People are busy these days. Busy and distracted. If you pause and look around at any given point in your day, I bet you’ll see a lot of people staring down at their phones, oblivious to the life that’s parading right in front of them.
Sometimes, I am that person. But I don’t want to be that person. Because life is too short to miss out on the beauty and wonder that’s around us every day. There is nothing quite like taking a breath, looking up, looking around and simply noticing things. No matter where you are, there are beautiful things to notice. The powerful act of noticing can lead to a thankful heart, which can lead to love, surprise, joy, selflessness and ultimately, contentment. Remember that we can’t appreciate or be thankful for something that we are too distracted to see!
Challenge yourself to slow down in small ways. Eat meals with your loved ones without
any distractions from phones, computers or the TV. Go outside for a walk, long or short, each day. Take 10 seconds to write a little note for someone you love. Notice other people in your path and smile.
Perhaps there is a place or space that particularly speaks to your soul. Go there sometimes. I have a particular affinity for the ocean and fields of flowers. Alas, I cannot be by the ocean or in a field of flowers at all times. But that doesn’t mean I’m not surrounded by beauty; that I can’t seek it and find it.
If I slow down and look for it, I always find it. It incites a childlike whimsy in me that I quite love. If am intent on noticing things, looking for beauty, I find it in a perfect spring breeze blowing through my hair as I take my dog for a walk in the morning. I see it in the little buds that have suddenly popped into bright pink spring flowers outside my dining room window. I see it in the faces of my loved ones, in kindness from strangers, in kitty purrs.
What types of things are you most likely to notice? What speaks to your soul? The stars, the way a bridge is constructed, the changing of the leaves in the fall or smiles from a stranger on the street? I bet if you take even a few minutes each day to look up from whatever is distracting you, you can find a little piece of refreshment for your soul. Better yet, perhaps you will pause long enough to notice that you could offer a bit of refreshment to someone else’s soul.
Want to simplify your life? Look up from your phone, look away from yourself and start looking for the beauty all around you-I promise you will find it.