Have you ever had an experience you had prepared for and thought it was going to be incredible, but when it was over you could barely remember what happened? This is more common than you think.
Life is hectic and it’s not slowing down anytime soon. We are all busy with work, family, friends, hobbies and many other things. But how often do you take the time to actually enjoy and appreciate what you are doing?
If you’re like me, I spend a tremendous amount of time thinking about what is next. What should I be doing next? How do I prepare for the future?
In the mean time, my kids are growing up and my wife and I are getting older (gracefully I might add). A week turns into a month, turns into a year… Where does that time go?
One of the best ways to seize that moment is to make it special. I don’t mean lighting candles and singing a song. Simply take the time to remember a specific detail about that moment and lock it away in your mind.
Let’s take the example of biking to work. You could hop on the bike, pedal hard with the taste of blood in your mouth trying to beat last week’s record breaking pace. You take the same route as always and you go through the motions. Your muscles and mind remember where you are going, so your brain can wander and think of other things like your to do list.
Alternatively you could figure out which part of your commute is your favorite. You could stop at that spot and make a mental note of how nice that spot makes you feel. What is special about that spot that makes it your favourite? Savor that spot and that moment. It’s the same commute, but you’ll appreciate it much more if you try to remember a special detail.
This works for several reasons. First, it forces you to recognize that something is actually happening. We spend too much of our lives reacting or just going through the motions. Rarely do we take the time to recognize that our life is happening right then and there!
Secondly, it focuses your mind on finding something specific about the experience you are having. You’re more likely to not only remember it, but to actually have a fond memory of it. You’re also less likely to be thinking about what is coming next and carrying the stress that comes with it.
This is something that can take as little as a few seconds, but it can have a big impact on how you feel about your own life. Are you just going through the motions, or are you taking the time to appreciate the little moments that are happening all the time?