Nov 16, 2012 - A little about John    4 Comments

Watch Clouds

A dear friend of mine who teaches the 2nd grade wrote me short note :

At our school if you’re a child and you get into some minor trouble you’ll have to sit on a brick wall at recess for a short period of time. I’m unsure if this benefits all children equally or not, however that is what we have put in place. Now the kids, when they find themselves in trouble and doing time on the wall, will sulk and cry, or sometimes grin obliviously at their circumstances and play with their fingers or an occasional small rock. Some fall asleep and some talk to themselves or sing.

Today one of my girls found herself sitting on the wall because she wouldn’t clean up during clean up time. She went and sat down against the brick all without a grudge. I really didn’t even take notice of her until recess was half over. I glanced over and she was looking straight up. As I walked towards her she never flinched from her upward gaze. When I approached her I began to say, “You can get up.” when my mouth just shut and I looked up.

Bright blue sky and one wispy, white cloud. But it got my attention as it had hers. It was so, so beautiful and alive. The white vapor swirled and crisscrossed like smoke flowing from the top of a chimney. It was so peaceful and graceful. I just stood there staring at it flow and dance through the sky. I glanced down for a minute and she was standing by me, still looking up, not saying a word. We both just watched this single cloud performing it’s little show above our playground. The cloud shrank with every turn and twist until finally it just disappeared. It was truly amazing.

I looked down and all the kids who were in trouble sitting on the wall, were now standing around me looking up. We all just smiled at each other. This boy from another class said, “Do that again!” Man I wish I could. No more clouds in the sky, the cloud show was over. I wish it wasn’t. Someone blew the whistle and all the children lined up. The little girl grabbed my hand, as she does sometimes. We walked to the line and I told her, “Thank you.” She said, “You’re welcome.” like she knew what she was doing. Maybe she does.

I wrote myself a note on my hand: Watch clouds.

I don’t know if you’re waiting for something “big” to happen in your life, but when you take time to enjoy all the little things in life, something “big” happens all the time. Really!

I hope you have a big day, a big weekend, and a even bigger life.

~John

Oct 19, 2012 - Mental Health, Priorities    1 Comment

Your Calm Pond

When you’re falling asleep at night, riding on a bus, standing in an elevator, or maybe walking you’re dog; what do you think about? Where does your mind spend most of its time? When your life is still where does your mind wander?

We all have specific hopes, concerns, and dreams for the future. Maybe your mind drifts away imagining what life will be like in the months or years to come.  Maybe you’re mind fades back to the past constantly pondering what choices you’ve made and what life experiences you’ve had. Whichever category you fall into I want to encourage you to take note of what you’re thinking about. Write down the thoughts you have the most. Taking  note of these things will help you realize if what you’re thinking about is helpful or beneficial to you.

It’s import to your mental and physical health to give your thoughts a little moderation. We can spend a lot of time thinking and maybe even worrying about things that are not in our control.  We need to make sure we’re keeping the good things in and the bad things out. Keeping a journal has helped show me where my mind has been and where it might be headed. So the next time your life becomes still in this fast moving and chaotic world, try writing down what you’re thinking about and see where it leads you.

~John

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