In the hustle and bustle of our goal-achieving; task completing; objective accomplishing; success-obtaining lives, far too frequently we forget to take a moment to just live. We fail to notice that brilliant sunrise that’s dancing across the sky because we’re too busy complaining about having to wake up so early or we’re too singularly focused on getting where we have to go. We often miss an infinite number of small moments of joy like that because we don’t, well, stop to smell the roses.
I think it’s time to start being a bit more childish! No, not the temper tantrum, bad behavior, infantile maturity type of childish (although life can sometimes make us all feel like having a good old-fashioned, flailing-yourself-on-the-floor tantrum, ha). I’m talking about childlike tendencies like wonder; sharing; and joy-seeking. We need to impart more moments to smile into our lives if we going to live a life that’s actually worth living.
We need to give ourselves permission to be unencumbered by the weight of our everyday lives and to embrace life’s little pleasures again. Max Lucado has it right, and gives us perfect instructions on ways to be a little more childlike:
FLIRT…but not just in the obvious way of flirting with someone you’re attracted to (although if you’re feeling that, go for it!). Merriam-Webster defines flirt as ” to come close to reaching or experiencing something.” With that definition in mind, how about flirting mentally with your wildest dreams? Daydream for a while about the joy–not the success or money–that achieving that dream would bring.
GIGGLE…when something is funny don’t stifle you laugh, giggle wholeheartedly. It’s good for you!
DIP YOUR COOKIES IN MILK…remember how much fun it was to dip your Oreos in an ice cold glass of milk? Whether you still eat cookies or not, the message with this edict is to do something that you enjoy, purely for the pleasure of the experience.
TAKE A NAP…I don’t have to really convince you of this one, do I? Okay, I know that there are people that live by the saying “I’ll sleep when I’m dead.” Quite frankly I find that a little obnoxious and ridiculous. I’d never dream of denying myself the pleasure of curling up on the couch, sun is softly shining through the window on me, while I doze off for 20 minutes. The world, and my aspirations, won’t suffer if I nap. Besides, research shows that napping is actually good for your health. And what good does it do to achieve your dreams if your body is too broken down to enjoy the success?
SAY YOU’RE SORRY IF YOU HURT SOMEONE…this is a super pet peeve of mine. There is a culture of the “sorry, not sorry” apology now where people say “I’m sorry that you felt what I did/said offended/upset/demeaned/belittled you…” This is not an apology. I repeat, THIS. IS. NOT. AN. APOLOGY. Making statements like that is akin to blaming the injured party for their injury. Just say “I’m sorry” and own it.
CHASE A BUTTERFLY…metaphorically, butterflies represent beauty; gracefulness; rebirth; evolving; and metamorphosis.Chasing butterflies in a proverbial sense could then mean the joyful pursuit of change in your life–trusting the natural evolution in your life and choosing to be at peace with it.
Still don’t believe that imparting life’s little joys into our day-to-day lives is the way to go? Still thinking that you’ll totally fail and the world will end if you pause to indulge in the simple pleasures for a moment? Perhaps multi-billionaire businessman Sir Richard Branson can convince you: “…I’m just delighted to be alive and to have had a nice long bath.” I can just envision Sir Richard in huge, luxurious, jetted bathtub filled with a ton of fragrant bubbles; a glass of Champagne Necker Island (he likes the occasional glass of bubbly–my kinda man!); and a plenty of rubber duckies (one rhinestone-encrusted just for fun, perhaps?) to play with. And if taking a moment to indulge in, and appreciate, life’s little pleasures works for him, I bet it will work for you and me, too.
And Sir Richard, anytime you want me to test out one of those Necker Island bathtubs with a glass of champagne to “rejuvenate mind, body and spirit,” just let me know. I am passport ready!