Finding stillness in the midst of life is not always easy, in fact, it’s downright hard most days.
So maybe we first start by finding a moment. A moment where there is peace, where the mind quiets, and you feel like you can take a few deep breaths.
It might only be a brief minute or two as you observe a small detail, a beautiful sunset, watching your child sleep, or enjoy the still of the morning with a hot cup of tea or coffee.
If you follow me on Instagram, you may have noticed a new hashtag on some of my posts #bestillmoment. I usually find these moments on my morning walks outside with Bailey or in unexpected places. Like when I look out the window at the back of the house and get to see a Bald Eagle fly by, or when driving home after a weekend visiting my Mom and I see an unusual, beautiful cloud formation, or flowers in bloom or feel the temperature change and a hush fell as I enter a wooded area.
These moments happen when I slow down enough to look around and see, and I mean really see, not just rush by.
Okay, I will admit then sometimes on our walks I’m probably yelling at Bailey to “get back here!” (especially if he is sniffing around a known nutria or porcupine hideout!) but, other than that I do try to pay attention, looking around for details in a scene, small moments, be still moments.
Finding a be still moment is something we have to train ourselves to look for. It doesn’t come naturally. For me, one tool I use is my camera. For you, it might be your camera phone, a small notebook, a journal, or even the notes app on your smartphone.
Document Your Moments
Over time, these can become quite the collection. My Instagram feed is about 99% scenery and landscape photography, it’s fun to look back through my feed and remember where I was and what I was thinking at the time, it can be calming and relaxing. It also helps to motivate me to keep working at the habit of looking for these moments each day.
You can also document these moments by printing a picture and adding it to a journal. Add notes about the When, Where, How, and Why. Don’t forget to include how you felt at that moment.
In the companion journal for the “Be Your Finest Art” book, there are a series of exercises that take you through different ways to observe what is going on around you. The activity I remember most asked you to observe a scene first, and then second explain that scene in words. It’s an interesting exercise to try. I found it hard to watch a beautiful sunrise and later try to describe what I saw in words only, no pictures. I had to get pretty creative and go beneath the surface of generalities to find words that could come close to describing that scene, that moment, I had experienced.
How would you describe one of your be still moments?
Share Your Moments
Don’t forget these moments, don’t stop looking for them. And don’t stop sharing them or start sharing them if you haven’t. You never know who you might encourage along the way. Recently I’ve been getting more and more comments from my Facebook family and friends about looking for my daily picture. They enjoy the moments that I find and share.
To know that I can make a positive impact the life of another in my practice of looking for moments, finding and then sharing it, motivates me to keep looking, to keep searching, and to keep sharing. It is a pretty cool opportunity.
Have you had a be still moment lately? Share it here or join us on Instagram at #bestillmoment
Marta Goertzen is an entrepreneur, writer and nature photographer. She daily explores the trails and beaches of the South Central Oregon Coast with her buddy Bailey. You can follow along on their adventures on Instagram. She is also the author of several books including her newest, “Confident Hope: A Daily Quiet Time Journal”. Start your own daily gratitude practice with our, “7 Days of Gratitude Challenge – A Gratitude Journal Starter Kit”.