Like me, I’m sure you’re familiar with the saying, Stop and Smell the Roses, that’s actually attributed to pro golfing legend Walter Hagen in his 1956 book, The Walter Hagen Story.
His actual verbiage is, “You’re only here for a short visit. Don’t hurry, don’t worry. And be sure to smell the flowers along the way. ”
Few days pass for any of us when we’re not reminded either personally or through the news of just how short our visit (life) actually is for any of us.
We instinctively know the importance of “making time” for ourselves to not only recharge and rejuvenate, but in slowing down from the frenetic pace our culture has become so accustomed. Although we desire to make the time, we simply get caught up in the “doing” of activities instead of simply throttling down and just “being” in the moment.
By not taking this time for ourselves, we become more stressed, more agitated, more angry, more detached, more dissatisfied, and ultimately more unhappy.
When you find yourself on the out of control roller coaster of life and feeling any of these emotional warning signs, take a moment to review these 3 Steps…
- Hit the “pause” button and take 3 deep breaths. Take a moment to actually center yourself and become fully aware of your state of being. See how the anxiousness of the past or some perceived future is spinning and spiraling your world out of control. Get present, close your eyes, center yourself, and take 3 deep breaths to recalibrate and re-center yourself.
- Make yourself a priority. Flight attendants remind us that in the event of an emergency an oxygen mask will drop from the ceiling. We are told to place ours on first before attempting to help anyone else. This is a great reminder that we’re never good for anyone else if we’re not good for ourselves first.
- Create a gratitude habit. Find a daily routine that encourages you to slow down and see the forest through the trees. The goal is to get present in any given moment whether you’re at home, work, or running daily errands. Here are a few that I enjoy doing that I suggest you try too: (1) Write a note of gratitude for your spouse, partner, family member, friend or colleague letting them know how much they mean to you or for something they did to make you feel loved or appreciated, (2) Pay it forward in the drive-through by purchasing a beverage for the person in the car behind you, (3) Take 5-10 minutes in the morning for a walking meditation outdoors (great in rain or shine) and/or for quiet contemplation that has you recognize your amazing greatness and unique gifts you possess to bring to the world.
Each of us has 86,400 seconds every day in which to “choose” how we’re going to show up. Be cognizant and aware that you have the power to disengage the autopilot and take back control of how life unfolds. Make the choice to own your clock and calendar to schedule time daily to smell the sweet flowers that are all around us.