everydaybalance

inspirational tools to create life balance in your everyday

oil and canvas

February29

the wind flaps
those vines
like ducks wings
against the hunter green

and scattered lilac flowers
that I don’t know
the name of
make me feel like I’m in

a painting
on my grandmother’s wall
peaceful
still and soft

as if all the world
had stopped buzzing by
and my loved ones were held
safe and content

and I could rest
between the oils and the canvas
in this perfect afternoon
where only the wind

and I
converse
through the tender
language of silence

if only I knew
who painted me here
i would reach out softly
through these thick colours

to touch them
to allow them to feel
this grace
this picture of calm

copyright – christina adler – 14 January 2008 – Hunter Valley, NSW Australia

posted under 2008 poetry

speaking to cows in the afternoon

February1

tribal music
led me here
to the edge of the fluorescent
pear green grass

my feet soggy
in flip flops
after days of low mist
soft rain

and I find myself
on one side of a fence
where across from me
three bulls gather

they call to their friends
and I am reminded of their godliness in India
they stare at me
with kind eyes and my grief lets go

like silk scarves
taken by the wind
and I am surprised
at the beauty of their large dark ears

and how patient
they are with my
cycle of tears
as I speak out loud

about the year that was just
laid to rest
and they nod
when I tell them it is time to move on

from what I needed
to let go of
from the seeds of my tears
and as I asked

of the them
the tallest task
the brown and white cow
nodded and I had been heard

copyright – christina adler – 18 January 2008- Hunter Valley, NSW Australia

posted under 2008 poetry

2008 – finding everyday balance in february

February1

In the heat of summer everything feels open, expansive and at its peak. The air is buzzing, literally buzzing here in Australia with the singing of the Cicadas. These extraordinary insects live underground for seven years and then climb out to sing for their whole adult life of two to three weeks. This amazing encore of their life makes the trees shake alive with new voice. They have several different songs, some about love, others for danger and the loudest to detour birds that view them as appetizers. Imagine living above the ground under the blue blue sky for only a couple of weeks? It seems to me that singing your heart out isn’t a bad idea, but what would you do? How would your words, actions and focus in life shift? What would you sing about?

I love to ponder these questions when life becomes heavy or stuck. During the times when I wake up preoccupied by the little things that have gathered importance as they rolled down my hill of worry, but are forgotten as easily as they arrived. In these moments I’ve learned how helpful it is to downsize focus so that the day that you’re in becomes your only canvas.

If you are a planner and many of us are, including this author, the act of throwing out the long term even for a day can be as frightening as that shark encounter at the aquarium. It may feel like the compass is missing, cracked or gone askew. You may even ask “If I’m not looking long term, then how can I steer the course of my life? Won’t I find myself washed off course on some deserted beach I don’t recognize?”

Maybe, but the beauty of that beach is that it is often much more beautiful than any plan you could have imagined would be. There will be people and opportunities and views from that beach that I guarantee will astound you. This beach is called the present moment.

The secret of the present moment is something that my husband taught me years ago. Whenever I began to over plan and worry as I looked to a land far far away that didn’t really exist, he would gently remind me “if we look after today, tomorrow will take care of itself.” And you know what? He was right. By living in the moment, treating the people around you with love and pursuing work and interests that make your heart sing as loud as an Australian Cicada, the rest takes care of itself. And the simple trick is, you wake up the next day and start again. And don’t worry, if you forget and do start travelling to that land far away, the next day or next moment will always be there, patiently waiting for you.

This month I invite you to practice living in the present moment. For one month, and the shortest month of the year for you planners, allow yourself the luxury of setting the word “planning” to the side. Replace this word with “living”. In January you set your intentions for the year and February is the month to begin living them. Take it slow, one day at a time and really enjoy each moment. Discover the details in your days, listen to the words your children choose, taste your food at each meal, really see your partner or friends and get absorbed by these beautiful details greeting you each day. From this space, begin to celebrate in the discovery that perhaps what you now have in your life is what you’ve spent so much time planning for. And I promise, that by connecting into the present moment you will find that your life opens in many mysterious and wonderful ways.

For tips on how to bring more mindfulness into your present moment see “mindfulness tips in February” below.

This is a monthly inspiration piece brought to you by ‘everyday balance’. If you would like to subscribe to this newsletter each month, please send your name and email address to chrisadler@everydaybalance.net or visit this website in the first week of each month. For information regarding meditation, yoga or life coaching appointments in person, by telephone or online, send an email to the above address with your name and phone number or visit the contacts section of this website.

posted under 2008 life balance

mindfulness tips in february

February1

1) Slow down your movements, instead of rushing through the washing up or laundry, feel the texture of the dishes, soap suds or clothes. Allow these tasks to become a time of relaxation rather than a chore.

2) Approach your everyday tasks in a new way. One friend of mine brushes her teeth with her left hand to create mindfulness and bring her back to the present moment. Why not walk a different way to work, buy your coffee at a new cafe, eat a different breakfast, have dinner on a picnic rug outside instead of at the table? By approaching everyday tasks differently, the mind is forced to become more mindful because it steps out of auto pilot and into action.

3) Bring new mindfulness to your speech, body language, spending or meals. Concentrate on each aspect for only one day. For example allow yourself to be the audience of your own words. Really choose those words with care and watch the effect your words have on others. At the end of the day make note if this influenced your interaction with or feeling of the world. Try a different focus for one day in the following week.

4) When you catch your mind wandering into dwelling on the past or planning for the future, gently picture those thoughts as white large clouds against an cobalt blue sky. Acknowledge them and then let them pass bringing yourself back into your present moment. It may help to bring your consciousness to the feeling of your feet on the ground, what you are sitting on, the temperature of the air around you. Use these grounding aspects of your body in the world to bring you back into the present moment.

posted under 2008 life balance