Bella Grace’s 5th birthday is rapidly approaching (cue fireworks!), and we are taking a trip down memory lane to celebrate.
While recalling our favorite articles from past issues, we remembered how much we loved “23 Ways to Stop Living on Autopilot” and thought we’d share it with you here on Grace Notes today. This collection of inspiration for being more intentional with each moment was featured in Bella Grace Issue 7!
23 Ways to Stop Living Life on Autopilot
I thread parts of my journey like a memory catcher. I play the radio loud to create a mood. I play “I spy” along the way. I search for animals, signs in nature to highlight the ordinary path. Sometimes I pick a color to focus on, like searching for all things red in nature.
— Ella Wilson
I have a “watch” that instead of numbers on its face simply says “NOW” in big, bold black-and-white letters to remind me there is no time but now.
— Vickie Kammerer
I’ve learned to limit my planning. Too much living is missed in planning for moments that may never arrive.
— Kim Collister
The secret is to fully embrace all that seems uneventful: the cleaning, the cooking, the groceries, the to-do lists are all full of opportunity to connect with my soul and create a beautiful, peaceful life.
— Frances Peets
I wait to get up out of bed and brush my hands through my baby’s hair after a sleepless night. I wrap my fingers around my grandmother’s Swedish mug and I sit and sip my coffee, slowly. I put on a record and dance atop the old wood floor in my little living room. I put on my blazer, look out onto the avenue below and write whatever comes to mind. I hold a pipe in my hands because it soothes me. I wonder and dream and some days need a nap. I sing out loud because I’m not afraid even though I don’t know how. I must do these things. The world tells me I’m wasting my time, but I don’t mind a bit. They can have the blur of this life. I’ll cling to the spaces in time where I meet with myself, in the quiet moments of the day.
— Jennifer Lynn Chapman
Art! There is art all around me. Putting the breaks on life slowing to a stop to really appreciate the beauty that surrounds me. The curvatures, lines, and light … the movement of water without sound. Art. It’s a Divine distraction.
— Brandi J Myers
Something about my camera, having that lens to my eye, allows me to see differently, to find the pockets of magic in everyday life. I’m learning to see, not just look.
— Paula Bogdan
I have a half-hour dance party for myself almost every night when I get home from work. I am not a good singer, but I will sing aloud to the songs on my playlists or crank them up to 11 and get really into it.
— Heather Taylor
I lay on the floor! Read a book under the Christmas tree, eat lunch under the table with the kids, watch a movie from a behind-the-couch tent, play games in front of the stove while dinner cooks. The floor is the place to be. Barefoot, arms spread eagle wide, looking at the world upside down.
— Jaime Michelle
Really listen. At the end of the day, journal one new thing that you learned just by listening to someone or something you normally might tune out.
— Joanne Lacey McDade
Take a moment to verbally express the beauty of the present moment.
I recently began photo documenting my Saturdays. It’s a way for me to stay present all day to the beautiful moments of home and family life. Some days I only take one image, other days it’s an hourly practice.
— Vanessa Simpson
I always keep a camera nearby. It makes me look at the world in a different way when I try to imagine it through a lens. It’s amazing how often something worth a picture happens when you’re aware and paying attention.
I stop myself throughout the day, take a deep breath and become keenly in touch with the sights, sounds, and smells around me. I focus on the details of these sensory experiences so that I can be truly present.
I listen to my heart and follow it. I follow it to whatever wild and crazy adventure it leads me on. When my heart tells me to do something new and daring, I do it.
— Lacie Fitts
I take off my shoes. Whether I’m at my desk, driving, walking on the sidewalk, at the lake, or in my yard. Feeling the cool moist earth, or the warmth of the sun-kissed sidewalk cement makes me feel so free and alive. It lets me be a little wild in an all too uptight world. It reminds me to ground myself and wake up.
— Kelly Jackson
I look up. I sky watch. I hunt for wild birds, wayward clouds, scattered branches across my view … anything to remind me that this very moment is never ordinary. Never.