Friday, May 2, 2014

Cultivating Calmness

I found the following quote on a beautiful and inspiring blog that a friend recently acquainted me with called Strangers and Pilgrims.  (If you take notice to the title of the book from which the quote is excerpted, it should be pretty obvious that I didn't read the book as this house is full of boys - but the quote applies nonetheless!)

Calmness is not a character trait, it's simply a skill.  You have to decide that it matters; that the quality of your presence would be better if you slowed yourself down and were really connected to people and to the moment you are living in.  Then you practice until gradually it becomes part of you.  It benefits everyone around you - they feel peaceful and happy in your presence . . . it is well worth cultivating.

Calmness is made up of certain actions - breathing deeper, dropping your shoulders, settling your muscles, feeling your feet strongly planted on the ground, focusing your thoughts on the job in hand in a steady, easy way . . . even just counting three or four breaths, in and out, will slow your heartbeat and calm your mind down . . .

. . . Everything is better - the taste of food, the scent of flowers, the feel of the shower warm on your skin.  You will find that time slows down and you can think more.

-- Steve Biddulph, Raising Girls

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