As feet hit the ground awareness starts to filter in. A sip of water, teeth brush and splash of water on your face. Birds are calling to one another. Light is gaining strength illuminating what’s in the room and,more importantly, the hope of a new day. The smell of coffee wafts from the machine activating saliva glands for the morning jolt. It’s still quiet. The day is only beginning. Perhaps you pitter patter around a little: put an egg in the cooker, glance at the news, sweep up the kitchen, open the windows wide, put the dogs outside. Slowly your senses wake. Gradually you’re becoming acquainted with the day before you, as if it’s a new place; although this time there’s not any travel involved.
You get dressed. Grab a quick sandwich for lunch. Orient yourself. What’s on your list for the day? What do you hope to accomplish? You check your phone and then, start your commute anticipating what’s ahead. While heading out the door, if paying attention, you feel hope and goodwill towards yourself and others.
When we travel we’re full of anticipation too. We’re expecting experiences and interactions outside the daily routine, inspiration at our finger tips. Your vacation has been on the calendar for months and finally it’s time. We can’t wait! Even if tired from the journey, we arrive energized, excited to be in a new place or a familiar vacation spot.The chance to be out of town is like starting a new day offering fresh perspective and respite.
Sometimes we just want to “get out of Dodge”, aka, change up routines. Yet, it’s not always possible. Luckily we can garner inspiration without going far everyday. There’s reason to feel hopeful when arriving somewhere, anywhere, every time! Like travelers we can bring a sense of wonder wherever we go. Every day begins a new. Here are a few tips for the everyday, local journey, gleaned from living as a traveler.
Enjoy the “travel”, the commute, the short drive wherever you’re going, even if it’s just an errand. If on the train, take a moment to sit and just be there. If driving, keep the radio off for a little while and just be with your thoughts and the drive, watching the other cars carefully, quietly maneuvering. If riding a bike to work, engage fully with your senses enjoying the physical, mental and spiritual all at once.
Acceptance! Often we’re plagued by long lines and hordes of people when traveling. We resolve ourselves to the situation because it’s where we are right then. Although we might need to wait for entrance to a favorite site, we’ve arrived fully! We can practice the same acceptance at home and work.
Arrive fully! At home and work we rush from place to place, one commitment to another. During these busy times we can incorporate “One Minute to Arrive”, an integrative “in the moment” practice* (part of the Search Inside Yourself Leadership Institute’s mindfulness curriculum). Before leading or participating in a meeting, for example, give yourself one minute to sit comfortably and be in the space, focus on your in and out breath, relaxing your shoulders and just noticing what it’s like to breathe. Take a minute to observe your thoughts, feelings and bodily sensations. Revel quietly in being where you are. The breath anchors us to the place. When you become truly present, you’ll be able to access your better self. Arrive fully!
Manage your technology. Despite digital cameras and maps, we often experience a new place without always burying ourselves in a device. We enjoy sitting in a cafe and people watching, for example. Digital devices distract us from being fully present with projects and endeavors.Decide how often you will check your phone during the day.Turn off the physical noise and check in with your thoughts and intuition instead. Creating internal quiet internally will give us access to our inherent creativity…and, like a traveler, we’ll notice and discern more!
It often takes so much effort to get out of town and when we do finally find ourselves in the airline seat or in the car driving away, we feel a sense of relief. We’ve made it. Phew! Maybe we have a few details to address but once “wheels up” we start to embrace the journey ahead. A new place is like a new day. A new day is like a new place…full of possibility, hope and goodwill!
Morning Bikes In Denver- A Local Journey