Mindfulness Matters

There are days when the noise seems so loud that my mind can't seem to think or function the way that it normally does. There's so much clutter: to-do lists, meetings, gigs, and social events. It's like I can't keep up.

These are typically the times when we most feel that we don't have time to breathe and to take care of ourselves. But in my own life, I have discovered that this is the most important time for me to practice self-care. 

Recently one morning, for example, as I began to dive into my calendar, I immediately felt overwhelmed and behind. In my younger days, I would just sink deep into those feelings and struggle to get things accomplished. As I have grown and become more intentional about my mindfulness practices, I am better able to recognize the emotions and respond proactively. On this day, instead of succumbing to that overwhelming feeling and allowing it to control my mental space which typically leads to me moving about frantically, I scheduled in time for meditation. I took myself away from my desk, I went for a short walk to get my blood flowing. I found a quiet space and I meditated. Every time I do this, no matter how frantic life is moving around me, my world stands still for just a moment. And when I return to my desk, I feel free. I am reminded why I do the work that I do and how much I love it. I am reminded that social events and time with friends and family fuels me rather than exhausts me. 

I am reminded that I run my calendar, my calendar does not run me. 

I am reminded that I can say no or yes, whatever is necessary for my self sustainability.

I am reminded that mindfulness matters. Depending on your work and family life, it may seem bizarre or impossible to set aside time for mindfulness. And believe me, I know what it's like to feel that you're not allowed to get up and move about and breathe freely. But I encourage you to consider what small steps you can take. For me, this space to be still began on my commute to work. I would sit on the train put in my headphones and pray and meditate. That was the only time that I had. One of my former managers used to go for a long walk on her hour lunch break, rain, shine, or snow. She did that faithfully because it was what helped her to maintain a sense of mental peace. 

I ask you: What brings you peace? I encourage you to find whatever space allows you to be still. Even if it's just for a moment, it can change and set the tone for your day. And if you make it a practice, it can help you set the tone for the life that you want to live.

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