Things that affect what I say and do

I think that life takes interesting turns, pleasant and unpleasant. 

I'm learning that anything is possible so I keep my heart and mind open to the likelihood of change.

That means I'm getting used to uncertainty. 

I use 8 questions to process the challenges I wake to each day. 

I embrace the idea that I get to choose how to respond to my experiences. Which means that difficulties are difficulties. Pleasures are pleasures. The BIG DEAL is being with any experience, difficult or pleasurable. Okay, how do I put this? Being with discomfort = not easy. Being with comfort = can be so easy I hold on in a way-too-tight way.

That means I aspire to live and know it. Moment to moment. (An ideal.)

I listen to others' personal difficulties to see from their view without evaluation. (Another ideal.) When I manage to quiet my mind enough to do this, mysteriously I feel a connection, and I think the teller feels seen and heard. 

More and more I think empathetic listening might be a super-power that can save the world or at least my life. 

Another super-power: a community of caring people.

I practice flexibility and acceptance and think it's tough though rewarding work. 

view life as a classroom and any difficult person or experience as a teacher bringing a significant lesson.

I think that every encounter holds meaning.

I practice pausing to notice my breath, but not often enough.

I like to examine my foibles and mistakes. When I do, transparency and lightness do a partnership-type dance that gives me a peek at the possibility of getting better acquainted with my habits and patterns.

I am a mistake celebrator, which means I think failure is a pretty good teacher.

I'm a surfer! Well, sort of. I surf transformative, wake-up waves. (That's my description of dharma study and meditation.) I sometimes feel exhilaration. More often, I get pulled under and gasp for breath. So far, I keep surfing.

I admire artists. I highlight one in each post. I believe art flames a sense of wonder about being human and that artists are expressive in ways the world needs.

I try to walk slow enough to notice caterpillars spinning chrysalis' or dew-glistened spider webs casting diamonds in a rising sun. 

Oh, how I want to remember there is no hurry even when I think there is.

Sometimes when I'm at the grocery store, I have a thought to ask the manager to use the intercom just for one teeny moment to say, "Hello shoppers. Wake up! Wake up!" I also hope that someone else has that same thought when I'm rush-shopping.

I love to be with children, especially my grandchildren. They show me aspects of life I've forgotten. Like the wonder of my car's right turn signal and how a millipede curls up in my hand like the braided rug in the hallway.

When I drive or walk down the street and see a homeless person, I sometimes look the person in the eye and smile. I want to be able to do this more consistently.

I know from my son's passing, that just being with a friend who has lost a beloved is what matters most.

When I go to the beach and come upon a whelk or conch shell, I pick it up to hear the ambient noise I forget is inside me.