Tag Archives: when did you stop dancing

Snow day

2015-01-30 09.05.53

We had a snow day the other week. It was a perfect flurry that made everything look picture perfect and yet it didn’t totally disrupt the trains and roads, so win-win all round.

On the eight week mindfulness courses I teach there is much reference from week one of the beginner’s mind. Participants are asked to eat a raisin as though they have never seen one before and then this continues in their home practice by doing a daily task with the spotlight of their full attention.

If ever there is something that reconnects us with beginner’s mind it must surely be walking to school with two kids after a snow flurry. The same old tired journey we do everyday was suddenly magical and exciting to them. The alley we traverse (often much covered in dog poo) was transformed into a Narnia-esque secret snow tunnel.

There were oooohs, there were arrghs, there were a few soggy tumbles as well but with the help of kindly curiosity I found myself quelling the urge to say ‘come on’ (surely the most overused two words on the school run?) and instead just marveled at their marveling. At moments like that I find myself thinking, ‘this moment, must remember this moment.’

It seems to me children are naturally mindful and we (society, parents, teachers, life, soft cops) squash it out of them, telling them to hurry and multi-task so we can squeeze all the things that need to be done into one day.

How wonderful it was to just take our time, marvel at the beauty of winter and, for one day at least, give ourselves permission not to rush.

Today’s total practice time: 30 minutes with the kids (it is half term)


2nd February 2014


It’s been a lovely weekend, mainly because I listened to my body and took note. I have had a sniffling cold for ten days and it still hasn’t gone. Yesterday I was due to go to a conference in London on education ‘From cradle to grave’ but when I woke up still sniffling I decided I needed a day off from commuting and tearing around. It’s good to take a foot off the pedal but sometimes, on the hamster wheel of life, it’s easier to just plough on. I always used to plough on but recently I notice I am making more skilful choices. A day off was much needed. Obviously being stuck in a house with two children is not really a day off but it was a slightly more restful day at least. ┬áToday a friend was having afternoon tea at a stately home with cake a plenty for her birthday. We talked about the merits of being civilised V going dancing. When did you stop dancing? Is a question often asked on mindfulness courses, I loved being civilised on someone else’s behalf and yet decided for my own birthday I want to dance! Today’s total practice time: 15 minutes

Young Woman Meditating on the Floor