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What is "mindfulness" anyway? And Stacey Abrams on how to keep moving.



Before Thanksgiving, I had the unexpected pleasure of seeing Stacey Abrams interviewed by Tricia Yearwood here in Nashville, an odd couple for sure, but apparently they are long-time fans of each other! Stacey got a question from an audience member about how to keep our hopes up (when American discourse seems so angry and divided) and how to keep showing up to make a difference. We all leaned forward in our seats holding our breath. She said, "Progress counts. I look at this work in biblical terms, like in the larger arc of humanity. It's not all going get done in my lifetime. I know that. We all just have to do what we can and celebrate every win, big or small. It's important to give yourself permission to let your best be enough." She's right. Progress counts. Whether you're taking time to walk around the block every day, getting your family vaccinated, raising money for a cause, or upending the power balance of the U.S. Senate like Stacey did, every little bit of progress counts. The holidays are here. It's a good time to take a breath, celebrate breakthroughs, mourn losses, and reassess what's most important going forward.

What little bits of progress have you made that matter to YOU?

This is a good question to bring to dinner table conversations with friends and family. Celebrate it, y'all. It matters. Stacey said so.


Sarah

 


This week "Can't Catch My Breath" wrote into Hey, Health Coach at Forbes to ask:

What is mindfulness, and how can I do it??

In short? Mindfulness is nonjudgmental awareness. It has TWO parts, friends! Awareness is key, but we tend to lose track of that second part—the bit about being non-judgmental. A lot of people think they need to "clear their minds" or "quiet their thoughts" in order to be mindful. Let's blow up that assumption, shall we? Mindfulness isn't about shutting down your brain. It's about learning to separate your valuable, inevitable thoughts and feelings from unhelpful knee-jerk reactions and rumination. This was a fun one to write. You'll find more information about how to practice "mindfulness" in your everyday life here.


 


Photo: Joe Raffanti/Seva Foundation via Washington Post

Today is Giving Tuesday, and The Washington Post published an article this week called This holiday season, use your money to change someone’s life. It touches on a few charities and non-profits that don't get the attention they deserve for the amazing work they do. Seva Foundation, in particular, is one I've contributed to in the past. If you're looking for ways to impact people's lives directly by helping to restore someone's sight, combat sexual violence, train low-income folks for tech jobs, mentor young people, or teach kids to read, you'll find some great resources here.

 

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