February 23, 2006

For some species, winter is a time of hibernation. And even though we don’t hibernate (most of us, that is), our rhythms do change: the days are shorter, we stay inside more, we’re less active. I think it’s fitting that winter is also when we end one year and begin the next. What better time to slow down and reflect on our lives, right?

Winter on Shelter Island…it’s difficult to explain what it’s like here this time of year to people who haven’t experienced it. There’s the good–that soothing silence when you step outside the morning after a big snowfall. The bad–the inconvenience of stores closing earlier. And the ugly–no late ferry on the weekends.

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Being Present – The Art of Paying Attention

February 1, 2006

For many of us, the phrase “pay attention” conjures up memories of parents, teachers, and maybe even bosses who would scold us for not being focused on what they felt we “should” be focused on. But paying attention has a much deeper and fundamental meaning. Paying attention is the equivalent of being present.

We’ve all had intense moments of presence. For example, someone driving in front of you brakes really hard and you almost hit them. You feel present then, don’t you? But it’s also possible to be present on a more regular basis. Before I explain how, let’s first discuss the rationale for being present.

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