“The sky is perfectly blue. The clouds are perfect too. And here I am with you, what could be more right?” ~Winnie-The-Pooh
When was the last time you went on a picnic? You know, the whole deal: prepared food and drinks ahead of time, packed a basket and blanket, and headed to a local park or beach or under a nearby tree surrounded by something other than concrete? There is something special, magical really, about eating outdoors and enjoying nature—it causes us to slow down and take in the moment.
Today, this post is written to plant this idea in your mind: Open up to the possibility of heading outdoors for a picnic, even if it is just for a couple of hours in the sun (with a hat and sunscreen) or under the shade of a tree. I’m suggesting that you take a look at your schedule and block out this time to spend with family, friends, or just you. When was the last time you scheduled time like this?
We are so busy going and doing, so think about this time as a time of being—being with nature, being in the moment with others, being with you. This can be a great opportunity to connect, or reconnect, with the people in your life—or to connect with yourself. Imagine sitting under a tree or at the beach or lake, sleeping, reading, or having a meaningful conversation. Once you get settled, put the phones and tablets away on silent (maybe toss them in the empty picnic basket) and use this precious time to be in the moment, taking it in with your whole being.
I have found it so important to find opportunities in my daily life to intentionally be in the moment. We are not used to being in the now, so take this time to practice Focused Attention. We can actually let go of all cares and concerns for these few hours and really make an effort to be fully present in each moment. Become one with everything around you—the birds, trees, water, friends—and let any past regrets or future worries float away like the clouds in the sky. This is your time to simply be.
Before you eat, take a few moments of silence, breathing in the beauty of life and the fresh air, really feeling the warmth of the sun, vibrating with the ocean waves, or listening to the soft sounds of the breeze as the leaves rustle in the trees. Imagine in that very moment that all is well with the world and that you are a magnificent part of the whole of life.
Today, we are busier than ever, trying to keep up with the speed of life, which makes it more important than ever to find time to connect with ourselves, connect with nature, and connect with others in a way that nourishes us and strengthens us. This connection within is everything. Our courage, our love, our ability to live our lives confidently with a deep sense of well-being are all rooted in this connection.
Before you say no to this idea of a picnic, open up to the possibility, imagine how it could be in your life, and just do it. Spend time connecting, being in the precious moment, feeling gratitude for Mother Nature and for your life.
I would love to hear your experiences. I’m grateful for all of you every day.
Love and blessings, Barb