Is there a right kind of attention?
Love Mindfulness Blog
by Annie Akasati McAuley
1w ago
  Ellie (as I'll call her here) arrived at our school with a fearsome reputation. I was warned: “Watch out! She’ll go for your eyes!” Unmanageable, sometimes violent, she had created ripples of stress among her former teachers. Our school catered for children and teens with emotional and behavioural difficulties. We handled high-adrenaline meltdowns on a regular basis. We were well trained in the art of de-escalation, but every so often someone got scratched, hit and kicked.   When I first met Ellie, the word that came to mind was 'neglect'. It was not so much the scruffi ..read more
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Grace: the art of receiving love
Love Mindfulness Blog
by Annie Akasati McAuley
1M ago
I have tried a few times to express appreciation to my friend. He has a big heart and he’s also a capable, practical man. But he shies away from receiving compliments. It’s as though he disappears: the words have nowhere to land. This is frustrating for me - I want him to know that I appreciate him. It’s genuine! Yet I remind myself that I have done the same thing many times; batting away a compliment.   There are many reasons we do this. We wish to be modest and are afraid that praise will inflate the ego; or we do not wish to be in debt to another person. Or we lack trust and suspect ..read more
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Confidence, Certainty, Vulnerability
Love Mindfulness Blog
by Annie Akasati McAuley
2M ago
Can we be confident without being certain? Life is unpredictable, which leaves us feeling vulnerable. We could even say, with certainty, that vulnerability in life is a fact! Is it possible to be confidant while knowing we are vulnerable?   In my youth, I was in awe of people who seemed very sure of themselves, who projected an air of confidence. This was not at all how I felt in myself. I was uncertain about my views and often unwilling to reveal my thoughts. But over time and with greater experience, I began to question these impressions of others, and of myself.   I recall one e ..read more
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How to Face Discomfort – and why it matters
Love Mindfulness Blog
by Annie Akasati McAuley
2M ago
It is a little-mentioned fact that mindfulness requires bravery. It takes courage to face our less appealing aspects. The feelings that make us squirm; the actions we don’t want others to witness.   I have learned that the most satisfying times are when I truly inhabit my life. I wish to notice the moments that make up my days. To be aware of my senses - the beauty around me, the breath in my body, my emotions, and my thoughts. And to exclude nothing, embracing both enjoyable and unpleasant experiences. I try to spot the stories I tell myself, and how I’m reacting to whatever is ha ..read more
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Between Tasks. Between Thoughts.
Love Mindfulness Blog
by Annie Akasati McAuley
2M ago
Life is made up of events. There are big events: a new job; the birth of a child; a special holiday. Then there are everyday events. Work tasks; picking up the kids; cooking a meal; meeting friends or family. But what of the times between these events? Are these significant too? Or are they ‘dead’ time spent waiting for the next noteworthy thing to happen? Seeing the empty spaces At art college many years ago, I engaged in a drawing exercise called ‘negative space’. There was a jumbled pile of chairs in the studio which we had been asked to draw. But we were not to look at the chairs. The i ..read more
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A Personal Energy Crisis
Love Mindfulness Blog
by Annie Akasati McAuley
2M ago
As the energy crisis bites, I am navigating a parallel process. I need to learn to better manage my own energy. Following a Covid-19 infection earlier this year, I run out of steam more quickly. I now have to pay greater attention to how I use - and waste - my energy throughout the day. This enforced pacing and prioritising of activities is teaching me a lot about myself. For me, my health is causing these limitations. But there are many other crunch-points in life that bring this issue to the fore. New responsibilities also mean we have less energy for other things. A friend told me how, a ..read more
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