What speaks to you is already next to you

Messages — for our career, our writing, our life, our everything — are everywhere. On concrete. On metal. On street corners. The choice we face every moment: am I willing to pay attention?

My mindfulness teacher, Deborah Eden Tull, says that giving ourselves the gift of our full attention is the subtlest form of self-love. Below are messages I stopped to pay attention to a few weeks ago in Mar Vista, West Los Angeles. I invite you to take the time to stop and notice what’s already around you — speaking to you.

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"I didn't know bunnies made mac and cheese."

So said the supermarket cashier after I claimed my night was “all right.” She had just scanned five boxes of Annie’s Shells & White Cheddar, each with a rabbit poking out of the brand logo. I smiled genuinely — I did appreciate her joke — and writing this now, I appreciate her fresh perspective and her attempt to bring some light to me.

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This cosmic playground offers up kindness and compassion to see and receive…when we’re ready to see and receive them. You and I have wireless connectivity to a source of lightness — even in the darkest moods. And yes, that WiFi signal can feel nonexistent during those times, but you can feel a hint of it in areas where it’s stronger. And when you’re ready (at your own pace, not anyone else’s), you can keep following it. You might just discover that rabbits make macaroni and cheese.

“And these are the winning game pieces” was the last thing “Suzy R.” (according to my receipt) said handing me the blue pieces for Monopoly, played every year by grocery store shoppers like myself. Walking out of Pavilions as a winner, I produced my second smile in an hour.

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