My Mindful Morning

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1. Don’t look at the phone when you open your eyes!

Charge your phone in another room, keep it out of the bedroom. You will sleep better and not be tempted to check social media. And there’s no pressing issue or someone would have called you! Here’s a great article on how waking up with technology is wrecking your morning vibe!

Instead, take a moment and focus on your intention for the day. Choose a mantra perhaps, like “I will find joy in my work” and really feel it. Sip some warm water with lemon and just contemplate how good your day will be. 

2. Just breathe

Now it’s time to grab your phone or other device. But, STOP, don’t open social media!! Instead head over to this video and just breathe.

3. Meditate:

Five minutes of meditation

4. Yoga stretches:

I start my day with these standing poses with Rodney Yee ( I also end my day with his PM yoga release). Here is an alternate that is specifically designed for beginners and also included is an am/pm meditation, AM & PM Yoga & Meditation for Beginners – Gaiam

5. Drink more water:

In the morning after I’ve done all of these things, I drink 16 to 32 oz of tepid water with hot lemon. This seems to give my body a better start to the morning and I am hydrated before I even start to get ready for the day. 

6. Seize the day!

Now get ready and go take the day and make it yours!!

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Hugging Meditation

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Step One

The first thing to do is to make yourself available. Breathe in and out, and come back to the present moment, so you are really there. Then go to the person you want to hug and bow to them. If they have practiced mindfulness, then they will do their best to abandon the things that are possessing them and make themselves available to you. They will smile and bow, and you will know that they are available. Now hugging is possible.

Stand facing each other with your palms joined, breathing in and out three times. You can say silently:

Breathing in, I know that life is precious in this moment.

Breathing out, I cherish this moment of life.

Step Two

Take the person in your arms. While hugging, breathe consciously and hug with all your body, spirit, and heart. While you hold the other person, they become real, and you also become real. You can say silently something like this:

Breathing in, my loved one is in my arms. Breathing out, I am so happy.

Breathing in, they are alive. Breathing out, it is so precious to be alive together.

Breathing in, it is so wonderful to have them in my arms. Breathing out, I am very happy.

You may then release the other person and bow to each other to show thanks.

This instruction is an edited excerpt from Thich Nhat Hanh’s dharma talks, and reposted from an article @ Lion’s Roar.

One Minute Of Zen

“Take a minute to relax in the forest of the Jatun Sacha Biological Reserve, in the Ecuadorian Amazon. Listen closely—how many different kinds of birds can you hear?

The Rainforest Alliance was founded in 1987 to help conserve tropical rainforests, but don’t let our name fool you—since then, we’ve grown to work with forests around the world, from the Peruvian Amazon to the highlands of Sri Lanka, from misty islands off the coast of western Canada to the Appalachian Mountains of the eastern United States. Today, the Rainforest Alliance is a growing network of farmers, foresters, communities, scientists, governments, environmentalists, and businesses committed to creating a world where people and nature thrive in harmony. We are an international non-profit organization working to build strong forests, healthy agricultural landscapes, and thriving communities through creative, pragmatic collaboration. You can help. Want to learn more? Visit https://www.rainforest-alliance.org/”

Breathwalking

HFG-Activist-Nature-blog.jpgBreathwalking involves making strong, purposeful strides in rhythm with breathing.  Dr. Jim Nicolai, demonstrates various examples of breathwalking including the “stair” and “wave” patterns.

The Gentle Salvation of Walking: http://weil.ws/2mjIdTW

Hope Offers Forgiveness Meditation

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Mantra: Om Sarvatva Namah
This mantra means, “I open my individuality to its true universality, the wholeness of cosmic awareness.” As we connect with our essence, we are revitalized, restored, and renewed.

 

 

By: Deepak Chopra

Mindfulness On The Trails

Practice Mindfulness on Your Next Hike
“We all deserve to have more peace in our lives, and I truly believe nature and hiking can bring that to us.”
Last month co-founder Karla shared her top tips on practicing mindfulness on the trails presented by Aftershokz.

My thank you, to you…

 

Thank so much for stopping by and wandering

through the pages of my heart 💜

Mandala Coloring Book

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Ever think of coloring as an adult? Every think of coloring as meditation? I’ve benefited from coloring to quiet my mind when I get stressed. It improves my focus and relaxes my whole body.

Benefits of coloring for adults:
  • Your brain enters a focused meditative state. Much like gazing at a candle but more active than that. 
  • Stress and anxiety levels have the potential to be lowered.
  • Negative thoughts release and positive feeling and emotions have room to grow.
  • Keeps you in the “now”. In the present which helps you attain mindfulness.
  • Unplugging from technology promotes creation over consumption
  • It’s an inexpensive way to add art and creativity into your life.
  • It can be a relaxed social gathering.
  • It’s portable!
How to Color a Mandala:

It’s easy!

  1. You will need crayons, pencil crayons, chalks, pastels, paint, or markers in a variety of colors.
  2. Print a mandala or stop at any dollar store, book store or craft shop and purchase a coloring book. You can find a ton on amazon.com too!
  3. Find a quiet and comfortable place where you can work comfortably with no distractions. You can even increase the meditative qualities by finding a spot in a nature where you won’t be disturbed. Here you can take in the scents and sounds while you create your art. 
  4. Color!

Try not to think too much about what colors you choose, or what’s matchy matchy. Let your instincts guide you. After you begin with the first color, the rest will follow naturally. Susan F. Fincher, the author of numerous mandala coloring books, says, “One color on the mandala invites another, like a guest who asks to bring his friend to your party.”

 

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Mantras for Meditation

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  1. “Aum”, “Om”
    Sanskrit/Hindu, meaning “It Is” or “To Become”.  Also used in Buddhism and other traditions. It is a sacred word. One translation being that it is the first breath of God. It can also be reference to; the soul, the self within, the entirety of the universe, truth, the divine, the spirit, energy, or ultimate knowledge. Listen here.
  2. “Om Mani Padme Hum”: Buddhist, meaning “Hail the Jewel in the Lotus” (perhaps the jewel being Buddha, perhaps our sufferings) Listen here
  3. “Om Shanti Shanti Shanti”: “shanti,” which means “peace,” is chanted three times. As a spiritual aspirant, one chants shanti in desire for the occurrence of circumstances conducive to a spiritual education. But these mantras can be chanted for peace in a general sense as well. Listen here.

“As we purify our own consciousness by extricating ourselves from the grosser vibrational planes, we turn back toward the formless. The practice of mantra is a technique for tuning us to those subtler vibrational levels. As we move more and more deeply into mantra, the sound becomes the vehicle that allows us to experience both halves of the act of creation-and-return, so we’re going from the many back into the One, and then from the One into the many, all on the strength of the mantra.

Mechanical vibration alone won’t do it, of course. The mantra and the reciter of the mantra are not separate from one another, and the power and the effect of the mantra depend on the readiness and the openness and the faith of the one who’s doing it. In fact, mantras in and of themselves don’t do anything at all – it all has to do with the beings who work with them. Mantras aren’t magical spells; power mantras are just sounds, unless you’re the kind of person who has the one-pointedness of mind and the particular personality characteristics that make those power mantras work. That is, what a mantra does is to concentrate already-existing stuff in you. It just brings it into focus. It’s like a magnifying glass with the sun: The magnifying glass doesn’t have any heat in and of itself, but it takes the sunlight and focuses it; it makes it one-pointed. The mantra becomes like that magnifying glass for your consciousness.

Mantras can be used as a way of stilling thought as well as focusing it. If you imagine the mind as being like an ocean, with waves of thought surging along on it, waves going in all directions because of the crosscurrents of the tides and the winds – in that ocean, a mantra sets up a single wave pattern that gradually overrides all the other ones, until the mantra is the only thought-form left. Then there’s just one continuous wave going through your mind – going and going and going.

– Ram Dass – Why Do We Use Mantras