Thursday, 14 September 2017

I keep coming back to here

I keep coming back to here. Every day if I can. At least five times a week of late. 

The sea reminds me to breathe full breaths. It brings me back to my breath. To one single breath. 

It reminds me that each moment is precious. And to feel all of me in this very moment. Not to think of yesterday's moments or tomorrow's. This moment. And then the next.

When I stand here with the sea, I feel all the more alive. Because here I am mindfulness. Sometimes only for a handful of minutes. Sometimes I'm afforded a whole lot more. But presence, regardless of the time limit, is what makes the difference.

I'm sharing today a round up of images of the sea I've taken in recent weeks. 

Notice how each is so different? Notice how the colours of the sea change each day? As does it's rhythm. 

I've tried to capture the beauty of the sea in my photos, yet none are similar and different aspects have stood out to me each day. 

Each time I pause to observe the sea, I find myself acknowledging how it presents on this day, connecting with its rhythm and giving thanks for it. I never judge the sea. I find beauty in the sea despite its actions, despite its rhythm, despite its appearance. There's a lesson in there. And it's so very applicable to me. 

As I breathed in the sea air this morning, I gave thanks for the me that simply showed up today. I gave thanks with gentleness, kindness and a loving heart. Without judgement. And realised this space feels new to me. 

So here I stand, committing to loving me better. Unconditionally. Stepping into my own power. With big nourishing sea breaths as encouragement. And as a reminder that this moment, this breath, right now is always the perfect time to begin. Again. 


Do you love the sea too? Is my lesson a lesson for you? 
What actions do you take to nurture your heart and soul? To love your whole self better?
I'd love to know. Elisa x

>>>>> See here for what's included in my free mindfulness bundle, which is quite a bit and is looking a bit more mini-ebook worthy than bundle right about now..! I can't wait to share it with you! It includes a bundle of mindful ways + words + activities to encourage you to easily connect with your heart the power of your amazing life breath. And next month it will launch! I'm just putting the pretty touches on it now :) Elisa x

Tuesday, 29 August 2017

Interrupt busy with slow

This year started off with the most wondrous of intentions. Intentions to move slowly, be grace, live purposefully, breathe with intention. And I'm not saying I haven't done all those things. To a wonderful extent I have. 

But then along came the chaos. The busy. I'm dubbing it "the scheduled life". When there's so much to be done, and so many commitments that all the moments seem played out in routine. It kills spontaneity. And it turns a slow and mindful rhythm into a routine. And to that mishaps and mess + throw in a tonne of winter colds and coughs. 

I felt it approaching a month or so back. I felt despair. And a whole lot alone and helpless in getting all the things done while carving out the slow, heart-centred rhythm that I need. {I've come to understand that slow and heart-centred is quite simply how I thrive.} 

To some extent, busy cannot be stopped. Maybe, like me, you have three young children. Or maybe, like old me, you have a busy corporate job that works to strict deadlines. It's hard to stop the busy when you simply have so much necessary stuff to be done. 

I've researched this very topic on a personal level for the past 10 years. Rushing and the stress that tagged along with it was making me sick. I needed the antidote to busy and rushing. And I have a conclusion: We need to be okay with some busy. Life simply demands it. But we don't need to become "busy". Busy doesn't need to be our state of being: our sense of self from the minute we open our eyes from sleep to the minute they close again at night. 

So, what to do?

Interrupt busy with slow. That there is my solution. And it's working. For me.

It means slowing down, and taking a dose of mindfulness to heart. But it doesn't mean becoming a constant state of slow and mindful. We can still be mindful and not practise mindfulness every single moment of our waking day. 

I say, begin with a handful of minutes. Or add an extra handful of minutes to your already mindful routine. I'm honestly talking about just a few minutes. And this isn't about setting aside time to be mindful. It's about choosing slow + mindful when your amidst busy. It's about noticing that busy pace, and choosing to interrupt it. 

I fold these mindful rituals into the everyday effortlessly. Because as well as slow and mindful, simplicity {for me} is key. 

RESET YOUR RHYTHM + When I'm running around in the mess that can be mornings with kids, I choose to step away from the chaos, step outside with my cup of tea. I savour those sips, I look to the sky, I breathe. I move slowly. Just for a minute, before joining the mess again. Albeit calmer and more mindful. 

LOOK TO NATURE + When I've had a busy morning or afternoon, I pull the car over by the sea* on my drive home. I step outside {or we step outside, as I almost always have children in tow} to watch the water, taking note of the rhythm the sea is moving to today, breathing deeply and fully, taking in that sea air.  

STEP OUTSIDE + I often choose to eat my lunch outdoors, especially if the sun is shining. I notice the feel of the sun on my face, it's warmth. I pause before eating to just breathe, to give thanks for this moment, my food, the sun's shine. I notice the sky's colour, the patterns of the clouds. I tend to eat slower when I do this. Eat more mindfully. I'm present.

JUST BREATHE + And when I simply can't make make my slow minutes an escape, I just take a minute to tune into my breath. I notice its pace. I listen to the inhalation / the exhalation. I invite myself to breathe deeper and slower than before, and to release that breath fully. I invite myself to move slower. To walk/speak/react at a slower pace. Just for a minute. 

To counteract life's busy, interrupt it. With slow. For me, it works.


Will you give it a go? What activities help you stay centred and mindful in the here and now? I'd love to know. Elisa x

*Of course, not everyone lives close to the sea! But the sky is just as wondrous! Look to the patterns playing out across the sky from home or work, notice how it changes, notice how it's changed an hour later, tune into the rhythms of the sky as you could the sea. Just as expansive, just as mesmerising, ever-changing with the rhythms of life - as are we.     

--------- >> Learn about what's in my free mindfulness activity bundle for embracing slow + mindful, and tuning into the power of your breath here.  

--------- >> I have a new instagram account: @ohhelloheart xx

Thursday, 20 July 2017

Taking a chance + starting before you're ready

I've realised {in the past couple months} that I find it easy to overlook myself in the day-to-day. And the problem with that - with not carving out minutes of your every day solely for you - is that soon those days become weeks, months and you look back and realise you've made loads of plans + let ideas swirl in your head... and that's where they've stayed. As floating ideas and hand-written plans. In a notepad.

I pretty much woke up to this realisation. Just woke up and thought, that's enough. 

I realised I don't actually believe in myself as much as I think I do.
I realised that taking a chance on me is damn scary.

I realised that I've been waiting for permission to give more of my heart's writing + soul's stirrings a real go. {Permission from who, I'm not quite sure.}
I realised that now's the time. {Actually, now is always the time.}
I realised that I'm very good at talking myself out of taking a chance.
I realised that even the thought of vulnerability cripples me {used to cripple me}.
I realised that living my truth - writing it, sharing it, speaking it - is where I want to be {always}.
I realised I was giving myself the opposite advice I'd give to my beautiful girls.
I realised if I didn't call myself out on this one. Say "that's enough" and actually mean it, I'd be moving in these circles for many years to come. 

And so, I scribbled words down on paper - words + feelings standing in my way. I came up with "taking a chance on me", "trust", "authenticity" + "vulnerability". And I've accepted they're all really good friends, and I no longer want them to be a roadblock in my way.  

So I've been breathing my way forward. 

This past month has been about pulling back, slowing down and breathing with intention. Focusing on what matters most. And that's meant little time for anything that's not mothering my three + nurturing my heart. 

I'm embracing my ideas little by little, and navigating them into existence slowly but surely. And I'm starting before I feel ready. And those little steps I'm taking, it turns out they feel like bounds once you make a few.


Have you taken a chance on yourself lately? Have you started a new project recently? Any lessons on vulnerability you'd like to share? 

With big nourishing breaths + much much love, Elisa x

~~~~~~~~ >> FREE PRINTS + MINDFULNESS BUNDLE: Thank you to all the lovely people who have signed up early before my mindfulness bundle + breathe prints are ready! Thank you for taking a chance on me! I've added a couple simple meditations and the bundle is almost ready to send. You can check out what's included here. Elisa xx

~~~~~~~~ >> NEW INSTAGRAM: I've created a new instagram @ohhelloheart that's solely for my writing, mindfulness + meditation. Love you to come say hi! Elisa X