“I’m so happy we spent time together today.”
This weekend I spent some time with a new friend. It’s been a while since I’ve had some friend time. Like, real downtime socializing with another human being besides my family.
We had such a fun day. We planned a meet-up time and drove to Lake Ontario. We chatted, grabbed a bite to eat, and relaxed by the lake while sharing personal stories, triumphs and struggles. No girls’ outing is complete without a bitch session in there somewhere.
But during the day, I felt guilty.
Yep, I felt guilty. How awful is that?
Here I am, spending time with a great friend on a beautiful summer day by the lake, and I felt guilty!
Well, I believed I should have been at home hard at work writing. Writing to you. Writing for my business. As much as I love all of you, I love my sanity too.
So I did something I haven’t done in a while. I let go and gave myself permission to enjoy the day. To enjoy the day, relax, and socialize with a friend.
After all, creativity and life only flourish when you’re out there being a part of life. You can’t expect ideas, beautiful moments, or wonderful life experiences to just come your way while you’re sitting in your kitchen alone.
That’s not how this life thing works.
But the challenge is this:
When you’re busy, in chaos, maybe not feeling like yourself, struggling to declutter your life, and just generally trying to lift your spirits, how do you create more of what you want in life? How do you create more of those beautiful, simple moments you long for in amidst all the other stuff?
Well, here’s my formula:
- Stop ignoring (and avoiding) life
- Take time and connect with friends
- Leave perfect behind and live for sweet, simple moments
“I’m choosing happiness over suffering. I know I am. I’m making space for the unknown future to fill up my life with yet-to-come surprises.”
~ Elizabeth Gilbert Eat, Pray, Love
Thoughts on Creating More Beautiful Moments in Life
Give yourself grace (and space) to understand what you want more of.
Ask yourself: what do I want from life? What would a thriving life for me look like? What do more beautiful moments look like to me? Taking 5 minutes to reflect on what beautiful moments look like to you will put a smile on your face. You’ll instantly feel uplifted and start drawing what you do want toward yourself.
If you’re a journaling type, add a “Beautiful Moment” spot where you can recount and be grateful for one beautiful moment you created that day for yourself.
Stop sweating the small insignificant things.
When life gets busy, it’s easy to become focused on all the silly little insignificant things throughout your day. And before you know it, you’re feeling grumpy, exhausted, and anxiety-ridden. You start to wonder: what’s the point? We all have those days when we aren’t at our best. It happens. But what’s most important is to be aware of them, understand what triggered them (usually, many small things add up to make us feel crappy), and then wake up the next morning determined not to have a repeat of that day.
Each day, we’re given a new chance to create more beautiful moments in our life. Do your best to wake up refreshed and believe that the small stuff won’t get to you today. And you’ll have a better day.
If you haven’t already, consider reading “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff.” When I have an “I’m sweating all the small stuff” moment, I grab this book and read one or two chapters (which are short and sweet), and I’ve instantly created a beautiful moment and reduced my anxiety level.
Declutter your time and mind.
When we feel like we’re not doing what we want or love in life, it’s usually because we’ve cluttered our schedule with too many things that don’t allow us to move peacefully through our day and thrive. Sure, I get it. There are crappy things you don’t like to do on your to-do list. I have those on my list too. But the idea is to reduce those crappy things as much as you can.
Stop saying yes to stuff your heart isn’t into, and that’s not essential to life. After that, move on to decluttering your thoughts. Did you know humans have an average of 50,000-70,000 thoughts a day? And about 80% of those are negative? Yikes. No wonder I’m mentally exhausted all the time.
When you work to remove negative self-talk, limiting beliefs, and other thoughts that waste mental space and energy, you’ll be able to fill that space with thoughts that move you forward and toward the life you’re longing for.
Indulge and explore more.
Do one thing each week out of the ordinary to get you out of a slump or stagnant spot. Like what? Change your coffee order, take a different route to work, go for a walk on your lunch break, commit to reading 5 books this summer that you normally wouldn’t, find something unique about your personality and learn about it online, etc.
I’ve committed to reading Pulitzer prize-winning novels, which I normally stay away from. And I’ve decided to indulge in my photography more; to create whatever my heart desires. It doesn’t need to be perfect, Instagram-worthy, or ever published anywhere. As long as it awakens my creative spirit and allows me to create a beautiful moment, I’m happy.
Have an open mind.
By opening your mind to the possibilities that you can have more of what you want in life, synchronicity steps in. Suddenly, you’ll be faced with more opportunities to embrace more of what you love.
Savour the little moments.
How many times do we need to remind ourselves to be mindful? As always, just once more, right? It’s tough when life seems like a stream of disconnected events. It’s hard to remain present and not walk zombie-like through life. But without savouring moments and being mindful of them, you’ll never truly know what you do want more of in life. So savour the beautiful, simple moments in life and be grateful.
Free time is for, yes, free time.
Have you ever had a day off or some free time only to have it turn into something work-related or filled with chores? I hear you. I’ve had this happen all too often on my entrepreneurial journey. Like this weekend. I gave myself some free time with friends and thought throughout the day that I should be working.
Adding more mindful moments into your day will create a pausing effect.
I’ve had days where I rush through it, doing one task after the other, hopping in and out of my car, and at the end of it, I feel like I can’t catch my breath. It’s a strange feeling. I feel as though I haven’t been fully breathing all day, like it’s just been a succession of short shallow breaths.
As soon as I pause and take a few deep breaths, I’m instantly brought back into the present moment. It feels as though time stands still at that moment.
We could all use more mindful moments in our day. The moments where we check in with our bodies, our minds, and the world around us. Have you ever gone through a day not remembering if birds were singing or if there were clouds in the sky? Scary right? Yet it happens. To all of us.
Take a mindful moment now and look up at the sky. Or take a moment to watch people walking by. Daydream a little.