Real Mindfulness

I have this story about myself about how, since I don’t practice “real” meditation, I not allowed to claim that I do the mindfulness thing. (As if there’s this omniscient, unseen Mindfulness Proctor who watches and evaluates us, right?) That story’s false, and it has been since at least sixteen years ago. An ordinary work day. Until it wasn’t. I didn’t freak out, even though freaking out was my go-to response to just about everything those days. I paid attention. Was present. In the present. No judgment, not because I was some kind of zen master, but because it took so long to make sense of the words coming through the school’s P.A. system. Planes? World Trade Center? The Pentagon? What? So I kept noticing, so present and nonjudgmental that I didn’t even roll my eyes, let alone argue, when the woman beside me in the windowless work room insisted. . . .

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Just Be Present

Maybe it really is as simple as just being present. Doing one thing at a time. Fully noticing that one thing. I’ve been thinking – by which I mean stressing and obsessing – about mindfulness lately. Presented a webinar, led a call, waded through countless posts online (new world record for open browser tabs) and scribbled enough crappy first drafts of a something – course, e-book, Broadway musical, who knows, the content and form are both emerging – to fill a shipping container. Or maybe a tiny house made from a shipping container. It started like most of my Big Ideas. My inner Contrarian teamed up with my inner Perfectionist. And all hell broke loose. Before I can embrace a trend, any trend, I first reject and then hyper analyze it until I figure it out for myself. I didn’t get on board with House of Cards, Scandal or even. . . .

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Mindfulness – at Your Own Pace

I’ve visited the church where this driveway sign welcomes visitors every December for over a decade. Three trips each visit. Two rehearsals and a concert. In the dark. Often in the rain. Sometimes snow. Always during rush hour, wondering why the heck we call it rush hour, anyway, since it’s way longer than an hour and it’s not characterized by anything remotely resembling speed. I always arrived late, rushed and frazzled. Until this year, when I was early enough to not only notice the sign, but also to take the photo and post it to Instagram. Because otherwise it didn’t really happen, right? The photo felt like a juicy writing prompt, so I sat down to scribble out this post weeks ago, until life – the amped-up, extra-hyper holiday version – intervened. As I considered the photo again, during this in-between week, it seems that I’m either really living and. . . .

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