Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Making the Most Out of Our Moments!

A few days ago, my sister sent me one of those e mails which, at the end, says: "send this to 8 people you care about". Although these types of messages are usually a nuisance, one line caught my attention: "Don't count the rest of your life in the number of breaths you have left, but in the number of moments that take your breath away". That same day, my wife, who has had a bone marrow transplant for treatment of lymphoma was overheard to say: "Maybe I'm celebrating too much, but I have made a decision to 'go for the gusto', so I'm not worried about it". Then, the very next day, some close friends of mine were in the Emergency Room because Mike had chest pain and nausea and his wife, Bonnie, wanted to make sure he hadn't had a heart attack. While we were waiting on the lab work to come back, they were talking about an expensive bass boat they had just bought and were recounting the headache they had deciding between two boats. The ended up getting the more expensive one that they really wanted. She said, if we hadn't gotten this one, I would have regretted it the rest of my life and I wonder how many other decisions I need to make so I won't look back with regret.

All this got me to thinking about how we live and how important it is to make the most out of the present. With all of our worries and cares, this can be really hard to do. But, yesterday, I started tweaking my thinking:

I didn't have a meeting scheduled at work until 10:30 a.m. So, instead of going in to the office early as I usually do, I went for a 20 mile bike ride. It was one of those mornings, clear, cool, low humidity, birds singing loudly. The Arkansas river was high and beautiful, everyone on the trail was in a good mood and saying good morning with a smile on their face. I stood up on my bike, picked up my pace and, smiling inside, remembered that this was one of those moments that I need to create more often by not allowing myself to be a slave to the schedule, to stop fretting about the mistakes of the past, worrying about the problems of the future, and enjoy this wonderful, but temporary moment.

Then, last night at dinner in our favorite Sushi bar, the manager was there with his wife and three delightful children. They didn't know me from Adam, but I grabbed the 1 year old little girl and lifted her up as she giggled and cooed, then picked up the 3 year old boy who, with a total stranger, rested his head on my chest in a short tribute to the precious value of human contact.

So, whether its being surprised by an unusually delightful morning bike ride, picking up a child to affirm them, or simply making sincere contact with a co worker, let us remember to stop living in the past and worrying about the future long enough to do a better job of enjoying our moments!

How about you? Do you have story to share about enjoying your moments?

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