December is a hectic month for most people. Shopping, celebrating, card writing, baking, eating and more! That’s why it’s the most important month to take care of yourself and to make sure you are getting the time you need to relax, unwind and rejuvenate your body and spirit. I am guilty of the go-go-go syndrome associated with the holiday season. Add continued garden cleanup to the mix and there is not much time for restful sleep or self-care.
I was reminded of the need to be mindful during a recent visit to DC to help a good friend celebrate her birthday. Although we were celebrating the anniversary of her birth, she was the one giving out gifts to her friends. Every attendee at the birthday brunch received a ‘Little Book of Affirmations’ which included a meditation for each week of the year.
The book was inspired by Ani Trime Lhamo, a Tibetan Buddhist nun and former ‘West Virginia mountain girl who used to ride her motorcycle in a black leather jacket.’ Like me, she experienced a life altering career change. As I began to read my new book I realized our lives were more similar than not.
Ani believed that we should not trust our negative thoughts so easily since they create our life experience. She felt we could train our minds towards healing and positive thoughts and away from negativity. She called her meditation group ‘The Garden Club’ since she was convinced you can plant different seeds in your mind to see what grows. These seeds become a toolkit for a more open and healthier mind. In 2016 at the age of 88, Ani set out to provide a meditation for each week of the year to be used as a tool to tend the mind’s garden. Although she passed away before completing this important work, her followers carried out her plan resulting in the Affirmations book I now own and treasure.
Let this blog post, my final one for 2019, be a gentle reminder to be kind to others and to yourself. I echo the book’s lessons and wish that what flowers in your garden be clarity, freshness and joy. Happy holidays all. Here’s to a wonderful, happy and healthy 2020!
What a powerful message. Thanks for sharing. I am grateful you are in life Carol.
You inspired the message Jeanette. If you hadn’t given me the book, I wouldn’t have known about ‘The Garden Club.’
It’s astonishing how being a gardener yields endless ways to see our own lives and the world through metaphor. I’m charmed by the notion of planting seeds in our mind to see what grows – even knowing that allows for some weeds sprouting. We just have to commit some effort toward pulling those that clutter or threaten the health, beauty, or clarity in our gardens.
Perfectly said Eric!
What a beautiful way to celebrate Christmas. I read your blogs every month and just have not taken the time to respond with how much I enjoy them and learn from them. Kindness towards others and ourselves is something we should be very mindful of. Hope your Christmas is marvelous!
Thanks for taking the time to respond. I am glad to hear you are enjoying my blog!
I love this analogy of tending to the garden as we do our minds — planting good seeds and not allowing the weeds to grow! Thank you, Carol, Jeanette and Eric for cultivating this wisdom!!! Great New Year’s reminders!
Glad you found value in our collective posts!