Tag Archive | serenity

Stop!

Between stimulus and response there is a space.
In that space is our power to choose our response.
In our response lies our growth and our freedom.

Victor Frankl 

Haven’t there been times when you just needed to stop what you were doing and get some “breathing space”?

With the holidays fast approaching, it seemed like a good time to stop and share a breathing exercise to help retain or regain our equilibrium. 

The practice below comes from Dave Potter who is a certified Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction instructor, who received his training through the University of Massachusetts Medical School where Jon Kabat-Zinn founded the Center for Mindfulness.

He provides a great way to step out of automatic pilot mode and move into the present moment to reconnect with our natural resilience and wisdom.

We are simply tuning in to what is happening right now, without expectation of any particular result.

If you remember nothing else, just remember the word “STOP”.

S – Stop and take Stock / Checking in to Head/Heart/Body

Bring yourself into the present moment by deliberately asking, “What is my experience right now”?

What are you saying to yourself, and what images are coming to mind?

What are you feeling and what sensations are being experienced?

Acknowledge and register your experience, even if it is uncomfortable.

T – “Take” a Breath / Directing awareness to Breathing

Gently direct full attention to breathing, to each in breath and to each outbreath as they follow, one after the other.

Your breath can function as an anchor to bring you into the present and help you tune into a state of awareness and stillness.

O – Open and Observe / Expanding awareness outward

Expand the field of your awareness around and beyond your breathing, so that it includes a sense of the body as a whole, your posture, and facial expression, then further outward to what is happening around you: sights, sounds, smells, etc.

As best you can, bring this expanded awareness to the next moments.

P – Proceed / new Possibilities Continuing without expectation

Let your attention now move into the world around you, sensing how things are right now.

Rather than react habitually/mechanically, you can be curious/open, responding naturally. You may even be surprised by what happens next after having created this pause.

What practice helps you to avoid unconsciously reacting, and choosing a better response as a result?

What positive  words would you use for S.T.O.P? I like Serenity, Tranquility, Optimism and Power.

 

 

 

 

Let Nature Restore You

beach-therapy

As the holiday season comes to a close, many of us may feel the need for some rest and relaxation from the busyness we just experienced. Sometimes the best cure for regaining our peace is found in nature itself.

For me, taking long walks on the beach, watching a sunset, or starring at the stars can instantly provide a therapeutic alteration to my state of mind.

There is something undeniably beautiful, powerful, and spiritual about the exterior gifts from nature, that can elicit such a peaceful, contemplative effect on our internal environment as well.

One cannot underestimate the importance of introspection on a regular basis, as it has a profound impact on the way we think, act, and operate in our relationships.

Therefore, the more we make room in our lives for stillness and reducing the noise level around us, the more we are able to hear the messages from within us.

Unfortunately, the busyness in our lives can pull us away from noticing the lovely settings which surround us, and allow them to fade away unnoticed into the background of each day. This lack of connection can prevent us from the serenity we long to experience.

boogie-board

Fortunately, it is never too late to begin focusing on all the beauty around us, and reap the benefits of its rehabilitating power.

What nurtures you?