Writing down intentions

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Hi everyone,

I hope that you’ve been able to sit with the idea of Mindfulness Month, and have come up with some changes that you would like to work toward in your life. In the past when I’ve done shorter versions of this with the intention to reset and rebalance my life, I have found it incredibly helpful to be specific and clear with myself about what I am trying to achieve. I like to write things down so that I can reference them and come back to center whenever I need to, particularly when things get difficult. It can and likely will evolve as we go, and that is perfectly alright.

While I was listing out all of my thoughts and intentions, Kelly came up with this neat little chart. I decided his way was much easier to reference than mine so I adopted his strategy for organization. I thought you might find this to be a helpful tool to get your thoughts in order too.

I will probably be adding and subtracting bullet points over the next week as I sit with it more, but are my intentions thus far:

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Now, all of that said, the goal here is not to cram more things into an already hectic day or life. These are my goals, and I will work toward them each day with the intention of staying mindful and present with myself. This means I need to be honest with myself about what is possible in the present moment. More important than all of the things listed in my chart is the goal of compassion with myself. The funny thing about compassion is that it is not conditional. If, in a particular day, I have tried my best to stay present and I have not succeeded in adding in any of the healthful practices on my “Daily” list that is alright.  My challenge then becomes one of sitting with, being grateful for, and loving what is. This, to me, is compassion.

 

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I would like to leave you with a poem that I come back to when I feel lost or frustrated. I think it’s gentle wisdom and compassion feel so supportive of our intention to cultivate mindfulness together here.

 

The Dance

I have sent you my invitation,

the note inscribed on the palm of

my hand by the fire of living.

Don’t jump up and shout, “Yes, this

is what I want! Let’s do it!”

Just stand up quietly

and dance with me.

Show me how you follow your deepest desires,

spiraling down into the

ache within the ache,

and I will show you how I reach inward and open outward

to feel the kiss of the Mystery,

sweet lips on my own, every day.

Don’t tell me you want to hold the whole world in your heart.

Show me how you turn away from making another wrong without abandoning yourself when

you are hurt and afraid of being unloved.

Tell me a story of who you are,

and see who I am in the stories I live.

And together we will remember that each of us always has a choice.

Don’t tell me how wonderful things will be . . . some day.

Show me you can risk being completely at peace,

truly okay with the way things

are right now in this moment,

and again in the next and the next and the next. . .

I have heard enough warrior stories of heroic daring.

Tell me how you crumble when you hit the wall,

the place you cannot go beyond by the strength of your own will.

What carries you to the other side of that wall,

to the fragile beauty of your own humanness?

And after we have shown each other how we have

set and kept the clear, healthy boundaries that

help us live side by side with each other, let

us risk remembering that we never stop silently

loving

those we once loved out loud.

Take me to the places on the earth that teach you how to dance,

the places where you can risk letting the world break your heart.

And I will take you to the places

where the earth beneath my feet

and the stars overhead make

my heart whole again and again.

Show me how you take care of business

without letting business determine who you are.

When the children are fed but still the voices within and around us

shout that soul’s desires have

too high a price,

let us remind each other that

it is never about the money.

Show me how you offer to your

people and the world

the stories and the songs

you want our children’s

children to remember.

And I will show you how I struggle not to change the world,

but to love it.

Sit beside me in long moments of shared solitude,

knowing both our absolute aloneness and our undeniable belonging.

Dance with me in the silence and

in the sound of small daily words,

holding neither against me at the end of the day.

And when the sound of all the declarations of our sincerest

intentions has died away on the wind,

dance with me in the infinite pause before the next great inhale

of the breath that is breathing us all into being,

not filling the emptiness from the outside or from within.

Don’t say, “Yes!”

Just take my hand and dance with me.

© Oriah Mountain Dreamer, from the book

The Dance

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