GOOD MORNING MONDAY –
AFFIRMATIVE THOUGHTS FOR A GREAT WEEK
Good Morning. I hope you had a GREAT weekend. Did you embrace each moment? Were you fully awake to the experiences the weekend brought you? Did you choose a healthy attitude? I am certain that you did the best you could being present for and open to each moment you were given. Nice job!
It is Monday once again; SMILE 😊 you get the privilege of being engaged in a true miracle – Life!Remember, everything you are looking for is right here in the present moment – for that is the only moment you are guaranteed. “Today is the only day available to you; it is the most important day of your life.” (thich nhat hanh)
Take a moment and reflect on these questions, “What am I thinking right now?, What is on my mind?, Will I allow myself to be in touch with where I truly am right now?” The truth of the matter is, whatever you are thinking – that is what is on your mind right now.Whatever you end up doing - that is what you are doing right now; whatever happened to you, it has already happened. So, the important question for you is “Now what? How do I handle it?”
So often, we conduct our lives in ways that forgets momentarily that we are here; yet that is where we are. We are at the crossroads of “here and now”. We lose touch. We fall into a robot like way of thinking, seeing, and doing. If we are not careful, that way of living can stretch out and become our entire existence. In fact, I recently read of a woman who wrote about her life saying, “10 years ago, I turned my face for a moment and that became my life.” WOW!! What a statement; what an awakening! How does each one of us make sure that we learn from her statement and allow ourselves to be truly in touch with where we are; no matter where that is!
Mindfulness is one way to waken to each of life’s moments; to live a life filled with greater satisfaction, harmony and wisdom. Jon Kabat-Zinn’s definition of mindfulness is, “paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment; non-judgmentally.” Cultivating this kind of awareness awakens you to the fact that your life is already unfolding in moments; you might as well be there for them. A key to mindfulness is appreciating the present moment, appreciating the mystery of being alive, cultivating a relationship with the here and now, attending to it; discerning it and not taking life for granted! One important key about mindfulness is that it is centered on the most important point, yourself; and not trying to have you become anything that you are not already. It challenges you to wake up and see things as they are! It reminds you that you are not trying to get somewhere else, you are working at being where you already are and embracing it!
Attitudes play a crucial role in the practice of mindfulness. According to Jon Kabat-Zinn, “your attitude is the soil in which you cultivate your ability to calm your mind, relax your body and see more clearly.” There are 9 qualities he believes that help constitute the fullness of mindfulness. Below I share them with you and paraphrase their meaning:
Beginners Mind – Seeing the present with fresh eyes; as though you are seeing it for the first time; like through the eyes of a child. Being open and receptive to new possibilities.
Non-judging – Being aware of whatever comes up for youand not judging it as good or bad; liking it or disliking it.Suspending judgement so that you are better able to handle what is happening; being impartial to it in your reactions.
Patience – Understanding and accepting that things must unfold in their own time. A Chinese proverb says, “Don’t push the river; it flows all by itself.” A monarch butterfly emerges from its chrysalis in its own time. Each moment in this life is this moment – accept it. This enables you to enjoy the small moments of life; knowing that life is made up of a series of small moments.
Trust – Living your own life; honoring your own feelings. Developing a basic trust for yourself and your feelings. Remembering that guidance comes from within yourself; trusting you are capable of discernment. Looking inward not outward. Taking responsibility for being yourself.
Non-striving – Going with the flow. Just ‘being’ without an agenda or manipulating, changing or forcing things.Trying less and being more. Being yourself. Action happens spontaneously; rather than being contrived.
Letting go - Letting things be and accepting things as they are. Through letting go, you allow things to flow intoyour life. Not fighting and resisting the change; trusting the process.
Acceptance – Not passive. Recognizing and accepting that things are the way they are. Acceptance paves the way for real change. Not imposing any “shoulds.” Remindingyourself to be open to whatever you are thinking, feeling, seeing, etc. and accepting it in the here and now.
Gratitude – Enjoying the present moment with a sense of reverence and humility. Bring gratitude into the present life. Delight and focus on what is positive in your life.
Generosity – Recognizing that there is more happiness found in giving than clinging onto things. It embodies a warm heart and kind attitude.
These qualities can be applied to every aspect of your life. There is no goal; no endpoint. It is not about learning them and then in practicing them that you will live a happy life forever; it is the realization that every moment is a new moment. Every situation is a different situation; every day is a new beginning. The point is to take one present moment at a time, accepting it as it is with an attentive view, an open mind and heart. Cultivating and practicing these qualities, in your own time, may help you begin to live a more mindful, alert life in the here and now. Through this awakening, you begin to truly embrace the ups, downs and in-betweens learning to dance with them no matter what they are.
Have a great week embracing each of life’s moments and each of life’s experiences. It is in living each day mindfully we truly experience the richness of what life brings. As Eckhart Tolle said “Always say “yes” to the present moment. Surrender to what is. Say “yes” to life; and see how life suddenly starts working for you rather than against you.”