My natural inclination is to hit the ground running the moment my alarm goes off. But what I really crave is A Slow Morning: a morning that I can unwrap slowly, deliberately, with care and attention.
Years ago I was inspired by this quote from spiritual teacher Thich Nhat Hanh and have held it close to my heart since. He says,
“Every twenty-four hours is a tremendous gift to us. So we should all learn to live in a way that makes joy possible.”
I’ve found that if I unwrap my morning slowly, like a precious gift, the possibility for joy, fulfillment and contentment increases exponentially. If I cherish my first stretch, spend an extra moment cuddling with Russell Clive, meditate first thing and drink my coffee slowly (from a real coffee mug, not a travel mug), I start my day feeling tremendous contentment. I am ready to receive whatever the day has to offer.
It doesn’t mean that I’ll be HAPPY! every single moment of the rest of the day. Santosha, which is the Sanskrit word for inner contentment, is a difficult attitude to maintain. Because, let’s face it: happiness doesn’t always present itself tied up with a pretty little ribbon every day. Some days go terribly wrong (hello, influenza B) and I’m frustrated, stressed and suffering.
Santosha is a possibility only when I relinquish my expectations and choose instead to be grateful that I even get to open the gift of the day, regardless of what’s under the wrapping.
One way I increase my possibility for santosha is starting my morning in meditation– setting my intention that I’ll be open to receive. Whatever the day brings, I strive to stay open, grateful and aware of the preciousness of this day.
Use this Guided Meditation today to open to the possibilities of joy and santosha.
“Open to Receive”
“Every twenty-four hours is a tremendous gift to us. So we should all learn to live in a way that makes joy possible.” -TNH
Guided Meditation Teachings
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