March Into Mindfulness

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Give me 31 days and I’ll show you a happier, more mindful life


I’m sure you can agree we humans are less and less connected… disconnected more now than ever.

For a highly social species that relies on others, this is horrible. I declare March as a month for Mindfulness, and I challenge you to March Into Mindfulness! 😊

Tomorrow, I’m teaching one of my favorite classes, Mindfulness 101. The story behind this class is amusing, but I’ll save that for when you take the class—just know I it’s not something I thought I was qualified to do, despite years of teaching about sensory awareness, mindful eating, the importance of mindset, so on.

Hey, we all need someone to point out our blind spots, right!? We all have shit to work on…

In honor of that class, I wanted to share 5 insights not covered there. In conversations with friends and other business owners lately, there’s a common theme appearing… we’re less and less connected than ever—meaning less aware and mindful of each other.

2 disclaimers:

  1. Be gentle with yourself, if any of these sound familiar. We’re all beautiful BEings that need help in improving ourselves. It’s why we take classes, read books, and hire therapists, coaches or mentors.
  2. These aren’t “pet peeves,” though it may appear that way. They are observations others shared with me. I pass along potential solutions so we can improve our lives and the world.

As you read this, consider if you have anything to add to these. If so, send them over or comment below—we have different ideas about how to make the world a better place. I’d love to share your thoughts!

Most important, you don’t have to be a Tibetan monk to experience the benefits of mindfulness. These are 5 basic practices that improve your connections with others in ways you may not have considered.

Not Responding


If someone sends you a (polite) message or asks a question, respond within 24-48 hours. Ignoring questions is rude, unless there’s a tragedy, like illness or death in your family. If someone sends a rude message, bringing attention to that politely is a great practice—compassionately let them know you’re not responding. Being passive aggressive by ignoring it serves no one, least of all you.

I rarely advocate immediate responses and, in fact, request you DO NOT respond immediately, in most instances. Unless it’s a conversation you’re having with the person, let them to wait a bit… our urge for “instant gratification” of Amazon and social media has derailed us as a society. Push back on this a bit by allowing space, especially if your response isn’t compassionate.

If the answer will take time for whatever reason, tell them. “I’m sorry. I’m tied up at the moment, but I’ll get back to you by the end of the day.”

Companies train customer service reps to explain they’ll get back to you. Many businesses have auto-responders that let you know they received your message and someone will get back to you within a set timeframe (important!).

If you don’t have time to respond, keep reading… I suspect there’s a scheduling issue, or something else holding you back.

Be courageous.

Last-Minute Schedule Issues


A business owner recently mentioned how clients show up late, often without letting him know. In other instances, the reason is something like “I’ll be an hour late, because I didn’t realize I had something to do.” He made an excellent point: you wouldn’t do this to your doctor, so why would you do it now?

You wouldn’t do it to a mechanic or many other professionals, and it’s not OK to do this to one of your peers. When you do this, you’re saying “your time’s not as valuable as mine or [insert other professional].” As I’m sure you’ve felt when this happened to you, it’s extremely devaluing.

Sometimes you’ll have to reschedule. We’ve all done it… I’ve certainly moved clients because of unexpected emergencies. Just be mindful of the reason and frequency of rescheduling appointments.

I’ve noticed this is usually a scheduling issue. We either have no grasp on our schedule or we over-commit. I dedicated a chapter to time management in Transformation 101—you can check it out from a local library or jump into the next session running soon. I can’t stress how important it is to manage your time, for your health and to show respect to others.

Be disciplined.

Not Thanking People for Gifts


This surprises me and shatters a belief I once held (don’t you hate that!?). I believed humans raised in my generation or earlier had manners newer generations didn’t—generational hubris, I guess. Humbling…

If someone gives you something, please thank them. Show you value it, regardless if you give it away once they’re not around. If you don’t want something, “no thank you” goes a long way. I can’t tell you how often people mention giving gifts or cards and not receiving a thank you.

They spent mental/emotional energy, time, and maybe money on you. Show gratitude. Thank them if they pay you a compliment (a verbal gift). If you want to make someone’s day—and yours—create a daily challenge of finding something to compliment someone on. If you like someone’s shirt, pants, shoes, hair, or they just look radiant, let them know. Rob taught me this trick, and it’s amazing to watch someone’s face light up… talk about a release of feel-good hormones!

Be integral.

Making Assumptions About Others


Humans are the best story-creating machines that ever lived. For thousands of years, before we could write, we told stories. It’s a natural and sometimes helpful phenomenon. After all, these stories pass along information to other humans, educate us, and give us some predictions about current situations—allowing us to make decisions.

But sometimes, this mechanic fails with ourselves… more often than not, I’m teaching clients and students how to reframe their stories, so they have the space to create new ones.

It also fails when we create stories about people we don’t really know—the old cliché “don’t assume… it makes an ass (out of) u (and) me.” Instead, I challenge you to ask people questions about themselves. Assumptions lead to judgment, and as a coach taught us in 2020, none of us has the right to judge another human. None of us.

Did you know?

A great example—neither Rob nor I are vegan. I’ve never asked anyone to be vegan (or vegetarian), and I will not, for ethical and legal reasons. Nor can or should you, by the way… human health is complicated and should you force a dietary change and there are health problems, YOU ARE LIABLE. That’s not something you want hanging on your conscience, my friend.

Yes, I challenge people to try eating plant-based for a couple of weeks, though they’re free to eat meat and dairy, should they wish. I ask this of people when they work with me as a client, too—we emphasize eating more plants and whole foods for evidence-based health outcomes—they still have the freedom to eat whatever the hell they want, though.

The horrors of the meat and dairy industry were something I used to teach, too. I teach 100% plant-based cooking classes; I emphasize the importance of plant foods in nearly EVERY class; and I make 100% plant-based meals.

But I’ve never said, nor led anyone, to believe Rob or I are vegan. Anyone that asks knows we’re 95% plant-based (meaning we eat free-range eggs, local honey from the farm I work with, and occasional dairy). If something died to be on our plates, we don’t eat it. I don’t wear clothing that caused their death, and we do our best to buy products that are cruelty-free.

I’m sure most people don’t know this… just because I’m a plant-pusher doesn’t mean I believe others should only eat plants. Nutrition and food plans are more than what’s on your fork.

Be responsible for the stories you’re creating.

Ask what people are up to


This ties in to my last point about being curious versus assuming. When I questioned friends if anyone asks what they’re up to, the answer is usually a resounding “NO.” The caveat appears to be those with friends who have hobbies, goals, or projects—those folks always seem to ask. Birds of a feather, I suppose.

We so rarely think about this, yet it may surprise you to discover what people are working on in their lives. Many people take classes or have hobbies you’d never know about until you ask. I’m lucky to have folks like you on my list, who I met in classes. I know you’re invested in your health and learning—which is why I believed you’d enjoy this article.

Most people love to talk about themselves, and not in a negative, narcissistic way (yes, some people edge closer towards narcissism because of societal trends, but that’s a different conversation for a different day). Most of us just enjoy knowing someone cares enough to ask.

Be committed to making others feel valued.


In closing, I’m curious if you’ve experienced any of these situations, or have any insights to add. If you do, comment or email me, so I can add them!

And thank you for the time you spent reading this, and for any feedback! Give me 31 days and together, we CAN make the world a better place, one person at a time. One day at a time.


Yours in Health,



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