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Archive for January, 2010

It’s interesting how often the time of day I go to look at these prompts coincides closely with some circumstance related to the subject.

Today, I opened up mindfulist.com about 5 minutes after having 2 interactions where I was presented with a fundamental nature of complaining and an avoidance of personal responsibility that was palpable.

Isn’t it funny how these two go hand in hand?

Physically I could feel it in my neck, head and gut as these people gave their interpretation of events.  I also noticed that the socialized urge in me was to nod and “Mmm hmmm” and participate.  My rebellious urge was to fly in their faces and point out the “wrongness” of their opinion.

I did neither.

I sat still.

I observed.

I gave gratitude that I no longer view my world that way. 

Am I now complaining?  I don’t feel deep down that I’m complaining.  More noticing; their approach to life, and my changed response to this environment where most people behave likewise.  There was a time I wouldn’t have noticed what was going on.  I was an avoider and a complainer, too.

How is your interpersonal environment affecting you?  Do the people around lift you up or keep you mired in a pool of negativity?  What do you notice about your reaction?  If it doesn’t feel right, how can you change it?

Our circumstances do not define who we are.

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I told my fabulous hair dresser I needed a quick new year jumpstart outside my comfort zone and had her give me a new short “do“.  I’ve had long hair for several years.  I figured this would be a fairly non-threatening new perspective.

The next day, I received edge pushing opportunities in spades. In one meeting I was scheduled with another person to speak briefly on local cable access TV, radio and to the newspaper about a fundraising event we are coordinating. All of these are new activities for me. The kind that give me a little quiver in my middle.

Once upon a time I would have found a way to not do them. Now I find myself slightly amused and ready for the challenge. I know it will be uncomfortable, but trust it will turn out just fine. I might be pleasantly surprised with the experience.

What are you asking for as the new year starts?

Anything?

Have you thought about how you’d like things to look at the end of the year? Or maybe this year it feels more comfortable to coast for a while. If your normal modus operandi is coasting, maybe you are ready for a little bit of push.

What could you do this year that is just a bit past your edge?  One small action can create a surprising series of events.  If you’ve been waiting and wondering for your best life to show up, perhaps it’s time to take a little step in that direction.

Be well.

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What a lovely prompt.  Thanks Gwen.

Sundays we spend time together as a family.  They are pretty low-key. We cook breakfast.  Sometimes there is a project to do.  My teenage daughter’s goal on Sunday is to stay in pj’s and not leave the house!

(As an aside, we are traveling to a resort in Minnesota for week in February.  I asked her if the weather was super uncooperative for skiing and such, would it get too boring just hanging around inside a condo for a week? Her reply, “No!  It would be like a week of Sundays!! Yay!”)

Anyhow, this Sunday my hubby did have a project away from home.  The daughter had a pile of homework.   The small fry and I considered the holiday decorations and decided to start putting them away.

(Why are they still up as mid-January approaches?  We had 3 separate little holiday celebrations, the last of which was Friday, so back off. This was not blatant procrastination.)

This activity ended up being a lovely practice of mindfulness.  There was a calming repetition to picking a box, searching for the right ornament, removing its hook and packing it away.  Austin thought it was a great hunting job.  We worked together, quietly chatting and giggling, for more than an hour.

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I stumbled across Leo Babauta’s method for habit change via Alana’s blog, became aware of Gretchen’s lovely Happiness Project (yay happiness!) and dabbled with an annual review  after reading about Chris Guillebeau’s.  In the last week or so I’ve scrolled through more material of similar nature than I can mention.  I was all excited.  Yay!  Projects!  Something else to help me grow and change!

Hoorah!

Then I thought about the commitment and the posting and the public accountability and…

Felt. Really Tired.

As I’ve said recently, I’m in the middle of the season of dragging.  Doing my best to stay well and relatively happy while I wait for more sunshine.  I feel the need to cocoon but keep bombarding myself with all the wonderfulness of the social web.

Then across my internet-flitting came Gwen’s newest project.

Deep sigh.

Almost everything I run across is wonderful and resonates on some level.  But this feels like the one to follow.  It embodies what I want to inspire in other people.

Get aware.

And since I ought to practice what I preach, and have been shying away from mindfulness and sitting, this is what I need right now.

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January 1-Resolution or no?

One-be still more. This allows me to pay attention and quit the distraction habit.

January 3-Transition points. Notice doorways, stairwells, getting into and out of your car.

Interesting this is today’s prompt.  As I was backing out of my drive to go to work I noticed my entryway.  It’s still got the garland, lights, wreath-made-by-me on it from the holidays.  My front door is a neutral purple; a beautiful backdrop for the surrounding decorations.  I love it.  As I was leaving today I felt this warm feeling of love for my front door area.  Funny.

———————

I think I will still pursue the commandment illustrated by Gretchen and I love the 6 changes concept and may pursue it later.  Right now I’m going to rest when I can and pay attention. 

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The first day of the year.

It doesn’t feel like a monumental day, but I can feel the possibility of changes that will come this year.

I’ve also had opportunity to pay attention to all that has changed this year.  Awash in the fatigue that finds me this season, I was lamenting how much energy it takes to constantly remind myself that I don’t need to panic and turn into a drill sergeant.  My dear coach reminded me not only that I’m allowed to feel this away and that it comes around each year, but that I’ve had many changes over the past year.  Many of them actually in the past few months.  I need time to assimilate as well as gear up for the next phase.

Looking back on the decade since we turned over the century, I realized how much has changed within it.  I was still a bit broken at the start.  I was unsure of myself; just coming out of the fog of a strenuous stretch of inner healing; shedding years of ingrained beliefs and harmful behaviors.

I’m in my stride now. Looking back nearly 10 years gave me the contrast I needed to see how much growth has happened.  It’s been a long climb, and I’m feeling ready to launch.

How about you?  What are you looking forward to in 2010?  What have you learned in 2009?

Be well.

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