Making Your Path

“Mindfulness is energy that helps us recognize the

conditions of happiness that are already

present in our lives.”

 

Everyone needs energy. We all need positive energy. When we want to start making a path to success, we must work harder. It takes much courage to take the path less taken. But I believe if we never take the path which may be unfamiliar to us but necessary to complete our path here on earth, then we miss a very important mark.

Sometimes we just need to close our eyes and visualize the path we are to follow. Whatever our true nature is then that is our true path. Mindful journeys are innately mapped out.

Don’t lose focus on what truly matters in life. We take the wrong path or fall when we are not focused.

Think about this idea next time you come to a crossroad. But also think about what Machado advises:

“Walker, there is no path, you make the path as you walk.” – Antonio Machado

“Caminante no hay camino, se hace camino al andar.”

Mindful of Stress

It seems that people are more open to talking about being stressed out. The question is how to lessen and relieve stress. Every time we watch the news we are bound to elevate our stress because so much news is negative. When tragedy hits in the form of mass shootings or natural catastrophe stress creeps into our psyche.

This month I have practiced trying to be more mindful of stress and immediately using some techniques to reduce it.

The following are some ways to lessen the impact of stress:

  1. Sit in a quite spot. Relax your shoulders and place your palms on your thighs.
  2. Let your gaze fall to the floor.
  3. Take a deep breath.
  4. Scan every part of you body and watch as you try to relax.
  5. Do not allow yourself to become distracted. Stay focused on getting your self as relaxed as possible.

We will continue to post different techniques to help you relax and become more mindful of stressful triggers.

Have a beautiful day!

Mindful of Haiku Poetry

Haiku is one of my favorite forms of poetry. I have tried my pen at writing my own Haiku. I fell in love with the poems of the Haiku masters such as Buson, Bashō, Issa. Buson was a poet and a painter (1715-83). He actually made a living as a painter as he produced haiga which combines haiku with pictures. His poetry is impressionistic  as he evokes nature.

For me Haiku evokes deep emotions and takes a snapshot of nature. The following is a poem by Buson I love and hope you enjoy.

Cherry petals scattered

In the water between seedlings of rice

moon and star light!

Buson

it is not difficult to practice mindfulness as you read this poem.

Challenge:

Write a Haiku poem about our crazy weather patterns lately.

Tip:

A Haiku poem is composed of three lines containing 17 syllables in the following pattern 5-7-5. You do not have to worry about rhyme. Please share your poems in the comments of this post. Hopefully other bloggers/poets will add to comments for a continued conversation during National History Month.

Happy wrining!

May your day be blessed with mindful moments!!!

 

 

 

 

Quote – Willa Cather

“There are some things you learn best in calm, and some in storm.”

                                                                                                                – Willa Cather

ngs you learn best in calm, and some in storm.
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/authors/willa_cather

There are some things you learn best in calm, and some in storm.
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/authors/willa_cather

There are some things you learn best in calm, and some in storm.
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/authors/willa_cather

There are some things you learn best in calm, and some in storm.
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/authors/willa_cather
ThThere are some things you learn best in calm, and some in storm.
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/authors/willa_cather

There are some things you learn best in calm, and some in storm.
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/authors/willa_cather

There are some things you learn best in calm, and some in storm.
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/authors/willa_cather

There are some things you learn best in calm, and some in storm.
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/authors/willa_cather

Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/authors/willa_cather

Mindful Gardening

 

 

Today we had a fairly decent almost spring day. I had purchased some tulips and I was afraid I would not be able to plant them because the temperature was too low. I put them on my bay window and watched the beautiful lavender tulips start to lose their luster and begin to shrivel. I took a picture of them everyday as they were still closed buds when I first got them. To my surprise one of the tulips had a twin. In other words, two flowers shared one stem. It was amazing how the flowers accommodated each other. Curiously the twin tulips were the last to dry up. But one dried up more than the other. At first I was going to throw out the plant altogether. I was so frustrated with the changes in temperature and the early spring snow and wind storms.

But I decided to plant the bulbs instead and hopefully they will bloom again next spring. I raked and cleaned the area where I wanted to plant some daffodils. We had a few trees fall during the last snow storm. We had many branches strewn all over our lawn. So we were finally able to bag all the leaves, pine cones, twigs and pieces of bark.

I visualized the area with new shrubs and big terra-cotta pots with beautifully arranged flowers. I drew sketches of how I wanted our garden to look. The next few days are suppose to be more spring like. The garden is now ready to welcome butterflies, and song birds. I looked up at the sky and I saw a few birds perched. There was a small nest near by. Spring is here after all.

Mindful gardening is about connecting to nature. Gardening is proven to help people relax and. bring about mental well-being. It is important to stay focused and to have a plan. Appreciate the process and visualize what you want to see in your garden. Map out your garden. Decide if you want to add some additional accessories. If you decide to have a vegetable garden as well, keep it simple and plant the kinds of vegetables that grow quickly. Don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty. Keep a garden journal. Write in it the feelings that emerged, what you observed. Take deep breaths. Happy Gardening!

 

 

Mindful of Someone Else’s Pain

Mindful compassion or empathy begins with self-compassion. I had many role models in my life who were the most compassionate people you could ever meet. They taught me not to be so hard on myself sometimes when things got rough. It is not easy to send yourself positive and compassionate messages when you truly feel culpable about something. When a dear friend committed suicide I felt I should have been more observant of the signs. It took me a long time to realize that there probably was nothing I could have done. I did not know about mindful compassion then but one of my teachers had this innate ability to make us see things about ourselves that we had never seen.
It takes a lot of practice to get into the rhythm of mindful compassion and self compassion. This mindset was developed by Dr. Kristin Neff. The idea is to learn to “offer yourself peace of mind” when something in your life goes wrong.
We must understand the pain and overcome the effects. We must learn to forgive ourselves before we can forgive others. Mindful compassion develops awareness. We put ourselves in someone else’s shoes. But we must also be careful not to be compassionate on auto pilot. I know caregivers that put themselves first and forget their own needs. When a caregiver burns out it becomes a difficult situation for everyone involved. There has to be a healthy balance.
The tangles in the drawing kind of illustrate how unbalance locks us into a place where we can no longer help another successfully.
Some Steps to Take:
  1. Save some compassion for yourself first.
  2. Ask yourself about what your goals are for helping someone.
  3. Remember that self-compassion and self-care are basic to mindfulness.
  4. Take a break for yourself when caring for others
  5. Be clear on your purpose for being compassionate.

 

 

Mindful Excerpts from Great Poems

As we start the celebration of National Poetry Month, I go back to read my favorite poems. I read them aloud to myself mostly or to anyone who will listen. I select excerpts from what I consider to be the great poems. I will share the excerpts with you and hopefully some of you will react to them in the comments section.

From Shakespeare – St. Crispin’s Day Speech

From this day to the ending of the world,
But we in it shall be remember’d;
We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother; be he ne’er so vile,
I think about some of my classmates just out of high school who served in the armed forces and never came back home. we must be mindful of all those who sacrifice so that we may be free.
You may have seen Renaissance Man with Danny Devito who plays a teacher assigned to a group of soldiers.  “While on duty, on a dare from Cass in front of other men, one of the soldiers recites the St. Crispin’s Day Speech by King Henry V while in full combat gear in the middle of a rainstorm during a night exercise.”