5 Morning Wishes To Start (or Restart) Your Day

Can you make Morning Wishes a part of your day?

I recently came up with a simple list of Morning Wishes that I could make when I am feeling particularly in need of feeling at peace with my day.

Recently, I woke up completely discombobulated.  I could tell I was not myself at all right from the moment my feet hit the floor.  I had been awakened many times during the night with my mind out of sorts.  Random thoughts were coming.  Bad dreams or at least the feeling of the leftovers of a bad dream.  Too hot in the night…and then, of course, too cold.  Dog sounds waking me.  A car racing in the night down the street.

When I awoke, I felt disgruntled and not well-rested.  I was grumpy.

It’s not as though I haven’t felt grumpy before in my life.  Very rare, though, for me though, is to feel this out of sorts upon waking.

I tried to lie back down and say my affirmations.  I was half-hearted…I admit.

I thought a glass of water would help.  I sat quietly on my own.  I slowly drank down the water and felt a little better…but I was agitated.

I spoke particularly carefully.  I was cheery…if you can’t be happy then fake it until you feel happy.

Out to the garden for some therapy.  Coffee in hand, I headed out to my urban sanctuary. My little piece of verdant heaven.  I sat, listening for bird song.  I breathed.  I sat.

Grumpy.

I asked myself to choose an activity that would help to bring me back to peace.

For some crazy reason, everything I chose was making me more irritated.  I tried blogging and ran into nothing but technical difficulties (4 hour delays to fix the problem kind of difficulties).  A craft activity that I was trying to finish went out the door so I headed to the craft store to work it out.  Got home with renewed excitement and dashed again.  On and on, all day long, I seemed to be blundering along at everything I tried.

Ugh! What a day!

I decided, for the next day to have a hope at getting off on the right track, I would write myself a list of 5 Morning Wishes to get my mind set on a better path.

5 Morning Wishes
5 Wishes

I hope they can help you too…if you are ever having the kind of day when you just wake up grumpy.

Love Ingrid x

The end of my day was much better….maybe just writing the list made all the difference.

 

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THINK about it: it only takes a second

Let’s Just Think About This…

We THINK a ridiculous number of thoughts per second with our sophisticated computer brains.  This means that throughout the day, thoughts of just about anything can scan across the old noggin at lightning speed.

This, in and of itself, is a miraculous and wondrous thing that we are scarcely aware of as it is happening in real time.  We quickly make an inventory of such grippers as: favorite striped socks are in the laundry so I have to pick another pair, we need bread, my student has to hand in his assignment today, and I have a dental appointment in two days at 4 PM.

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Think

In fact, coming up with thoughts is hardly ever a problem.

Most often, I write about taking time to let go of thoughts such as my post on the Insight Timer or when I write about letting things go in Two Monks.

Thoughts flow on their own

Thoughts, however, flow as quickly as water cascading over the falls and most of them just fall into oblivion.  They get categorized in a sophisticated filing system in our brains where hopefully we can retrieve them when necessary.  When the boss asks for the details from the lesson plans we’re presenting, we feel grateful that our internal logistics pull out the proper file and we can rhyme off in ‘education speak’ and answer with what we actually do remember from the situation.

Perfect.

The system is working as it should.  We are said to have around 50,000 thoughts per day which makes it about 40 or so thoughts per minute according to this article from Huffpost.

What happens when I don’t think before I speak?

A few years ago, I was introduced to a fabulous little acronym that addresses a different kind of information retrieval.  You may or may not be familiar with a different brain function known as: ‘I wish I hadn’t said that’; ‘Did I say that out loud?; or ‘What was I thinking?’

That function where our crazy little brains work on overdrive, we blurt out what needed to be filtered, and we immediately react with something akin to ‘Whoa! I wish I hadn’t said that!’

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Thinking it over

In comes the acronym: T.H.I.N.K

It’s super easy, (it does take practice) and it can really change your life if you use it.

It goes like this:

Friend: I’m thinking about starting a pole dancing scrabble club at the Legion.

Old Me: What?!!!

New Me: (Thinking to myself hmm….THINK…is it Thoughtful, Honest, Intelligent, Necessary, or Kind?)

When I can’t answer all of these questions in the affirmative…

New Me: “I’m sure you’ll succeed if you put your mind to it”.

There it is.  A super simple filtering process that can save us all a LOT of trouble.  We tend to offer far more advice than is solicited.  When we sit back and allow others to do what they feel is right for them (and we just keep our mouths shut) we all win.

Who really is the expert?

There are literally hundreds of things that have caught on like wildflower, that the world would have originally scoffed at: ever heard of the lightbulb, the telephone, the microwave, online shopping?  These are all things that were predicted to go nowhere.  You can find out more about these kinds of items here or here.

T.H.I.N.K

Who are we to judge?

Last time I checked, I was not an expert on Pole Dancing (I know, hard to believe!), and quite frankly, anything that involves Scrabble could be a great idea!  Next time you go off thinking you’re about to be an ‘expert’ maybe….

T.H.I.N.K. will be your SOMETHING WONDERFUL.

Love Ingrid x

 

 

8 Life Lessons From Nature

Have you ever thought about how just as you are dealing with something in your life, you find that nature gives you a clue that you had never realized?  Or maybe you’ve looked at something in nature and all of a sudden it gives you a hint about a problem you’ve been trying to solve?

Nature truly is a giant classroom

I look to nature a lot when I am able to be out in my garden and I have a few lessons I have been thinking about of late.

All of our toughest life lessons can be learned in nature.  We learn about the cycle of life by watching a subtle change in the seasons or when we experience the death of our first pet.  We get medicine from the world outside and we also learn to respect its power and intensity.

I start my day in a particular way these days as I try to strike a balance between not feeling well and wanting to explore and expand my world. You can read about my Flower Meditation in more detail as my primary tool for getting my morning off to a good start.

The following are some of the ideas I have where nature teaches me a gentler way of making it through the day through daily lessons from nature.

8 Life Lessons from Nature

  1. Small things make a big difference: things in nature make incremental changes throughout each day.  The most imperceptible difference can seem insignificant if you look at it from a micro-perspective.  Change the perspective and look at the changes over the course of a week, a month, or a year and you will see that things can often seem completely different.  If you have just joined us on our Month of Gratitutde Challenge, you’ll know that things seem pretty much the same on the first and second day, but as you get going, that subtle shift can spell big change by the end of the month.
  2. Even our enemies make us better: the most pesky creepy crawlies from my garden can make or break my harvest.  Ants make the flowers bloom, they aerate the ground, they get rid of old debris, etc.  The bees that we so feared as children are among the most instrumental in bringing us food to our table.  The next time you encounter an ‘enemy’ maybe you can think of how they help and what purpose they serve beyond what you see.
  3. Perspective is everything: I was looking at my lupin plants and admiring the tall stalks just laden with berry-like petals.  Suddenly, I swiped away a large bug from around the plant and had the opportunity to see it from above.  The flower takes on a totally different look when seen from overhead.  I was just having a conversation with a friend the other day and we saw things completely differently.  She was convinced that someone was acting from ill-intent, and I suspected they were acting from fear.  One perspective poises the observer to act in defense and the other acts in compassion.  Nature offers us the opportunity to see so many things from a variety of perspectives.
  4. Protection is an inside job: nature devises so many ways for plants and creatures to protect themselves.  There are venoms, and colouring,  to distract and discourage predators.  There are sheathings, membranes, and all kinds of materials devised by nature for self-preservation.  It got me to thinking that my boundaries, my self-confidence, my self-esteem, and my actions are my way of protecting myself.  All these have to be nurtured and provided by my inner self.  It made me feel more powerful just thinking of that I have the ability to build these qualities within myself.
  5. It’s all inside you: I was looking at the tiny beginnings of my strawberry plants and I realized that everything the strawberry needs is in the flower that preceded it.  Just like in nature, we, too, have everything we need right inside of us at our disposal.  It is very empowering to realize that we have what we need.
  6. Be patient: nature is very patient indeed.  You cannot imagine that the bean plant is telling its seedling to hurry up an grow so it can make a bean.  The butterfly does not pester the caterpillar to hurry up and create a chrysalis.  Nature works on its own time and it is patient.  The right amount of sun, water, air, and nutrients and the tomato will be produced.  We can learn a lot about patience by daily walking through nature and observing as it all happens in its due time.
  7. Take time to regroup: I have to admit this took me a long time to learn this lesson.  I spent a lot of time in my life preparing for things and then being disappointed when things fall short or when my ideas were not ready to be brought to light.  In nature, a perennial will often come up in the Spring but may offer no flowers.  I think of this as regrouping.  It knows it’s not ready so it prepares its stalks and roots for next year and tries again.  Just like in my post about How I Receive Bad news, there’s nothing wrong with regrouping after a disappointment or when things don’t work out.
  8. Wonders come every day: if you take the time to look, there are wonders all around you.  Practicing gratitude, daily meditations and affirmations, and setting my intentions each day help me to find wonders all around me.  I love being out in nature and I am so grateful that I have the time to see them as they come.

Does nature guide you and help you throughout your day? Do you have tips and tricks you use to make your day brighter that take you out in nature?  I would love for you to leave a comment and let me know what lessons you get from the natural world around you.

I’ve made the helpful graphic to help you remember the 8 Life Lessons from Nature.

8 Life Lessons From Nature

I hope my nature observations are SOMETHING WONDERFUL for you today!

Love Ingrid x

 

 

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Two monks…

What does this have to do with two monks?

I recently found myself, at 3 AM, awake and debating a conversation that I had had earlier in the week.  It was one of those very difficult kinds of conversations, so I wasn’t entirely surprised to find that I had gone back to it in my mind.  After a few thoughts came wafting forth, reminding me, of course, of missed opportunities to add a piece of information here or there, I soon found myself comfortably drifting off to my plans for the next day…and before I knew it I was fast asleep.

How I got to where I am now

There was a day that this scenario would have played out very differently.  I would most likely have gotten myself quite worked up about having this zinger or that ‘touché’ interjection to slay my opponent.  I am so grateful to two monks who drastically changed that for me.

How can two monks change anything?

You see, a number of years ago, I read a great Buddhist parable that perfectly describes that 3 in the morning debate that I used to engage in.  It also perfectly describes the coming back to an earlier discussion with loved ones that just needs two monks to solve.

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The story goes like this:

There were once two monks in training who were told by their teacher to walk to the mountain top and to contemplate what they saw.  One slightly older monk and his younger friend set off on the 8 hour journey, as they were apprentice monks and had taken a vow of silence, they walked without a word between them.  Monks in training are not allowed to speak, and in addition, are never allowed to touch a woman.  If they are found to have done so they must engage in a 40 day cleansing ritual and interrupt their tutelage.

The two monks had been walking for many hours in silence, enjoying the scenery on their journey, when they encountered a young woman in her petticoats.  The woman was crying as she had fallen from her horse and there was a huge puddle of water in her way.  She could not manage to walk across as she had the heavy dress and risked getting soaked.  When the two monks approached she cried and asked for help.

The older monk looked quickly to his friend and without a thought swept the young woman up in his arms and waded deep across the water to the other side of the huge puddle and gently put the woman back down on the other side. The woman thanked the monk profusely and the two walked off in silence.

Later that day, as they finally made it to the mountaintop as the day drew long, the young monk sat in meditation beside his older friend.  He was heard to be sighing and restless and then turned to the older apprentice and said: ‘I cannot believe you picked up that woman!’

The older monk turned to him slowly and replied: ‘I put that woman down hours ago…why haven’t you put her down?’

Now things look different

It is this lesson that I now carry with me, to remind myself to ‘put the lady down’ that allows me to slip back into sleep.

I hope this is SOMETHING WONDERFUL for you to help slip back into sleep someday too.

Love Ingrid x

#loveiseverywhere   #somethingwonderful   #csfleak    #spinalCSFLeak.org

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Insight Timer

First and foremost, I want to thank you all for bearing with me as I convalesce from my procedure….I have not been able to blog as I had grown accustomed to, as looking at screens has become rather challenging of late, so if you’re reading this, I appreciate your coming back to me!

I want to share a great new app that a very dear friend of mine recommended (yup…she knows who she is).  As is always the case, I do not endorse or get any benefit from recommending apps, I just love sharing them when I think they can be of help to others.

Today’s app is called ‘Insight Timer’.  It’s a meditation app with a twist.

The way it works is that you log in, for free, and make a profile of sorts.  You can add as much or as little detail as you like.  The more information you give to the app the better it connects you to the community though.  They state at the outset that they do not ‘collect’ the data or share or sell data in your profile… I believe them.

The great thing about this meditation app though is the inter-connectedness.  You can add your friends and meditate together (which is super great for those of us who are unable to go anywhere to participate in group classes).  Once you have completed your chosen meditation for the time you choose, you are given statistics on how many other people on the app were meditating with you.

You get to set the parameters.  You can meditate as long or as short a time as you choose.  You can choose from a huge bank of meditations either guided or unguided.  You can opt for specific aspects of meditation foci: healing, compassion, stress relief, etc.  There is a large bank to choose from.  There are 4,645 free meditations available at this very moment.

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When you are done, you can send others encouraging messages as they can also encourage you as well.  You can recommend a great choice that you tried to your friends (mine are my real life friends…but you can build a virtual community if you like).  It tells me that there are 2,297 people meditating right this instant…it’s kind of cool.

My favourite thing to do though is to go to the ‘Timer’ section: you can choose what sound to start and finish your meditation time, the ambient sound you would like to choose, or no sound is also an option (my fav is Zen Guitar…it is absolutely captivating in a good way….it helps me to abandon any attachment to my thoughts and really delve into quieting my mind).

Insight 2

There are a number of options throughout the app to upgrade if you like. These options inevitably cost money but honestly, I am really impressed with the depth of options available for free and recommend this app as my SOMETHING WONDERFUL  for today.

Love Ingrid x

#loveiseverywhere   #csfleak      #meditationheals    #meditationapp