The birds were chirping, the wind was blowing, we had good tunes on my laptop and we were cooking in the kitchen.
To anyone else, this might seem like a waste of a Canadian summer weekend. But, to me, it was absolute perfection.
Over the last month or so, I’ve tried to be more mindful of being fully aware and present in whatever I’m doing. I decided to make this a priority for myself when I started noticing I was always thinking about what was next, rather than enjoying ‘the now’.
As an example, I get super frustrated when my partner and I don’t launch into our weekend immediately. I view the slow start and lazy couch lounging as a waste of time. I see it as a stop gap before the ‘real’ thing we are supposed to do that weekend starts (groceries, hikes, country drives etc). I assume (wrongly) that the next activity is going to be better than whatever we are currently doing.
The short version of this plays out like this: why are we doing X thing, when we could be doing Y thing and ‘really’ living? We are always waiting for life to start, but we forget it’s already happening around us. My attitude lacked an appreciation for the awesomeness bestowed upon us in the present.The present is the only place we'll ever be, so we might as well enjoy it. Click To Tweet
Let’s jump back to the wonderfully slow weekend I had.
Full disclosure: we don’t have kids and no friends or family live close by (everyone is at least two hours away). So, our weekends are almost always our own. I recognize that’s not necessarily the case for everyone reading this.
I am not ashamed to admit that I spent much of my Saturday reading, couch-napping and taco face-stuffing. We didn’t have anywhere we needed to go, so I was under no illusion that whatever came next was more important than what we were doing in the present.
For a variety of reasons, I often feel like life has to be lived big to be meaningful.
Don’t get me wrong, wild adventures and anything else that would be considered Insta-worthy are all wonderful things/experiences. But, these experiences are not the reality of daily life for most people (myself included). And I refuse to feel bad about my life because of that.
It is a much better use of my time to find and appreciate the magic in everyday things instead of wishing for life to be something it isn’t.Anguish emerges from craving for life to be other than it is. Click To Tweet
It was on Sunday when I looked up from prepping dinner, to see my partner dancing around the living room with our cat, soft music playing in the background, that I realized, this is life.
Life is not the moments worth posting on social media. It’s all the small bits we’d rather not show anyone. The messy, uncurated bits.
Life is not the reality I dream up in my head when I’m trying to distract myself. It’s the here and now, with all of its wonderful beauty, trials, and tribulations.
When applied to my current life situation, my thought process goes a little something like this:
- Sure, I don’t have a six-figure income, but I also don’t have the stress of an hour-long commute every day.
- Yes, I don’t live in a trendy city, but I’m also not spending half my income on rent every month.
- Sure, my apartment is small, but I’m saving up for an even smaller tiny house.
- Yes, I don’t have my dream job right now, but I’m not actually sure what my dream job is anyway.
When I told my partner I was writing about our weekend, he said: “but, we didn’t do anything”. With a twinkle in my eye, I replied, “Exactly”.
The birds were chirping, the wind was blowing, we were cooking in the kitchen.