As a kid, I absolutely loved summer vacation. They were the awesome days of summer when all I had to worry about was figuring out what adventure would capture my interest once I finished breakfast. When we are children it is so much easier to live in the moment, and enjoy what life has to give us. Children approach the each day with wonder, and with the mindset that this could be the best day ever! In our society, we don’t live in the moment as much. We find our value in how busy we are, and unfortunately living for the next thing on our calendar or popping up on our iPhones. Eventually, this rat race leads to burn out. So, this summer I want you to embrace the moment.
Set aside time to do something each day that you enjoy.
I have found that many leaders live by their calendars and to do lists. Most of the time these lists are filled with tasks that have to be done, but there is very rarely any space set aside for something that the leaders enjoy. Their focus is purely on getting the job done and moving on to the next item. If you add a time in your day, or at least set an intention, to do something that you enjoy, you are creating space for you to embrace joy in your life. You don’t have to wait for that beach vacation. For me, I set aside time each day to read and sip a cup of coffee or tea. It is so simple, but my day is much more enjoyable when I have time to focus on the joy and comfort that this activity provides. I love the time exploring a good book, or just a silly fun read, and a good cup of coffee. It is the simple pleasures that can provide a pick me up, especially when they are done with intention and focus.
Be with the people around you.
The next time you are in a restaurant or in a conference room waiting for a meeting to start, take a look around the room. How many people are looking at their phones? Are you reaching for yours? While we are living in an increasingly digitally connected world, we are losing our interpersonal connections. We have trouble focusing on the people in the room with us. We are constantly looking for new information, the latest game, the next task that needs to be completed, or just mindless scrolling. We are escaping into a digital cave that increasingly numbs our interpersonal connections. So, set your phone down and step away from the computer. Talk to your co-workers. Work on establishing authentic relationships through conversation. When you reach out and form connections at work, you increase engagement and work/life satisfaction.
Know your truth.
When you are not being who you are, it is really hard to embrace the moment. If you are trying to fit into a certain mold of what a leader, significant other, friend, co-worker etc “should be,” then it is hard to embrace the moment. You are too busy trying to anticipate your next move and worrying about how people are judging you. This is your time to define who you are and what you stand for. Once you know your vocation, values, and truth, each moment is a step in your life that should be savored. It is a step in your journey that is meant to be embraced.
Embracing the moment is more than just enjoying a vacation. Embracing the moment is being able to live as though life is an adventure, so you want to savor each detail and experience it to the fullest. Embracing the moment allows you to step away from the should do’s in life and accept where you are right now. It allows you to see each event in life as an opportunity. Embracing the moment as a leader helps you to foster a culture that supports work/life satisfaction through innovation, authenticity, and engagement. Embracing the moment isn’t just for those summer vacations growing up, it is a life long practice.