I am always looking for ways to demonstrate mindfulness in daily living. Here is what I came up with today . . . a string of lights is a great mindfulness teacher. Here’s why . . .
In mindfulness the focus is on present moment awareness. Paying attention to living each moment as it unfolds. The awareness that time really is measured in moments. Which is true, although we often find ourselves stuck in the past or wishing our lives away to some magical place in the future. The only moment we have to live is this moment. And then the next moment and the one after that. Moment after moment after moment. You live your life by stringing moments together. One after another after another. In a practice of Mindfulness you are Paying attention to the moment, non-judgmentally, non-reactive, as you are living it and then letting it go. Each moment is strung together, in a sense, one moment after another, as we live our lives, make our memories, pave our way to our futures.
The same is true of a string of lights, imagine you are the one stringing the lights, you are carefully paying attention to each light, stringing it side by side and then once you have it securely placed, letting it go, and on you go to the next one, and then stringing the next light in the same manner, stringing light after light after light.
What happens when you find a light that no longer works and the whole string stops working. Then what do you do? Do you take it personally, are you judgmental, get mad, yell, stomp your feet and give up. No, you simply try another light and see if it works.
1) If you are still stringing the lights, you simply try a different bulb until you get one that works for you.
What if after having finished stringing all the lights you plug them in to notice the string doesn’t work. Would you scrap the whole effort. Think that you failed. No, probably not.
1) You would look for & discard the bulb that is no longer working for you, right?
2) Replace the bulb with one that works for you;
3) Plug the lights in & enjoy the beauty of the lights & what you achieved.
If you can look at your life while it is happening in a non-judgmental way, non-reactive, leave your ego out of it, and don’t personalize it as it is happening, then you will be living a much easier life. It is important to realize that you don’t have to hold on to ideas, opinions and beliefs that no longer serve you just like light bulbs that no longer serve a purpose you just discard them and let them go. If you can learn to shift perspective and see that just like in the case of a string of lights no matter how many light bulbs go out in the string of lights there is still more right with it than wrong with it. Also notice that the string of lights remains the same and quite beautiful even when some of the light bulbs need to be replaced. Don’t be so hard on yourself. Treat yourself with gentleness and kindness as you go through each day. I guarantee this is a much happier way to be. Use the string of lights as a reminder of how easy it is live life.
Great love, happiness and peace to you, your family & friends.
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