Zen Wednesday

Mindfulness and Gratitude


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Favorite Things Friday!

'Favorite Things Friday’ is a weekly gratitude journal pioneered by my dear friend Kristy Edwards who is definitely a ‘stop and smell the roses’ kinda gal. We humans spend so much time during the week rushing to appointments, checking items off the to-do list, worrying about family, feeling frustrated, bored, anxious, under-appreciated and occasionally overwhelmed….. It’s nice to make a habit of taking a few moments at the end of the week to stop, breathe, and remind ourselves of all the good things in our lives. Gratitude is a deliberate attractor of positive vibrations. I find that the more thankful I am, the more positive my thoughts become, which in turn brings more positive people and experiences into my life. It sets up cycle of appreciation and happiness. :-)

So without further ado, here are the things I am happy about or grateful for this week:

1) Book Club! A little context here, this past December rather than writing out a list of New Year’s resolutions that I would most likely break, I wrote out a “Want List” of all my intentions for the year. Incidentally, it’s a rather long list. Writing more was on the list (hello blog!) as well as reading more, cooking more, and spending time with friends. To address those last three, I came up with the idea of starting a monthly book club. I sent out some emails to see if anyone else was interested and, lo and behold, they were! The inaugural meeting of the newly minted “Words & Wine” book club is happening this coming weekend. I am so excited! Looking forward to an afternoon of stimulating discussion, good food, and a little vino. I am overjoyed to discover that reading and discussing literature is not a lost art.

2) Daylight Savings Time – Granted, having to adjust to walking Peanut the Wonder Dog in the dark each morning took a little getting used to, but how delightful is it to get out of work and still have a few hours of sunlight left?!!? I’ve been getting to the gym again, going for walks, watching Peanut chase butterflies (which rates ridiculously high on the cuteness scale)…..having the sun set later really gives you the perception of having more time. And I, for one, intend to take full advantage of it and get out there!

3) Cineopolis - Have you guys heard of this place? It’s a chain of luxury movie theaters where you sit in individual leather recliners and order food and cocktails during the film. Bravo to that! I am going for the very first time this weekend with my lovely friend Corie K. and I am really looking forward to it.

What I learned about mindfulness from total 5k failure

On Kelby Barker

This is a post from a blog I used to run, but I feel it might be useful to add to this site.

Mindfulness meditation, or at least as far as I have experience it, teaches us to do two major things; to observe the constant internal and external changes we experience and not to react to them.

This morning I ran my second 5k ever. It was a major personal achievement for my to run my first 5k, which happened a couple of months ago. I took that achievement and sat on it though, having barely run since. Yet as the weather here in Iowa has gotten unbearably hot I decided to pick my running back up and start training for my first ever 10k. This decision came at the beginning of this week, and I decided that I would look at events to give myself a clear deadline.

To facilitate getting back on the horse I registered for four 5k's, one of which was this morning, with plans to run seven by the end of November. I'll sneak a ten-er in there somewhere once I find a fitting one.

Now, I have run a 5k before and made it through in no small part with the help of a friend. I smashed my time on that first run and it felt great. But, this one didn't go quite so well. I was operating under the assumption that I would be able to press through, having done the distance and time before. I would just need to beat the mental games that one plays with themselves when running.

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