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4 Seasons in one Day

Living in the West of Scotland means there is no great surprise when the weather changes in an instant.  In fact, it is very common to experience sunshine, rain, hailstones then back to sunshine again in the space of 1 hour let alone one day!

What is fascinating, however, is to pay attention to the shift from one to the next.

I was sitting looking out of my bedroom window the other day and happened to notice the transition from sun to rain happening before my eyes.  I am lucky to have a fantastic outlook right over Glasgow from my bedroom window.  When I look out I can see right over the roofs of the houses opposite, over the train lines towards landmarks in the city centre and out to the Campsie Hills beyond.  On a clear day I can even see Bechanging weathern Lomond.

On this particular day, I was looking out towards the hills in the distance and became aware of the subtle changes in the colour, tone and texture of the sky.  A great darkness loomed in the distance, covering up the Campsies that were visible just 10 minutes before.  As I watched, the darkness spread like a heavy blanket being pulled up tight around the chin, gradually covering the city in a wet gloom and obscuring the landmarks.  Before I knew it, the bright, sunshine lit room became dark and the heavens opened.  For a good 15 minutes the rain was bouncing off the roof, the pavement, the cars and then, as suddenly as it came, the rain stopped, the darkness lifted and I found myself sitting once again in that bright, sunshine lit room looking out over a now glistening Glasgow.

That dark cloud of rain advancing across the landscape could easily have been a metaphor for our experience or our mood.  Have you ever noticed how quickly you can shift from feeling positive, content, happy to feeling irritated, restless, annoyed?  Sometimes our mood, and as a result our experience of whatever or whomever we are with at the time, changes in an instant.  We don’t even notice it happening, we are at the mercy of some unknown phenomomenon that we appear to have not control over.

But wait…..what if the shift in our mood is like the shift in the weather?  What if we had a broader awareness of what was going on around us, as if we were sitting looking out a window with a great vantage over our whole experience?  We might notice the change coming.  We might notice the subtle change in the colour or tone of our experience before it decends upon us.

And what then?  Well, if we notice it, we can be better prepared for it.  Just like putting your umbrella in your pocket before you head out for the day (something that we do automatically here in the West of Scotland!).

Simply pausing, lifting our head up out of the busy-ness we often find ourselves in and noticing the changing landscape within us, over time, enables us to become better at dealing with (and maybe even preventing) those shifts in mood when can turn our exprience from a positive one to a negative one.  Noticing the tension in our jaw, the fluttering in the stomach, the heat building around our face or the frown forming on our brow can be enough to alert us to the impending storm and give us the choice to move ourselves towards the sunshine.

Try it out today.  Pause once in a while and notice the shift that may be going on inside you.

 

Interested in learning more about Mindfulness?  Why not consider one attending one of my Mindfulness Based Living Courses?

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