Do you have precious people in your life? I do. Lots of them.
I have a myriad of friends and family I admire for a wide variety of different reasons. Feel a connection with for a wide variety of different reasons. Enjoy spending time with for a wide variety of different reasons.
Some of these people have been in my life for a while, others are fairly new additions. Yet, most of them have become part of the scenery. Part of the life I take for granted.
By that I mean that when I spend time with them, I’m not always completely present. My mind is engaged in things that preoccupy me that day. Nor do I always make the most out of a meeting. I get lazy. I settle for coffee with someone when I could be having an adventure with them.
Get me right — sometimes coffee is all you want. All you need. Or hot chocolate. Or wine. You know, sitting talking, looking someone in the eye. Really being there. Connecting with them. Exchanging ideas. Feeling their soul next to you. But there are times when you could go out there and experience life with someone. Partake in activities that blow your mind, or engage your creative spirit, or make you laugh till you topple over, or tickle your senses, or stir up your adventurous side, or let out the playful side of you, or…whatever it is you desire to experience with that person (what do you desire to experience?).
In short, I think there are times when we forget to live and times when we forget to truly connect with the person next to us. See them. Feel them.
When we go new places, or meet new people, they awaken our senses, but it’s temporary. Soon we become used to the landscape and the people. The temporary high fades away. We become complacent. Settle into routines, that aren’t as much healthy routines as they are lazy habits. It’s not the routines we desire, but the ones we ended up with. That exciting new bar is now our local bar. That exciting new restaurant is now the only restaurant we go to. That exciting new person is now just another friend of ours.
As the landscape and people become familiar, we forget to truly see them and feel them — experience them — because we’ve become used to them. We make the assumption we already know what they look and feel like. We grow numb. What’s worse: we no longer seek new people and experiences. We’ve become lazy. Forgotten we even can seek out new experiences in a familiar landscape.
I wrote a whole feature film script about this and, still, sometimes I forget to live. What’s worse, I forget to experience those around me.
For example, I get so caught up in worry about my child that I talk non-stop about her doing her homework, cleaning her bedroom, being nice to people, etc. I don’t truly experience her. I don’t really sit with her and feel into what she’s feeling. Instead, I’m caught up in trying to control her because I fear being raised in a township has left her with little morals and no drive. Control is my go-to habit. My autopilot switching on. I’m no longer present. I’m caught in fear. And I act in ways to try to resolve that fear. My way of resolving it is by enforcing control. But it’s not getting me the results I desire. Instead, it’s disrupting my life.
When fear, nervousness, panic…whatever you like to call it, kicks in, we’re rarely present to life, or the people in it. We just act in ways we think we should act, or whatever way resolves our tension (fear/discomfort/pain) the fastest. Be that swallowing a painkiller, acting clown, hiding away, eating candy, or enforcing control.
You don’t know what makes another person feel loved until you ask them. You don’t know what will help them until you ask them. You don’t know what adventures they want to go on with you until you ask them. Until you’re present with them. Feel them. Truly feel them.
We make assumptions. We make assumptions about how to handle people and situations. We even make assumptions about how we will feel when entering a certain situation instead of asking ourselves how we’d like to feel and what we need to do to feel that way? We make assumptions about how to handle our own life. We make assumptions about how the day will be and how people will react. We make assumptions about how the coffee will taste, so we don’t even bother tasting it. We’ve had it before. So we just drink it. On autopilot. We make so many assumptions about life we forget to live.
Be present. Experience your day. Experience yourself. Experience people.
Ask yourself what you’d like to feel and experience, instead of making assumptions about how you will feel and what you’ll experience. See the opportunities instead of hiding in the habits.
Experience the people in your life. Ask them questions instead of making the assumption that you know them. People change. People need to be experienced daily. Even just reminding yourself that the time you have with every single person is limited, will help you remember to experience them. To be fully present with them.
I bet if you know me, you make assumptions about what I feel. You make assumptions about what I think about you. You make assumptions about what I want to experience with you. Don’t. Ask me. And don’t assume that I know what you want to experience with me. What you like about me. I don’t. Because you’re constantly changing. I’m constantly changing. And we need to get to know each other every time we meet. Experience each other every time we meet. Get naked with one another every time we meet. Metaphorically speaking.
Life’s an experience, but to experience it, you have to become present to it.
Dizzy blonde, over and out.
Image Source: https://za.pinterest.com/pin/507780926726563154/