It’s that marvelous time of year in which I lovingly call “Ponder Day.” The holidays are wrapped up, Christmas decorations come down, New Year’s celebrations are over, the kids are back in school and life’s routine’s begin again.
I don’t necessarily make formal New Year’s Resolutions, but rather I take some time to be introspective and decide what things really matter to me in this life and what doesn’t. This quote sums it up nicely and should give you some things to ponder just as it did for me.
“It is very telling what we don’t hear in eulogies. We almost never hear things like: “The crowning achievement of his life was when he made senior vice president.” Or: “He increased market share for his company multiple times during his tenure.” Or: “She never stopped working. She ate lunch at her desk. Every day.” Or: “He never made it to his kid’s Little League games because he always had to go over those figures one more time.” Or: “While she didn’t have any real friends, she had six hundred Facebook friends, and she dealt with every email in her in-box every night.” Or: “His PowerPoint slides were always meticulously prepared.” Our eulogies are always about the other stuff: what we gave, how we connected, how much we meant to our family and friends, small kindnesses, lifelong passions, and the things that made us laugh.”
In pondering this quote (from Arianna’s Thrive book), I developed a formula for how I’d like to live my life. You are welcome to borrow it if you’d like. These are the questions that I have begun asking myself each morning before I even rise out of bed.
- What Can I GIVE today?
- Who Can I CONNECT with today?
- How can I show love and MEANING to my family and friends today?
- What small kindnesses can I do today?
- What passions can I explore or make a difference in today?
- What makes me laugh today?
Then at night, I rephrase these questions to evaluate how I did today.
- What did I GIVE today?
- Who did I CONNECT with today?
- How did I show love and MEANING to my family and friends today?
- What small kindnesses did I do today?
- What passions did I explore or make a difference in today?
- What made me laugh today?
What a beautifully simple way to take stock of one’s day and focus on the three things that are really important in life… Did you live? Did you love? Did you matter?
That’s the sort of year that I want to create in 2018.
Another idea that I pondered and shared with my sons today with a note in their lunch boxes was this…
Q. What is one thing that all human beings, animals and even plants have in common?
A. Our time on earth is temporary. We ALL die.
I say this not to be morbid or to make you sad. I say this because every day that you are alive is a precious gift! Today will never come again. Don’t let the petty challenges, squabbles, stressors or even a tragedy tarnish your view on life.
If you are reading this, you are alive. You are meant to be here. There are lessons to be learned, lives to be touched, friendships to be kindled, relationships to be mended, mistakes to be forgiven, projects to be completed, knowledge to be shared and love to be given.
Each day is a clean slate.
Take a deep breath and find gratitude in the fact you are breathing, you have a heartbeat, a mind to think and a multitude of other blessings too plentiful to list here.
No matter how big the struggle is in your life right now, choose to NOT take the day for granted. Life is a wondrous journey that may be long or cut short. None of us know our exact expiration date.
Always be thankful for the time you are here.
The Tuff Momma