“Take only memories, leave only footprints.”
—Chief Seattle, Duwamish Tribe Leader & namesake of the City of Seattle
Image form Unsplash by NASA
Many of us are living simpler and more essentially these days. Taking less seems to be giving many of us more of the intrinsic things we value most.
I can recall visiting the Disney World exhibit sponsored by Kodak—the powerhouse of photography—when my kids were little. The catchy tune “Making Memories” inspired us to take a photo safari around the park, taking snapshots of us wearing the wild hats in each gift shop, without making a single purchase.
I also easily recall being glued to the TV in 1969 when man landed on the moon. Although some rocks were taken for study, the most impressive visual I recall was the astronauts jumping for joy, and of course, the many footprints they left, establishing the fact that they were there.
How would your life become even more fulfilling and meaningful if you embraced Chief Seattle’s coaching?
“Give every day the chance to become the most beautiful day of your life.”
—Mark Twain, pen name of Samuel Clemens
Image from Unsplash by Fikri Rasyid
Consider your life as a roll of bathroom tissue.
When you are born you have 1,000 sheets to use. As the days, weeks, months and years pass, you begin to notice the roll is spinning faster. Perhaps you are now closer to the end of the roll than the beginning.
Consider the idea that rather than fretting that some or even many of those sheets have been wasted or lost, you still have the opportunity to make each moment of every day something to joyfully enjoy and celebrate.
How can and will you be far more intentional about making the most of each precious and beautiful day ahead?
“The rising sun blesses my mind with joy. The setting sun blesses my heart with peace.”
—Sri Chinmoy, 20th Century Indian Spiritual Leader
Image from Unsplash by John Towner
Before electricity and the light bulb, our sun and perhaps the occasional fire influenced every aspect of life.
Sunlight was man’s alarm clock to rise and go about the day, to survive and be productive.
When the sun went down, it was time to relinquish our efforts and find safety in our homes with our family. It was time, hopefully, to settle into a peaceful and safe slumber until the sun woke us again.
How has the world — and particularly your life — changed from this simpler time? Consider the fact that we live in a world where the lights never seem to go out, even if its the dim light of your smart phone or the numbers on your alarm clock.
How much additional joy and peace might you experience if you more fully embraced a life guided further by the rising and setting of the sun?
Consider reading Waking up to the Dark – Ancient Wisdom for a Sleepless Age, by Clark Strand.
“I am more distress-avoidant than I am joy-seeking.”
—Malcolm Gladwell, Canadian journalist, Author, and public speaker
“Creative Tension” is a term coined by Robert Fritz in his book The Path of Least Resistance from the late 1980s.
Essentially, it describes the tension that exists between our perception of our current reality and our vision for the future. Fritz points to the desirable and attractive nature of a committed vision, which draw or pulls our reality closer to it.
A common example of this phenomenon is the TGIF (Thank Goodness It’s Friday) approach many people experience as they look toward the weekend. Unfortunately, this concept also applies to the less desirable future which many people experience Sunday night if the prospects of Monday morning are experienced with apathy or dread.
To what degree are you more joy-seeking than distress-avoidant in your personal and professional lives? What actions can and will you take to intentionally design more positive experiences in the days, weeks, and years ahead?
“I wish you all the joy I can wish.”
—William Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice, Act II, Scene 2
Image by Robert Collins on Unsplash
With the holiday season upon us, and the new year just ahead, Shakespeare’s wish feels quite appropriate.
Take some real time to reflect on the people, things, and experiences that bring you joy and reach out to those you love with extra hugs and the kind words we often neglect.
How and where can you share Shakespeare’s wish of joy throughout your communities this holiday season, and all year long?