Tag Archives: attention

We establish boundaries throughout our lives.  Sometimes these boundaries are physical boundaries, like the chain link fence that the daffodil below is working its way through:

Breaking Boundaries

Even more frequently we establish boundaries based upon our culture and conditioning.  We build assumptions that serve us well as we navigate the world, but also limit our perspective and the opportunities that we allow ourselves to experience.

This week I will focus attention on understanding what boundaries and assumptions I approach my day with and work to eliminate as many as possible.  The goal?  To be open to the world as it is.

Will you join me?  If so, I’d love to hear about what you discover.

Have a great week everyone!

I spent some time this weekend in our backyard trying to capture images of the flowers that aren’t going to be around much longer.  It’s the time of year when things are changing rapidly, and if we aren’t paying attention before we know it summer has arrived and we’ve missed the transformation.  In our backyard, the crocus is gone, and the little blue flowers have been swallowed by the grass, but this daffodil is fighting to stay alive!

Daffodil

There’s no time like the present to seek beauty.  And if we’re having trouble finding it, then maybe we can create some.

May our week be filled with beauty.

We were out yesterday looking for images to fulfill Cee’s latest foto challenge, and we came across this high-rise gazebo, with steps!

High-Rise Gazebo

So we took some shots going up the steps:

Steps Up

And we took some shots going down the steps:

Steps Down

One of the benefits of blogging and these types of challenges is that we get the opportunity to focus attention in new ways, providing different perspectives on a world that may otherwise seem mundane.

Thanks, Cee, for the inspiration to get out discover a new place in the world!

Weekly Photo Challenge: Change

On Saturday we visited the Slate Run Historic Farm in Canal Winchester, OH. Roosters, birds, sheep, pigs, piglets, and cattle all greeted us we entered the farm.  The cows were making a lot of noise, and to my untrained ear, sounded upset and angry.  So, we asked a volunteer who was walking a young calf to a different field what was going on. He shared that it was calf weaning day, which means it was the day that they separated the calves from the herd.

One mother telling us how she felt about this practice:

Cow talking to us

And here is another mother sharing a similar concern with us:

Cow shouting at me

As we were leaving the farm we could hear the cows talking to their calves over the 200+ yards of separation.  They couldn’t see each other, but they were clearly communicating with one another.  And then one of the calves paused and started to eat:

Calf eating grass

Change isn’t easy for any of us to deal with, but it is a fact of life.  No matter how much we want control, or think we’ve achieved control over our lives, something will happen that takes us from one place to another, and we have a choice about how to respond.

I’m not saying that the calf made a choice to move on, but an analogy does come to mind. Just as the calf feeds upon the grass during a time of change, we feed our attention during times of change.  If we feed the sadness or failed expectation with our attention, we’ll continue in the awareness of disappointment or happiness.  However, if we make a choice to feed awareness without expectation we might find that things will be okay.  Not what we expected, or perhaps wanted, but okay.

I don’t know about you, but it’s super easy for my attention to scattered into a million different directions, all within the same second.  A recent macro photo of a Tillandsia serves as a visual reminder of this:

Tillandsia

Just as there are many things that can grab my attention from the present, there are many varieties of these plants (a Google image search highlights this point).

As I begin my week, my intention is to practice mindful awareness each moment.  I’m sure that I’ll grow many mental tentacles through the days, more than could ever be represented in a single photograph, but that’s why they call it a practice!

May your days be filled with simple awareness and happiness. Have a great week!