Your Weekly Mindfulness

This week your mindful tip is all about "mindful transitioning." I don't know if that's a real term, perhaps I made that up (mental note - trademark that later), but sometimes it feels like we're all in need of some mindful transitioning. Perhaps you come home from work, go from the office, to the car, to home, to the family to dinner, to tv, to bed. At what point do you just stop and take a breath? At what point do you decide to leave work at work and let yourself be home? Or at what point do you leave the chaos of the day behind and let your evening begin? Here's a little trick I learned that super helpful when you're life is just one big transition...

In the past few years I've had a schedule that looks something like this:

7:30 am breakfast
8:30 am preschool drop off
9:00 am counseling
1:00 pm teaching
6:00 pm dinner
6:30 pm counseling
8:00 pm home
8:30 pm kids to bed
11:00 pm bed

I felt like I was all over the place. Whenever I spent time with my family I was thinking about work, whenever I was at work I was thinking about my family. Needless to say I was feeling stressed and not present. Then I started doing something my mom did when I was a kid, something I didn't fully understand until now, a little trick that kept her sane despite 4 kids in the house.

Here's what it is - when I get home from work, right before I go into the house, I take a minute and sit in the car. Sometimes I'll listen to a song from beginning to end. Sometimes I just stare off and focus on the sunset or the trees, or that fearless squirrel that's always on the telephone wires. No matter what it is, I take a few minutes to decompress sans distractions from the kids, the house, the phone etc. And when I do enter the house I feel refreshed and ready to go.

So here's your challenge for the week- try to find a time when you have a stressful transition, or any transition really, and give yourself a minute or two to slow down between these transitions.

Mindful Transitioning

Between daily activities, between heading from the car in to work, or from work to picking up the kids, or even from the house to the grocery store, give yourself just one minute to slow down. Stop. Look around you. Listen to a song you like and pay attention to the lyrics. Take a few slow deep breaths. Whatever you like, as long as it's slowing down and observing your surroundings. 

 Note - checking email, texting, or really anything related to your phone/computer etc. does not count. 

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