Thursday, October 19, 2017

Mindfulness and STRESS!

Yesterday my morning walk was distracted. I have some external stressors happening in my life...the kind of stressors that are not within my control, or at least not within as much control as I would like. Those type of stressors are always within the domains of family and work—what else is there in life that can cause a feeling within you of absolute powerlessness at times? When things that were seemingly going along well, all of the sudden—or so it seems—flip all upside down and you are left with WHAT THE HELL????

So, with this in mind, you can understand why taking this course is perfect timing in my life! It is also perfect that this mindfulness course I'm taking requires that you note and record one informal mindfulness exercise every day—whether it is eating something mindfully or taking a walk mindfully or even something as simple as sitting next to your adorable purring cat mindfully.

So far, I seem to be doing my informal exercise on my daily morning walk. Yesterday morning, with all that is happening around me (those external stressors), I was pretty distracted on this walk, though not in an anxious way but more of a energized and let's-get-on-with-it way. Today, I felt more present on my walk and was able to really be mindful—take in the vibrant colors of the foliage, smell the sweet and pungent air of fall, and feel grounded in the strength of my stride as I walked (and the slight creaking of my hips!).

During my morning walks I always listen to talk radio (I know, probably not the most zen thing but everyone gets there zen in different ways—no judgment, right?) so for this mindfulness course, I am shutting off the show for about 3 minutes and intentionally noticing the space and scenery around me. Because of this time of the year, I noticed the leaves immediately. Yesterday I observed how different they are when not soggy from the rain, that they curl up more when dry. Today I noticed one tree with all maroon leaves and how the marron was actually made up of two different leaves with two different shades of the color.

Yesterday I also did the other daily assignment in the course, the body scan but this time I researched for another one that might be a little shorter. Check it out here. This one was soothing and quick. Exactly what I need in my life right now!!

Fall is about transitioning into a more internal state of winter and it seems to me that this particular fall has been filled with a lot of external challenges and obstacles in the path of change. Utilizing mindfulness, I can be in the moment and get brief periods of rest. Instead of riding the What If train, I float on the What Is boat!

To read about day 7, click here

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