A few weeks ago, I decided to take the day off. It was a rainy Tuesday, and I wanted to wrap myself up in blankets, light every candle in my living room, and pour through old photo albums and notebooks. I was feeling mighty nostalgic, as I always do when we transition into the end of the year.
As I flipped through my 1st grade diary, it occurred to me that life moves so quickly. How is it that I could thumb through these pages that my tiny hands had touched, and they still looked so new, as if they were created just yesterday?
Life never stops moving.
After pondering the fleeting nature of time for a while, I realized something else:
1st graders are awesome!
Check out some of my 1st grade diary entries:
My diary got me thinking…
Obviously, we all want this year to be our best year yet. What if we allowed our 1st grade self to have a say?
Your 1st grade self is full of wonder, awe and excitement.
Your 1st grade self enjoys learning and exploring.
Your 1st grade self loves to play.
Wouldn’t it be nice to be more like that? Really. Wouldn’t it?
When you look back on your year at the end of the year, what will it look like…
…if you celebrated in anticipation of celebrating?
…if you were inspired all day by the rainbow you saw?
…if you decided that play was as important as pay?
…if you’d treated 2013 like it was the year to really go for it?
The following exercise will change your entire year for the better. Ready?
Take out a photo of yourself from roughly age 6-8 and put it in a prominent place. For the next week, you’ll be consulting this Little One, so you’ll want to have the photo handy. If you don’t have a photo, have a picture of her cute little self in your mind. Let’s hand her the mic for a moment…
Ask “her” each of the following questions, and write down the answer. Relax and go with the flow, here. Don’t overthink and overanalyze the answers – she’s in 1st grade, for goodness’ sake!
1. What would be really fun this year?
2. What would be really boring this year?
3. What should I pay attention to?
4. What do you need?
Being the grown-up that you are, it will be your job to find a way to listen to this wisdom and provide what’s needed. Does she want to stomp in puddles? Dance more? Spend less time on the computer? Feel loved and listened to? Stop being so self-critical and just go for it? Your responsibility is to find a way to create more of that…for “her”…for you.
For the next week, keep consulting with this Little One. She’s clever, and knows how to have fun. You can do this by consulting with her when you are feeling sad or serious, or just because you want to learn to be more like her. I find it helps to put my hand on my heart and invite in that playful energy; after all, she is me.
By the way, here’s what my Little One had to say:
When there’s a thought to stop and smell flowers, always, always do it. Walk in the rain more. Eat only delicious things and lots of colorful foods. Take a month off and go be near palm trees. Drink coconut water from coconuts, not cartons. Don’t be on the computer too much — boring. Go outside every morning. Don’t worry. Make sure you tell people how much you love them. Spend time with people you laugh around. Pet more dogs. Learn to swim for real. Dance every day.
Life is happening now, and it’s here to be savored. Every moment is precious.