Happy New Year...Welcome to a Month of Mindful Moments

Good morning 2014! As we enter a new year we are filled with resolutions for big changes in our lives, and generally these changes are unsustainable over time. Let's do something a little different this year, what about setting the bar lower and just noticing one thing mindfully each day? I am calling this the Mindful Moments Challenge. I invite you to participate during the month of January as I post a daily mindful moment from my life and hope you do the same. Expect to see 31 daily posts this month, with a thought, a photo, a description, or a poem about something that I noticed in a way I hadn't before. I welcome and encourage you to post your mindful musings -- feel free to use the comment section on my blog for your thoughts. Let's see how this evolves and see what mindful moments we can share.

Ready, set, go........

January 1 The friendly face of a paperwhite narcisus

Mindful Moments Challenge

"Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans."~ John Lennon

snowflake-cookies.jpg On the eve of a new year, it seems especially timely to reflect and consider the wild ride we are on together called life.  Mindfulness teaches us that it is the moments, sometimes hidden within the busyness, that give our life richness and meaning. Often we project into the future, as in "when (fill in the blank) happens, then I will be happy", and new year's resolutions can push us toward this way of future thinking by negating the present moment.  Consider making 2014 a year of mindful moments, continuing to have overarching goals, but also honoring the present moment by noticing it as it unfolds; and not observing your life in the rear view mirror or as a mirage on the distant horizon.

As a way of embracing this rather radical idea of mindfulness, I invite you to join me during the month of January in a Mindful Moments Challenge: Let's work together and help each other in learning to slow down to the speed of life in the new year. Beginning tomorrow, January 1,  I encourage you to join me in capturing a mindful moment in a word, poem, photograph, drawing, description, etc. Let your imagination take flight! You can post your mindful moments in the comment section of this blog.  I hope it will serve as inspiration and will be interesting to see what others notice and share. Remember to look for those small, seemingly inconsequential moments that are really the essence of our life.

Happy new year and may this year bring many mindful moments your way,

Happy New Year...What Are Your Priorities This Year?

"Five hundred twenty-five thousand six hundred minutes...how do measure, measure a year?", asks the opening song from the musical Rent.  Our new year's resolutions often focus on beginning a new year with better time managment skills, more effective prioritization of tasks and in general being more organized with our time.  Does this sound familiar?  If so, I invite you, at this beginning of a brand new year, to take a breath...and then read an email I received today from a colleague at University of Massachusetts/Boston.  It made me stop in my tracks and simply smile at the profound wisdom of a six-year-old:
"Here is a suggestion from my six-year-old daughter on how to start your TO DO list. Two of days ago, I wanted to teach her how to make a plan for the day so I asked her to bring me a notepad to write down what we would like to accomplish. She jumped quickly and brought a note that said “LOVE” and without even waiting for me to ask her anything, she said: “Mommy, I wrote the first item on the agenda” grinning from happiness. “Isn’t LOVE the most important anyway?”, she added.
As I watched her in awe, I noticed a change in my state of mind. “Yes, dear child, LOVE is the most important”, I said to her and thought to myself … “even if nothing else gets accomplished for the day but we share LOVE with each other the day would be quite successful”. We made a schedule for the day and moved on. Every time we were in disagreement we reminded each other “What was the first item on our Agenda?”
Put LOVE first in your daily/weekly/yearly TO DO list and simply enjoy the benefits it will bring to your life."
What incredible insight and what a good suggestion for the first item on the inevitable TO DO list(s) in our lives!  How will you measure your precious five hundred twenty-five thousand six hundred minutes this year? How about in LOVE.

Wishing you LOVE in the new year,