Living Mindfully Blog Challenge

[Day 9] - with Michael Haupt

Meditation in nature

(the picture is from a mini wilderness retreat in Sweden I did with my colleague Sille)

Michael Haupt came up with today's challenge and I thought I would write my respons to it today - so thank you Michael. :)

I love meditating outdoors, with the wind against my face, fresh air and the feeling that I have stripped away so many of things that I worry about in my daily life by connecting to something bigger. There is something special about nature for me - how do you feel?

I live downtown Copenhagen, Denmark 2 minutes from the Central Station. A LOT of life going on here. I am not really a city girl but fell in love with a city boy and here I am. I was born in Labrador in Northern Canada. Not a lot of people, but a lot of wild life going on there. I have missed that connection to nature, and often felt it was lost in my life.

But in the city there are parks, trees, animals, wind, sun, rain and the chance to connect to the peace in all of the noise. I connect by looking up at the sky, pointing at birds with my 1-year old, watching the sun rise (we do that a lot I find thanks to the 1 year old...), feeling the wind against my skin and the smell of a freshly mowed lawn. It is there if I want it.

Mindful Living with Michael Haupt

Now write a post or grab your journal and write about your reflections, experience and share your story.

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Click to tweet: Connecting to nature via @mindfulground 's Mindful Living blog challenge #awareness #nature #meditation #openess http://tinyurl.com/qf3m33s

Recommended reading 

Mindful in nature - mindful ground

Awake in the Wild: A Buddhist Walk Through Nature - Meditations, Reflections and Practices

By Mark Coleman

 

 

Mindful Ground - Michael Haupt

About Michael Haupt

Michael Haupt has lived in 16 cities on 6 continents. After being caught up in the hustle and bustle of corporate life, he now lives in a tiny mountain village, 90 minutes from the nearest bank. Traffic jams now consist of cows rambling down the road. Michael believes that the questions we ask ourselves determine the quality of our life. Follow or friend Michael on Facebook for a daily inspiring question, and enjoy the lively responses and debate at http://michaelhaupt.com/facebook/

 

[Day 8] Look up!

  Meditation and mindfulness training are often linked to the image of a person sitting with her eyes closed, focused and alert (and most of the time amazingly gorgeous).

But what if it also included looking up and really noticing what’s right there in front of us. How often do we investigate and take that in? It can be a good practice to see what is going outside of ourselves and how we relate to it. Do we see with an open mind, or see what we think we see.

Look up - meditation and curiosity

There are clearly many reasons why we as adults don’t always look up with curiosity. We are in a hurry, stressed, tired, worried or we've been in the same spot so many times we rely on KNOWING instead of seeing.

One thing a teacher of mine brought up that hit home for me was - remember to be curious. When I look at my children and people that are playful in life they are curious about themselves, life, objects and whatever they stumble upon on their way. I have always admired that ability, since it seemed to fade in my life.

Looking up can be taken very literal - what is in front of you. wall, trees, cue, window etc. You can also take it one step deeper with your partner, children, colleagues. Who is this in front of me? What do they look like today? What are they saying? How does it feel to be here with them? Taking in what we see with curiosity and open eyes.

Look up mindfully

Make it a habit several times today to look up . Up at the sky, rooftops, birds or tree tops. What do you see? Do you see something new? If you are somewhere that feels sort routineish how does it feel to look around and observe. Let your eyes wander around - curious and open.

You can remind yourself by writing a post it or note that says " look up". Or set your a reminder on your phone.

What do you notice?

Now write a post or grab your journal and write about your reflections, experience and share your story.

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2. Add a comment below with a few words about your post with a link to the blogpost

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Click to tweet: Look up what do you see? via @mindfulground 's Mindful Living blog challenge #awareness #life #openess http://tinyurl.com/oc5mzns

 

 

[Day 7] Enjoy a cup

 

Mindful Tea drinking

There is no doubt that being TOO busy is an issue in a lot of people's lives - including my own. As for finding time to meditate, well probably you won't the find time, you'll need to take it. Letting mindful living into others parts in important.

For me bringing awareness and mindfulness practice into my daily activities is just as big for me as my formal practice (meditation). If being mindful left me when I leave the cushion, then maybe there wouldn't be that much of a point.

Something I really enjoy doing is setting aside time to drink a cup of tea or coffee and allowing that to be part of my practice that day. Most of us drink tea or coffee (or water etc.) and if you're like me, you "down it" while sitting at the computer, Tv, chatting on the phone or reading.

This is an excellent chance to show up where you are, practice being mindful and enjoying what you are doing - while you are doing it.

Mindful Ground tea meditation

Now write a post or grab your journal and write about your reflections, experience and share your story.

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Recommended reading

Mindful Living - Mindful Ground

Mindfulness: A practical guide to finding peace in a frantic world

By Mark Williams

 

[Day 6] - What are you grateful for?

MIndful Living Day 6 - Gratitude We often look at what we aren't good at, what needs to change and how we can improve. Seldom do we shout from the roof tops what we are good at and what we are grateful for in our lives. Somethings might be a given. Other things we may forget to truly enjoy.

Being Mindful is showing up for life as it is, and this includes joy, happiness, celebration and gratitude. Do you remember to enjoy life? Do you allow yourself to celebrate your qualities and successes?

Even in the darkest times of our lives, there is still "good" to be discovered and be grateful for. Acknowledging those times and things in our lives can support of us to remember to enjoy.

When stressed or in a hurry we may not be as sensible to the signals to slow down, but are we in such a hurry we also forget to breathe in the wonderful things in life?

Mindfully grateful

 

I AM GRATEFUL for all of your posts, sharing, insights and openness.

Now write a post or grab your journal and write about your reflections, experience and share your story.

1. Add the URL  http://www.mindfulground.com/day-6-i-am-grateful/ as a TrackBack link

2. Add a comment below with a few words about your post with a link to the blogpost

Share the love

Click here to tweet: Noting what I am grateful for via @mindfulground what are you grateful for in your life? #gratitude #mindful http://tinyurl.com/o3fgtlo

Recommended reading

Louise Hay - mindful Ground

Gratitude: A Way Of Life

By Louise Hay

 

[Day 5] with Belinda Pate-Macdonald

 

Who is in control of your life?

Now, this is a thought-provoking question.  We’ve been told by the media and other people that we need to take control, be in the drivers seat and take charge.  But, there’s a huge difference between making choices in your life based on trying to stay in control, and making inspired decisions based on empowerment and love.

One depicts a struggle, the other an openness and flow.  Control stagnates, flowing creates.

Mindful Ground - control vs. mindfulness

Ideally the answer to this question is “no-one is in control of your life”.  When you align yourself with your heart, to manifest a life you love, it’s really important to understand that Love doesn’t control.

Making a commitment to stay in your heart centre and to respond to life from a connected, universal perspective, aligns you with Divine Grace.  You are then guided by your heart’s truth in any given moment.  You understand that everything you create is connected to the whole and for everyone’s benefit.

This is empowering, inspiring and highly creative.  As you release control, and all the fear that is attached to that, you welcome an even greater vision and wisdom, and truly become the “author of your own life”.

Belinda mindful challenge

Now write a post or grab your journal and write about your reflections, experience and share your story.

1. Add the URL http://www.mindfulground.com/30-day-living-mindfully-blog-challenge-day-3-belinda-pate-macdonald/ as a TrackBack link

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Click to tweet: Contemplating control with @mindfulground 's 30 Day Living Mindfully Blog Challenge. You can still join http://tinyurl.com/nxcwjqk

About Belinda Pate-Macdonald

Belinda HummingbirdBelinda is a consciousness illuminator who helps you breathe Love and renewal into your life.  She is renowned for her gift of seeing your Essence and helping you to connect with your true purpose.

Through her work as a heart-centered speaker, spiritual counselor, healer and writer, Belinda creates deeply healing, sacred spaces that inspire and transform.  Over the years she has helped thousands to discover their own unique and amazing gifts.

http://www.hummingbirdhealing.com.au

http://www.facebook.com/hummingbirdhealing

[Day 4] How do you treat your body?

 

"Your body is your home"

Rich Hanson

Mindful Ground - Mindful Living

For years I neglected to listen and respond to the signals my body was sending. Headaches, pain in my back, insomnia, nausea, panic attacks just to name a few of the signals.

The body was just sort of in the way, and at times I felt that it was robbing me of the chance to really get to a place of success and freedom - "if I can just do a little more, THEN I can relax" I would think to myself. The thing is you can ALWAYS do a little more, and more and more.

I was stressed and although It didn't come from bad intentions, I had never learned how to slow down enough to really respect my limits. A lot of us aren't friends with our body, it becomes our enemy at times.

By beginning to listen to the body's signals with gentleness and curiosity you can create enormous shifts. They may seem small, but just knowing where you are in this moment can help you respond more skillfully and in tune with what you need. The first step is always awareness with what is.

So, what is your body telling you? Get more sleep, eat less, eat more, less sugar, stretch, exercise, release tension, drop your shoulders a bit, relax your jaw, feeling strong, healthy, light, big or small, what signals is your body sending?

As Rick Hanson puts it "Your body is your home" and how does living there feel? Maybe you treat your body really well, how does that feel? How can you begin to treat your body like a good friend?

Remember this isn't about judging yourself, but observing with compassion (we will be diving into that some more later on ).

Living Mindfully - Mindful Ground

 

Now write a post or grab your journal and write about your reflections, experience and share your story.

I am LOVING your posts! 

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OR

2. Add a comment below with a few words about your post with a link to the blogpost

Recommended reading

Mindfulness rachel Neumann mindful groundNot Quite Nirvana: A Skeptic's Journey to Mindfulness

by Rachel Neumann

 

 

 

[Day 3] - Sit

Mindful Ground Mindfulness challenge

We are starting off slowly in this challenge. And one good point in all of this is, that this isn't about rushing to become more mindful... :)

We have covered what being Mindful means to you. Important to define for yourself so you know what your starting point actually is. It helps you know what you expect from the challenge and yourself. Yesterday we connected to the breath. An amazing place to begin to stop and bring your awareness back to the present moment.

Today is about the formal practice - meditation, and in this case the sitting meditation.

Day 3 mindfulness sitting meditation

 

Do a 10 minute sitting meditation (if you are experienced or feel you have more time, then sit for longer). 

You can use the following instruction, an app or sign up of the mini mag on the front page and you will receive a free audio you can download. You can also youtube "Mindfulness sitting meditation" and use one of those.

  • Sit on a chair or cushion, you can also lay down on the floor if that is more comfortable for you. The back should be straight and let the shoulders drop slightly towards the floor. Close your eyes or let them stay open, and find a focus point in front of you.
  • Let your attention rest on your breathing. Follow your in-breath from the nose and its movement through the body to the stomach. Follow the out-breath up through the body and out through your nose. How deep in the body does the breath go?
  • Let the focus be on the breath. Every time you discover that your attention has shifted away from breathing, observe what the mind is occupied with, and gentle bring your attention back to the breath. As best you can. not judging yourself, because your attention has shifted. It happens again and again and is completely natural.
  • Next time your mind has wanderd off, pay attention to whether it is thoughts, feelings, or body sensations that has filled your awareness.
  • At times your legs might begin to feel restless, or your nose starts to itch, there can be an unsetteled feeling in the body, you start to worry about what you need to do when you're done? It can be anything. Is it possible to observe what it is?
  • Before the meditation ends bring your attention back to your breathing allow your attention to rest here before opening your eyes and gently take in the room.

 

Now write a post or grab your journal and write about your reflections, experience and share your story. If you already have a solid practice maybe reflect on what that practice means in your daily life. If you are a beginner what comes up for you when meditating?

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Click to tweet: Day 3 - Sitting meditation today with @mindfulground ’s 30 Day Living Mindfully Challenge. http://tinyurl.com/p9mr8sy #ease #meditation

 

[Day 2] B R E A T H E

 

“Feelings come and go like clouds in a windy sky. Conscious breathing is my anchor.”

Thich Nhat Hanh

Breathe - Mindful ground

We are often told (in the world of meditation) things such as "remember to breathe", "It starts with learning how to breathe" etc. I get what they are aiming for - I think. But as I see it, we are lucky beings because breathing happens whether you are intending to or not.

At last something in our lives we don't "have" to control... blink wink blink...

The breath is a very supportive way to anchor our awareness and can be used as a resource to come back to the present moment. It can be a way in to what is happening right now.

Anytime we want to, we can bring our attention to the breath and notice how it moves in the body.

For just a moment we can allow thoughts, feelings, sounds take care of themselves and just sit, stand, lay down with the movement of the chest and stomach. Giving ourselves the chance to show up - right where we are.

Simple - Yes. Easy - No not all the time. Available - anytime you want.

For me in my daily life it is my way of stopping, observing, letting be and connecting to what is important in that moment.

Mindful Ground Living mindfully

Now write a post or grab your journal and write about your reflections, experience and share your story.

1. Add the URL http://www. mindfulground.com/30-day-living-mindfully-blog-challenge-day-2 as a TrackBack

2. Add a comment with a few words about your post below with a link to the blogpost

Share the love

Click to tweet: Connecting to my breath with @mindfulground ’s 30 Day Living Mindfully Challenge. Come join me http://tinyurl.com/p9mr8sy #LMBC13

Recommend reading

Mindful Living - Mindful Ground

Wherever You Go, There You Are: Mindfulness meditation for everyday life

By, Jon Kabat-Zinn

 

A few posts from Day 1

Habits, Bringing larger awareness to life...

Krista, being mindful and floating happily through the day...

Charlotte, Denmark - om bevidst nærvær og børn..

[Day 1] Welcome to the Challenge

  Yay, we are ready to start 30 Days of Living Mindfully and thank you for joining. I am so happy that so many of you have the intention of creating more space for yourself this November and beyond.

Allow yourself to be inspired, touched, challenged and create space to feel all the in between. I can't wait to read your posts.

Thank you for the willingness to turn inward and the courage to share your story.  <3

A little house keeping

Before we get to today's challenge here's a little info about the challenges, how to go about them and how to join.

There will be a few guest posts with some really cool teachers throughout the 30 Days. Everyone of them have a different perspective (as do we all), and field they work in. Some challenges will speak to you others may not.

Also...

  • Don't feel the pressure to take everything in, believe or love it all. Instead reflect, look at resistance, why you like it or why it just might not matter. Being mindful includes it all and there is no right or wrong.
  • Listen to your body and system along the way. You are the only one who can feel your limits and respect them. Be respectful of yourself and be responsible throughout the challenge.
  • When commenting and interacting always be respectful of others. This isn't about judging others. Any rude, abusive or cruel comments will be removed

Now for the fun part

Mindful Livinng Challenge

Now write  a post about your reflections and/or experience, and share it with us.

How to share and submit your your link:

If you're joining as a blogger or writing about your experience along the way you can do 2 things:

1. Add a trackback link to your post. The link you want to use is the URL for that day's challenge for example

http://www.mindfulground.com/30-day-living-mindfully-blog-challenge-day-1/

Past the link in the TrackBack box - It normally looks like this

trackbacks image

When you hit publish, we get a notification and a link to your blogpost. This is the easiest way for us to find you and round up and share your posts.

2. Or you can add a comment below with a few words about your post and the URL to it.

Share the challenge with your followers

Click to tweet: I joined @mindfulground ’s 30 Day Living Mindfully Challenge. Come join me http://tinyurl.com/p9mr8sy #LMBC13