Wow! Christmas is this week, when on Earth did that happen? This year has been an absolute whirlwind and I am thankful for all the ups and downs and the lessons learned. This Monday I want to talk about taking it all in as the year is wrapping up. This past weekend my hubby and I made a trip to see his maternal grandparents and I feel like it put a lot of things in perspective for me. Ever have a moment in life when you are listening to a story and you realize the meaning of that story is not just about a simple “we did this and that” but a lessons learned type of ordeal? Well this weekend was full of that and I want you all to take it all in a bit more this time of year, I know I could benefit from taking my own advice 🙂 This time of year makes me nostalgic so let’s figure out how we can take it all in but first a bit about my weekend.
I am so glad we had the opportunity to visit JJ’s grandparents this weekend. Mine have all passed unfortunately and I wish I had more time with them to learn all about their lives and experiences. It is also no secret that I used to love listening to the stories of my patients when I worked in the hospital. I always asked them what the secret to living a long and healthy life was, and I think one of the biggest trends was that they took life in and lived it to the fullest, oh and one lady told me vegetables but I’m pretty sure she was just sucking up to me. In this day and age we rush from one activity to another and sometimes forget to take it all in. Sure we take pictures and tag all of our friends on social media but do we end up living in the moment? I would argue no, not really.
I find that my favorite moments are when I am disconnected. I always wish that I had more photos to remember the day by but I feel like the moments I did have in that day or that time were much more meaningful. That is what happened this weekend. You don’t see grandparents glued to their phones (well most of them anyway) and they have SO many stories to tell you. JJ’s grandparents must have told us upwards of 20 different stories about trips and experiences they had over the years. While they might not be traveling much now they said they would not trade all of their trips for the world and that they are so glad they are able to have all those memories together.
When I am older and have grandchildren I hope I can recount stories as long as they’ll listen. I want to tell them to “live a little” and explore a lot. I want to tell them to live in the moment and to not be afraid to try new things. I hope that one day I can look back on my life and say “I wouldn’t change a thing.” May be a bit sentimental but I sure hope that I have memories for days and stacks of photo albums to show my kids and grandkids one day. It’s so easy to get caught up in what’s going wrong from day to day that we forget the whole point. Take it all in and enjoy every moment. Lessons are learned through experiences and I think we all need that reminder.
So how do you take it all in? Here are a few of my thoughts but feel free to add your own!
- Disconnect and reconnect. That’s right, turn off your electronics (after reading this of course) and connect with those around you. Maybe you will need a phone to call a friend but that’s it. Drop everything else you are doing, grab a glass of wine and invest some time in the conversation. You’ll be surprised how much you learn and gain from the conversation.
- Take a few deep breaths. Sometimes we can’t take it all in because we are thinking about how much laundry has piled up, what we need from the grocery store, what bills need to be paid and what to get that special someone this Christmas. Stop, take a deep breath, and be in the moment.
- Get some sleep. This is a biggie, one that I need to remember as well. It can be really hard to take it all in if you are sleepy, overtired and overworked. Find time to get to bed, it’s important for your health. If you are well rested you will find it much easier to listen intently and live in the moment.
- plan for things to go wrong Of course you cannot prepare for everything but when it comes to things around the house you could be. For example, if your refrigerator malfunctions and breaks this could be a disaster and ruin your whole day, you may also be worried about the costs of repair or replacement, but if you get a home warranty plan like those from First American Home Warranty online, then you can avoid all of this stress and continue on with your day.
- Plan an unexpected trip. While your possessions may fade your memories will not. Plan a trip with a friend, family member, significant other or heck even just yourself. Pick a place and go, you’ll talk about it for the rest of the year (and life) and will have a great story to tell your grandchildren one day.
- Relive your favorite moments. Find time to recount your memories. That picture up there at the top of the page? That’s from our honeymoon and let me tell you we love reliving it! While you do not need to be a broken record, you should find time to recount it with those willing to relive it with you.
How do you take it all in? I want to know what else you would add to this list!
Now I have a challenge for you this week, I want you to put your phone down during this holiday season when you are with family and friends and instead of posting it to all mediums, take it all in and enjoy the moment, then feel free to post about it later 🙂
Take a deep breath, sit back, relax and TAKE IT ALL IN.
Enjoy this holiday season and let me know how you plan on taking it all in!