Cultivating Mindfulness

Part of me feels like apologizing for not living up to my expectations, for feeling like I haven’t accomplished what I held myself accountable to achieve this past week.  To be honest, my “to-do” cup has runneth over. I’m feeling overwhelmed, cranky, perpetually tired and I’m sitting here feeling frustrated because I have no idea what to write about mindfulness that hasn’t already been written.  So, I’ve decided to share a recent story that I’m hoping might resonate with you.

Last Saturday, I hit the “screw-it” button and went mountain biking with my son and grandson although I had a huge list of things I needed to get done.  For me, mindfulness is giving myself permission to be in the moment and trust that everything else will get done - often easier said than done! I’ve spent most of my life forgetting this truth - it is always now. The sunny day, the opportunity to spend time with family, have fun and enjoy the moments. More often, I’ve chosen to prioritize my work “to-do” list.  My work ethic has contributed to many things I’m proud of in my life, but I have regrets too - moments that I will never have an opportunity to get back.

“When you are present in this moment, you break the continuity of your story of past and future.  Then true intelligence arises, and also love”- Eckhart Tolle

We often fail to appreciate what we have until we’ve lost it. Recovery is about giving ourselves permission to start where we are - perfectly imperfect, to increase awareness and start to make incremental changes in our lives. Cultivating mindfulness is proven to reduce pain, anxiety, and depression; improve cognitive function; and even produce changes in the brain related to learning and memory, emotional regulation, and self-awareness.  Connecting with breath, meditation, spirituality, nature, movement and listening to our thoughts and feelings are some of the ways we can practice mindfulness.

It was a beautiful sunny day yesterday, the mountains and my family were calling again to go riding and I listened and enjoyed the moments.  Mindfulness is not a passive practice. It takes courage and commitment to do things differently. What stories of your past or future are stopping you from being present in the moment? What steps can you take to cultivate mindfulness in your daily practice?

Each month at our SHE RECOVERS Sharing Circles Sea to Sky Group we focus on a different topic that supports building recovery capital and resilience in our lives.  Kim is a Certified Life & Recovery Coach and SHE RECOVERS Coach and facilitates the monthly circles. For more information or to join us, please visit Sea to Sky Coaching or contact Kim at


Rob’s Corners at Garibaldi Provincial Park