Archive of ‘Being Mindful’ category

Just Being

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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?

 

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Word

Mindful Photo

It’s taken me a little while to get into the swing of things but I finally feel as though 2015 is kicking off. I’ve returned to work this week, Sweet Pea is back at day care, the calendar is getting filled in and plans are being made.

One thing that I have done for the past few years after being prompted by the wonderful and insightful Susannah Conway is to choose a word that gives me a focus point for the year ahead. The word for 2014 was “surrender” and I’m not sure that I completely pulled it off – but it did give me some thinking points!

This year I have chosen the word “mindful”. Being mindful and mindfulness is a skill and technique I teach and use a lot in my work as a mental health social worker but it is not something I am very good at practising myself. The thought of meditation makes me groan inwardly. I’m always thinking ahead, planning, rushing – basically not focusing on and enjoying the moment I’m actually in. It leaves me feeling breathless, exhausted, anxious and stressed. It makes me eat more than I should and more of what I shouldn’t be eating. It makes me snappy at times, angry and frustrated. It makes me miss moments with my daughter and others which I should be capturing and holding on to. It’s not good and it needs to stop. And so – mindful…

I’ve purchased the Smiling Mind app and have already done my first meditation/mindfulness exercise (2 minutes but hey it’s a start!). I also bought this gorgeous tool from Kikki K and this book the other day – it looks beautiful and practical – a favourite combination of mine! So, I’ve got some resources to help me get started focusing on being mindful – I’ll keep you updated on my progress…

There have been some wonderful posts by other bloggers talking about their words and plans for 2015. Some of my favourites are this one by Jess and this one by Tamara. Maxabella Loves has also put together a fantastic linky post about word choices for 2015 here.

How about you? Do you have a word/intention/plan/goal/dream for 2015?

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