Living mindfully – what does that mean to you? For me, it means taking at least a single day off from work each month to enjoy my own company and that of my sister-friend and hairstylist extraordinaire. A sister needs a break – regularly – and so I take it – just for me. Because I am working on practicing extroversion, I made a conscious decision to attend an event that involved other people and I took it one step further. I invited my good good girlfriend to join in the fun. The shift is real, yall!
I enjoyed the company of a beautifully diverse collection of women ranging in life experience, stages of motherhood, race and religion. None of that mattered. While in this sacred space, we each were vulnerable women who had something in common. We made a decision to take time out for ourselves on this day to just be. [Exhale]
Malikah had us introduce ourselves in two ways – 1) Writing our names and descriptors on our nametags and 2) Verbally introducing ourselves and stating what we intend to get out of the workshop. If you could have heard to deep sighs and harmonious “ahhs” and “mmmmhhhs” after each woman’s introduction…
The 8 Ways
Malikah introduced us to eight ways in which we can live mindfully well:
- Creating Space
- Operation Awareness
- Craft the Feeling
- Food: The Potions of Life
- BEA Method
- Invest to Flourish
Now, rather than compose the entire workshop in a blog post, I am going to share the three that resonated with me the most. I am doing this for two reason – 1) I know you are not going to read that long of a post and 2) The homie might want to host this workshop again.
I have a space in my home that is mine. It tends to get crowded and I believe that it is a reflection of my mental state. It is located at the highest level of our home and the windows are facing east. Though intermittently used, my space is important to me. Malikah confirmed the importance of space for me and added in several nuggets:
Stimulate the five senses in your personal space
- Taste – have something sweet to stimulate the taste buds. Aye, we are not talking about hiding cupcakes somewhere, though. Her example was a small lip balm dish filled with honey. She dabs a bit and places it on her tongue. I have not quite figured out what my something sweet is going to be.
- Touch – have contrasting textures in your space. This could be stones or crystals, feathers or even textured pillows. I have feathers and textured pillows.
- Smell – have a fragrant something in your space. This could be incense, oils or something that stimulates your sense of smell. To demonstrate, she sparked up a
doobiestick of palo santo for us all to enjoy.
- Sight – have something visually pleasing to the eye. I have art and crafty things.
- Sound – Listen to the sounds of nature or sounds that make you happy. She recommended the Insight Timer and Calm apps (both free).
By stimulating the five senses, you are more likely to shake off the fog and know that you are a living, breathing force.
She made us aware of how much we unknowingly rush through life by asking us simple questions about our surroundings. She also tapped into the writer in me on this one by introducing a writing prompt. I love those! I’ll share my prompt of “Right now I am…”
Right now I am experiencing a shift from the woman I have been into the woman I was designed to be. I welcome these changes as they serve as confirmation. This is no coincidence. I tear down the walls of doubt, outside approval/opinions to be “me” – a divinely beautiful soul.
Next, we divided the room into two small groups. We were tasked with sharing our to area of growth. When I tell you I felt like I as in an episode of Iyanla Fix My Life, yall!!! Oh, I loved it! The genuine and sisterly love in this space was real. Out of respect for the sacred nature of our time together, I will not go into detail about our conversations. Just know that it was filled will affirming, love, tears and wisdom. Thank you ladies!!!
We concluded the prompt with a series of stretches and visualizations to help us become more aware of our own beautiful selves – from the crowns of our heads to the curves of our hips down to the tips of our toes.
Food: The Potions of Life
Now, you know a sister was ready for this one! We ate lunch and while halfway through, Malikah began to share wisdom about our food choices. We all raved about the soup and tabbouleh. I was also pleasantly surprised to have a nice bite of vegan chocolate. Saadia’s juicebox is yummy!
We went in about food colors, benefits and more.
If I could describe this event in two words, it would be…
Peace and Love
Note: There are no pics to share because I was fully present and being mindful of this experience. I have learned from a past blogging season that I will choose how I engage. I will attend as a participant or a blogger. For this one…I was a participant.