By Erika Fehrenbach Prell
Gretchen Rubin coined this quote in her book The Happiness Project when reflecting on parenting her kids. Rubin was describing how tiring and, at times, endless a single day can feel when you are in the thick of parenting. Then, you look up, and BAM! A whole year has passed. You are putting away the baby toys. The snuggles and cuddles get less and less. Your son starts calling you “Bruh” instead of Mom, and “Mommy” has long been erased from the vocabulary. It’s no wonder that this quote has become so popular…it describes the parenting experience to a tee.
I find this quote popping into my head more frequently lately. My oldest son just turned 14 and is just a few weeks away from finishing the 8th grade. High School is on the close horizon, and I know those four years are going to go by in the blink of an eye. My other son is finishing up 4th grade, and I can see the beginnings of the “preteen” stage coming…I’m not “Bruh” yet but it’s close. And, Lucy is 3 already…and I just want to freeze her right where she is! Who am I kidding? I kinda want to freeze them all or slow it down just a little. Sigh. Since this is the end of school year and graduation season, I know I am not alone in this feeling.
Time is a funny thing. The younger you are, the s-l-o-w-e-r time seems to go. It takes f-o-r-e-v-e-r for your birthday, Christmas, summer break. And, the reverse happens the older you get. Then, you become a parent and you literally see time passing before you as your child learns new things and literally grows and changes before your eyes. Time marches at the same pace, yet, somehow it feels so different.
What if I could give you the gift of time? Before you start thinking I have magical powers, I don't…sorry to disappoint! Here's what I do have…3 simple tricks to change your perception of time. These tricks will boost your feelings of fulfillment in relation to where your time deposits are going.
#1 - Transform the Mundane: Wouldn’t it be great to spend all our time doing the fun adventures? But, alas, as parents, there's much more time spent chauffeuring kids from place to place, waiting for practice to get done, and evenings spent traveling to sporting events than a special family vacation. It's easy to get caught up in the busyness and mundane routine. Before you know it, the season is over. Here's a simple way to transform the mundane…infuse these tasks with gratitude. Finish this sentence, "I am grateful to…because…". For example, I am grateful to drive my son to practice because we get to spend 10 minutes together in the car to chat about his day. Gratitude helps you to be present in the moment and boost the moment from mundane to special.
#2 - Create Memories with Intention: Life is for living and enjoying everyday, not just on holidays, birthdays or vacation. Block time to spend with your kids as a family or one-on-one. It doesn't have to be a huge event…the point is time together. You could go for a walk or hike, play games, or go for a bike ride. Truthbomb…you need to be intentional in reserving this time, planning something to do, and protecting it fiercely or these opportunities, and precious time, will slip away. (And, make sure to silence those phones😉)
#3 - Practice Your Best Yes: Repeat after me, it's okay to say no. Sometimes, your best yes starts with saying no. Huh? Whenever you say yes to something, it means you are saying no to something else. To use your time to the fullest, you want to save your 'yes' for your Best Yes…depositing your time in the areas that are your priorities, bring joy to your life, and leave you feeling the most fulfilled.
The years we have with our children may continue to be faster than we like. Changing our perception of time with the benefits of gratitude, intention and our Best Yes results in being more present in the moment and feeling more fulfilled in how your time is being spent. In turn, as time goes by, even the most ordinary time deposit can transform to the most cherished moments.
✔️4 Yahoo!! Know what today is?!?
That's right…SoulShine Personal Inventory Day! Join your Inspiration Catalysts at NOON on Facebook for this week's SoulShine State of Mind.
P.S. Oh! If you don't have your copy of this Best Life tool, check the files tab located on the SoulShine DreamChaser's Academy on Facebook.
Jackie White has been writing about life and its ups and downs for many years. With a degree in Industrial Psychology and a life-long student of personal development she is intrigued by how each individual chooses to live their life. Jackie feels strongly that truly living your best life is imperative to attaining peace and fulfillment. SoulShine was borne of her desire to inspire and teach others to live their best life. This is her mission and her dream.