Project 52 Stay Awake Quiet Your Mind


This is Week 17 of {Project 52} Stay Awake. You are welcome to join in anytime during this year-long mindful living photo project. please upload your photos to our Project 52: Stay Awake Flickr group so we can see what an Awake life means for you. And, if you also use Instagram please use the hashtag #awakeproject13. 


The News.


Social Media.

Photo sharing.

Dr. Google.

The next best recipe.

DIY cold remedies.

Do we really need so much of knowledge? Of course, it feels strange to give you this message via a blog post that I will soon link to on social media. I realize the oxymoron. I do.

But, here’s the thing. This information we receive from the vast world of the internet — the support, the ideas, the inspiration, the happy feelings, the friendships — there is absolutely a place for it all in our lives. It’s the world we live in now. It’s not going to change anytime soon. I love it. You love it. I am a better woman/mother/creative person for it all.

But, we must, must, must learn how to balance it.

This week is Screen-Free Week. You could do as many will do and go cold turkey. Power everything down for the week.

And then twiddle your thumbs.

Then next week you will feel so refreshed that you’re going to jump right back in 100 percent knowing full well that you will burnout on it all again.

Or, you can learn to work balance of real life and online life in to your everyday life so that it never fully consumes your mind. I went on this same tirade last year with a few posts such as Amaze Yourself & Unplug, Creative Ways to Break a TV Habit and I even asked YOU to take a Mindful Screens Pledge, vowing that you’d be more intentional with how and when you used a device as a family.

The balancing trick is in the release —  the quieting of your own mind from the information overload.

Let’s face it, on top of the Internet throwing things at you, you also have real life dramatics unfolding as well. It’s always something — issues with the in-laws and other relatives, co-workers, neighbors and other people who seem to have nothing better to do but criticize and create problems where problems never should exist.

Have you ever just felt tired? Exhausted? But you’ve had plenty of sleep and you didn’t even really work that hard?

It’s mental exhaustion. It’s different than physical exhaustion. It lasts longer. Fatigue just becomes a way of life.

That’s our minds saying I’ve had enough. I’ve had enough. I’ve had enough.

If you take in something with your mind, if you feel a lot of feelings (and we all do!) those feelings and that information needs to be released/expressed/reflected upon.

You need to quiet your mind offline.

That unplugged release can come in many forms … with pauses, breaks, quiet time, solitude, trying something new, savoring, experiencing moments that leave you in awe.

The more of these powered down moments you put into your life — the ones we talk about so very much in The Abundant Mama Project — the more you will walk in balance and feel centered, even if you did stay up way too late surfing the ‘net.

5 Ways to Quiet Your Mind

Here are 5 Simple Ways to Quiet Your Mind:

1. Write it out — Take everything you’ve thought about, worried about, gotten angry about, felt disappointed about or even really excited about and write it all down in the form of crazy, informal, ungrammatically correct sentences. Dump it all no matter what time of day you are in. This exercise works while drinking coffee as much as it works while laying in bed waiting for sleep to come. I’ve also done my fair share at 4 a.m. when I couldn’t sleep. If sentences won’t form, write lists. Lots and lots of lists.

2. Walk it out — Walk until the thoughts start to slow down. Until the pictures — the choices, the decisions — all become clearer. Walk until things just start to make sense to you.

3. Breathe it out — Find yourself a meditation or relaxation video or CD and lay down flat (us Yoga Mama’s call it Savasana) and rest. Be at ease. Chill out. Stop thinking. Let it all fall down through the earth. Let every muscle relax.

4. Create it out — Make something — you know, with your hands. Create something. You never have to show another human being. Or, perhaps you want to. Just pick your favorite thing to make and get busy making it. Be a maker. Makers are the new black.

5. Zen it Out — Meditation comes in many forms. Sitting and breathing can be done on a cushion, a bench, a chair … anywhere you can do nothing other than breathe in and breathe out. I call this doing nothing and yet I still find it so hard to work into my day.

{Project 52: Stay Awake} This week for our Project 52: Stay Awake pick one way to Quiet Your Mind and put it to action. And, if you’re really feeling crazy, try all five! Let me know how it goes. Take a photo and link to it. Blog about it. Write in the comments. Or, say and do nothing this week at all about it.


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