In November I presented Three Mindfulness Tools in my monthly workshop. Sorry you missed it because you missed a wonderful experience. This workshop helped participants learn how to come out of their busy mind that has 50-70 thousand thoughts a day, which comes down to 35-48 thoughts a minute. Stop right there. How many thoughts have you had since you opened this blog? What were those thoughts? Take a minute and write them down in your journal so that you get to know yourself a bit better today.
Here are three thoughts I am guessing you had in the last minute:
Is this blog going to be worth my time? Is she going to say anything that I don’t already know? Mindfulness is for those who have the luxury of sitting and doing nothing.
Not only do we have 35-48 thoughts per minute, those thoughts lean toward the negative. Actually some of those thoughts borderline on bullying. Sadly, you were not aware of them until I had you stop and actually write down a few of them. Now you are more aware of what your mind is producing while you are trying to pay attention to the words on this page. There you have it, Mindfulness 101. You are now aware of your present thoughts. Congratulations.
You might even be wondering why you are thinking such negative thoughts. I have an answer for that too in a different blog. But here is a clue, our biological system is wired that way. Evolutionary wise we have 9 basic biological affects and six of them lean toward the negative. Those six helped us survive in the past, but now we must train our brain to be more curious and interested in the positive rather that the negative. But, yes I am digressing from the topic.
How does Mindfulness help and what does the Labyrinth have to do with Mindfulness? Mindfulness takes discipline. If you are like me, sitting silently and focusing only on my breath while releasing my thoughts like clouds over the rainbow takes more discipline than I find the the patience to do. But many years ago I found a tool that helps my brain unwind, focus on my breath while I just put one foot in front of the other. This mindfulness practice is called walking a Labyrinth.
The easiest way to think about walking a Labyrinth is called the three R’s. Release, Receive, Return. There will be more blogs about the Labyrinth, but in the meantime it would be great if you experienced a Labyrinth Walk. You can find a Labyrinth near you by going to www.labyrinthlocator.com. Put your zip code into their search and see close one is to you. If there is not a Labyrinth within a day trip go to your app store and download The Labyrinth Journey App. There you can enjoy a mindfulness finger walk. I often suggest you allow enough time to mindfully walk a finger labyrinth three times especially when you are getting use to this mindfulness practice.
Enjoy discovering a new tool. If I have tweaked your interest you can discover an introduction to the Labyrinth on my web page at www.arizonalabyrinthconnections. I am also an Arizona Regional Rep for the Labyrinth. You can check us out http://www.thelabyrinthsociety.com. You can even become a Labyrinth trained facilitator like me at www.veriditas.org
I hope you enjoyed this piece. Please pass it along to your friends and colleagues and be sure to drop me a note letting me know your thoughts and questions.