting go

From controlling to trusting

From feeling entitled to being grateful and humble

This is mindful living.

Namaste

Steps to Find your Middle Ground

find your middle ground

Here are the steps I have discovered for myself and others, for finding our middle ground and living life in balance 💛

  • Notice! Take time to pause and be aware of the incredible gift of life that you share with others and with nature. Wake up to the little things. Wake up to  your self. Wake up to it all. This is called living mindfully. Become a keen observer.
  • Accept that life has ups and downs. Really! Some one told us when were little that life should be a breeze. This is called wishful thinking. Be grateful for the highs and graceful in the lows. This is called living life well.
  • Become present. Stop lamenting the past or worrying about tomorrow.  Living is in each moment. Now. Take a deep breath.  Then an other.  Notice you are still here… not there.
  • Get to know yourself. Take that first scary step of self discovery. Turn off the tv.  Sit for a while. Journal about what comes up. Have a meaningful conversation. Listen more to others. Listen more to yourself.
  • Let go of judgments. We think that judging others or ourselves makes us feel strong. Judgments come from fear of not being in control  and having things go our way. Our way is not the way. There is nothing wrong, so stop trying to be right. Stop comparing, criticizing  and start letting others be. Let yourself be.
  • Realize that you are not your thinking. You are the one who is aware of your thoughts. You are awareness within a physical body, with an imaginative and fearful ego-mind that creates stories. Your thinking is not the truth about who you are or the world around you.
  • Find the peace within. Beyond the next breath and the next thought there is a deep reservoir of peace waiting to be stepped into. This cool refreshing stillness has always been there and will always be there for us to access. To connect to this wondrous pool becomes our practice… whether its in mindfulness meditation, yoga, sitting in nature, or while commuting on the train,  realize that you too can find your own middle ground.

This blog is my way of helping people get their feet wet and refreshing themselves.

getting your feet wet

* Mindful Yoga, Living and Meditation

For this New Year, some of you may be considering setting the intention of meditating every day. In my experience, even with the best of intentions, many people start, and then stop with a daily sitting practice. Some will come back to it, and some will give it up completely.

So I decided to write a post about an alternative approach. I found inspiration in “Mindful Yoga, Mindful Life” by Charlotte Bell. Here, she bridges the gap between meditation, mindful living and yoga.

being mindful

“The practice of yoga in all its aspects allows us to connect with and dwell in awareness, our essential being…

Mindfulness is the thread that connects all aspects of yoga practice. When we give our full attention to what we are doing, we become that which is present in our experience…

When we live our lives  mindfully, we live in fullness; there is no leftover residue of regret for missed opportunities.

… Mindfulness is most commonly practiced in sitting and walking meditation. If you can sit quietly for even a few minutes every day watching the flow of your breath, you will begin to strengthen the power of your mind. But mindfulness practice needn’t be confined to formal meditation.

In his book “The Miracle in Mindfulness”, Thich Nhat Hanh writes about “washing the dishes to wash the dishes”, instead of washing the dishes in order to get the cup of tea you will have afterwards. Viewed with careful attention, the experience of dishwashing yields a surprising richness of sensation – the feeling of warm, sudsy water, the smoothness and weight of the plates in your hands, the movement of scrubbing and rinsing. Any activity can become a wondrous and sacred ritual if we pay attention.

… You might begin the practice of mindful living by choosing one activity that you already do everyday. Commit to be completely present  in this activity.”

mindful dishwashing

What could you commit to bringing new awareness to every day?
It could be washing the dishes, washing your hands, opening the front door, showering, taking a walk, or enjoying a cup of tea. It can be any activity that you take for granted, enjoy or perhaps even resist.
Its your choice. The activity that you choose does not matter as much as the care and respect you bring to it.

I’d like to share some of my daily rituals with you:
First thing in the morning, I wash my hands with beautiful scented lavender soap.
When I open the back door I take a deep breath and really feel the outside morning with all my senses.
I have a mindfulness app called Chakra Chime that goes off at 8am and 1pm. When it does, I stop what I am doing and take a moment to scan my thoughts, emotional state, my breath and my body.
When I stop at a red light, I pause and notice my breath (Still working on that one when I run late!)
When the light stays green as I approach it I say in my mind Thank You Universe. In class, as I come into mountain pose, I look down at my feet and say out loud Thank You Feet!

Committing to being mindful is a serious commitment to finding peace of mind, but it needn’t be serious!

Namaste