A Moment in the Garden

This morning I stopped moving.  I realized I was feeling anxious and starting to let my thoughts spin. Guests leaving, more guests coming tonight, and a party to throw this weekend.  Where is that to-do list?!!?

So I stopped.  Christine, what would you tell someone to do?  It’s time to follow your own advice…

I have 20 minutes.  What can I do to calm my system?  What can I do to gain perspective?  I could meditate, but is there something I can do and still be available to my guests?  The gardens!  I walked down to the shed and as soon as I put on the gardening gloves and grabbed my weed bucket, I felt my breath change gears.  I went up to the patio and dropped to my knees; the breath goes down another notch.  I carefully insert my hand weeder in-between the bricks to widen them a bit and pull out a week….another notch of calm.

Methodically I move, one weed then the next.

I feel the warm sun on my back.

The breeze moves my hair, still wet from a shower.

I smell the ripe strawberries next to where I am working.Orange Iris

I look just in front of me, only to the next weed.

I hear the symphony around me,

Someone is in the kitchen rinsing a dish;

The meadowlark sings loudly from the top of the house;

The Lilly leaves rustle;

A plane flies far overhead;

A bee finds a pansy near me.

I feel,

My shoulders relax down my back;

My knees against the knee pad;

The bend in my toes.

I feel my shoulders relax.

Just a few short moments and I go back to the to-do list.  Hours later my gardening tools are still on the patio and my shoulders are still relaxed and a few things are crossed off the list.

Today I remembered. It’s a small victory and maybe tomorrow I don’t remember to stop and feel what’s happening inside, but each time I do I start to build that memory.  If you want to start building that ability to hesitate when you feel stress coming, remember STOP.

S – Stop what you are doing.  Hesitate.
T – Take a breath.  Follow your breath in and out.
O- Observe how you feel.  What’s going on in your body, with your mind and emotions?
P – Proceed and make it a conscious decision.

Daily Mindfulness Inspiration

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