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Mindfulness Challenge – Week 2

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Or ‘In which Taylor Swift unexpectedly overtook Theory of a Deadman in my most played list.’

You know those days where the universe conspires to make sure you learn a lesson.  Well Monday, the first day of the second week of my challenge was like that. I needed to learn and I needed to learn fast of end up failing before I started.

Week 2 – Forgive their mistakes – big or small.

In her article ‘7 Things Mindful People Do Differently and How To Get Started’ Elisha Goldstien talks about the challenges in practicing a mindful life and the importance of recognising that we will stumble.  The hindrances of life that get in the way of living mindfully can become opportunities to learn.  In these times it is important to recognise what you need in the moment and find your fastest route to begin again.
One of the things I struggle with is being hypercritical of myself.  If I make a mistake I dwell on it, no matter the size of the mistake.  I have conversations in my head about problems that haven’t arisen or judgements that haven’t been made because of my mistake.  Like I said last week, I have issues starting things in case they aren’t good enough, I don’t give myself the chance to make mistakes.
In short – very bad with mistakes. Much issues.
I can remember being in therapy one time and mentioning that I felt like I failed at everything I tried.  I felt I would never achieve anything or succeed at anything I tried.  At the time I was in therapy because I had taken on the small community services organisation I worked for and ended up on work cover having had a break down.  Their treatment of me had been nothing short of bullying.  I ended up affecting change in their policy but couldn’t face going back in there ever again.

My therapist said to me “Tell me about the things you have failed at.”  I couldn’t think of anything.  I took the question home to think over more. “What had I actually failed at?”  Contemplating this at home made me realise that although I had not failed at anything on a large scale, every set back, every rejection and every small mistake was blown up in my mind to feel like large scale failure.

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Mindful Monday: Find your Generosity of Spirit

Come for a walk and find your generosity of spirit this Mindful Monday.  www.brunchfuelledvagabond.com/find-your-generosity-of-spirit

Here we are again, My Darling Vagabonds

Telling you about the importance of looking at the beauty in the world instead of the boring train tracks and power lines that seem to clutter everything up last Monday reminded me of a walk I took one lunch time.  And in true it-must-be-a-sign-even-though-I-don’t-believe-in-signs-so-it-is-clearly-a-coincidence-I’m-going-to-nod-my-head-and-say-huh-in-an-annoyingly-knowing-way-about kind of way I came across an article on Pinterest about the 7 things that Mindful People Do Differently.

I’m not sure that this story fits neatly into any of those boxes but to me it certainly illustrates how our attitudes change the way we experience life.  And it is the beginning of a challenge I am setting for myself, and for you.  But more on that in a moment.  For now to the story…

It was a sunny day and the route down to the boardwalk I like to use takes me past a vacant lot, lots of trash, a dual lane highway, mosquitoes breeding in stagnant puddles… you get the idea.  With my eyes firmly fixed on the green field ahead and my face turned to the sun (in a feel-the-warmth-on-my-face way, not a blinded-because-I’m-an-idiot-who-stared-at-the-big-ball-of-burning-gas kind of way) I felt the stress of work slip away as I walked in the sunshine with Ed Sheeran playing through my headphones.

As I walked through the trees I could easily have focussed on the abandoned shopping trolley, the trash in the water or the muggy mangrove air.  Instead I saw blue wrens hopping across the ground, the fluffy seed pods floating through the dappled sunlight and the homeless man sitting on the boardwalk shooting up 20 feet ahead of me.

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