Becoming a Master of Moments

Life is assembled by a series of moments. We can’t buy up a collection of perfect moments and use them over and over again because by nature, they are meant to be unpredictable, spontaneous and fleeting. They can be painful or bliss and the beauty is that no two are identical. As they come to us in the present, they are charged with energy and filled with potential. Our experience of life is determined by how we receive and act on each of these opportunities, presented in disguise. As they approach, do we expand in love or contract in fear? We can spend our moments waiting on a phone call, waiting to find out how someone else is spending their moments, fearing that we’re not a part of their intentions, or we can focus on our own opportunities for growth and expansion. Will you spend yours on hold or living? Waiting or growing?

Coast WaveTo achieve our highest potential, we must constantly pay attention to the opportunities coming our way. Think of them like waves in the ocean. Waves just keep coming; another wave always comes. The waves that come are a perfect metaphor for opportunity because there is always another opportunity to succeed just like there is always another wave to take you to shore. They will continue to come and we should take advantage of the ones we can play on and enjoy. And if the wave of opportunity fizzles out before it reaches the shore, we just wait for the next one. There is no failure; there is no setback, just perseverance, patience and trust.

Every moment brings with it the potential to carry us forward. We can use up all the juice in each one to propel us into the next one and the next one until those individual moments have rolled us into such a strong momentum that we become unstoppable. Then, we have become the master of moments. We can wield our moments and use them to shape a new and better existence for ourselves. People will wonder our trick and not understand how everything we touch turns to gold…but the secret is, we are mastering moments. We are capitalizing on the opportunities the universe gifts us with each tick of the clock and with each step forward as time propels us into the future, one present moment at a time.

The best and most inspiring part for me about learning to master my moments, is knowing that everyone else in the world is out there living in their own moments with unique perspectives and different potential. The combination of energy as people bounce off of one another is limitless. Every time you meet someone new or bump into someone you already know, remember that you’re each living different experiences and doing completely different things with that moment of interaction. If both of you are maximizing your moments, the possibilities are boundless.

Mastering moments is about making creative decisions. By creative decisions, I mean, taking everyday risks like going out for a walk when you might have stayed in. Acting on the question, “who or what might I encounter out there in the world that could maximize the power of this very moment?” Picking a book off the shelf I didn’t know I had, downloading a new song that may inspire me to write my own, calling a friend I haven’t spoken to and learn in talking that I had ideas or advice I didn’t know I had. The best thing about making moves, any moves, is that there are infinite possibilities with each one. It all begins by capitalizing on every single moment. Pick the harder choice, the one that forces you to move and act and hope and believe.

Pay attention to the way one moment flows into the next and the next and the next. Witness the way opportunities abound when you pay attention and move with the flow of the universe.

Things can change overnight; with one phone call or one email or one boss having a thought that leads to one creative decision. There is infinite potential in every single moment for excellence, abundance and success.

As originally published in Soulwoman eMagazine.

A Time for Reflection and Growth

I came across this post on my other blog while preparing for a workshop I’m hosting at my yoga studio on Reflection and Resolutions. I thought it a fitting time, days away from the new year and my birthday, to see exactly what difference a year makes. I did lots of hard work and some serious manifesting in 2013! Here is the post as originally published on the Kristin Daemon journal blog.

Today is my birthday.  I feel fortunate that my birthday comes along with the fresh start of every New Year.  As an adult, I have come to appreciate this and take advantage of that opportunity to check in with myself and look at how far I’ve come, not only in the scope of a new year, but also in the greater scope of my life.  

Our lives stack up so quickly and so densely that it’s necessary for us to look back at intervals after time has made sense of our experiences and removed us from the emotion and fog of it all.  Every year we take on new responsibility and obligations.  We meet new people and have new relationships; we also mourn the loss of people and relationships, and alternately welcome and resist change.  As beings in constant motion, experiencing things on both physical and emotional levels, it’s rare that we take time to sit still and reflect and recognize our process and acknowledge our progress.  When we do take time to do this at the beginning of each year, it’s important to look at these experiences objectively and not to judge anything we did as a mistake or a misstep.  Everything positive and negative we go through leads to a bigger bank of knowledge about ourselves and the world and helps us evolve and make better and better choices moving forward. 

It helps to consider that we often don’t notice the little changes a thing takes to grow, be it a child, a pet or a plant.  But to an outsider looking in who only sees that progress intermittently, the small changes along the way contribute to a great body of change over a period of months or years.  Our lives and our personal progress work like that too.  When I think about all the little changes I made over the course of this year that stacked up to put me here in this time and place under an entirely different set of circumstances than the year before, the progress I made, though it didn’t feel like it along the way, was quite significant. 

Like most people, I think, I tend to get wrapped up in the discomfort of a moment or a series of moments and it’s hard to see the big picture and see that the moments of discomfort I’m feeling during this period of great change are actually baby steps in the right direction; a direction that will take me to my end goal, a life where I get to live my dreams and my passions.  So instead of looking at the discomfort in these moments as obstacles or challenges and dwelling on the sense of unease they create, I need to start looking at them as growing pains.  Instead of feeling down or sad or impatient that I’m not exactly where I want to be right now, I need to appreciate that these moments are exactly what I need to be going through in order to experience expansion.

So now, I set my intentions for a year full of surprises and gifts, challenges and knowledge.  I will leave behind my fear, anxiety, stress and worry over the unknown and choose to embrace it instead.  I will leave behind my unhealthy attachments and create a life of freedom, choices and adventure. 

Happy New Year!

Cultivating Peace

It’s late and I’m sitting in a cozy spot by the fire. The tree is lit by a strand of little red lights that sparkle as they reflect off keepsake ornaments. I’m sipping tea that smells of fresh peppermint and sweet chamomile. The tea and soft blanket around my shoulders warm my body and mind and I look at the gifts, prettily wrapped with heart-felt intentions, under the tree. I remember that the holidays are about love and a special kind of light that glows soft and steady.

I withdraw to the peace of this moment when I need a break from the hustle of the holiday Cultivating Peaceseason. I visit this peace every day by closing my eyes and breathing into the gaps between the chaos. I escape to that peace by the fire before getting out of my car to go into the next store. I can rest in it before opening my laptop to shop online or email the family about holiday plans. It’s so important during this special time of year, to create pockets of time to remember what the holidays are about. There will be chaos, there will be obligations, we will encounter the greed, guilt and consumerism that come with the holiday season. But we can withdraw from all of that. We can look within and return to that cozy place by the fire. We can breathe into silence and keep the stillness with us throughout these crazy days.

Once you create a place for peace within and learn to return to it, create your scene for others. Sit close by the fire and let the silence comfort you and your loved ones. Share a cup of peppermint tea and a blanket. Enjoy a soft, heart-felt conversation. This is the warm holiday spirit we’re all trying so hard to create and provide for our families and friends as we move frantically about the season. Remember that spirit resides in peace; peace within, peace with the members of our families, peace with the universe, peace in silence and stillness. Cultivate holiday spirit and peace this season and bask in the warm, soft glow of love and light.

As published in the December 2013 issue of Curious the Tourist Guide

Being Present in Divine Moments

There are moments when the world around me falls away; when it’s just me and an overwhelming sense of peace and contentment. There was a moment in Bali swaying in a hammock on the beach, listening to my iPod. There was a moment walking through Brooklyn on a cold evening toward the water. There was a moment on a spring afternoon in Morocco when my work was done for the day and I sat in mediation and recently walking past a rose bush on my way to the grocery store. There is one thing these experiences had it common; and that was their capacity to break open my heart for an instant. They provided a rare surge of divinity, helping me tune into my inner knowing on a deep level.

Back in the Hammock

The power of living in the moment was fully realized for me during those seconds in time. In them, I felt fully present and I saw an undisguised truth. When I experience indicators of my authenticity in this way, I know I am exactly where I’m supposed to be. Since I’ve begun the journey to finding myself and my purpose, these moments occur more and more frequently. The clarity and sense of knowing they leave me with are so comforting in my seemingly constant state of transition.

It was an important realization for me that my moments of clarity and peace have not come during the time between bookends or commitments.  They only come to me in freedom. They only come when I allow myself to detach from the web of distractions like work, parties, relationships and other obligations. It’s tough to return to that place of detachment and rare to find yourself there to begin with. Perhaps that is why in our fast paced lives we lose sight of what we’re passionate about and the reason we’re here.

A sudden feeling of unexpected gratitude for what is. That is pleasure; that is delight. The essence of delight, is that it is too quick and subtle to be called happiness, but it is strong enough to be distinguished from neutrality. It would be a fabulous place to spend more time and, maybe, by placing higher importance on living in the moment, it is possible to improve our everyday realities in just such a way. Maybe these moments don’t have to pass so quickly and maybe their longevity would result in a more lasting sense of happiness.

I find there is potential for encounters with pleasure and delight to shift us into a higher state of consciousness.  When we experience the fragrance of the sea, the cackle of a glowing fire or when we wrap our cold hands around a mug of warm tea, we touch this delicate state. In appreciating the small things in life, we practice knowing that all is as it should be; as it is meant to be.

By nature, delight is unexpected. It has the potential to surprise and inspire us. Its spontaneity draws us out of the mundane and helps open our eyes to the wonderful when we’re lost in the probable. It’s a feeling that sneaks from behind to embrace you in a tight hug and makes you feel warm and loved. When I’m out for a walk, lost in reverie, a perfect lavender rose or a hummingbird will catch the corner of my eye and I’ll suddenly remember to pay attention to the beauty of the world again. After all, what is the point of all of this if not to experience and witness the small and pretty things?

Walk a little slower. Stop to smell the roses and feel the sunshine on your face. When you see a pretty view, pull over and pay attention to it. Close your eyes and breathe into this special feeling and notice the sense of peace our connection with nature, beauty and warmth provides. Hang out in these fleeting moments as long as you can.

As published in the July 2013 issue of Soulwoman eMagazine www.soulwomansanctuary.com.