“Learning to embrace the expanse of the present moment is the only true way to live a conscious life…
Perspective helps us to remember that beauty and heartache coexist, as do grief and gratitude, joy and sadness.
The dividends of perspective are reaped long term, arriving when our gratefulness accounts are near empty.”
~ Kristi Nelson, Wake Up Grateful
While each person’s life contains a unique mix of both struggle and ease, there’s no denying the shared grief and loss resulting from a global pandemic and widespread political and social strife. We are all living with uncertainty in this challenging time. In her book, Kristi writes, “When our ‘now’ is disconcerting, it’s easy to fall into a pattern of perseverating about the past and worrying about the future. A simple spaciousness of presence can be disarming in its quiet grace and invitations.” Opening to this spaciousness of presence — this disarming — is the bedrock of the week’s practice and allows us to cultivate perspective. Our first step is the sacred act of pausing and being with our lives just as they are.
- We invite you to begin by listening to Kristi’s seven-minute video that frames our week together and offers a guided grateful living exercise for stopping and becoming present to this moment through the breath. Read the video transcript.
- Following the video and the breathing exercise, spend time in written reflection using the following prompt as a way to begin: “Pausing for stillness, I am aware…” You might write one sentence or several pages.
- Commit, Pause, Savor: Commit to pausing to breathe and get present at three specific points throughout your day today. It’s often during the most challenging times of our lives — when we’d most benefit from pausing and becoming present — that it’s most difficult to remember to stop and breathe. If helpful, set a timer to remind you to pause. Savor what emerges.
Throughout the practice there will be invitations for written reflection so you may want to have a favorite notebook or journal at hand. We also invite you to share your reflections below.
Enjoy the full seven-day Wake Up to Perspective practice.
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Pausing for stillness, I am aware that I am coming home to myself again. The practice of simply pausing and allowing myself to connect with a deeper vein of stillness, I can sense a peace that has been alluding me – it’s been there all along – I have just not slowed down enough to engage with it. Having the intention (commitment) to pause and savor throughout my day will allow this peace to bubble up and soothe the difficult moments that may arise. Feeling this commitment to be present with myself is priceless. I recognize the freedom it affords me and know deeply that it is the source of all peace.
Pausing for stillness I am aware of… Flow – In – Pause – Out – Pause – Flow . Beloved Wisdom may I more consciously live in this pulsating awareness of Flow – In – Pause – Out – Pause – Flow.
Clinging, resisting is a form of holding onto my breath so that it becomes a strangle hold on my heart, a claustrophobic act of anguish. Whereas, Flow – In – Pause – Out – Pause – Flow this gift of breathing this Flow is Your Sacred Gift of Life to me.. Trusting in this exquisite gift allows me to accept Your invitation to participate fully and freely in the dance of life, the movement of Grace, Mercy, Kindness… Thank you Abba God for this precious gift this breath of life, the invitation to freely flow. Flow – In – Pause – Out- Pause – Flow…. Amen
Pausing for stillness I am aware that my right shoulder is tight. I am aware that I hold tension in my neck and shoulders often. Pausing for stillness I am aware that as I stay and breathe my shoulder relaxes and I am reminded to come back to this moment and just breathe. I am reminded there is no place to go, nothing to do, just to stop and be here right this moment………Pausing for stillness I am aware that the sun has come up and the day has started…….I am aware of the quiet.
Pausing for stillness, I am aware, for the first time, that there is a place where my heartbeat and breath meet. An inner engine of life and strength that is with me always. This simple thing gives me hope and confidence. Thank you, Kristi.
I am grateful for this technology that unites us. I am grateful for the posts we share. I am grateful for this grounded perspective and it’s simplicity in a time when so much fear is circulating.
I’m late in replying because I was without my computer this weekend, quite a change for me! In this way it allowed me to pause for stillness. Pausing for stillness, I am aware of the way the clouds change when lit by the rising sun, every few seconds, changing gradually and quickly at the same time. You have to keep watching to enjoy the show. How many times do we look and say “Beautiful sunrise!” and then look away and get busy. It is really worth it to continue watching!
It’s pretty impossible for me to “pause for stillness” when I seem to be having these major panic/anxiety attacks when I can’t figure out something dealing with technology. I won’t go into all the difficulties I faced in the last hour that led me to uncontrollable tears. I could not figure out any way to add my journal writing/comments where I could see everyone else’s comments. And then suddenly my name appears on the left margin, and allows me to type to the right of it.
Tuesday’s WORD FOR THE DAY was
We become what we think about. During this time of social isolation, I have been keeping a journal with what I consider to be particularly relevant “Word for the day” quotations, and just write about what comes to my mind when I think about them. Gratefulness.org has been such a big part of my life in the last several years. We are always becoming closer to who we want to be. Gratefulness.org helps me to be more kind and gentle with myself, & hopefully to others and it’s nice to know they’re there for us all. And thank you all for being my community this week.
I feel your frustration! How insightful you were able to connect with the word for the day. “We become what we think about.”
Peace to you, have a lovely week.
Pausing for stillness, I am aware of the calm before the busy-ness that today will bring, and I notice that I am grateful for this moment, this time, this space, this freedom, I guess.
Pausing for stillness, I am reminded that I am so much more than life at the surface level of myself and that there is a whole other depth to my being, a wellspring of the infinite Life of Love.
And all of this awareness from just a few breaths! Thank you.
Pausing for stillness, I am aware … that my wife of 41 years is making dinner for our daughter and me.
And not just heating up some food. No, no, no this is a labor of healthy-eating love!
Whole food, plant-based creations that not only fill our stomachs, but heal our bodies and nurture our souls.
Thank you, My Dearest, for bringing your many creative talents to make us such feasts for the eyes, for the nose, for the mouth, and yes, for our very being.
Pausing for stillness, I am aware of my heart, my breath, my bones, my flesh, my organs, my muscles, my body in space. I am aware of coquis, and I am aware of my day.
Pausing for stillness I am aware of how emotional I am feeling. I am a bundle of mixed up emotions. Dread, hopefulness, impatience, expectations for better things..grateful..sad… just so many feelings rolling around in me.
Pausing for stillness, I am aware of how quiet it is all around me and how I so need this quiet, this stillness now, at this very difficult & challenging time in my life.
Kristi, your video was so comforting, soothing & peaceful. Thank you kindly. 🙏
Pausing for stillness I am aware…
Of the clock ticking
Cold night air, beautiful crescent moon and stars
Duffy, my furry companion, sleeping in his bed beside me
The presence of my dear brother. In spirit, in memory. 25 years gone tomorrow.
The cushion beneath my butt.
The love that surrounds me.
Dinner in the oven.
Thank you dear Kristi for sharing your light with all of us. I am grateful to be present in this space with all of you.
Pausing for stillness I’m aware about the fear.
Pausing for sttilness during a rainy moment, in fact a storm.
I was safe in my home. I could notice another point of view in a situation that always made me fell scared. I could appreciated the feelings in my body.
And I’m grateful for this moment, here, breathing. No asking to stop the rain because I’m scare, but I’m here and breathing despide of fear.
I’m grateful for this experience.
With fraternal love, Cintia.
Hello sister, long not heard! What you shared just now is just the same with me. As I paused, I became aware of the storm of old fears and even some old anger and out of this, self-made limitations. through still having been attached to it. I am deeply grateful for this experience, too. And thank you so much for sharing, dear friend.
Pausing to breathe – to take in precious air to give energy to my body – placing my hands over my heart to feel the intake and outflow of breath. A blessing.