As human beings, we are prone to adjusting to new comforts and luxuries in our lives quite quickly. It’s only natural that the novelty of buying ourselves a new bag, or car, or whatever it may be, wears off after some time. Similarly, with family and friends, they are often taken for granted - and not given enough credit. It is usually only when something drastic happens that we’re forced to take some time back, reflect and reevaluate.
You guessed it, over the last few days I’ve been forced to do some reflecting an reevaluating. It’s also the inspiration behind today’s blog.
In the famous words of Ferris Bueller, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” Looking back at the last few months, I’m not sure whether I’ve really balanced my time as well as I could have. Dedicating hours and hours towards my studies, many other aspects of my life have been sacrificed. The unfortunate thing is that, I know I’m not the only one guilty of not balancing my time well.
We live in a fast-paced world, where it almost always seems impossible to stay on top of things. With endless errands, chores and relationships to maintain, it seems that we’re in a vicious cycle. We’re living in a perpetual state of wanting more. It can be easy to get swept away in the fast lane and forget to stop and show your appreciation for what you do have. I’ve realised that while it is important, and at some points it is vital, to chase your dreams and have a goal in mind, it is equally important to look after yourself and strip everything back to basics. You need to ensure to keep sane and make time for your family, or nearest and dearest.
A life well lived is one of gratitude and thankfulness.
What gives? In an attempt to appreciate the present, and the life which you are living, the first step is to become self-aware. I mentioned this briefly at the start of this blog. Up until very recently, the concept of ‘daily lists of what one is grateful for’ or ‘reciting in the mirror what makes you happy’ seemed a little crazy to me. Do such lists actually work? I have to admit I’m yet to start making physical lists but I can say that, to perform your best, you need to acknowledge the beauty of your life as it currently is. You also need to know who you are, and why you think and feel the way you do.
You are where you are and what you are because of yourself.
If you’re currently investing all your hours into a new business venture, take a moment to appreciate that, even if the venture doesn’t go to plan, you still have love and support around you. Whether that be from family, friends or colleagues, there is always someone thinking about you. You may be going through a difficult patch with a parent or your child, take some time out and broaden your horizons. Find some support if you need it, because there’s always someone happy to take some time out, listen to you and give you advice if you should need it. That may be an aunt, a partner, a helpline or care worker.
When you’re working hard towards a specific goal in mind, try to remember the bigger picture from time to time. If you want to be somewhere in the future other than where you are now, it is up to you to take the right action to get to that place. It is equally important to reflect on how far you have already come. So for example, if you’re currently sat studying for your A Level exams, look at what you have already achieved. You’ve thrived through primary school, the peak of adolescence and secondary school. You’ve done your GCSE exams and you’re now sitting down to do your A Levels. That’s not to mention all the extra-curricular activities you’ve more than likely done too. So for that, give yourself a pat on the back.
Fundamentally, it’s important to embrace your natural state of being in life. Your normal, natural state of being alive is a wonderful gift, whether or not it always feels like it. And as such, it should be treated like a gift. Sadly, there’s no good in thinking that you’ll live life once you’ve reached a certain point or milestone in your life. You don’t know when people will come and go, so you have to value the time you have with them now. Try to tune into the joy of daily experiences, have a laugh and demonstrate the fullness of your current position in life.
Acknowledge these moments, and be grateful as they happen.
Know that there is also beauty in the difficulties you’re currently facing. While it may seem unlikely, each obstacle you face now, is only building you up to be a stronger, better and more resilient person in the future.
I hope that eventually we can all reach a point where reacting to everything with gratitude becomes a habit. This will surely allow one to start feeling happier all the time.
And on that note, thank you for taking time out of your day to read this blog.