Bumper Sticker Practice

Earlier this year I came up with a new mindfulness practice: bumper stickers! OK, let me explain. I like finding new and inventive ways to cultivate daily mindfulness. Being mindful means being mindful of something. And that something can be anything! Anything that allows us the opportunity to practice getting in touch and connecting with the present moment can be considered a practice of mindfulness. And it’s fun to find new ways in which to practice.

So in January, this idea of bumper sticker mindfulness came to me. For each month in 2016 I would practice noticing bumper stickers. In order to put a little extra weight on this new mindfulness practice, to help encourage me to do it, I would also write down the bumper stickers that caught my eye as being especially odd, funny or interesting. I then also resolved to write a blog post about it further into the year. And since I’ve recorded so many already I thought I’d stretch this bumper sticker practice into two blog posts, one now and one at the end of the year. As an FYI, my bumper sticker rules included only writing down bumper stickers I saw in action, meaning displayed on cars – so bumper stickers I saw for sale in a store didn’t count. I have a nice little notebook and an easily accessible pen in my car that I scribbled down all of the ones I saw, that I deemed worth noting. Here they are, in order of date seen:

Happy is hard to beat!

A woman’s place is on a horse!

Jesus loves you. Everyone else thinks you’re an asshole.

Montana is full, GO HOME!

Grandma’s Rock!

We are Montana

Two Chinese character stickers meaning Naughty and Bitch

Montana is Full! I hear North Dakota is Nice!

Positive is how I live

I pooped today

Criminals prefer unarmed victims

Reading is sexy

A woman’s place is in the White House

My other car is an ambulance

At last the chickens have been set free

Life’s better with a basset hound

So…how’s that hope and change working out for you?

The dude abides

Compost happens

I got crabs in Newport, OR

Keep calm and Get Lost in Montana

Knowing better has never stopped me (on my stepson’s car 🙂

I love whitebark pine

What would Homer do?

Smile if you’re not wearing underwear

Jesus would slap the shit out of you

Notice: Intolerance will not be tolerated

What would Buddha do?

Hunt to eat

Darwin loves you

Question reality

I’m diagonally parked in a parallel universe

Sometimes I creep myself out (one of my favorites 🙂

Save water, shower with a friend

Zombies eat brains. You’re safe.

I break for bigfoot

Faith is a journey not a guilt trip

Not for city boys

It’s good to be a dog mom

Jesus was a liberal

I hate being bipolar, it’s awesome! (another personal favorite)

Taking a trip not taking a trip (12-step recovery sticker)

Will travel for Vegan food

I may be slow but I’m ahead of you (another favorite)

Bumper stickers are stupid (it was this car’s only sticker, ha!)

Wolf, the other red meat (perhaps the most disturbing one I’ve seen so far)

I hate it when I think I’m buying organic vegetables but when I get home they’re just regular donuts. (I just saw this one a few days ago and was hoping the red light would be long enough for me to write it all down – another favorite!)

Got science?

And that brings us up to date so far! I make sure to write down a few during the course of each month. It’s been interesting tuning into what stickers people feel called to adorn their vehicles with. It’s also interesting to note the reactions and judgements that come up for me around the stickers I see. The immediate impression I get as to whether I might be able to be friends with the person driving in a particular vehicle based on a bumper sticker, and how it’s both ridiculous and makes some sort of sense. I mean, I think I could be friends with the person driving around with the Sometimes I creep myself out sticker but not so much with the Jesus loves you. Everyone else thinks you’re an asshole sticker. You see what I’m saying.

I’ve been enjoying this new practice and I hope that it encourages other practitioners to think outside of the box, when it comes to cultivating fresh ideas of how to integrate mindfulness into our everyday lives. Happy practicing, dear friends!

Written by Nicole Dunn, True Wonderful Flower

Originally posted on Nicole’s mindfulness practice blog:
https://goingoutwordsandinwords.wordpress.com/

And here are a few more blogs to check out too, written by other OI members or, in the case of themonkness, a practicing monk in our tradition:

SmileCalm’s Front Page

https://themonkness.wordpress.co

https://ianprattis.wordpress.com/

5 thoughts on “Bumper Sticker Practice

    1. Michael

      i don’t understand if you have been ordained how you bring anyones attention to most of your bumper phrases. i know that thy does not support opportunist using his name for their own gain especially in phrases he, or mindfulness does not and would never support . Please unsubscribe me from
      receiving any further emails. Thank you as i wish you an increased capacity for peace.

      Reply
      1. True Wonderful Flower Post author

        Hello dear friend. Perhaps my above post is a bit unclear and I can try to offer some additional clarity. I am an ordained OI member and have been since 2007. I am a dedicated practitioner and sangha leader and director in my local Thich Nhat Hanh community. The above practice is simply a new way I’ve been personally expanding my daily mindfulness practice. I thought it worth sharing so as to possibly help others to think outside the box in regards to how to further their own practice. The above bumper stickers I mention above are simply those that I’ve seen around town on other people’s vehicles and do not necessarily reflect my own personal views or ideas. I hope this helps shed a little more light. Thank you for posting.

        Breathe Well,
        Nicole

        Reply
  1. John Mahoney

    I agree that paying attention to bumper sticker can help anyone’s day be a little brighter. I can see how making sure you choose a creative design can not only help you relieve stress but also express yourself. I would want to make sure I choose one that can also help me communicate with people and express what I like.

    Reply

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