1. There is no ‘should be’ is my mantra! It took me a long time to learn this, but I fully embrace it and try to pass the message along to others. So glad you found peace in your meditation and allowed yourself to just be! I love your idea of the Winter bucket list being posted on Dec 21. Is there a link-up or particular method for joining?

    • I love that mantra, Janet. Are you familiar with the second arrow in Buddhism teachings? In short, it says the occurrence is the first arrow. The story we tell ourselves about the occurrence (the shoulda, woulda, coulda) is the second arrow and causes most of our suffering. It’s a difficult lesson to learn and remember, but well worth it. I link up with some other bloggers for the bucket list. We post new lists each season and updates on the 21st of each month. I took a break for fall, but am jumping back in for winter. There will be a link in my post on Friday. If you’re interested in what others did for summer, you can check it out here: https://christiehawkes.com/summer-bucket-list/. We’d love to have you join us. Happy winter!

  2. I love posts like this, makes you think. I try not to make plans…I wake up and hopefully will achieve something…make someone smile, laugh.. Not sure with my blogging over Christmas. If there is tennis on the TV then I may be just doing lots. My housemates mum is coming to stay with us for a few days and she is a tragic Tennis TV watcher…she is 82 so thats ok 🙂

  3. I love the gentle little life lesson that this meditation gave you. Are feelings are what they are, it doesn’t usually work to try to change them in the moment, or even worse, berate yourself for them. I’ve never tried a guided meditation app. Most days I meditate well on my own, but sometimes I am tired and uninspired and don’t do well on my own or even skip meditating all together. I don’t know why I haven’t tried a guided meditation app before!

    • It is a good life lesson, Michele–one that I have to be retaught on occasion. If you want to check out the Simple Habit app, they have a free version that offers a limited number of meditations and then, of course, a premium one with lots to choose from. I know there are others, but I haven’t tried them.

  4. Hi Christie I am experiencing a range of emotions at the moment. I am excited about Christmas and spending time with the family but I also had a health scare last week with lots of medical tests. I’m okay but feel drained at the moment. Thank you for being part of our wonderful #MLSTL community and I’m sending you and your family love for a very Happy Christmas and a wonderful New Year. xx

    • I’m sorry you had to go through that, especially right before the holidays, Sue. I am glad to hear that you are okay, and I hope you are able to relax and enjoy the family on Christmas. Thank you for bringing this #MLSTL community together. XO

  5. Hi, Christie – My mantra is similar to Janet’s. “Don’t should upon yourself, and do not let others should upon you!””Meeting yourself where you are” is great advice for all.
    Wishing you a safe, warm and happy Christmas and a wonderful year ahead!

    • I like that mantra, Donna. Thanks for sharing. I also wish you and yours a wonderful Christmas and a happy new year. Thank you for your support and friendship in 2018. Here’s to more in 2019!

  6. Hi Christie – you’re so right, moods come and go – and we can’t always be all sunshine and Pollyanna. Sometimes we’re allowed to be a bit flat or a bit sad or a bit “whatever” because we know that it’s part of life and the good times will roll around again.
    Thanks so much for being part of our MLSTL and for your friendship and encouragement throughout the year (much appreciated!) – I’ve shared your post on my SM – Merry Christmas! 🙂

    • You’re so right Leanne. In this case, I was feeling more enthusiasm by lunchtime. I have also appreciated your support and friendship this past year. I’m not sure I’d still be blogging if I hadn’t found this warm community. I know I wouldn’t be enjoying it this much. Thanks for all you do. Merry Christmas to you and yours. I wish you a happy, fulfilling new year.

  7. Hi Christie, I also enjoy the Holiday Cheer oil and have it in my diffuser everyday this week! Everyone comments on how festive it smells! Life is full of ups and downs and our moods go with the flow don’t they? I’m experiencing a low time too but like you, I’ll get through it. Have shared for #mlstl . Happy holidays to you.

    • I love this oil; they’ve definitely captured the holiday smell. Life is full of ups and downs, and our spirits ebb and flow. If we can accept all emotions as legitimate parts of our lives, instead of trying to quash them or push them away, we are more at ease. Thank you for your support and friendship over this past year. Wishing you the best that all of life has to offer in 2019.

  8. Hi Christie I’m enjoying the build up to Christmas but find myself thinking about my son and the memories we made at Christmas. Sounds like meditation is really working for you. I haven’t had much luck with it, unfortunately. Merry Christmas to you and your family Christie, I’ve enjoyed getting to know ow you this year on #MLSTL

    • Hello Jennifer. The holidays do certainly stir up all emotions, especially for those of us who have lost loved ones. I miss my brother and my best friend, who were both a huge part of my holiday celebrations. I imagine it’s even more intense when it’s your child you are longing for. I do hope your fond memories bring you joy. I stuck with meditation for several months before I began to notice a difference–and it’s not always while I’m meditating, though at times it is. Mostly, it’s more of an underlying sense of peace and the ability to recognize stress building and breath myself calm. Have you tried guided meditation? I think it’s much easier to start that way. I, too, have enjoyed getting to know you Jennifer. I look forward to another year of building our friendship.

  9. Christie, I love the message about accepting the negative emotions as just being where you are at the moment. We so often try and push anything negative away, but sometimes it’s good to just let it be. Being in the moment, accepting it. Thanks – A great message for me to keep hearing. Merry Christmas!

  10. One of my yoga teachers told us, “Everything is already ok.” I try to keep that in mind when I’m feeling out of sorts. My husband and I meditate together. Sometimes with just a timer and sometimes a guided meditation.

    • I love that Jennifer–both the wisdom from your yoga teacher and the fact that you and your husband meditate together. I haven’t quite convinced my husband to join me, but I’ll keep trying. 🙂

  11. Hello Christie! How lovely to come by you via Donna at Retirement Reflections! I’m so pleased is how I’m feeling right now!

    I’ve been meditating for a very long while – TM – first thing in the morning propped up in my bed against the pillows, legs folded. Who knows where I go, but I like to think/feel that I reach a still point even if it’s just momentary which carries me through the day. I’ve thought of guided meditations .. I’ll look into that.

    Those words, should, must, expect, are words that deserve to be expunged from our vocabulary!

    Re: the holiday spirit … not quite yet. Still a fair bit of shopping to do food-wise for the Christmas Day fare. But my younger son and his wife are due here from Cape Town some time later, and when they’re here, the family will be together. This will be the entree into the spirit!

    All good wishes for you and family over the festive season and again, I’m very pleased to meet you. I’ve signed up to receive your posts.

    • Welcome Susan! I’m so glad you stopped by. Thank you for taking the time to comment and to sign up for the email notifications. I look forward to getting to know you better. Enjoy your family and holiday celebrations!

  12. Christmas is bittersweet for me. I’m so happy my mom is living close by but I’m sad that she has dementia and isn’t the mom I remember. But we make the best of it and still we can share a lot of happy experiences. I’ve struggled a bit more this year at finding some holiday spirit. I can’t say why exactly. But I’m thankful to be healthy and safe and getting to spend time with my brothers and sister.

    • I’m glad that you are still able to have some happy times with your mom, Jean. Dementia is such a cruel disease. I hope that the holiday spirit will find you, but if not, we simply do the best we can muddling through and taking the bits of joy as we find them. All the best to you and your family. May you be surrounded by love and well supported.

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