Beginners Mind

Before you knew about a thing,

there was no judgement.

Especially in today’s western world,

we seem to be growing up quicker.

There is almost no choice.

Because of the continuous exposure to false pleasures, and pressures to be happy,

we want all of the things at a younger and younger age.

Growing up fast doesn’t mean you are better equipped emotionally,

in fact, I think the imbalance between societal maturity

and emotional intelligence is extremely harmful.

Beginners mind is a concept I have studied over the years through my yoga practice

and other eastern arts and philosophies.

It is an idea that we can shift our perspective

back to before the mind was jaded and judging,

look at the same situation, person or event

as though we are experiancing it for the first time.

This isn’t easy, but a great practice in mindful thinking.

Remembering we are in control of our thoughts in any moment.

The fact is, that each moment IS a new experience.

We prejudge so much of our life,

that we don’t allow ourselves the moments of wonder and awe we deserve,

and frankly, we are stripping that sweetness from the lives of our children.

I have a new motto in my house when things start to get a little crazy.

Stop, take a breath and smile.

It snaps you out of your normal ways of reacting

and allows for new, softer ways of responding to life.

It’s really a breath of fresh air to allow a sense of innocents back into your life.

This technique is very usefuly for our creative endeavors.

When practicing yoga, painting, playing music or even a walk you have taken 100 times,

can you step into the seat of curiosity?

What will be different this time if you are not just going through the motions?

You will be surprised about what shows up and it also takes pressure off of perfection.

Pick one thing you do regularly and for a month,

approach it with eyes wide open.

Christmas in Mexico

This is what I want the title of my memoir to be.

As it would be the ideal description of my life.

Sparkling lights.

Religious iconography.

Perfect sunsets.

And of course, margaritas.

I look for plane tickets to some location that is not my home usually weekly.

I never book a flight.

But knowing I could if I wanted to makes me somehow feel better.

That if all else fails,

I’ve got an out.

Wrong.

Fat chance.

I’ve been there, and done that,

too many times to count.

If I can live on the beach and teach yoga,

everything will be amazing.

If Im in a country steeped with cultural tradition and art,

I will feel more alive and connected to spirit.

Where siesta are encouraged,

and a 6 day work week is a way of life.

Where families live together and support one another

until it makes sense to go off on their own.

Everyone has their own “Christmas in Mexico”,

but we all know that;

where ever you go, there you are.

The, If I just had this one thing, then everything will be amazing, syndrome

is a way of life for many of us.

It’s only the momentary tequila buzz or sea breeze sun salutation

that convinces me it would change everything.

Running away to a new house, a new country, a new partner or a new job,

changes nothing about who you are on the inside.

How you control your thoughts.

How you stay motivated and encouraged.

How you offer compassion to yourself and others.

Unless you are in an abusive situation, you really can be happy anywhere

because emotions are based on thoughts, not circumstance.

Do you have preference? Yes.

Are there things that suite your skills better? Absolutely.

My mentor, Brooke Castillo, of The Life Coach School says, change nothing until you’re happy.

Other people and things don’t create your happiness, your thoughts do.

If you believe if free will,

then you should believe you have the freedom of what you choose to think.

Will people be jerks? Yep.

Will your job be boring? You can guarantee it.

But it still does not choose your thoughts for you.

I choose to find joy and contentment in the act of being alive.

If I have expectations of someone,

it is my responsibility to make sure they know that and are in agreement with it.

If I want to feel more successful with work and making meaningful connections,

I need to get my self out there and take a step in the direction of the greatness I seek.

It will not happen with me tucked away watching Netflix.

Be the bad ass boss that you are.

In control of your thoughts and feelings.

And then, when there are random acts of kindness in the world, bonus.

Trust me, when you start taking care of you the best,

leaving things in the world better than you found them,

you are in a state of allowing abundance to come your way.

Expect nothing, work your butt off and you will receive more than you ever thought possible.

This doesn’t mean I don’t plan on spending Christmas in Mexico,

because that sounds amazing.

But it might mean a Margarita in the snow may be a new tradition.

The happiness I seek only exists in one place.

And I don’t need to get on a plane to find it.

Salud!