Monday, July 16, 2018

Fresh Thoughts for Your Monday: Appreciate the Gift

You have just been given a most marvelous present. It’s wrapped in tissue paper and gently placed in a beautifully wrapped box, tied with a bow.

What is that gift? It’s a new day!

Don’t allow the shadows of yesterday to affect the possibilities of today. Focus on what you can do with this precious gift, this beautifully wrapped present.

Today, this week: Make the very most of the day!

Monday, July 9, 2018

Fresh Thoughts for Your Monday: Adopt a Posture of Gratitude

Start your day in a posture of gratitude. When you open your eyes, ready to welcome the new day, before you step foot out of bed, name three things for which you are grateful.

When you start your day with a heart of gratitude, it sets the stage for the rest of your waking hours.

Not sure where to begin? Remember that even the smallest, most ordinary things hold extraordinary abundance.

Today, this week: Be thankful and you will find that you have more and more for which to be thankful.

Monday, July 2, 2018

Fresh Thoughts for Your Monday: Spend Time in Nature

When the summer sun is warm and the days long, spend as much time as you can outdoors communing with nature.

Many of us tend to spend much of our time indoors, particularly during the workday. When we seek out nature, we benefit from its gifts of renewal and wellness. We feel a connection to others and to every living thing. The chatter in our busy brains quiets and we reconnect with ourselves.

Today, this week: Spend time in nature. Your mind, body and spirit will thank you.

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Simply Living Simply

A few years ago, a dear friend shared with me a magazine, drawing my attention to a particular article about wabi-sabi, a Japanese philosophy about appreciating things, even when they are imperfect, incomplete, simple and subtle.
Wabi-sabi promotes a physical and psychological space devoid of clutter and distraction, yet abundant in serenity and contentment.
I read the article with fascination. If I had to put a word to the life I try to create for myself and the atmosphere in which I try to live, it would be wabi-sabi. I have intentionally decluttered my life in recent years, reducing my outside obligations, decreasing my to-do list entries, and removing physical clutter from our home. This effort toward a more minimalistic lifestyle has made room for what is vital—and for the new.
As I talk with friends and colleagues who have busy lives with myriad commitments and responsibilities, I see my own life more clearly. I have chosen a different path for myself. (And in some ways, the path has chosen me.)
Consequently, I embrace the simple, the clean, the silent. I embrace the slightly slower pace where I have time to think, to consider and to appreciate. I've gladly exchanged the more frenzied days for quieter ones.
There is a wealth of books, websites and other resources about minimalism these days. As a society, whether we’re young or not-so-young, we’re seeing that our “stuff” and our over-committed calendars don’t encourage a fulfilling life. Actually, the opposite occurs because we have to work even harder and longer to pay for our belongings and to climb the ladder. In the end, those things don’t make us happy. They just get in the way of a truly abundant, well-lived life.
Time to contemplate and pay attention is more than a luxury. Space to enjoy the things that really matter is more than a clean house. Opportunity to be of service or to spend time with loved ones is more than commitment. It is abundance. It is serenity. It is contentment. It is wabi-sabi. 

Affirming Words: Celebrate Your Inner Child

Consider adopting these Affirming Words for this month. Say them often to yourself -- whenever you see yourself in a mirror, when you get out of bed to start the day, whenever you need a little pick-me-up:

I laugh easily and make time for play every day. The child in me thanks me for it.