Being

Remember the Joy of Being

August 17, 2018

Photo by MI PHAM on Unsplash

“In today’s rush, we all think too much, seek too much, want too much and forget about the joy of just Being.”
—Eckhart Tolle, The Power of Now

Preparing

Weathering Summer Storms

August 13, 2018


It starts with a grumble in the east. You quickly glance up at the sky—what’s the cloud situation? Is there lightning? The Spanish moss hangs limp from the oak trees and there’s not a whisper of breeze.

It’s still sunny where you are, but puffy clouds edged with gray appear, racing across the sky. A summer storm approaches.

Quickly the blue sky turns gray, the air temperature drops, the rumbling surrounds you. Sometimes the light takes on an eerie green tinge.

The house shakes the next time the thunder booms, and you begin to see lightning flashes. In moments, the rain begins to spatter the ground, speckling the pavement. The rain whispers or rustles or thuds, depending on how hard it’s coming down. If you’re lucky, you’re inside, cozily watching. If you’re unlucky enough to be out and about, you’re probably drenched despite your umbrella. You might take off your sandals so they don’t get ruined, and run through the parking lot to get to your car. (Or is that just me?)

After a few moments—or an hour—the sun may shine through the rain. This is what’s known as a sun shower. Or a rainbow will appear. Your gift for weathering another summer storm.

Sometimes we can see the storm coming from a long way away and we can prepare at least somewhat, as my family and I did last summer when Hurricane Irma was bearing down on us. Sometimes a storm appears seemingly out of nowhere and we’re forced to take cover until the worst is over. Afterwards, we pick up the pieces.

What’s true of the weather is also true of our lives. Sometimes we see the storm coming, other times it takes us by surprise and all we can do is hold on. If you’re in the midst of a storm, know that it will end, and that you may very well find a world made new on the other side. If you’re watching a storm on the horizon, what can you do to prepare for it? And if you’re currently enjoying a stretch of beautiful weather, savor every moment of it, knowing that soon enough, the storms will come.

What storms have you weathered lately?


JOMO

Lazy Summer Link Love

August 10, 2018

Well, it’s August. What more can I say? I’m feeling about as lazy as is possible while still being conscious, just marking time until the weather cools off. But my fingers still work and I have an internet connection, so here are a few links I’ve loved recently:

I’m not the only one struggling through summer. Apparently, according to at least one study, your brain really does slow down during hot weather. Read about it here: “It’s Not Your Fault If You Can't Get Anything Done in the Summer.” 

Laura Vanderkam’s posts are always full of common sense. In “Every Yes Is a No, Every No Is a Yes,” Laura writes, “The upside of keeping this phrase in mind is that it reminds you that expectations are infinite, and time is finite. You are always choosing. A choice to do one thing is a choice not to do something else, and therefore a choice to disappoint someone. So the question is who are you choosing to disappoint, and why?”
“Reclaim Your Weekends” looks at the importance of scheduling time for restoration: “We all need rest and rejuvenation. Without deep, restorative time, we power through jam-packed weekends (or aimlessly surf the net), only to wake up on Monday mornings feeling tired and dissatisfied.”
I’m still exploring Julia’s Bookbag, but so far I’m enchanted. How lovely it would be to receive one of her book boxes! And wouldn’t it be fun to create them?
Read “10 Things to Keep You Going When Everything Goes Wrong,” because it’s not what happens to you, it’s how you respond to what happens to you. Numbers 3, 7, and 9 especially resonated with me.

I just finished reading Quiet Girl in a Noisy World, and checked out the author's Tumblr, “Where’s My Bubble?” The book reminded me that I haven’t been allowing enough recharging time for my introverted self. 
To continue with the theme of doing less and enjoying life more, have you heard the acronym “JOMO”? It’s FOMO’s (“Fear of Missing Out”) cousin, the Joy of Missing Out. Read about it at “FOMO vs JOMO: How to Embrace the Joy of Missing Out.” 
And for the times when it requires too much energy to go to the beach, here’s a video of waves crashing on the beach...


Hope you have a relaxing, restoring, and very happy weekend!

Being present

This Moment

August 06, 2018


Breathe.

I’m an expert at worrying. About the future. About what might happen.

But in this moment, I’m OK. My loved ones are OK. Sure, there will be times when this isn’t the case. But not this moment.

Breathe…

All my worrying, my complaining, maybe my problem is not noticing and being grateful for this moment. This moment is a gift—that’s why it’s called the present.

Hurry, distraction, multi-tasking—these are the enemies of presence and peace.

I want more presence and peace.

Instead of constantly searching for something bright shiny new (shopping, reading yet another self-help book, etc.) to distract myself from uncomfortable feelings I’m practicing appreciating, caring for, and savoring the many gifts I already have.

Will you join me today in stopping to breathe and appreciate where you are? All the things that work in your life? Let all the worries for the future go—poof! Maybe even make a list of 10, 15, 100 things you love about your life right now. Summer is a good time for slowing down to appreciate this moment.

What do you notice when you become present in the moment? What’s best about your life right now? What would you like to change? Please share in the comments!

Habits

Cultivate Habits of Happiness

August 03, 2018

Photo by gabrielle cole on Unsplash

“So many of us believe that to be joyous we need to do a lot of work. But the truth is, our essence is already sparkling with happiness and bliss. All we really need to do is cultivate good internal habits to allow our divine spark be revealed.”
—Tzivia Gover, Joy in Every Moment

What habits do you cultivate to reveal your inner spark?


Look for my travel writing here