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Lilian's blog

What Every Child Needs

 

Dear friends:

Stop & Look, Understand & Transform

With the start of the new year, chatter surrounding ‘resolutions’ reigns supreme. From family members, coworkers, and even the media, everyone seems to be discussing how they will improve in 2014. At the same time, you might even find yourself stuck somewhere between making healthful intentions and implementing them. 

Mindfulness practice can help bridge this gap. When we are aware, we can change long-ingrained patterns without condemning or depriving ourselves.

Welcoming Winter

As days roll on in the northern hemisphere, we’ll soon be welcoming the official start of winter. Until the solstice on December 21st, sunlight will continue to wane, reminding us that even the earth and sun are ever-changing.

In darkened nights we may enjoy our less-dominant senses: the soft crunch of footsteps in freshly fallen snow, the fragrance of simmering soup, or the warmth from holding a mug of tea. Invite the dimming of sight and the calm of cold. 

Savoring the Holiday Season

Many often refer to the holiday season as their favorite time of the year. Interestingly, when you ask anyone how they’re feeling during these next few weeks, you will often hear some variation of “busy,” “stressed,” or even “broke.” Scheduling, planning, purchasing, and preparing for our many gatherings and events can be overwhelming and exhausting. We get caught by distractions and the spur of the moment impulses, riding our auto-pilot mode and making decisions contrary to our plans.

Eating and Living Mindfully to Improve our Mood

We all have our days when we’re feeling less-than-cheerful. When they come around, we’re often quick to blame external factors. Even if we can’t avoid daily frustrations like delayed trains or heavy traffic, we can always turn to mindful eating and living practices for a mood-booster—especially on those days when we have “woken up on the wrong side of the bed.”

Thay's Most Challenging and Desperate Situation

At a Q&A session during Thich Nhat Hanh’s recent visit to Boston, I was given the opportunity to ask Thay a question. I inquired about the most challenging and desperate situation that he has faced during his lifetime, and how he managed to cope.

 

Joy and Happiness

During a recent retreat with Thich Nhat Hanh in Blue Cliff Monastery, I learned about the difference between joy and happiness.

Generating joy and cultivating happiness are key elements to the practice of mindfulness. And while these feelings usually go hand-in-hand, they are two separate states - so what is the difference?

Mindful Eating & Mindful Living at Wanderlust

Last August I traveled to Whistler, British Columbia, to speak at Wanderlust—a festival that aims to “create a community around mindful living.” By focusing on diverse experiences like practicing yoga, eating well, being green, practicing purpose, creating awareness, and showcasing art, the event allows participants to deepen their mindfulness practice and enhance their approach to healthy living.  

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