Mindfulness is Fucking Awesome – Guest Post by Jennifer Bronsnick

August 6, 2017 2:47pm EST Florham Park, NJ

I am sitting on a reclining chair in my backyard, my black toy poodle Zoe at my feet.  The temperature is a perfect 78 degrees. The sun peaks out from behind the clouds every so often so that I can feel the warmth amidst a light breeze on my skin. Cars drive by with a wooosh and I hear the siren of an ambulance from the next town over. Not too loud that it bothers me, but just loud enough to make me wonder if the person they were headed to is okay. It rained last night and I can smell moist grass mixed with a bit of mildew from the outdoor furniture. I sit and sip my chai tea feeling the warmth from the spices move down my throat creating a nice sensation in my body. Breathing in sync with the swaying trees as the winds moves through the plush green leaves. Feeling grateful for a few more weeks of summer to enjoy.

2:50pmEnter my 5 year old daughter Savanna wearing a tutu and tap shoes. “Mom! Watch my show!”

Was I annoyed? Maybe I wasn’t thrilled, but I wasn’t angry. I was just moving into a new moment; a moment with my daughter. This happens 1000’s of times each day. We have good moments, bad moments and everything in between. The beauty of mindfulness is that it can give us peace in our minds and hearts because it teaches us not to only strive for good experiences (sipping my tea alone), but to be open to ALL experience (getting interrupted during my quiet time), without labeling them. It’s this labeling that ultimately causes us to suffer. Without the label, an experience just is. It’s an opportunity to know what being alive is all about.

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Finding Your Bliss Buddy with Anne Sussman

I’m back with more from Anne Sussman, our resident mindfulness and meditation expert. Read on to learn about her inspiring project, Bliss Buddies, how you can be apart of it and why volunteering and giving back is so vital to her everyday life.

The Project: Bliss Buddies

The “Bliss Buddy” project is something I created. In the roller coaster that is life, we all will experience sadness, sickness, and death of a loved one. No one gets away unscathed. How is it that we can find the joy in the midst of all that? There is so much to be grateful for in life–from the moment we are born we breath. Beginning there, to just be grateful for your breath, for your life, is the way to start. Before my feet hit the floor each morning I say “Thank you, thank you, thank you”. Gratitude begins and ends my day. It is true that where you put your attention, grows. It’s like watering a plant–your attention is love. When you put your attention on small moments of joy in your life, you will be amazed at how they begin to grow. Being on the lookout gives you the opportunity to see what you are looking for. This is about the steps it takes to start living that way and having more of that joy in your life.

The Acronym: N.E.W.S.

Notice– Noticing the small moments of joy is the first step to cultivating this practice. Make a choice everyday to be on the look out. Once you begin turning your attention to these small moments, you will find them almost everywhere.

Experience– What am I seeing? What am I feeling? What am I hearing, tasting, and smelling right now? Experiencing fully through all your senses, just as the moment of joy is happening, is the best way to begin. Being tuned in, present, and engaging all your senses is a great way to imprint that joyful moment into your brain and turn it into a strong memory. Being fully present is how we experience the most joy we can out of life. If you’re thinking about the past or the future, it’s impossible to live in the moment. It is only when you are dialed in to right now that you can fully experience that feeling of being in the zone.  That’s when the “Aha” moments of life become available to you. When you stay in the present more, you have more of the “Aha” moments. 

Write it down-Writing it down–keeping a journal or just a quick note helps to solidify the experience. There is a visual record of what the moment was–a way to remember it when you move on in your fast-paced life. Taking that time to just jot it somewhere helps to keep it ever present.

Share– Share it! This is the essence of the Bliss Buddy Project–taking the time to share it. Find a partner, a Bliss Buddy. Make a commitment to do this with someone for two weeks in a row. Exchange emails every day and in the subject line write, “Bliss”. Then just send a quick note – “Bliss moment today was when I walked outside, the sun shone down on my face”. That’s all there is to it! Making a commitment to doing this keeps you accountable to noticing what those moments are through out your day.

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Listen up Mommies! Mindfulness & Meditation with Anne Sussman

I met Anne a few months ago at camp. She’s an expert in mindful meditation and all-around blissful bad-ass. If you need to be more present, quiet that busy mind of yours, stop sweating the small stuff, and gain a deeper appreciation of all that you have in this life (and I think all of us moms need more of those things in our lives), she’s your woman. When not rocking the circles at camp, Anne runs the Mindfulness Meeting Place where she helps individuals bring meditation into their everyday lives, just as she has. And thanks to technology, you can work with her from anywhere! Read on to learn how you too can mindfully meditate, find your bliss, and live a life of gratitude.

Meet Anne!

On Becoming a Mindfulness and Meditation Instructor and Expert

I teach a trademarked program called SEED: “ Simple Easy Every Day”. I received my certification as a Meditation and Mindfulness Instructor through the McLean Meditation Institute in Sedona, Arizona, founded by Sarah McLean, a Hay House author, and internationally known teacher. Meditation is a skill that anyone can learn. I am someone, just like you and your readers, who struggles to live in our fast-paced, often stress-filled world, and I have seen the remarkable benefits that meditating consistently brings.  My goal is to help you live better, as I do. I teach beginners and those looking to deepen their own practice.

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