Monthly Mindfuls: November

Monthly Mindfuls are my way of staying focused and productive without feeling overwhelmed and scattered. I make goals, in a variety of categories, and go back to these goals all month long. With another month, comes new goals. So let’s welcome November!

I’ve spent the past few days reflecting on October and looking forward to this next month. I’m super excited to visit my best friend and her new baby in Chicago, and also for spending Thanksgiving in Pittsburgh with Matt’s family. I also can’t wait to get going on some new intentions. Keep reading to find out more about this month’s mindful living game plan.

Do – One of my more far-reaching life goals is to continue the process of simplifying and decluttering our home. There’s just too much stuff everywhere. We currently live in a consumer culture, where many people aspire to buy and own more. I’m moving away from that consumer mentality and moving toward a life of owning fewer, better things with a lessened attachment to “stuff”. But you can’t achieve a minimalist, simplified life overnight. So this month, I’m tackling our front hall closet, where 85% of our stuff ended up. Going through this space and deciding what we really need vs what’s purely sentimental or flat out unused will be a major step forward in my mission to be more minimalist.

Create – One of the things I love most about the holiday season is, of course, the food. But because I don’t like eating meat or poultry, and because I try to limit dairy, I can’t enjoy many of the dishes I grew up loving. Developing some go-to healthy-ish, straight-forward and produce-centric holiday recipes will not only be a ton of fun, but will also make each holiday season going forward a bit less stressful.

Experience – Entertain friends at home to kickoff the holiday season. Nurturing close friendships and spending quality time with good friends gets more challenging as the years go on, but these experiences are essentially important for feeling connected and supported in a world that often makes you feel small and alone.

Nourish – My mornings have been slipping lately. I’ll sleep in until the very last possible minute, then I rush through the AM to get to work. I frantically straighten-up the apartment, take Cheddar for a quick walk and depart with a sense of anxiety. A morning routine, including meditation, is incredibly important because it sets the tone for the whole day.

Give – Sometime ago, I read an article by Dr. Sanjay Gupta talking about the hunger crisis in America. Hunger is definitely a global problem, but many people don’t realize that this is also a major problem in powerful, wealthy countries too. I love food, my whole life revolves around it. More and more I find myself thinking of how much food I eat, my clients eat and everyone around me eats. And then I think about how much food is wasted because it’s not viewed as scarce or too expensive. Reality check, 40% of food in the United States is wasted. Yes, 40%. That’s insane. It hurts my heart thinking that so many of my fellow Americans think of food as an out-of-reach luxury. Not wasting food is something I’m very conscious of on a daily basis, but I know I can do better. However, it’s about more than just reducing my personal food waste. I’d also like to find a way to more directly contribute to solving the problem of hunger in America. Curious about Dr. Gupta’s article, read it here!

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