Column: From first to last breath

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Commentary by Sally Brown Bassett

sallyA quote from an inspirational book entitled Happily Grateful has resonated with me the past few weeks. “Look at things as though you are seeing them either for the first or the last time”.

As I continuously discover boundless joy by being with my first grandchild, who is now five months old, I realize part of it is watching her see and experience things for the first time.  A recent trip to the zoo was fascinating as Olivia fastened her eyes on a zebra, giraffe, and a wart hog. Then later her mouth created a big O as she saw the different colorful fish in an indoor exhibit.    

On the other end of the spectrum you might have heard the sad news about the death of former President of Butler University, Bobby Fong. What a wonderful, joyful man. His last hours were enjoying the Colts and Broncos football game with his wife and wearing his favorite Peyton Manning shirt. Later he went up to bed and died from a heart attack. Death is inevitable but Bobby lived life to the fullest and left this earth in a very peaceful way.

The lesson to be learned here is to practice mindfulness so that you do enjoy life from your first to your last breath. This year has been called the “year of mindful living” by the Huffington Post. “No longer an activity reserved for the new age set, the public is looking to mindfulness as an antidote to stress and burnout, technology addiction and digital distractions, and a sense of time famine and constant busyness.”

Here is a list of ways to practice mindfulness:

•Take a walk and commune with nature

•Unitask not multitask

•Meditate on your breath

•Find gratitude in everything!

•Turn off your cell phone and be present

•Get out of your comfort zone and try new things

May you truly see things as if for the first or the last time. We take life for granted sometimes and the latter suggestion makes you think again. 

Until next time…

Namaste!


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