Rain

“Rain is grace; rain is the sky descending to the earth, without rain there would be no life.”

-John Updike

Dance in the Rain

Dark clouds and a cold downpour. To some people rain means sadness. Being stuck inside, with the sunshine gone, isn’t what most people think of as a good day. The busy, upbeat pace of life is fueled by sunshine. Being out in the day, going to work, spending time with friends and family, our lives are fast paced and moving. Yet rather than be dampened by the rain, I find myself inspired by it. Rain lights up my spirit in a way that few things can. The seeming contradictions within this all make sense when we take time to think about the rain and what it means to our lives.

The Calling of Rain

When it rains, our lives naturally shift pace. We are forced to slow down, to take a deep breath. Rain calls us inside and we tend to shift focus to the needs of ourselves and our homes. When we have been running full steam for too long and not getting proper rest, rainy days make us sleepy. We become introverted, curled up with a book or a favorite movie. Finding time to relax, grow our minds, or just be still for a while is so important to our health and well being.

Life of the Earth

Outside the rain pours down on the earth. Everything seems gray and dull. But the waters pouring down are giving plants time to nurture themselves and the energy they will need to flower and grow when the sun returns. Just like those plants, you need time in your life to unwind or absorb. To slow down and focus on what you need. This recharges us, providing energy and strength for the bright, upbeat days to come.

Live in the Rain

This week, whether it is raining or not. Take some time to focus on the positive lessons rain teaches us. Stop for a few minutes to evaluate the areas in your life where you need to slow down and recharge. Take a few minutes for yourself today and focus on something you need to grow.

Breathe

Breathe

“For breath is life, and if you breathe well you will live long on earth”

-Sanskrit Proverb

The Need to Slow Down

Too often I find myself rushing through the day so quickly that I don’t even notice the little things passing me by. In an attempt to be more mindful in my life, one of the simplest exercises I’ve found is to focus on my breath. This helps me clear my mind and let go of stress, helping me be more energized and focused throughout the day. Walk through this simple exercise with me to feel the powerful effects that something as simple as mindful breathing can have on your day.

The Simple Act of Breathing

Slow down. Quiet your thoughts. Just breathe. Feel the air coming into your lungs and the cool, calming sensation it brings. Feel the sense of release as your exhale the warm air inside. With each new breath we are drawing in life. Refreshing and calming each part of you. The rush of thoughts and list of tasks for the day can all be let go for these few moments as you just breathe.

As you focus on your breath notice the changes throughout your body that this simple act of mindful breathing creates. Your heartbeat slows. Your nerves relax. Worries and stress from your day slowing start to sink away. The stress we build up throughout our day can slowly start to wear us down. The fast paced buzz in our system needs a few minutes of rest and quiet. Our heads clear from the cloud of thoughts that build up and we can see things more clearly.

Physically and mentally each new breath draws energy to your body. You are able to focus on the tasks at hand and break them down into manageable pieces. You feel refreshed and prepared for the rest of your day.

Taking Your Breath With You

Challenge yourself this week to take a few minutes every day to just breathe. You can set aside this time in the morning before you start your day or in the evening to unwind. Practice it when you are feeling overwhelmed and notice the difference this small exercise in mindfulness can make.