Welcome to the weekend! Although if you’re inclined to celebrate the luck of the Irish, your weekend may have started yesterday. In that case, sláinte, but also, let’s get you some mindfulness…and maybe also some ibuprofen. Lucky you, this weekend’s mindfulness challenge will probably do you good in more ways than one.
This week has been about how connecting to nature, or even just our surroundings in general, can be a no-frills way to cultivate mindfulness in our everyday lives. This time of year, even a short walk outdoors can enliven so many of our senses, and frankly just feels great after a winter trapped inside. Ideally, this weekend will offer you an opportunity to take a walk, or simply just sit outside and notice the sights, sounds and smells of Spring around you. It may be early yet where you are, but there are signs – small buds on trees, tiny blades of grass trying to pop through, and maybe even a few colorful blooms to be seen. You may have to really pause and find stillness to notice, or you may find they were right under your nose all along.
If the weather isn’t cooperating for you, or if there isn’t enough Claritin in the world to make even a brief visit with nature work for you this weekend, you can still make this work. Many of the sights and sounds can be appreciated from indoors, and even a rainy day is full of sensory experiences. Alternatively, you can do this with the room you’re sitting in. Notice the textures of the fabrics and materials in the space, the sounds that permeate from both inside and out…our senses are always working, without our even trying. Stopping to notice the results of their effort can be a powerful way to find a few moments of stillness, and quiet a busy mind.
Whether you’re outside or inside this weekend, I hope you find some time to observe the space around you, and the everyday beauty it has to offer. As they say, it’s often the simple things that often bring us the most joy…and a great excuse to step away from that laptop for a few. ;-)
Photo credit: Jon Ottosson