Looking Ahead to 2014

Vector 2014 Happy New Year background.

As I contemplate the year ahead, I hear Mary Oliver whispering in my ear, “Tell me, what is it you plan to do/with your one wild and precious life?” What do I have planned for this year? month? week? day? hour?

The list of wishes is endless- visit new places, try new things, and make new friends. I want to make some big, bold decisions. I want it to be a year to remember. I want my family to be safe, healthy and happy. I want my friends to be filled with hope and surrounded by love. I want to inspire others and to find inspiration for myself.

I’m clear on the big picture, but what are the micro-decisions that make a big impact? For me, practicing mindfulness is essential. I had a lot going on during the month of December. On top of all of the holiday activities, there was drama at work, and my dad had surgery. I started feeling the pressure and some of my symptoms started to flare. One day before heading to the hospital, I noticed how my brain was racing from thought to thought frantically trying to process events and prioritize the things that needed to get done. My body was tense and even though it was early in the morning, I felt exhausted. It occurred to me that I was just zooming through the motions of my daily life, so I tried to focus on the moment. As soon as I made that shift, the endless stream of thoughts slowed, and I could feel my body relax a bit.

My intention for the past few months has been to take care of myself so that I have the capacity to care for others. I have made a lot of progress with this, so now I want to focus on mindfulness and reaping the benefits this practice can bring. How do you stay mindful? How will you answer Mary Oliver’s question?

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