Liz Lamoreux is one of my new favorite bloggers. I started following her this year, and I've put her at the top of my list of bloggers I try to read on a daily/weekly basis. As a matter of fact I found her one day as I read her guest post on the Ali Edwards blog that I am a big fan of. There was just something about her post that I found was intelligent, comforting and even soothing, and I found myself trailing her back to her own website. I ended up reading some of her past posts, and after reading a little bit about her story I just felt like I connected with her and spirit somehow.
So a few weeks ago she offered a free online course that she described as an invitation to "open yourself up to the beauty and the realness and the joy that surround you each day"... "even in the midst of the messy reality of the everyday." She wanted to share some of her practices via a 10 day personal journey on how to find "that space to take a deep breath and see the beauty" of each moment. So I decided to join her on this trip, and I'm so glad I did.
Because a journey like this can be such a personal thing I won't be able to recreate my experience 100% for you, but I wanted to at least share with you a summary of the daily prompts she gave all those who joined heron this trip so as to possibly inspire you to take your own journey to say Yes To This Moment.
Liz also encouraged her readers to participate in a big way by sharing our daily experiences through pictures and images on Instagram and Pinterest and forming a community of those saying 'Yes, This' with a hashtag of #yestothismoment. So those of you who follow me on Instagram got to see my daily shots but now you'll understand what they really meant to me in this process.
Day 1- Finding Silence
The first day of this journey was all about breathing and silence...taking the time to take 5 deep breathes, truly feeling each breath, relaxing and finding where you stand within that silence. A powerful practice I am now implementing daily.
Day 2- Finding beauty amongst the chaos.
This day Liz reminded us that although our lives are crazy, that living in the moment is a necessity, and in doing that we could find beauty. Tapping into your gratitude goes side by side with this practice as well.
Day 3- Finding my Center
So day 3 was about combining the breathing of day 1 and learning how to use those 5 breathes to really pay attention to how and where my breathing comes from. Coincidentally I was wearing this shirt and I found my center to be where the heart was on my shirt...I liked that.
Once I found my center, I can now use that knowledge to help me go back there especially in those moments when I feel like life is overwhelming me. I found this to be so powerful and I've been using it daily even just to start my day off.
Day 4- Finding my senses
This day was about taking the time to really pay attention to what each of my senses was telling me. What I touched, what I saw, felt, tasted, smelled...hence it worked out perfectly that I was making banana bread which helped me experience each of those senses deliciously!
Day 5- Getting out there and experiencing what I know.
This day landed on a busy Saturday for me, but I found a half hour to get out there and take a walk with my doggie looking for that perfect moment in nature. However, I couldn't really find it until it hit me that I had actually experienced it already, and its what I already knew...the true companionship of my doggie on my walks. My Lulu is actually great to walk with, I know I can count on her to keep me safe, and I know that she loves me for taking her for walks.
Day 6- Enjoying a day of Rest
Sundays are a sabbath day for many and so in that spirit...I truly enjoyed this prompt. It just happened to be one of those lazy Sundays where nothing was planned and I had a house full of boys that were busy playing, so the morning was all mine to enjoy. I did so by enjoying a meaningful cup of coffee and catching up on the shows I had taped from the week before...Perfect!
Day 7- Seek out Joy
This day Liz challenged us to find what give us joy. Both those tangible and intangible joys. She had us write a list of those things to remind us as well. I chose to post a picture of two of my tangible joys...my beautiful nieces! I am surrounded by boys at home that bring me unconditional joy, but when I am around these two little girls it is a joy like no other. It was a perfect day for it too as it was coincidentally Sofia's 8th birthday.
Day 8- Being open to connections
This day Liz challenged us to see just how open we were to connecting with others. I'd like to think that I am someone who is always open to connecting with others including those from my past. But as a mom I wanted to concentrate on my connection with my boys that day. I LOVE them and will always be willing to maintain that connection with them. And with a sweet face like Mikey's how can I resist. ;)
Day 9- My Yes List
Today was all about going back through the last 8 days to see what I had been finding in my moments of silence and awareness. What had I been saying 'Yes' to recently. We were to then write a list of what we wanted to say Yes to that particular day and these were 2 of them off my list...'Yes', to the much needed rain we got that beautiful day and 'Yes' to finally getting a chance to wear that super cozy sweatshirt again!
It truly is the simple things isn't it!
Day 10- Yes, Here
The final day of this personal journey was here, and Liz had a beautiful way to end it by challenging us to find 10-15 minutes of quiet time just for ourselves, and I took time in making sure it was as perfect a setting for me as possible. She challenged us to meditate (which I've never really done before) with a candle in front of us to concentrate on. She had us put our hands to our hearts and find all the possibilities of what our hearts could hold - 'Yes, here' in my heart. What a powerful 15 minutes this was for me. I was able to do my breathing and quietly reflect on the past 10 days and see what a gift each of those practices were for me and point out those possibilities to practice from now on.
The 10 days were over and I was sad to see it come to an end, but at the same time I was so happy to have followed through with and completed this journey to the best of my ability. This was something that I had never tried before or that I honestly had never been open on doing for myself. I am so glad I did and I will so do it again. Liz was such an inspiration through this all for me, and I found it easy to trust her direction and knowledge in this area.
Again, just know that there was definitely much more to this journey than I can share in one post (for many reasons), but I just hope that I have inspired you to take your own journey of saying 'Yes to this moment' or to find a personal journey of your own that you'd like to explore for yourself. At the very least I highly recommend you check out lizlamoreux.com in the hopes you can find something there you can also connect to.
Thank you Liz Lamoreux for sharing yourself with me and for allowing me to take this journey with you. I hope to do it again soon.
And from my little corner to yours...Hope you all have an amazing week!