After you read the blog - be sure to review the Mindful Living tips, check out the guided meditation and answer the prompts in the Reflect & Journal section.
Lately, I’ve been thinking that the only way to really succeed in starting something new is to write down your aim as clearly and as detailed as possible. Different than a New Year’s resolution, this is an intention you have already crystalized in your mind as a top priority. It’s like you need to name what it is that you’d like to do differently in order to make it happen. For example, if you want to start living more mindfully, write down your overarching intention and what aspirations you hope to achieve. I believe that setting your guiding principles will help build your framework and keep you aligned with your hopes and wishes.
For some, getting started on a mindful path arises from a simple desire to find more happiness and joy in life. For others, a mindfulness practice helps navigate difficult emotions, manage stress and reduce anxiety. For me, it took a critical health condition that required a whole new approach to my work-life balance and well-being. In my early 30s, I was diagnosed with lupus, an autoimmune deficiency disorder. It stopped me in my tracks within days of giving birth to my second son. Life ended as I knew it. When western medicine failed to manage my acute pain, I turned my attention to developing a mindfulness practice to find relief spiritually and holistically.
The way of mindfulness requires paying attention with intention to the present moment just as it is. With mindfulness, we are learning to observe life experience as it is emerging with more awareness and acceptance. To train ourselves to do this, we devote time each day to a meditation practice. Along the route, there are detours like facing emotions and physical sensations that are uncomfortable and difficult. We may notice feelings of fear and conflict, and rather than trying to control these things, we can observe them as they arise, linger and fall away with the awareness that they are impermanent. Finally, the way of mindfulness requires understanding, kindness and compassion. When you’re ready to give it a try, start by taking baby steps. You’ll not only strengthen your well-being, you’ll get closer to your sense of purpose and respond to others from a place of wisdom. Now, imagine the benefit your practice will have on the world.
If you’re curious and feel motivated, try the tips below.