Sometimes we forget to notice and acknowledge the little things about life. The sunlight as it beams down on earth. The kindness of a stranger who’s willing to hold a door open from you. The smile that can light up your world from across the room. An unexpected check that hits your doorstep at just the right time. When you take the time to slow down your brain, it’s amazing how much we take for granted that gives us so much happiness and joy in our world.
I find as I get older I pay more attention to all of the little things adding up to a big picture of a great, thankful world I have around me. I’ll stop and acknowledge a good deed when I see it, such as tonight when I see the proactive presence the mall security are taking in our local area to keep the shopping experience safe for all families. If I receive great service at a restaurant, I’m not opposed to giving verbal compliments and a bigger tip. Even people willing to pick up after others say in a public bathroom- not because it’s merely their job, but they want to make their environment better for the next person who uses those same facilities.
We only have a finite amount of time on this land. Do you want to spend your time grumbling, moping and whining about what’s going on- or would you rather channel that energy into happiness, excitement and good times with people you love and that love you? Praise the people who are giving of their time, their experience, their philosophy and their insights. To me it doesn’t matter if someone is half my age or twice my age- I can even learn a lot about areas I need help in from children, because I recognize we all have natural talent and abilities.
We hope to teach character by following through on your obligations. Our youngest daughter learned today that my wife will pull her out of school for a doctor’s appointment- and then return her to serve out a homework detention. The message may take years to sink in- but we would be doing her a disservice if we let her slide from school obligations and consequences. Even though she has a strong idea of what career path she wants to take, we have let her know that you can’t give up on academic learning and training just because you don’t like doing it. She doesn’t lack ability- she merely lacks the internal compass or drive to want to succeed in this area for herself.
In the meantime, I’ll be spending time this weekend with my friends and extended family. We need that people energy to understand that we are unique and different, and yet can share the same experiences and points of view to not feel so solitary from within. We can share, we can laugh, we can encourage, we can be supportive. We are all doing the best that we can and striving to see even more from our children than we had ourselves.