A Lesson in Mindfulness

Bob and I have a very nice laundry room in our home.  I did not realize how spoiled we were until the dryer went out.  We live full-time at a lakeside resort and there is a laundry room on the property.  In fact it is less than a block from our house.  But I quickly learned that dragging hampers full of wet laundry even a short distance in not fun.  The first two times I tried I hurt my back and neck.  After weighing my options I decided to take the laundry into town when I took Bob to the YMCA and dry the clothes at the laundromat while I waited for Bob.  Seemed like a great idea.  In fact earlier this week the laundry was all washed and ready to go when Bob decided he was not up to the Y.  Not wanting to drive into town just to dry clothes I decided to schlep them down to the laundry room.  But this time I did something different.

So what did I do?  The first two times I was trying to dry clothes while also trying to work online and prepare lunch, with frequent trips back and forth between home and laundry room.  It was a mess.  I was a mess.  Everything got done, but not well.  When I was finished I was in pain.

So… this time I decided to devote my full time and attention to the laundry.  I sat down and waited for the clothes to dry.  I read magazines.  I drank a bottle of water and had a nice conversation with a neighbor who came in to wash her clothes.  What I had been seeing as a burdensome chore became a welcome break.  And since I was not worried about getting everything done at once, my muscles did not tense up when I picked up the laundry baskets, and I was not in pain.

Another gentle reminder of how we create our own reality and a good lesson in living in the present moment.

Failure or Lesson?

Our life on this earth is a school and everything we experience here is a lesson.  But sometimes we forget that and see things that don’t turn out as planned or hoped for as “failures.”  That is a loaded word for most of us.  When we see something we tried as a “failure” we may begin to see ourselves as a “failure.”

Next time something you do doesn’t turn out the way you want, calm down and go within.  Ask, “What is the lesson in this?”  Be open and listen.  Answers may not come right away but as you go on with daily life they will start to come, sometimes in unexpected ways.  There may be more than one lesson.

Once you are aware of the lessons, what you do with them is up to you.  You may choose to revisit the project or experience that didn’t work out the way you wanted and apply the lessons you have learned.  You may choose to just start over with something new with the new knowledge and experienced you have gained.  Perhaps what you learned from the experience was that you were trying to do something that was outside of your skills.  Here again  you have a choice — to learn new skills or try something else that is more in line with your skills, abilities and knowledge.

Finally you may decide that what you were trying just wasn’t what you thought it would be.  You may have been miserable as you worked, determined to  not “fail” at something your heart really wasn’t in.  Letting this go will free you up to move on to something that makes your heart sing.

Letting go of something that was making me miserable is what led me to follow a calling I had felt for many years, but had felt prevented from acting on.  And that was the beginning of Espirational.  I might never have found my way here if it hadn’t been from two attempts at an online presence that didn’t turn out the way I had hoped and the lessons learned along the way..

Many of us have unrealistic expectations of ourselves and our lives.  Fame and fortune are not required for a life well lived.  Many expect to be perfect the first time they try something new.  When we let go of these expectations we will find that we are free to live the life we were created for, learn lessons we need to learn and perhaps even enjoy the journey.

 

Walking into Autumn

 

Fall at Chalco #8 Copyright 2013 by R.A. Robbins
Fall at Chalco #8
Copyright 2013 by R.A. Robbins

With the Autumnal Equinox on September 22nd the journey toward winter began.  For many this is a time of planning and preparation, making sure homes and vehicles are ready for the impending cold.  Squirrels are busily burying nuts so they will have food for winter.  Our daily lives begin to change as we dig out the winter clothes and soup recipes.  This flurry of activity is in preparation to settle in and hunker down as the weather gets colder and colder.

As the earth prepares to slow down, this is our chance to slow down as well.  With the cooler weather we can now begin cooking meals requiring lengthy times in the oven.  The smell of fresh baked bread may begin to fill the kitchen.  We are more inclined to settle in with a good book and a piping hot beverage.

This year especially, I hope we will heed the lessons of Autumn. Mother Earth has much to teach us if we will only slow down and take the time to listen.

Blessings to you during this beautiful season.

Sometimes What we Fear the Most…

… is exactly what we need to do.

I do not like to drive.  It is necessary in the part of the country where we live, but not something I consider fun.  Bob loved driving, but with his eye problems I am the only driver now.  I really don’t like driving in cities.

So when I learned I was going to need to take Bob to a city 1 1/2 hours away, (smack dab in the middle of the Ozarks) to see one of his doctors who is relocating from our small town, I was not happy.  I even dug my heels in and declared it ain’t gonna happen.

After trying to convince myself to make a trial run to at least become familiar with the road I finally decided to see if there was a church closer to our beliefs there.  I went online and found a Unity Church and Bob and I drove the 1 1/2 hours to go to church.  We found a friendly, welcoming group of people who invited us to stay for the fellowship lunch and on the way out asked if they could pray for us.

So by breaking through my fear I learned the drive is not as bad and the city not as large as I imagined.  We found a city for things we can’t find around here.  We also found a group of like minded people, something we have been missing.

So once again I learned that lesson I tend to have to repeat over and over…

Sometimes what we fear the most is exactly what we need to do.