Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Mindfulness and Creativity


Have you been playing with your creativity? It’s time to add the element of mindfulness.

“The most precious gift we can offer anyone is our attention. When mindfulness embraces those we love, they will bloom like flowers.”
Thich Nhat Hanh

Mindfulness is the act of paying attention and being fully present in each moment. This week I invite you to give this gift to yourself by practicing 15 minutes of mindfulness daily, and journaling about the experience. This practice builds new neural pathways while reducing stress and sending increased oxygen to the brain. It’s also a sure way to stimulate creative ideas – so always keep a notebook and pen handy. Life is jam packed with ‘to dos.’ We are absolutely blessed when we claim a piece of our day toconsciously slow down, notice our breath, feel, smell, touch, and truly see the miracles in our moments.

Take a discovery walk. This can be in your neighborhood, at a park or anywhere it’s convenient. Turn off your phone, walk at a leisurely pace, and simply look and listen. Notice what calls your attention. Keep your mind in the present moment. Take photos or make sketches if you like, as long as you are fully immersed in the luxury of 15 minutes of ‘nowhere else to be, nothing else to do.’ When we are fully present, even a grey day is beautiful. We notice things like the curving pathway which leads us, gently, into new ways of seeing. And while you’re walking unfurl your wings – shake them out – and like a little bird perched on the end of a limb – begin to flap them. Feel yourself drop and then lift with the current and soar. Mindfully observe your feelings…reactions…insights…and end your experience by recording random thoughts in the little notebook/journal you carry with you. This is a good time to express gratitude for all the blessings which come to mind. This is how you will gather more pearls.
by Marta

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