Living a Little and Living a Lot
On the Importance of Deliberately Experiencing Our Lives
You’ve just stepped outside into the radiance of the day, it’s warm; not the kind that is uncomfortable or oppressive, though you wouldn’t mind it even if it was. This is the warm hug of the sun felt by all things, each glowing with their own vibrance.
I know you’ve experienced this before, in rain or shine or snow or heartbreak. Because aren’t the darker days just as beautiful as the sunny ones? Don’t we savor music of tragedy just like we celebrate with music full of energy and the joy of life?
Andre from “My Dinner with Andre” once questioned the practice of travelling to a new country to climb mount Everest just to experience something ‘real.’ Why would one go thousands of miles in a single direction to experience what something ‘real’ is like? Isn’t the subway of New York City just as real as Everest? Isn’t there a uniform magic to life as it is?
Let’s destroy the buzz word of “living in the moment.” My eyes are already starting to roll onto the floor typing this out. There is buzz and there is a truth of the human condition.
The truth is our brain is designed to weed out 99% of the details we see every day. It does this because if we were completely aware of everything around us, we would likely lose our minds. This mechanism is geared to help us, but in this world of busyness and distractions, it’s come to hinder us.
That’s why these moments happen, these experiences that seem to stand out in our days, or even our weeks or months. Because they are an escape from the past and future. An escape from the constant hustle of our to-dos and our obligations.
An escape from work into living.
Maybe we weren’t meant to go to work and do one boring job for 8 hours. Maybe we weren’t meant to find someone who can tolerate us and marry them because that’s what everyone is telling us to do.
Maybe we were supposed to live in those moments, to BE as those moments, maybe that’s supposed to be the default.
On my deathbed, I don’t think I’ll care about the reports I sent out, the arguments I had with a co-worker, the spreadsheets. I think I’ll remember those moments of clarity as they were, moments that tapped into what life was about — vividly experiencing the joy and gratitude of being alive.
We could all do with some more gratitude.
Look up. Look deeply. Look Often.