Living a mindful life is not a luxury reserved for a lucky few. It’s not an exclusive privilege for the wealthy, or those with a lot of time on their hands. It doesn’t belong solely to the yogis, the meditators, the artists, the outdoorsy-types, the wanderers, the nomads, or the otherwise “free spirits.
Mindfulness isn’t so lofty.
Mindfulness is simply a state of awareness that allows us to appreciate fully, love deeply and live richly. Anyone can do it, and everyone deserves it.
My journey to living a mindful life began when I hit a wall. I was maxed out in most areas of my life, and I ran into a health problem that stopped me in my tracks. Looking back, I’m so thankful for that time because it made me STOP the insanity and ask myself some tough questions.
1. Am I experiencing joy in my life?
2. Am I happy with the pace of my life?
3. Are my relationships healthy?
4. Is my relationship with myself healthy?
5. Are my surroundings in balance? (I.e. my home, my finances, my schedule, etc.)
As I took an honest look at my answers to these questions, I discovered I was only really happy with one – my relationships with other people. In all other areas – I was failing miserably.
I knew I had to take action, but did NOT need to add anything else to my daily stresses. So I did two simple things:
1. I began to do an “emotional check-in” at the beginning and end of each day to see where my pain points were. What I found was I had too much in my life. Too much stuff, too many commitments, and was struggling to meet too many expectations.
2. I began to focus my entire life around two words: “Edit” and “Engage.” That meant EDITING my life to include only the things that were really meaningful so that I could ENGAGE with my loved ones, with a great book, or with a new challenge that mattered to me (Lions in Four was born in this era!)
Everyone’s journey to mindfulness is going to look different. Right now, I’m working on mindfully adding more spontaneity and fun into my life!
Side Note: I can tell it’s working because on a recent family shopping trip, my husband called to tell me our kids were so loud he could hear them from the opposite side of the large store. What he didn’t know was that we were all cracking up together, playing and being totally spontaneous and enjoying each other’s company right in the middle of the store. Their sweet laughter (however loud it was), was pure joy to me, and that’s the kind of moments mindfulness has allowed me to have!
Comment below to tell us how you’re working to live a more mindful life!