Hey, friends! And hellllo 2021! Boy, it feels good to have 2020 behind us. And I think I have a great quote to launch us into the new year about staying grounded in the present.
— unknown author, found on Pinterest
“Time is like a river. You can’t touch the same water twice, because the flow that has passed will never pass again. So enjoy every moment in life.”
If 2020 has taught me anything, it’s the message this quote speaks. On multiple levels. And even though this year has sucked–which I think we all can agree on–I am grateful for this lesson. Amidst all the suckiness this year brought, it has also brought me immense gratitude for what I have, personal growth, and an appreciation for the present moment.
So this quote is a perfect encapsulation of the deepest lesson I am carrying over into the new year.
I learned to not take anything for granted. What’s here in front of me now, may not be there the next day, let alone the next minute. Life can change fast in a single breath.
I also learned that you can attempt to plan your future out in excruciating detail, but because life can change at the drop of a hat, plans shouldn’t be bullet points written in stone. We have to be flexible, adaptable.
And the final thing I learned? Well, it’s just like this quote says. Enjoy every moment in life, as it’s happening. Don’t dwell on the past, and don’t fret about the future. If you spend every minute in those planes of time, you’re going to miss what’s right in front of you right now.
I got to thinking about this during the lockdown days back in March and April. I spent my days on lockdown at my parent’s home so that I could be safe outside of New York City. At first, the thought of being locked up at home with my parents for months and not back with my boyfriend in our new home in the city made me really sad. I felt heavy and heartbroken as time went on.
But then I realized something really important. When else would I get the chance to spend all this extra time with my parents? Someday, when I’m sixty years old and missing my parents, I’m going to wish I had just a few more minutes with them. And there I was, on lockdown for weeks in the same house with my parents! I could have all these extra minutes with them!
So I went on walks with my mom, crashed one of my dad’s zoom seminars for work, and spent almost every night watching TV with them. I enjoyed that extra time together and grounded myself in the present moment. It comforted me. It eased some of the anxiety I felt over living through a global pandemic and the sadness I felt from being separated from my boyfriend.
And when I eventually returned to the city, I took this lesson right with me. This may or may not be a new confession here, but I had some reservations about moving to New York City. I’m a country girl who grew up in a small town, and I’d never been to the city in my life. Ever. I hate large crowds, loud noises, and being away from nature. But I still always wanted to go ever since I was a little girl. To experience the lights, excitement, culture, and FOOD! Still, I had my reservations over living there for a few years.
But, because I’m trying to live in the present now and enjoy it, I realized: When will I ever get this chance again in my life? To live in one of the greatest cities in the world in my twenties? What an adventure that is! Just think of all the memories I’ll make in my time there!
So now I am challenging myself to stay grounded in the present. To not live in the past, nostalgic and sad, nor in the future, where I often worry about what that picture will look like and when it will get painted. No. No more of that. I’m staying right where I am, and I’m staying focused on what’s right in front of me and who’s around me. I am not taking a single second for granted. I’m choosing to be mindful of each second as it passes by and to appreciate it wholeheartedly.
So as we transition into 2021, I’m taking all of these lessons with me. I’d love for you to join me. Let’s go into this new year with the intention to stay grounded in the present, with gratitude in our hearts, and an appreciation for everything in our lives right now.
Happy New Year, my warrior friends! Sending you all love and spoonfuls of well wishes for the next 365 days to come!
Want more inspiration? Check out quotes from previous months if you missed them!