We plan. We do. We plan. We do. Now, Mike Iamele is taking some time to watch, and suggests we do the same.
Christmas came and went. Great presents, too much food, and smiles and laughs with those who know me best. In a flash, it was over.
I’ve always thought of Christmas as more anticipation than action—like Shark Week or New Year’s Eve. We talk about it so much. We plan for it. We stress out and rush around about it. And then it’s over in the blink of an eye.
I guess that’s life. That’s how life works. We spend all of our time getting ready for things. We plan everything out as best we can—where we’ll go to college, what our careers will be, when we’ll get married, when we’ll have kids. And then life happens anyway, while we’re busy planning. Life just whizzes by us, plans or no plans.
Yesterday, as I mediated an impromptu half-joking Christmas wrestling match between my mom and my sister (only half), I realized that you never know where life will take you. For all of the really good planning that we do, life throws you for a loop.
You might fall in love with a man, or get a horrible sickness, or mediate a wrestling match between two tiny little women. Life happens. And we’ve got to decide if we’re going to keep living in the future—planning—or if we’re going to just exist in this moment and do the best we can.
As I watched my niece excitedly run around to show off her new doll, as I watched my mother’s eyes light up at the sight of a ricotta pie, as I listened to my cousin’s uncontrollable laughter during a game of spades, I remembered that this is life. It’s these little moments. And sometimes we’re so in our heads getting ready for it, that we just miss it.
Sometimes we need the authenticity of a laugh, the flash of a smile, the tender touch of a loved one, just to remember that we’re alive. That life is happening. With our without us. And, if we don’t stop to notice it, it will be over before we know it.
I like Christmas because it’s the end of the year—a time to re-sort your priorities. You come up to it with this hectic lead-up—striving to finish your work and get all the presents and cook food and set up your house and everything else. And then it happens. You see someone’s eyes, and they’re genuinely touched by the gift you got. You play a game with family and laugh harder than you have in a long time. And you remember what’s important in life. You remember why we do all of this.
With that said, I’ll be fully immersing myself into the life that’s whizzing by me. As usual, I’ll be taking my annual break all of next week and a bit after (until January 8th) while I’ll be in Aruba.
As the year wraps up, I sit on a beach with the people I love most, looking out over that infinite ocean, and I just exist in that moment. It’s not about what I’m going to write or the new course I’m going to create or signing on more clients or creating more partnerships or any of that. I just sit there, existing with the sand and the cool breeze. Remembering why I do any of this. Remembering what matters to me. Reflecting on all that happened in 2014, and all to come in the new year.
If I feel called to it, I may write once or twice. Or I may completely stay in the moment. We’ll see how it goes.
And I want to share that gift with you. You’ve been with me all of 2014. You’ve watched me grow and change and evolve. And you, yourself, have reached new heights. It’s been a big year—a huge year, in fact. So I want you to find your own Aruba. I want you to take a moment to just exist. Maybe a walk through the neighborhood, some hot cocoa with neighbors and friends, a romantic night with a loved one.
Just take a moment sometime as the end of the year approaches and give yourself permission to just be, without having to do anything. Give yourself permission to exist in the moment, and remember why you do any of it. Remember what really matters to you. Reflect on all that happened in 2014, and all to come in the new year.
Because life is happening. Whether we want to admit it or not, life is happening. And sometimes we just need to be still to feel it whizzing by us.
Happy New Year. You deserve 2015 to be the most amazing year yet.