Mindful March

March 04, 2019

Though you may not have noticed, I sometimes choose a monthly theme around which I loosely organize my posts on Catching Happiness. For example, February’s was the unimaginative-but-appropriate “Love.” As I was casting around for a theme for March, I happened upon the Action for Happiness March calendar, “Mindful March”—how perfect! (Printable PDF file here.)

I’ve been bemoaning the speed with which life seems to be moving (HOW can it be March already?!) and feel like I’ve been missing my own life. I still feel anxious and stressed, even though things have settled down considerably after the whirlwind that was the last three months of 2018. I could do with a dose of mindfulness. Maybe you could, too? We can all benefit from paying more attention to the present moment.

So this month, I won’t be just writing a few posts related to mindfulness, I’ll be actively trying to practice it.

For me, mindfulness involves paying attention, focusing on the present moment and what I’m doing, thinking, or feeling. It has elements of appreciation and gratitude, because if I’m paying attention, I notice the simple pleasures and everyday adventures that populate my life. My worries fade, and I’m able to see the larger panorama, the ebb and flow of my own life’s experience. No matter what is happening, this, too, shall pass. As James Baraz says, “Mindfulness is simply being aware of what is happening right now without wishing it were different; enjoying the pleasant without holding on when it changes (which it will); being with the unpleasant without fearing it will always be this way (which it won’t).”

How else might we (I) practice mindfulness this month? Here are a few things I’m going to try:

  • Use the Action for Happiness Mindful March calendar prompts for suggestions
  • Read a book about time. I’m going to check out Why Time Flies, by Alan Burdick
  • Practice mindful eating. I find it supremely difficult to eat and do nothing else—I also want to read, or watch a video online, or…
  • Use a timer to bring me back to myself after I’ve fallen down Internet rabbit holes while researching
  • Schedule time for daydreaming
  • Restart a yoga practice
  • Try meditation using the Headspace app I’ve had on my phone for more than a year

Would you like to explore mindfulness together? What do you do, or avoid doing, in order to become more mindful?

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  1. Kathy the calendar is such a super idea with wonderful prompts. It is always more difficult for me to slow down when spring fever hits...March starts the disease and it really doesn't stop until July. March's calendar will be a great help to keep me centered on what is truly important. Thanks for sharing. Hugs!

    1. Debbie--Yes, I imagine that after being cooped up during winter, you might be rarin' to go! Hope you enjoy some mindful moments of happiness this spring and beyond.

  2. So often you write about things that I'm thinking about or doing in my life. Thank you for this calendar! It fits in with my new, fun practice of "tracking". I've had a major shift in accepting that certain self care activities do take time and it's worth it. With that, I can now focus on them, and am even enjoying them as I'm able to finish them. What I do: When I get into rabbit holes, I stop, pause, breathe, sort of pray, bringing myself around to awareness & acceptance. Then I'm more able to go back to focusing on what's important for my health, mental, physical, and spiritual. Thank you, Kathy.

    1. Rita--I love how we seem to be somehow connected that way. I'm working on the notion that self-care must now take more of position in my life.

      Enjoy the calendar--I have it on my desk, and I've been trying to use each day's prompt. I do think it's helping me become more mindful.