Let us recognise the precious nature of each day – The 14th Dalai Lama
Confession: It’s (after) midday on a Monday and I’m still in my PJs. I haven’t done yoga or exercise yet. I’ve had no contact with the outside world – no radio, social media or emails. I haven’t spoken with a single soul. And I’m all good with this!
I’m getting asked a lot what my kinder life is about. It’s difficult to tell you yet. Maybe it’s just about wearing PJs in the middle of the day and being ok with that. Maybe it’s about finding what will truly inspire me every morning to get out of my PJs and into the world.
You might think I could say: “I’ve been doing my kinder life for a month and now I have all the answers” but that’s not how it’s been, nor what I expected. I trust the ‘aha moment’ will come when it is ready. I’m giving it time.
So the only way I can explain what it’s about is to tell you my why: I simply want to create the kind of life I want to live – a contented life with simple pleasures, where I appreciate what I have here and now – instead of striving for more because I think I should or that I’m expected to, or because others are and I need to keep up. And I want to create more ways that I can contribute positively for others, because I know that gives me pleasure too. I volunteer every week teaching yoga in a prison, and it gives me more joy than anything I do ‘for me‘ ever has. So it’s simply a life that’s kinder to myself, and kinder to others. The best of both. And happiness all round.
And when I tell people that, the next question is usually, what am I actually doing with my days?
Again, no straight answer – but this is today:
I slept late because I felt like I needed to.
I made a hot lemon drink then went back to bed and listened to day 14 of mindfulness guru Deepak Chopra’s Desire and Destiny programme.
I stayed in bed and wrote in my journal for about an hour (I had some catching up to do after not journalling all weekend).
Still under the duvet, I finished reading the first chapter of Michael Chaskalson’s ‘Mindfulness in Eight Weeks’.
And since Chaskalson’s mindfulness exercise for week one is a 35 minute guided body scan that can be done lying down, I stayed nestled in bed and did that.
And since I was still feeling pretty cosy in bed, I decided to stay horizontal for another hour and do Michael Sealey’s Hypnosis for Finding your Life’s Purpose, which I’ve been wanting to do for a while (and will have to do again since I think I largely slept through it today!)
At 11.30am I decided I’d like breakfast, so made banana and cinnamon porridge and brought that back to bed. After my porridge (which I admit I ate more quickly than mindfully) I read a few pages of Thankyou Water founder Daniel Flynn’s book, Chapter One.
Then, I started writing this blog on my iPhone, still under the duvet (so that I didn’t have to get up to get my laptop).
Soon I’ll get up, open my laptop, edit this blog, and after that, head out for some afternoon tea. Then scout around for interesting stuff on the internet and share something on social media.
That’ll be my ‘work day’ done and then I’ll head off and teach my koha yoga class.
Tomorrow might be exactly like today, or completely different – probably the latter. What is certain is that I’ll be doing exactly what I want to do, at my pace, either alone or with people I choose to spend my time with, and I’ll be doing it with intention and gratitude.
And sometime in the next few weeks, I might sit bolt upright, with 100 per cent clarity about what I’m here to do. And then I’ll do that…
Until then I’m continuing to make space each day to reflect on what this bigger experience is about: what are my values and how do they shape my choices? Where am I going to be in a year’s time through living my kinder life and how might I get there?
I’m in no rush to work that out. It will come at the right time. Until then I will keep creating the space for it, while I keep building my self-awareness and flexing my mindfulness muscles.
Without the commitment to self reflection, mindfulness and intentionality, the risk is that I keep living the life I think I should live, or that I think others think I should live. And that’s definitely not my kinder life.
I know I will get to the right place at the right time. And if I get there in my PJs, that’s not all bad.
Yours in PJs,
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