I thought today might be a good time to remind everyone how anxiety and stress can show up differently in children and adolescents than in adults. If you are educator, a child care provider, a coach, a youth group leader, a parent, or someone who simply cares about young people, please take note. Our young people are navigating a lot of challenges that most adults have never had to deal with let alone imagine. The more empathy and understanding we can have the better able our children will cope during these unprecedented times.
I’ve been trying on a mindfulness practice which invites the observer (me/you) to notice and to be with whatever is present. The intention behind this practice is not to change what you are observing, rather to stay open to what you are witnessing.
As you may imagine, this type of mindfulness is SO much easier when you are observing all things pleasant. In those moments, I could just swim in the euphoria or the tranquility.
Staying present when you feel the unpleasant – the painful sensations, the tough feelings, or the worrisome thoughts – that is the challenge. The desire to run away, to distract yourself, is not only preferable but easier to do.
As we move deeper into the fall season, we notice a shift in the natural cycle. Leaves are turning brilliant colors, annual plants are dying back, and animals are burrowing in their dens: all signs of something coming to end. No longer are we in the salad days of summer with plants growing and animals, including humans, scampering about, enjoying the long, warm days.
Autumn is the season which initiates death and decay, and as such, signals a time to release and to remember. To release that which is…
During a recent healing practice with my training partner, I was asked if I felt “rushed.” I paused and checked in with my body: Was I feeling rushed?
Yes, said my body. I was feeling rushed. But why?
I slowed down my breath, got still, and became curious. I noticed I wanted to blow by the uncomfortable feelings I experienced mere minutes ago and go straight into “fix it” mode. Oh boy, I thought, my partner is going to ask me to stay with the uncomfortable feelings. Yuck.
Welcome to fall, my favorite season!
On September 22, the terminator, the line which divides daylight hours from nighttime hours, ran vertical to the equator. When the terminator is in this position, we experience an equal amount of day as we do night. In the Northern Hemisphere, we call this day the Fall Equinox.
On the equinoxes (we have one in March too), I make time, not only to welcome the new season, but also to review where I experience balance, or not, in my life. I consider this activity a wellness check and give myself permission to evaluate how I am spending my time, on whom I am spending my energy, and where I am experiencing meaning and fulfillment.