Has a day gone by that you simply realized you didn’t live the life you intended to live? Is it important to you to exit the ever revolving merry-go-round of life and to check in with yourself?
An elder friend of mine exemplified the choice of growing a well lived life. Her sitation was not perfect, there were many less ideal situations beyond her control daily, yet, she chose to live a well lived life.
What does that look like for me? It begins with realizing that what I think about is at least half the battle, how I think about what thoughts enter my mind is my choice. At fifty-one, my life is not a new experience, but how I live it has become new. As a child I intended to grow up, be someone who had the ability to empower others, live in a home filled with amazing aromas from the kitchen and gather with friends. My little girl dreams included living in the country and scenes from my childhood that one day the log stack I worked on with my Grandfather Geddie would be for my own fireplace. The house would be filled during holidays and weekdays with welcoming joy and folks we’d choose as family. Strangers would find warmth and work would be joyful.
It’s easy to get off track in life. To buy into some sort of daily competition to figure out how many ways someone else is more while you are feeling “not enough.” Personally, I got off that merry-go-round. It’s easy to let social channels visually take you to the “wow, they seem to have it so together” space, but most folks simply aren’t growing a life they love. I go to conferences, workshops and local spaces and when the topics go deeper there is almost always a solemness of conversation tides when it comes to questions like “are you happy, do you like how you’re spending your life?”
You know we are, we are spending our time and our life, and that spending needs to be an investment of intention. Time is our most precious commodity and our life is indeed limited in its days.
Have you heard from your heart lately? Have you taken time to think “What would today look like if I could choose how it would be?” It may be something as simple as it would start with the perfect cup of something, or as complex as ‘it sure wouldn’t be doing what I have to do today.” Awareness. Growing a well lived life begins with awareness. Awareness of what brings you peace, of where solitude engages, what makes your heart happy and how long it’s been since you laughed, played, found joy in a cool breeze or a sunset. I think we too easily get “numbed” to everything around us. We’re too often plugged in to routines, habits, and electronic devices that mindlessly take over our lives.
This week I am returning from a grand road trip. It has tickled me that most of the conversation fodder has been about how could I drive or travel the fastest. Folks have chimed in on how to save time through this caveat or that on the interstate. Personally, I’ve take the side roads, made time to stop and enjoy the beauty of a cross country drive. To drink in the smell of the air in different parts of the country as I drove over 1900 miles. I’ve stopped to hear the stories of the dairy farmer who happened to be out milking his cows.
I’ve taken time to pull in to a local shop and asked what it was like to be in a home that was built in 1775 as the fifth generation of that family. I’ve taken time to drink in the rich colors of Fall and to know that each day was filled with focused intention of being where I was. Rarely do I have the time or the intention to drink in the beauty of a road trip, but this trip had been planned with the colors of Fall in mind.
Sometimes the best way to use your time is to savor what is before you.
Personally, savoring the people and life that is before me becoming a focused daily habit.