Heads Up! We’re Right Here! (5YTL)

phoneI’ve been reading and talking a lot lately with people about the importance of being present, in the moment.

There was a spot on NPR recently about an experiment among some of the staffers to reduce their usage of their smartphones.  The theory is that reaching less for their phones to fill virtually any moment with content from their phones allowed them moments of “boredom,” which engaged their minds to “think better.”

I was recently talking with someone who has significantly reduced her use of Facebook as a method of entertainment and information (a practice I have also put into place recently).  She was telling me that it is driving her into more and better personal involvement with her husband and toddler.  It is also affording her more productive use of her work time.

Finally, I was having a conversation recently about the availability of cameras on our smartphones and how we tend to capture as many moments as possible with our phones.  The very vision of someone holding a phone/camera two feet away from their face, grabbing a photo of something, has become a staple of our time.

At what cost?

We’re so obsessed with snagging a photo, reading an update, tweeting a status, pinning a funny photo or recipe, or Instagramming a photo of our meal, that we may be neglecting to savor the moment that we’re in.  The value of our interactions and being present in our moments might be getting lost in and among our desires to memorialize them. We could be so consumed with everything except enjoying our moments that we fail to actually do so.

I’m not advocating a return to a time of less technology and less access to the information that is so useful to us on a daily basis.  After all, I’m a huge fan of technology and what we’re able to do with it.  I am, however, suggesting that we be attentive to one another and not replace our time together with shared space and faces down.  I’m suggesting that we will benefit from looking each other in the eyes and communicating fully and in the moment.

There is value in spending time together, and there is value in spending time in our own heads.  Just like our phones need to recharge to be useful, so do our brains.  We need time to ourselves to process our thoughts and opinions.  It is often how we do our best problem-solving.  It is also how we best reconnect to the spirit of what makes us unique and special.

Besides, we can always use our phones to call people we can’t see in person.  Imagine that!

Will you join me in connecting more in person?  Tomorrow Begins Today.

Embrace Your Change (5YTL)

change1I had a great conversation with my friend, Betty, last week.  

Betty pointed out how many things had happened in the last year to throw her off her “plans.”  With death, resulting home purchase and extensive remodeling, and many other things in play, she said she didn’t have a chance at maintaining her equilibrium as it was in years past.

Betty said that she had these ideas about how things were supposed to be, but all of these unexpected changes had really thrown her off her usual mojo.  The thing I enjoyed the most about her perspective is that she was praising how much better she felt when she let go of her old ways of thinking and embraced the changes that were happening. She was actually joyful.

Why do we cling to old notions of expectation?  Why do we deny ourselves potential abundance in deference to “the devil that we know?”  We do it, because we fear what we do not know.  We do it, because change represents uncertainty, and that scares the hell out of us.  

Whether it’s a new job, or a new relationship, or a different hairstyle, or even a new arrangement for our furniture, we resist change, because we can bank on what we have, and we may not be able to bank on change.

Here are a few ideas I’ve had rolling around in my head that relate to change and the abundance we stand to experience when we embrace it:

  • Change is inevitable, and we are powerless to stop it.
  • Resisting change is an exercise in futility, and we spend far more energy resisting it than we would if we embraced it.
  • Embracing change is surrendering to potential adventure, and adventures are exciting.
  • Acknowledging change is empowering and opens us up to potential for great joy.
  • Becoming part of the change gives us a vocabulary within the change and lessens our fear.
  • Driving change can be a lot of work, and it can be infinitely rewarding.
  • Becoming a change motivator means becoming a leader, and people admire strong leaders (and follow them readily).

Ultimately, our lives are changing constantly, and we can fight that or ride the change wave.  Be open to the changes you see around you and invite the opportunities that change brings.

We are meant to change and evolve.  While the changes aren’t always within our power to choose, we definitely have the power to choose how we are affected by change.  See the opportunities instead of lamenting the familiarity of your comfort zones.  There is a lot of good stuff in store for you if you trust, surrender, and take action.

It’s a big world.  Be a part of it!  Tomorrow Begins Today.