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Mindful : August 2018
suitcase failed to make it onto the carousel or you re- alized you packed all wrong for the weather, you can rise to the occasion. Choose to see the chaos as an adven- ture. Stay open to all the unfolding details and really drink in the entire experi- ence, whatever it is. Staying close to your sensory experience will help anchor you in the present moment. Become a detective of the details. You might start by taking a good sniff. How often do you stop and notice the many subtle fragrances wafting across your path? Is the air moist or musty or floral or salty? Let the olfactory world in and notice how this welcoming attitude makes you feel. At your own pleasure, shift your attention to your ears. What do you hear? Each city, each locale, has its own rhythm, its own hum. By tuning in and lis- tening to the grand sympho- ny of life, you can invigorate both body and mind. Tangy, pungent, sweet, or sour, when it is time to dine, offer your full attention to your taste buds. Whether you are biting into barbecue or banqueting on blowfish, succulent and savory vaca- tion victuals can increase feelings of joy and well-be- ing. Why wouldn’t it? It’s a party in your mouth! You can practice mindful seeing by staying connect- ed to an energized and viv- id visual relationship with life. Exactly what color of blue are you seeing? Or is it many shades of blue? Take a moment to widen your gaze, placing emphasis on your peripheral vision. Let in the kaleidoscope of colors, shapes, and textures lingering around the edges of your perception. The mind loves new experi- ences. Even if you think you’ve seen it all before, remember that nothing is quite the same as what it was. Open up and see what is here, now. As you keep bringing your attention back to the lavish newness all around you, you are also giving yourself a huge health boost by limiting the amount of time available for your tired but still-buzzing brain to hook back into rumination. Ahhhhhhh. It’s a bit like hibernation is for bears: A vacation can be a way to fatten up on laughter, joy, and ease, keeping you warm when the cold winds of hard work blow. Vacations won’t solve all your problems, but they can be part of maintaining a healthy and balanced life all year round. When you have the opportunity for leisure time, make a point of intentionally revving down, opening up, and going from doing to being by connecting to your senses. This way, you too can vacation like a pro. ● YOU MIGHT PLOP YOURSELF DOWN IN THE MOST GLO- RIOUS SUNSHINE AND STILL FIND IT HARD TO UNHOOK FROM THE WILD AND WOOLLY CHAOS OF THE UN-VACATIONED BRAIN. 28 mindful August 2018 inner wisdom