Kitty Litter Zen Garden

Finding mindfulness in every day moments

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Kitty Litter Zen Garden

I'll start by saying that I have a lot of respect for Zen and mindfulness. I also have two cats and three litter boxes. So, how do these things fit together? I'm trying to infuse mindfulness into everyday events and I've noticed it's generally easier to feel peaceful and calm when I'm engaged in something I enjoy. The difficulty comes when I'm doing something less pleasant or even unpleasant. Cleaning the cats' litter box is one of those unpleasant tasks that needs to be done every day. If I skip a day it becomes even more unpleasant. I've worked on a way to make it feel less of a chore and more of something that when completed gives me a feeling of satisfaction and ease.

I use clumping litter and after I've scooped up all the mess into a plastic bag I use the little rake to smooth out the litter, kind of like a Zen garden. I try to do this with awareness and a sense of equanimity. When it's complete I can walk away knowing that it's done for today. It will be a mess again tomorrow but that's in the future.

It's a little like meditating itself. I don't always want to sit. Sometimes I make excuses or find myself so busy that I forget. If more than a day or two goes by I'll find my myself with a big mess. I get cranky and yell at my son. I'm more impatient in traffic. I don't follow through on other habits that help me stay mindful.When I finally do sit down to meditate I can't settle in easily. I have an itch that must be scratched. My mind wanders even farther than usual before I notice and bring it back to the present.

When I meditate every day the habit becomes easier. When it's done I can walk away with that same feeling of equanimity.

What helps you to be mindful every day?

The Power of Meditation

On Travel 'n' Wellness

According to Leo Babuata of zenhabits, meditation is the most important habit to implement.

I agree.

Three years ago, I began meditation after StumblingUpon Babuata's blog.

Every morning I woke up, sat on a comfortable cushion, and listened to my breath for 10-15 minutes. Well, every morning I wasn't hungover. And every morning I wasn't busy with school work. Aaand every morning I was at home, and not on the road.

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