Mindfulness and Five Beautiful Things

Mindfulness is a beautiful word that can be used in different contexts. When I googled the words ‘Mindfulness and Meaning’ this definition came up. It does not say who wrote it but it comes closest to what I was looking for.

“A mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations, used as a therapeutic technique.”

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I am pretty sure you will recognize the following experience: you hear/read about something new to you, figure out what it means and than all of a sudden you come across it ‘everywhere’. I always feel that the cosmos is nudging me than to take some kind of action and when it happens, I investigate further because it always brings me something positive.

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So lately, I bumped into Mindfulness all the time. I heard stories, read articles, blogs and spoke with people who had followed a course/program and I liked what I heard. You learn more about ‘being in the moment’, looking for what is positive, finding down to earth solutions. Ha, that sounded ‘like me’, having followed that path already for years and discovering it brings a lot of happiness. People use it for handling stress, to get rid of bad habits, for support in losing weight or coping better with illness and pain.

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I am not blessed with a strong constitution and without going into boring details, I can tell it has affected my style of living. And I am happy to say, I have come to terms with that. I used to stand on any barricade possible, combine work, study and a wonderful family. Nowadays my pace of life is slow, instead of jumping on barricades, I walk in nature and enjoy its beauty. On good days I do a lot and bad days less and I feel blessed I have that option. And I still have that wonderful family! I look after my health, the doctors after the illness. And I am so incredibly fortunate to find the most loving and kind people possible in my family and friends…wherever they are on the world!

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However…there is always room for improvement;0) So when the cosmos nudged me about Mindfulness, I inquired and of course…just 15 minutes away from us, I have the possibility to follow a course, starting January. I spoke with several people there and I am so looking forward to this! In the meantime and as an introduction, I bought that little book and I have tremendous fun with it. ‘One Minute’ suits me fine, since I am not a very patient person ;0)

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It gives little ‘practice assignments’. One of them was, to collect five beautiful things when you take a walk. So here you see, five things I collected when I was hiking with Mr. Walker yesterday in Rowe Woods. First the memory of that beautiful walk with the Youngest Mr. Walker late summer and we came across this little deer. It was totally relaxed, kept on eating and looking at us. Unfortunately..branches kept ‘ruining’ the photos but the memory is just beautiful!

The leaf with holes fascinates me. The layer of fallen, rotting leaves is just one big habitat of all kind of creatures living comfortably in and of them. Everything in a forest is alive.

The gall on the leaf shows already that life in Spring will continue. (after taking this photo, I left it outside again, among other leafs;0))

And that reminded me again of a course, I did years ago about intuitive and symbolic drawing. How I enjoyed that and this drawing is about how a tree can represent life.

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And then some other beautiful things that Mother Nature leaves for us to pick up and admire and feel good about. So, I had a very good weekend;0) How was yours?

Love and Liefs, Johanna.

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22 thoughts on “Mindfulness and Five Beautiful Things

  1. Johanna, I wish I could take this course with you! It sounds wonderful and I think it would do me so much good to slow down and breathe! Maybe you can give us little tips you learn along the way . . .

    • Oh Kerry, that would have been great indeed! But I will keep you posted come January. And I do not think that being busy is the bad thing, it is whats going round ( and round and round;0)) in ones head ;0) For me it was such an eyeopener, to learn to do one thing at the time and only focus on that one thing. Sound silly but it was really something I had to learn. It brought me a lot of happiness and from time to time I love finding new angles to look at this ( does that make sense?)
      And soon all your candies and chocolates are ready, sold and enjoyed. And you can sit back and relax and enjoy the Christmas tree! Hugs from Ohio for my hard working friend in Maine!

  2. A lovely post – the pictures are gorgeous – we need to remember to appreciate the simple things in life!

  3. Hi Johanna, your photos are lovely as usual. Recently I’m a kind of M&M person šŸ™‚ Mindfulness and Minimalism, I’m paying attention to little things, most of time nature’s gifts, like you did yesterday, and really focus on them. And I’m doing lots of meditation too, but only 5 min per day. We need to take care of ourselves. Have a great day!

    • Your Minderfullness speaks on all your beautiful photos, Elizabeth. That is the pleasure of photographing: you really have to look at something, focus to capture what you want ‘to tell’. Ha, and 5 minutes a day…is 4 minutes more than I do;0) I hope, to learn more about meditation too. I once tried yoga..but just sitting still and breathing…is so far a nerve wrecking process for me;0) But live and learn! Have a lovely day, Johanna

    • Thanks Pit! I made that drawing some 15 years ago and it crossed my mind again. It is actually fun to go through my ‘old’ sketchbooks and see how things develop. Have a great week yourself too, Johanna

  4. Johanna! Lovely post, and it seems once again we are kindred spirits…my husband practices mindfulness through Tai Chi (he’s also an instructor), and is currently studying the topic while doing his PhD. I have learned so much from him about focus, patience, positivity, and simplicity. He’s always telling that good thing will come if you stay on that path (like that little deer!). And it’s true.

    • Anne, it is so amazing to find so much ‘parallels’ indeed. So fascinating your husband is studying and practicing mindfulness and Tai Chi. You see, I keep on ‘bumping into’ it. Positivity, patience and simplicity has brought me so much happiness. I am really looking forward to January and learn more about this from different perspective again.

  5. I love this post Johanna. The class sounds so interesting. I like both being mindful and present in the moment. Your nature discoveries really speak to me. I had a vase full of fall leaves that I sprinkled to the wind yesterday. They needed to continue on their journey like we need to continue on ours.

    You drawing has so much meaning. I love your photos too…the deer, leaves, twigs all so beautiful.

    Please keep sharing your discoveries, I’m certainly listening!

    • Thanks Cathe, and I so love the image of you sprinkling your leaves in the wind. And indeed I love sharing discoveries with like minded spirits as yourself and get inspired. Our journeys indeed continue!

  6. I do hope you’ll share some of what you learn and absorb in your class. I’ve not heard much about this concept, but love the whole idea of living in the moment and finding the positive.
    The 5 things from nature, and the way you photographed them, are great.

  7. Hi Johanna,

    I just saw you over at Boomdee… so I dropped around to see what’s up. I LOVE your mindfulness exercise and your approach to life and especially illness. I am your newest follower! Yay!

  8. What a beautiful and meaningful post, Johanna. Great photos all but I really love your little deer (doe, fawn, whatever?!). I’d love to take that course with you. It’s so true, you know. I’m happiest when I’m focused on the here and now and taking that in. Problems start when my mind wanders to worries of the past or future. I have been training myself to just be now.

    Matthew 6:34 – Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

    Love and hugs to you! šŸ˜€ ā¤

    • Thank you Linda, that is lovely said! Feeling grateful, blessed and happy in the here and now is so precious. I only have to look at your beautiful photos to knwo you are a kindred spirit! Big hug back to you!

  9. What a perfectly aspirational life you’re having and sharing. I’ve Pinned your little deer photo onto a Pinterest board I have for photography. It’s absolutely magical in every way. Such an unguarded moment together is a gift. I think she’s beautiful. We often would come across dear on our walks through the woods at the lake. But having Buddy with me stomping around would send them scurrying. If I didn’t have him on his lead, he’d take off too. But being that he was a senior dog, he of course came back soon enough with a big smile on his face. I think he was saying, “Did you see me go mom?”

    I always adore seeing your presentation and vignettes. Your photography skills take the simplest things and turns them into art. The tiny berries and seeds are my favourite. I find the colours very appealing. They almost look like micro pumpkins to me.

    My weekend was nice and quiet as my husband was away. I didn’t have too cook and spent time in my favourite place, the craft room. Cheers dear Johanna xk

  10. The course sounds like it will be an absolutely wonderful experience! You’ll definitely have to let us know how it is as you go through it next year.

    Your photos are breathtaking, as usual – you have such an incredible eye for composition and light! šŸ™‚ I always so enjoy your posts.

  11. I love your five beautiful things, but my favourite is your memory of a previous walk. Maybe the branches “ruining” your picture (although I can’t see it!) makes that beautiful thing even more beautiful because it is something that belongs exclusively to you and the youngest Mr Walker.
    Mindfulness…I strive to practise it too and sometimes I even manage it šŸ™‚

  12. Johanna I took a mindfulness based mediation class a few years ago. It was wonderful. I need to work my practice back into my day. I feel wonderful when I do.

    I’m looking forward to hearing about your experience.

    As always, gorgeous photos. The simple elegance evokes a feeling of calm serenity, much like the deer.

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