It’s a crazy world we live in. Chaos. Suffering. Pain. Loss. Love. Hope. Despair. Laughter. Tears. Fears. Smiles.  Living with ease can be a difficult thing to do.  Furthermore, living a life where you approach difficult situations in a softened way, can sometimes feel out of reach.

Recently, I’ve been fascinated with the word soften. It seems like this word and theme is continuously popping up in my life.  From my daily #Truthbombs to the books I read and discussions I have.  I have come to realize this is a message I need to hear and incorporate into my life.

So, what does soften mean?

From a physical perspective – I believe it’s a practice of releasing any unnecessary gripping in your body.  Releasing and softening those areas in your body where you hold tension and stress.

From a mindful point of view – I believe it means to soften your approach.  Whether it be how you interact with someone, how you go about a particular activity, or how you talk to yourself.

The message to soften can be interpreted in so many ways, depending on how you look at it.

Soften your approach.

Soften your tone.

Soften the way you hold your body upright.

Soften the delivery of your message.

Soften the language in which you speak to yourself and others.

It’s especially important to soften nowadays.  When the world is filled with chaos and our televisions and media outlets plague us with misery and disastrous events – it’s so easy, if not natural, to feel anger, rage, pain, disappointment…

But before you get wrapped up in the hype of negative energy in the world -soften your approach to life.

Soften to be flexible.

Soften to hear the message underneath heated emotions.

Soften to create more peace.

Soften to let go and allow forgiveness into your life.

Soften to laugh more and relax.

Soften to simply be without unnecessary constraint.

I was recently given a list of tiny habit examples of softening.  Here are a few from that list:

  • After I pick up my coffee cup, I will exhale slowly, see the mug and coffee, and inhale the scent.
  • After I detect I’m in a difficult moment, I will take a breath, thinking “soft belly, kind eyes.”
  • After I put my hand on the doorknob at day’s end, I will slow down to listen and see.

The above was written by Kelly Koerner, PhD

To take it a step further, here are my ideas and personal ways I like to soften. Hopefully, these will help you create more opportunities to soften and live with more ease in your life:

  • Set a reminder on your phone that says something like:  Look around the room and notice 3 things that you’re grateful for.
  • Practice completely tensing your body, in every area possible and then exhale and release all the tension.  Soften into your chair like a slug.
  • Put a new desktop or screen saver on your electronic devices that remind you to soften your approach to life.

Final thoughts:

Tension. Stress. Anxiety. Anger. Rage. These are all emotions that are flooding our world and impacting how we live our lives

If you’re struggling or feeling overwhelmed, take a moment to soften by trying any of the exercises above.

Your Turn:

What practices do you have that help you live with more ease?

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