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Embracing the Art of “Being”: Lessons from a Bearded Dragon

bearded dragon

In the whirlwind of our everyday lives, it’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle, always chasing after the next thing on our to-do list. But amidst all the chaos, there’s something truly special about just being in the moment. And believe it or not, my bearded dragon Remi has taught my kids and me a thing or two about the beauty of slowing down and simply being present.

Remi’s presence in our home has been nothing short of magical. Despite her small stature, she radiates a sense of calm and tranquility that has a way of spreading to everyone around her. Unlike us humans, who often find ourselves lost in thoughts of the past or worries about the future, Remi lives entirely in the now. She’s a master of mindfulness, soaking up every moment with a sense of curiosity and wonder.

She finds joy in the simplest of things

Whether Remi is lounging in her terrarium or exploring the great outdoors with me, Remi reminds us to stop and smell the roses (or whatever it is bearded dragons like to smell, for her, it’s probably raspberries (they are her favorite 😊).

She finds joy in the simplest of things – the rustle of leaves in the wind, the chatter of birds overhead, or the warmth of the sun on her scales. And whenever I catch her watching me with a perplexed look on her face while I’m multitasking or rushing around, I can’t help but wonder what she’s thinking. Maybe she’s wondering why us humans are always in such a hurry, or why we can’t seem to sit still and enjoy the moment like she does.

But regardless of what she’s thinking, Remi’s presence serves as a gentle reminder to slow down, breathe, and appreciate the beauty of the present moment.

Whether it’s spending quality time with loved ones, taking a leisurely stroll through nature, or simply sitting quietly and soaking up the sights and sounds all around, we’re learning to prioritize the art of “being” over “doing.”

In a world that often glorifies busyness and achievement, Remi reminds us that true happiness lies not in the pursuit of goals, but in the simple act of being fully present in each moment. And as we continue to learn from our wise bearded dragon, we’re grateful for the profound lessons she teaches us about the beauty of embracing the art of “being.” I wanted to share this to show that we can find gifts or reminders in the smallest of experiences in our lives. In fact, when I slow down and practice “being” I find even more of them all around me.

woman walking on a nature trail practicing the art of being mindful

If you are wondering how you can practice “being” in your everyday life here are some ideas to get you started:

Cloud Watching: Find a comfortable spot outdoors and spend time simply observing the clouds as they pass by. Notice their shapes, colors, and movements without any distractions. (This is one of my favorites)

Body Scan Meditation: Lie down or sit comfortably and bring your attention to different parts of your body, starting from your toes and moving up to your head. Notice any sensations or tensions without judgment, allowing yourself to fully connect with your body in the present moment.

Sensory Awareness Walk: Go for a slow, mindful walk outdoors and pay attention to your senses. Notice the sights, sounds, smells, and textures around you as you move, staying fully present in the experience.

Mindful Eating: Take time to eat a piece of fruit or a small snack mindfully. Notice the colors, textures, and flavors as you chew slowly and savor each bite, focusing your attention on the sensory experience of eating.

Loving-Kindness Meditation: Sit quietly and cultivate feelings of compassion and kindness towards yourself and others. Repeat phrases such as “May I be happy, may I be healthy, may I be at ease” and extend these wishes to others in your life.

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Nature Meditation: Find a quiet spot in nature and sit or lie down comfortably. Close your eyes and listen to the sounds of the natural world around you, allowing yourself to be fully present and immersed in the moment.

Breath Awareness: Sit quietly and focus on your breath as it enters and leaves your body. Notice the sensations of each inhale and exhale, using your breath as an anchor to keep you grounded in the present moment.

Mindful Observation: Choose an object such as a flower, tree, or piece of artwork, and spend time observing it closely. Notice its colors, shapes, and details, allowing yourself to fully appreciate its beauty without any judgments or interpretations.

Gratitude Practice: Take a few moments each day to reflect on three things you’re grateful for. Focus on the positive aspects of your life and express gratitude for the blessings, big and small, that you’ve experienced.

Sit in Silence: Find a quiet space where you won’t be disturbed and simply sit in silence for a few minutes. Allow your mind to rest and observe any thoughts or feelings that arise without getting caught up in them. This can feel very uncomfortable in the beginning, notice that. I invite you to sit with that uncomfortableness and see if, with some deep slow breaths, the feeling eases as you become more present.

These mindful practices can help you cultivate a deeper sense of presence, awareness, and connection with yourself and the world around you.

By incorporating these moments of “being” into your daily life, you can reduce stress, increase self-awareness, and find greater peace and fulfillment in each moment.

woman in a yellow shirt sitting in the grass practicing the art of being mindful