It all started with a text message. Actually one from a girlfriend, and one from an acquaintance. My girlfriend reached out because she was feeling vulnerable, and I did the thing called "holding space" for her while she went through something difficult. Holding space is like saying a prayer for someone while picturing them safe and sound.
The texts from the acquaintance started off just fine until little by little I got to see what this person was all about. Let's just say that I kept adding to the bouquet of red flags until I decided that it was not in my best interest to continue the conversation. I began to really feel uncomfortable, and then there was a deal-breaker. Something that crossed the line of human decency. So I shut it down and stayed safe. I really wish this person well and I hope they get the help they need - just not from me.
I'm grateful for having trusted friends that reach out when they feel vulnerable. I have been there and I felt very alone. One of the last...
I took a break. A long break from posting. I was faithfully posting every Monday through March.
Then it was April. There are four months of the year where I am insanely busy: January, April, July and October. It corresponds with the time when the catalogs roll-over and my customers get a brand new fresh catalog. In that catalog are all the changes that will be in place for the following three months. It's my job to discover what is new and what has changed so that my customers get all the savings to which they are entitled. It takes a toll on my energy. Today starts a new quarter. I'm rested but still feel anxious about what I cannot control. Which is stupid, really. I acknowledge it and intend to watch out for the anxious feelings arising. I have your name Anxiety. You will be named. I am acknowledging feelings in the moment.
So during April, I was teaching Meditation on Fridays; a requirement for one of the three programs I was enrolled in. Two programs finished this quarter...
I'm very thankful that I began my mindfulness journey quite some time ago. My book, "Grounded in Chaos" is my journey through a major upheaval in my life and will be published on May 4th. I'll be reaching out to get launch team members soon. But the point is that I lived through the biggest challenge of my life and came out on the other side changed, different, better. Much better. While you are in the middle of it, you can't make sense of all the changes, but meditation helped me keep perspective.
These are indeed strange times. So many people are stepping up to help in the way that they can. Staying balanced and centered when the whole world is changing, literally, is a challenge. I accept that and I am compelled to help.
I'm throwing my hat in the ring to lead meditations, and I have options for you.
Here is the link to join me in learning to meditate every Friday in April, at 8:00 am eastern.
For the next three Fridays, I'm teaching a live...
My Dad was the showman in the family. He was the Supervisor of Music for my local hometown school district. Dad would say that no other teacher had their work on display for the whole town to see every Friday night. Dad was particular. Dad had a standard of excellence that generations of children in our home town understand at a personal level.
March 7th was Dad’s Birthday. But then he would say it was on the 10th, and so for years, it was a true floating holiday to whatever day he decided to celebrate. March reminds me of Dad.
Dad taught me to concentrate. Concentration is one of the foundations of Mindfulness. If you can concentrate, you can meditate. Meditation was a natural outgrowth of specifically focused attention.
Dad was a pioneer in understanding that playing music stimulated the other half of your brain, and made it easier to remember facts, figures, and computations. On the big band trip to Disney World in 1976, he was afraid that the band would be out of...
This is a very short mindful blog this Monday. I’m not feeling well and I’ve decided to take it easier on myself. I had surgery 3 weeks ago and I am still healing. Exhaustion comes easy when you have an injury. Add an insult, like a water break in the house, and well, this gal’s body has had enough. In German it's zuviel ist zuviel.
Know when to say enough is enough and take care of yourself. No one else will, that’s for sure.
Have a great week and a Mindful Monday!
Meanwhile, I'm resting up and sending you all Loving-kindness.
May we be happy. May we be healthy.
I’m really late with my blog today. I caused a flood in my upstairs bathroom and was sent a very disreputable plumber who broke two more things. I actually had a geyser in my side yard when he started using a shovel.
Oh Lord, it’s hard to be mindful when stuff goes sideways. So no laundry done and no haus cleaning done. All my day off plans went awry. Something about mercury retrograde, for those who follow that.
Nevertheless, I have something really special to share today. I was listening to the Army band tribute arrangement of “Time Stand Still” by Rush. Neil Peart recently passed away. The guy went through a lot in life and the last several years had a glioblastoma.
I remember how he dealt with tragedy when he lost his 19-year-old daughter in a car accident, and then 10 months later his wife died. He took off on his motorcycle and drove all the way from Canada to South America. (55,000 miles!) I’ve had my share of losses and my...
This week I’m at the Winter 340B Coalition Conference in San Diego. It turned out to be a grey (Pittsburgh grey) day and it was raining, so no outdoor California fun for me. I typically don’t do well with hurtling my body across the US. This time is no different. My challenge this week, is to be present in the Pacific Time zone. I typically start grounding myself part of the way to the new destination the night before I fly. It helps me sleep and gets rid of jet lag—try it, it works like a charm.
Friday night, it felt like I could only ground to Kissimmee and Phoenix, the first leg of the trip. I went with it. I grounded into Phoenix, and while waiting for the flight to San Diego, I remembered that I needed to ground into San Diego. This morning it occurred to me that I was still grounded into Phoenix and San Diego. Mountain time and Pacific time.
I have a tool where I extend a connection to the center of the earth by imagining a beam of light, or a...
If you like the truly American spectacle known as the SuperBowl, yesterday did not disappoint. Congratulations to Andy Reid and the Kansas City Chiefs. Well done.
I personally watch the Superbowl for the commercials and this year did not disappoint. I was blown away by the New York Life Commercial #LoveTakesAction Click here to watch. This short commercial shows love in action, which is the definition of Lovingkindness.
I'm writing a presentation on Lovingkindness for my Mindfulness Meditation Teacher's Certification Program that I have to give in two weeks. The fourth type of love described in the commercial, Agape love, is the unconditional love for all living things. Lovingkindness is a feeling and an action. It's moving through life with love.
To practice Lovingkindness is typically done by entering a quiet state and repeating phrases such as "May I be healthy, May I be healthy, May all living beings be healthy, May all living beings be healthy." It comes out of an...
Growing up in the tundra of the western Pennsylvania mountains, this day, Groundhog Day, was a legitimate holiday. As a school kid, we so looked forward to the “prognostications” of Punxsutawney Phil. We anxiously awaited, would we have 6 more weeks of winter? Most of the time he did see his shadow-probably because the television lights lit up the gray Pennsylvania winter day. Sadly, it would leave us to trudge through 6 more weeks of boots, mittens, and stepping through crusted-over snow to get the mail from the common bank of mailboxes at the end of my yard. I can still hear the crunch, crunch under my rubber fleece-lined boots. But on those magic days like today, Phil would not see his shadow, would not return to his borrow, and we could count on an early spring. Now that I live in Florida, (I moved to the happiest place on earth) and it was 79 degrees yesterday, I am a bit nostalgic today and this post reflects the sentiment.
This morning I couldn’t...
For the past three days, I’ve been heads down finishing my book, “Staying Grounded in the Middle of Chaos.” In the last 30 minutes, I sent the draft to the editor and reached back out to the cover designer to let him know that we are rounding third base and heading for home. I’m sitting here with my eyes closed typing, feeling into the good feeling of completion. Breathing in ‘yes’. Letting go on the exhale.
My boss calls this the “Polish Vacation.” That’s where you take PTO from your first job, to work on your second job. From Friday morning until this morning, I reread every poem I’d written over the last three years. I use poetry to process emotions. I stopped hiding that I write poetry and there are 75 poems and one Eulogy in the book. It gives me goosebumps to claim that I write poetry. I am a poet. Not in the Robert Frost, Walt Whitman, Maya Angelou way. My way is, well, my way.
Poems pop into my head, especially...