"It’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.” –Abe Lincoln
By Eboni Elise
It’s crazy how a child can teach you about life and how to be your best self. My son recently turned 3 and in his short time on earth, he never ceases to amaze me. Watching him grow has brought on a new perspective and appreciation of life. Growing (whether physically, mentally, emotionally, etc.) comes with hardships that are necessary to reach each milestone. As I began to realize this and reflect on his life, there were 3 lessons that have been at the forefront of my mind. It’s helping me to live purposefully and live a more balanced life. I wanted to share these golden nuggets with you.
1. Be Mindful, not Mind-full. I love the innocence of my son. He is so carefree and totally lives in the HERE and NOW. Like all kids, he doesn’t care about the past and has no worries about the future. As a toddler, his growth happens soooo quickly. One moment he’s goo-goo, gah-gah-ing and the next he’s talking in complete sentences. This taught me that I need to be mindful and aware, be as fully conscious in the moment just like he is. As a working mom, I have a million things running through my brain on a daily basis. I don’t want to have a mind full of worries or be so engrossed in work or social media that I look up and realize that I’ve missed an important moment in his life. Life is too short and it’s important to enjoy every moment in time because we can’t get it back. Why waste time having a mind full of regret or stress? We can’t change anything about the past and have no control over the future, no matter how much we try to prepare for it. I’m choosing to live every day mindful of my actions, words, and being fully present in my relationships.
2. Things Happen When They Are Supposed To. If you’ve ever had to potty train, you’ll know that it takes the patience of a turtle. I tried several techniques to get my son fully potty trained by his birthday. A month ago, I thought it wouldn’t happen in time for him to be ready for pre-school. I was so frustrated and my Mother Theresa patience was about to get thrown out the window. With weeks of bribing him with stickers, candy, and other treats, I still couldn’t get him out of a pull-up but didn’t want to force it. Just when I was ready to throw in the towel, he woke up one day and went by himself. He didn’t even say anything, he just did it. Right then I realized that things happen when they are meant to, no matter what I do. Whatever I want to make successful, I just have to keep putting forth the effort and everything will fall into place when the time is right.
3. Who Cares Who’s Watching? The Queen of England could be in the room and my son will throw a tantrum, run around naked, or randomly break out into a dance like nobody's watching. He could care less. What I love most about him is that he is unapologetically himself in every moment. If he has no problem being his authentic self in front of everyone, why should I care about what someone thinks of me? What matters is what I think and feel about myself. If I’m being me, enjoying life, and not harming anyone in the process, who cares? I shouldn’t give that much power to someone else and solely relying on their opinions. I'd rather bust a move like no one’s watching!
Any life lessons you’ve learned recently? Share in the comments section below!