— Guillaume Apollinaire
"Now and then it's good to pause in our pursuit of happiness and just be happy."
The last few weeks have been a bit hectic.
My life is full and for that I am extremely grateful; there was a time, not too long ago, when that was not the case. Obsessing on all the things that might happen, caused me to play it way too safe in many areas of my life, while being reckless in others. I later understood that fear had held me captive, often disguised as perfectionism or procrastination. Thank goodness I have learned that perfection is a myth and procrastination robs me of precious time.
I spent time by the water this weekend, allowing myself the necessary luxury of being present. I was hypnotized by the ebb and flow of the waves, captivated by the way the gulls danced through the air, and savored the feeling of my feet buried in the soft, cool sand. I realized that my well being and peace of mind require regular doses of sitting in the sand, staring out over the water. There is just something about being near the water that soothes my soul.
What I have learned is that, unless I allow myself to hit the proverbial 'pause' button, I am incapable of being fully present for my life and the people in it; I run on auto-pilot. I once thought that the more I could squeeze into a day, the better. I was a big fan of the notion that 'whoever dies with the most toys, wins.'
That is no longer the case.
I have a new-found appreciation for the simpler things in life; those things that money cannot buy. Don't get me wrong, I get a little jolt of excitement from buying something new, just like everyone else...in fact, I can lose my mind (for a second) over a fabulous pair of new shoes! But I get a different kind of jolt from being fully present in my life...everything just seems to be magnified. Being fully present requires that I not be weighed down with extraneous "stuff" : outdated beliefs, negativity, resentments. All those things act as barriers that prohibit me from seeing the beauty that surrounds me and prevent me from being grateful.
Stop for a minute.
What are you grateful for?