Sunday, March 19, 2017

Time to Notice

Once, in the cool blue middle of a lake,
up to my neck in that most precious 
element of all,
I found a pale-gray, curled-upwards 
pigeon feather
floating on the tension of the water,
at the very instant when a dragonfly,
like a blue-green iridescent bobby pin,
hovered over it, then lit, and rested,
That’s all.
I mention this in the same way
that I fold the corner of a page
in certain library books,
so that the next reader will know
where to look for the good parts. 

                        -Tony Hoagland

Led by Gregory Bratman of Stanford University, studies found that walking  50 minutes in a city park boosted people’s moods as well as their working memories and attention. A 90-minute walk yielded changes to their brains in a way that can protect against depression. A second study revealed negative thought patterns were reduced when in the park setting.

David Strayer, a psychologist at the University of Utah, says we should put away our cell phones and pay attention to the sounds and sights of nature. “When people use a phone, what they notice is cut in half,” says Strayer. The idea is to engage our senses and interrupt, even briefly, the steady drip of urban stress.

Discover the good parts to share with others.  

Look beyond what appears bad to see what shines around and through distress.

See inside petals with a bee's eye. 

Search for possibilities in all kinds of weather.  

Take time to notice what's going on beyond daily tensions and worry.

Awareness is the greatest agent for change. - Ekhart Tolle

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