Today started off as a typical day, I set 3 alarms – the first one was set for 7:50am, second 8:25am and the final one was set for 9am. Not that I had anything planned that morning but I wanted to wake up earlier. I made a promise to myself that I’d make the most of my days off and not waste it watching tv or sleeping the day away. I hoped that I’d wake up to the second alarm but the night before I stayed up a little too late reading The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin (highly recommended) so it did take all three alarms to wake me up.. When I finally woke up I laid on my back, looking up at the ceiling and instead of reaching for my phone to check my social media I told myself ‘make today different from the others‘ so I decided to meditate.
Rewind to the day before. I spent a relaxing day with my older sister Kim. We planned to go on a hike at Scarborough Bluffs and at night she scheduled an appointment to see this new psychic that me and my other sister Cathy are obsessed with – but that’s a whole other story! We were in such a state of relaxation as we were sitting in silence on a mountain of rocks close to the shoreline looking out at the water. When we were driving to Peterborough to see the psychic we were reminiscing about how relaxed we were and I made a comment “Sister, we should’ve meditated”. I was kind of nervous about her response, worried she’d think I was weird but Kim is a very spiritual person, she’s a yoga instructor for heaven sakes and I knew she wouldn’t judge me but I still waited in anticipation. After waiting what felt like 5 minutes she responded, “Yeah! We should’ve! Why didn’t we?!” Phew! So then and there we made a pact to meditate every morning! I think she sensed hesitation from me and since she knows me so well she added, “If you don’t do it every morning just know I’ll disown you!” Kim is my spirit twin and she’s one of my favourite people in the world! When we’re together we just have so much fun and if I lost her presence my life would incomplete. So of course after that statement my subconscious wouldn’t let me miss a day of meditation. We downloaded an app named Calm to guide us through our practise. The first program was called 7 Days of Calm. Its 10 minute introductory audios of the basics of mindfulness meditation.
So now that you know the backstory let’s fast forward to the present day. So I grabbed my phone, turned on the app, got in a comfy upright position with my palms open on my knees and let the audio guide me through meditation. At the end of the 10 minutes I wanted to set an intention for the day. Deepak Chopra’s article on the 5 Steps to Setting Powerful Intentions states that setting an intention is like planting a seed. At the end of your meditation you’re in a state of restful awareness also known as a quiet field of possibilities. In this state of contentment think of your intentions and let the seed go along with any expectations or self-doubt and just know that no matter the outcome everything will be okay! You don’t have to know the details of how or when it will happen but just allow opportunities and openings to come your way. Like Deepak Chopra says, “The outcome that you try so hard to force may not be as good for you as the one that comes naturally. You have released your intentions into the fertile ground of pure potentiality, and they will bloom when the season is right.”
I’m new to setting intentions so I didn’t have anything planned. I said whatever came to mind at that moment so it was a little all over the place. This is what I said:
“I am strong within my being and nothing negative can enter here(an excerpt my Mom told me to say when I felt insecure). Everything happens for a reason. Have no expectations and you won’t be disappointed. Go into every situation with a positive outcome and be grateful for everything.”
Obviously I’m no poet but whatever I said really resonated with me that day. I started to notice the little things that were going my way that day. First, I had a interview at 11:30am that I was almost late for because of traffic and instead of reacting like I usually do – stressed and tense – I calmed myself down. I told myself that the world wouldn’t end if I was 5 minutes late for the interview. It’s better to arrive late and be in a good state of mind for the interview rather than being early but stressed and frazzled. So I ended up getting there 3 minutes early and completely killing the interview! After that small win I went on with the rest of my day feeling amazing. I went to Starbucks to get an ice coffee with two shots of white mocha to reward myself. As I pulled out my phone to pay with their mobile app I knew I’d have to wiggle my phone, pull it back and forth for the darn thing to scan but that day it happen to scan on the first try! I was amazed! Even the cashier said that that never happens! She was just as shocked as me. Nothing life changing I know but somehow that just added to my happiness!
Then I went to work and the first customer I helped I recognized as one of the barista’s from the Starbucks at the mall. Usually I’d pretend I didn’t recognize him so I didn’t have to make awkward small talk BUT I made a promise to myself to try to be more social on my infinite quest to self improvement. So I asked him, “No work today?” he responded, “I’m going after this. Your name is Amanda right?” I was so flattered he remembered my name! Not that he was cute or anything but out of all the people he helps in a day he remembered MY name! After that we talked a little longer and before he left he said, “Next time you come by ask for Jason and I’ll give you a free drink.” Again I was SO flattered! He didn’t have to do that but just the fact that he offered made me feel so special.
Working off a higher high than I was already in one of the new trainees at work brought me back to reality. She came into work with red puffy eyes. When me and my coworkers asked her what was wrong she broke down and told us her Dad had suffered from a stroke two days prior. I’m an emotionally compassionate person so although I didn’t know her very well I just felt so bad for her. So I decided to extend the olive branch and tell her a personal story about my Mom and her history of stroke. I’m not gonna go into detail here but I could tell by her body language that the little anecdote helped. Although she was teary eyed I knew she could see the light at the end of the tunnel.
Moral of that long story is, by being in a positive state of mind, having no expectations and setting an intentions can have a huge effect on the outcome of your day. So my friends stay positive, be nice, take time to rationalize your thoughts and appreciate the little wins!