Just Being


I’m a doer from way back. I like to be in motion, in action, achieving, creating, thinking – anything that doesn’t involve simply being. I do not like to sit with my thoughts – or worse, sit without my thoughts!

So I knew when I chose my word for the year that it was going to be a big challenge for me. You see being mindful says to me “slow down”, “focus”, “be still”. All of those things that don’t come naturally to me.

A few years ago when I was working in a particularly stressful job it was suggested to me that I try yoga as a form of relaxation. Big mistake. Far from making me a blissed out bubble yoga made me want to kill someone – just for something active to do! (For those who might be worried about my murderous intentions be assured I didn’t actually want to kill someone). Needless to say, yoga was not the form of relaxation for me at that time – no offence to all those yogis out there – I know it is an incredible form of exercise and support for so many. It just didn’t feel right for me.

And so I pushed on – I took up Pilates which I did, and do, find a great form of exercise for me. And it does help me to relax and recharge – but I know it is not enough. I know (as I tell my clients on an almost daily basis) that I need to be able to sit with what is happening for me and around me – just sit, and take it in – I just need to be. I need to be mindful.

But by god that is bloody hard!!

I have used my Smiling Mind app a few times this year – but I know I need to make that a daily practice if this mindfulness thing is ever going to become a part of me as opposed to just a passing phase. I am becoming more aware of mindfulness in my life and trying to capture moments and hold on them rather than just rushing through – especially when it comes to time with my daughter. I am using photography as a way of slowing down and taking notice of the little things (my photography skills are shit but I enjoy it!). In short, I am trying. But I know it will take time to move from being a doer to a be-er!

How about you? Do you struggle with just being? What are your strategies for slowing down?



6 Comments on Just Being

  1. Nadia
    February 26, 2015 at 1:03 am (3 years ago)

    I can definitely understand how hard it is to just be. It just doesn’t come natural to some people (mainly doers). My friend Kris urged me to try meditation and so I did. I wound up falling asleep in my meditation class. It just wasn’t for me. Of course, I was a lot younger then and my mind was always running a mile a minute with things to do. Now that I’m older and still busy, I do think that I should try it again. My only problem is that the idea of emptying my mind to relax does not seem feasible. I think you are on to something with using photography as a way to be. You can get lost in taking photos and that will help still your mind. Good luck!!

    • Karen
      March 4, 2015 at 4:59 pm (3 years ago)

      I know what you mean Nadia – I need something to focus on while I am trying to empty my mind!! That’s why I’ve found pilates helpful – it definitely relaxes me but I find that I have to concentrate so hard on some of the movements that my brain doesn’t have the space to worry about anything else!!

  2. Bex
    February 26, 2015 at 5:22 pm (3 years ago)

    I agree, Karen! It can be so hard to just be still. We are all so used to being busy; I feel anxious if I have nothing to do. I must have forgotten something! I quite like the Headspace podcast, which talks a lot of mindfulness and switching your mind off. And I’ve just taken up Pilates in the last month. I’m really enjoying it :)

    • Karen
      March 4, 2015 at 5:00 pm (3 years ago)

      Sounds like pilates is working for you too Bex! I will have to look into the Headspace podcast – thanks!

  3. Kathy
    March 1, 2015 at 8:55 am (3 years ago)

    I find yoga is great moving meditation and I practice regularly. I am trying to make my meditation practice more regular too. I think there is a lot to be said for mindful moments scattered throughout the day – whether it is a simple breathing technique or what you achieve through photography in being really engaged in the moment. Good luck.

    • Karen
      March 4, 2015 at 5:01 pm (3 years ago)

      I agree Kathy – I need to find ways that meditation/mindfulness fits in with my life and way of being – that can be so hard thought can’t it??!!


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